Self hosting – Act 1

We have more and more communication media (pc, laptop, smartphone, tablets) and being able to synchronize everything quickly becomes mandatory. Tools like the Google suite for example (Gmail, calendar, contacts, etc.) are therefore very practical to use. But then at least two problems arise: the dependence on tools that can close from one day to the next (see Google services which stop quite abruptly, the latest example Reader ) as well as the question around this which is made of our private data. This is where self-hosting can be a solution.

The machine and the OS for self-hosting

I had wanted to take the plunge for a while. I have just started with the purchase of a station under Ubuntu which will act as a home server. I hesitated a lot about this purchase, I decided to go with a Shuttle XS35 with Atom processor. I wanted a compact machine (already busy office) and low consumption (designed to run 7/7 and 24/24). In addition, it is a fanless machine and therefore extremely quiet.

Once the machine at home, I left on Ubuntu 12.10 (latest version).
But I had a lot of freeze problems (only the mouse cursor moved, everything else was frozen, usually when launching an application that could be Firefox or the software library, for example). Suddenly, I changed my tune and I left on an installation of Ubuntu 12.04. In addition, it is an LTS (Long Term Support) version which will be maintained for five years, i.e. until April 2017, which leaves time to see what is coming.

The first facilities

Once the machine is installed with a stable OS, we now need to install the web server, which will be a LAMP (Linux, Apache, MySQL, PHP/Perl).
You can do it in one line:

sudo apt-get install lamp-server^

Be careful, the final ^ is important. During installation, you will be asked to enter the mysql administrator password.

Next, let’s install PHP5 with the most commonly used modules (gd for image processing, mysql, curl, PHP command line, CGIs and the development module):

sudo apt-get install php5 php5-gd php5-mysql php5-curl php5-cli php5-cgi php5-dev

The web server is now operational.
A launch of the url allows you to check it, “It works”! ? Another essential in standard installation, PhpMyAdmin:

sudo apt-get install phpmyadmin

Normally, phpMyAdmin should be accessible by the url If this is not the case (like on my post), just create a symbolic link from the phpmyadmin installation directory (/usr/share/phpmyadmin) to the /var/www web directory:

sudo ln -sf /usr/share/phpmyadmin/ /var/www/phpmyadmin

Finally, the last step for this first series of installation for me is the installation of OwnCloud by following the commands in this link .

This is one of the products that prompted me to try the experience of self-hosting.
Because on paper, the product now seems mature. With the ability to manage and synchronize files, contacts, calendar, photos… All with Windows, Android, iOS clients. And the ability to share files with friends or family. In short, it seems to correspond to what I am looking for. Now remains to be seen in practice the speed and ease of use. This is the subject of the self-hosting – act 2 .

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