Free private server cloud email collaboration
Current time: 09-20-2018, 07:01 PM
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Author: LiviuM
Last Post: LiviuM
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[How To] Free private server cloud email collaboration

I've spent this year some time, all my time :), learning and working with linux and all that stuff.
After trying various options I finally have some conclusions and I believe it's worth mentioning those here.
So this thread is about what options are there for a small company server (less than 50 users, document management, file sharing, email, ftp, http, webdav, data backup, revision history and web access to documents pc tablet mobile browser).
All software mentioned is free for commercial use, you pay for hardware (if required), know-how if needed, internet and electric power.

Router: OPNSense or pfSense (BSD based, both work very well and are the most stable OS I've ever seen in my life) OPNSense has PPTP which is the most supported and easy to setup VPN option. The have proxy server as well as filtering options.

Server (alternative to Windows Server primary domain controller (PDC) and email server): Zentyal (Ubuntu based) or ClearOS (CentOS based) or UCS Univention Corporate Server (it's a click to install solution, it has Agorum and Open-Xchange)

Cloud like file sharing: OwnCloud (Nextcloud) or Seafile or Pydio

Project Collaboration (alternative to Microsoft SharePoint): Alfresco or Agorum Core

Storage: preferably ZFS, can be on main server Zentyal or ClearOS or a different machine running FreeNAS or whatever alternative, don't use Btrfs it's still under development.

Virtual machine hypervisor: VirtualBox on Linux main server or Proxmox on baremetal.

Remote desktop connection in browser: Guacamole

Computer inventory and software deployment: GLPI (has some sort of project management) or OCS INVENTORY-NG

Not working yet: BIMserver

To consider:
Open-Xchange (collaboration)

Minimum setup: one computer with 16-64 GB ram running Proxmox and multiple vm (virtual machines) and lxc (linux containers).
Zentyal doesn't run in linux container but Owncloud, Alfresco, GLPI will.

Recommended minimum setup:
a) 3 independent computers: router (pfSense), storage (NAS), server (Zentyal+Agorum+OwnCloud). And a backup pc running proxmox with all 3 roles in vm.
b) 2 computers running Proxmox as nodes having 3 vms the router, server and storage.

What to expect: hardware failure (processor, hdd, mainboard, PSU, networkcard, UPS) for all and software failure for the server (Zentyal, Agorum, OwnCloud).
ClearOS proved to be more stable, most issues happen due to Tomcat server needed for Alfresco or Agorum.

Alternatives to Proxmox: vMware vSphere and XenServer (sadly have various limitations)

To compare let's say entry level Synology or qNap (Atom, 2gb ram, 4x1GB nic) is about 700$ up to 2000$ the system only, no hdd, can run 0 win 7 vms.

VS very powerful and cheap old hardware on ebay:

Mellanox ConnectX-2 10Gigabit NIC 10GBe 30$
3m SFP Cisco Cable 20$
Refurbished switch Quanta LB4M 10GB 48x1GB + 2x10GB SFP+ 120$ (in case the existing switch doesn't have SFP+)
Chenbro 1U 2x Xeon Eight Core E5-2650 64GB (can run 12 win7 vms) 400$
Chenbro 1U 2x Xeon Eight Core E5-2650 128GB (has 16 cores and can run 20 win7 vms) 650$

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For the router I'm thinking to try this one:
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So if you know of other products and you're satisfied please share.

Enjoy and ask me if you need further information.
With so many doctors there's nobody sick in this world.
[-] The following 6 users say Thank You to LiviuM for this post:
  • oanm2000, malc, joker™, cace-01, Dell_Brett, bigone

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