5 best on-premises cloud storage options

You don't have to depend solely on third-party cloud storage solutions. Deploy one of these on-premises tools for your own, in-house cloud.

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Image: Jack Wallen

Does your business rely on cloud storage? If so, do you outsource that to various third-parties? Would you like to be able to at least have some of your cloud offerings in house? You can. How? There are a number of viable on-premises cloud storage options available.

Let's take a look at five of the best on the market. (Note: This article about the five best on-premises cloud storage is available as a free PDF download.)

SEE: Serverless computing: A guide for IT leaders (Tech Pro Research)

Nextcloud

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Nextcloud is, hands down, the single best on-premises cloud solution you will find. Not only can Nextcloud serve as your personal private cloud solution, it is perfectly at home in the enterprise. What makes Nextcloud so special is the ability to easily extend its feature set, with the help of the Nextcloud App Store. Install apps for productivity, multimedia, monitoring, social & communication, calendaring, encryption, data sync/share, two-factor authentication, Outlook integration, and so much more. Even without installing apps from the App Store, Nextcloud can serve as a power cloud storage solution with file sharing, unlimited storage, large file support, mobile clients for Android and iOS, auto upload for images and video, and more. And for those who work on an LDAP-enabled network, Nextcloud seamlessly integrates with your existing directory. Nextcloud is free to install and use. If you're a business, and need support, you can purchase a Nextcloud plan online

ownCloud

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ownCloud is that which spawned Nextcloud. ownCloud is equally as capable as a cloud storage server platform, which can meet and exceed your company needs. ownCloud features an MS Outlook plugin, data sync/share, versioning, encryption, drag-and-drop upload, theming, application APIs, migration, and back up, and much more. ownCloud also offers a specific ownCloud enterprise edition that includes all the features found in the standard version, plus workflows, file firewall, Oracle DB support, MS Sharepoint integration, Windows Network Drive integration, Ransomware protection, branding, and more.

Seafile

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Seafile is a solid, cloud-based file sync and team collaboration tool that can be deployed in-house on any existing Linux server. The Seafile feature set includes file syncing, built-in file encryption, collaboration, group libraries, automatic file conflict resolution, a powerful sharing system, and more. Seafile is cross-platform with desktop clients available for Windows, macOS, and Linux and also includes mobile apps for Android and iOS. For enterprise usage, Seafile does offer a Pro license, which adds features like file locking, fine-grained folder permissions, MS Office file online preview, LDAP/AD support, single sign on with ADFS, role-based account management, audit log, antivirus integration, scalability and high availability, and much more. Find out more about the pricing here: Seafile Pro edition information.

Pydio Cells

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Pydio Cells takes a different approach to cloud-based file storage and sharing. With this solution, users can create top-level, personal folders, which allow them to organize their data. Within those top-level folders, collaborative cells can be added, where data can be easily shared with other users. Pydio Cells also includes a powerful global search tool, in-app messaging, global security rules, easy scalability, team management, versioning, encryption, security policies, collaboration tools, web and mobile access, a powerful admin dashboard, and much more. Pydio Cells offers a community edition for free but also has an Enterprise edition, which includes all the features found in the community edition, and adds the likes of advanced sharing and authentication, high availability, and enterprise-compliant security. For more information on Enterprise pricing, visit this version matrix.

Syncthing

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Syncthing is a bit different, instead of being hosted on a server, it turns your desktop into a local cloud for your mobile device. In other words, you only want Syncthing as a solution to sync files between your smartphone and your desktop. That's a limited feature set, but Syncthing does a great job with this task. This is especially handy when you have specific files you don't want stored on a public cloud service. Syncthing works on nearly every platform imaginable and can sync between a single desktop and multiple mobile devices. Syncthing is secure (using encryption and strong cryptographic certificates) and offers a web-based GUI for configuration and monitoring. Best of all, Syncthing is incredibly easy to install and use. For anyone who runs a small business out of their home, this might be the one missing cloud storage piece you've been looking for. Syncthing is open source and free to use.

Take Your Pick

And there you have it, five outstanding on-premises cloud storage platforms that are ready to meet and/or exceed the needs of both individuals and companies of all sizes. Deploy one of these services and stop relying solely on third-party solutions.

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By Jack Wallen

Jack Wallen is an award-winning writer for TechRepublic and Linux.com. He’s an avid promoter of open source and the voice of The Android Expert. For more news about Jack Wallen, visit his website jackwallen.com.