Installing and testing Nextcloud


You don't necessarily have to open your browser in order to access the Nextcloud installation. Network capable file managers such as Files (previously Nautilus) in Gnome or the KDE file manager Dolphin, can open the cloud storage platform with WebDAV. In order to use the file manager, open the address line with [Ctrl]+[L] and enter the URL of a file such as davs://<>/nextcloud/remote.php/webdav. In Dolphin, replace the protocol component at the beginning of the URL with webbdavs://.

Dropbox is a commercial program that lets you synchronize and edit files and folders between connected computers. You can manage your Nextcloud data in the same way, but you first need a client program. Presently, Nextcloud offers a free Android app available via both the Google Play Store [8] and the open source app store F-Droid[9]. Both are in the Beta testing phase. There are also versions available for iOS and Windows phones.

Desktop Users can download clients for Windows, 7, 8 and 10 and OS X 10.9 onwards from the NextCloud website. There's a dedicated PPA for Ubuntu & Debian to download the Linux Nextcloud client. Other distros such as openSUSE, Tumbleweed, Archlinux and Fedora have their own client packages. The source code is also available from the Nextcloud website if you prefer to compile the client yourself.

When installing the client, enter the URL https://<>/nextcloud as the server address. After this follow the instructions in the installation assistant. Set your data directory to your ~/Nextcloud folder. Once installation is complete, the client copies the data currently stored on the server to the directory that has been selected. If you copy additional data to this server, It will automatically save in Nextcloud.

The Nextcloud app for Android looks very much like the ownCloud original except that it has a different color scheme (Figure 6). Unlike the ownCloud app, the Nextcloud version is free of charge. If you prefer to use the Owncloud app on your mobile device [10] this should work with your Nextcloud server but you'll need either to pay 0.79 Euro cents to install it or download the free version from F-Droid.

Figure 7: Install the official Nextcloud client free of charge from either the Google Play Store or F-Droid.


Nextcloud still bears a close resemblance to its predecessor Owncloud. As such it's easy for beginners to work with both the original and the fork. However, since there are many developers now working on Nextcloud, it would be a fair guess that it will probably undergo more improvements. The first new features to appear might include audio and video chats with the software. It remains to be seen how ownCloud will fare in comparison to Nextcloud, or whether it will suffer a fate similar to that of OpenOffice.

Nextcloud runs on the Raspberry Pi. However, you probably shouldn't let hoards of users loose on a Nextcloud Raspberry Pi. The limited data throughput capabilities on the mini computer remain the biggest obstacle. This is due to the fact that the USB ports and the network interface share an internal USB port thus keeping the data rate that can be realistically achieved lower than a 100 Mbit/s network.

Listing 11

Editing config.php

$ sudo apt install php5-apcu
$ sudo nano /var/www/nextcloud/config/config.php
$ sudo cat /var/www/nextcloud/config/config.php
  'installed' => true,
  'memcache.local' => '\OC\Memcache\APCu',

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