Today’s how To BurnWorld Guide is all about creating your own cloud space at home. The purpose of cloud computing is to access to your files remotely. It also allows you to upload, share, and stream content. And, many popular solutions for cloud storage exist on the web (such as Dropbox and Google Drive). Yet, these programs may not suit you. Perhaps you’re concerned with security risks. For instance, Dropbox was recently hacked. Perhaps you haven’t found a cloud service provider whose Terms of Service you entirely agree with. Some providers use their license to use your content stored on their servers. Perhaps you simply don’t want to pay a third party for cloud computing. Or, maybe you just want to see if you have the technical know how to set up your own cloud storage system. Without further adieu, let’s explore this new BurnWorld guide: How to Build Your Own Cloud Storage System.
How to Build Your Own Cloud Storage System
The good news is that it’s extremely easy to do set up a personal cloud system; all you will need is an Internet connection, a spare PC (as in, an old PC you no longer use), and some free software. Let’s walk through the necessary steps, then.
1. Choose your software
Plenty of affordable options exist online to turn your PC into a cloud server. Check out our list at the bottom of this post. Then, select one that’s suited for your needs and budget. Finally, download and install the software. It’s that easy!
2. Tailor the experience
Most programs require you to sign up for an account and then log in. On Tonido, for instance, you name your account and this becomes a part of the URL address that provides access to your very own cloud server. Make sure you allow the program to bypass your computer’s firewall. Let it run in the background at all times if you want permanent access to your cloud server.
3. Adjust the Power Options
Your cloud computer will now acting as a server. Make sure you adjust its Power Options from the Control Panel. Opt for High Performance. Then, go to “Change plan settings,” and “Change advanced power settings.” You’ll want your display and hard-disk to go into sleep mode when you’re not actively using the computer.
4. Access your PC-turned-server
You can now access this personal cloud server by visiting the URL provided by the cloud server software you installed. This URL should be accessible from any device or computer connected to the Internet. Upload files via cablesless file transfer, stream music and video, use your cloud server from a mobile device. The features are all yours to take full advantage of!
Software for Turning Your PC Into a Cloud Server
The list below is not meant to be exhaustive; it’s simply a rundown of some of the more popular solutions on the Internet. Any of these programs will help you turn your computer into a cloud server. Check them out. Then, select the one that best suits you.
This is a cloud solution that targets home users. All you need to do is download their application onto all the computers you plan on using as cloud servers and start sharing. You can also access your own cloud server remotely via the Pogoplug online interface. You can buy dedicated devices to keep running 24/7 at home much like a regular server would. Allowing other users to upload files to your server requires paid access (which costs $30).
Tonido comes in a very simple downloadable app. It also includes extra perks such as music and video streaming. Tonido works on smartphones, other mobile devices, and all the major operating systems (Windows, OS X and Linux). The premium version, which allows others to upload files to your server, costs $30.
The cool thing about OpenStack is that, as the name suggests, it’s open source. The less stellar aspect is that it requires ongoing maintenance and can be a bit complex for simple cloud server purposes. If you’re simply looking for an alternative to Dropbox, OpenStack is good; otherwise, you’d be better off choosing Tonido or Pogoplug.
The ownCloud Server software is extremely easy to install, especially if you opt for the web installer. All you need to do is upload a file to your web host of choice. The web host will also provide you with a domain name. However, this name must be compatible with PHP5 or MySQL (or SQLite). You’ll also need a remote access URL. ownCloud allows you to use the domain name provided by the web host or purchase one.
The Windows Homegroup/Network Feature
Although Windows stopped producing Windows Home Server in 2011, it’s easier than ever to set up a file server with Windows 8. There’s a Storage Spaces feature in this new edition of Windows. To use it, you simply need to attach a disk drive (internal or external), create a storage pool, and divide it into one or several storage spaces. You can share these spaces both from PCs which run Windows 8, as well as from those running on Windows 8. Simply create a shared Library, or add the Storage Spaces you want to share via HomeGroup to an existing Library. Please note that this won’t work with Windows Vista and XP.