Pydio is a free cloud solution

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Most cloud solutions for small networks are based on ownCloud or, less frequently, Seafile. Pydio is the third open source product trying to gain a foothold as a cloud solution.

Most users only know about products like ownCloud and Seafile when the subject of local cloud solutions comes up. Pydio [1] has been scraping by like a wallflower, unnoticed by many. Even so, this software, like the more familiar solutions, has been under development for a considerable period of time, and it is based on similar underlying concepts.

Previously known as AjaXplorer, this product, which has intuitive operation via the web browser, is looking to win over small- and mid-sized working groups who are trying to figure out whether it is a good idea to use centralized data storage in the cloud.


Preconditions for using a Pydio server include installation of a web server and database system. For purposes of testing, Pydio can be operated with out a database backend. However, the developers recommend explicitly that the user set up a database management system (DBMS) solution. Therefore it is a good idea to use an Apache web server, a MySQL database, and PHP. The Pydio server is written in PHP and also supports PostgreSQL and SQLite as a database backend. Additionally, the server can interact with other web servers such as NGINX and lighttpd. Using these two servers is far less well documented however, thus making configuration difficult especially for beginners.

The Pydio project provides its server in the form of a usable, distribution-independent tarball and as a ZIP archive. The project also has various packages for RPM- and DEB-based Linux distributions. The website contains a short set of instructions for installing the cloud server under diverse distributions. There are also instructions for integrating the Pydio package sources in the user's Linux system [2].

Installing on Ubuntu 14.xx

If you are using an older version of Ubuntu or Linux Mint all you have to do is to include the relevant repository into the /etc/apt/sources.list file. Working from the terminal in a text editor, open this file with root rights and add the line from Listing 1 at the end of the file. After saving the modified file, import the public key. Then update the package list and install the cloud software. The installation routine automatically resolves the necessary dependencies (Listing 2).

Listing 1

Adding the Repository

deb jessie-backports main

Listing 2

Importing the Public Key

$ wget -qO - | sudo apt-key add -
$ sudo apt update
$ sudo apt install pydio mysql-server php5-mysql

Pydio installs both the Apache web server and PHP 5 at the same time. Additionally, the user should have the package manager install the MySQL server and the interface for PHP. At this point, the user should also set a special root password for the database.

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