Tonido Personal Cloud
Tonido is a self-hosted personal cloud, that squares off against products like Go To My PC, and DropBox. It leverages your existing hardware, file system and internet to give you access to your files anywhere.
When the folks at Tonido say anywhere, they truly mean anywhere. The built in web interface is quite powerful, and so far in my tests has been accessible even across multiple internet providers, and cellphone data providers. Having said that, you will need to know how to port forward. Setup is relatively easy otherwise, a simple setup file walks you through the entire process and even adds firewall rules if you happen to be using a server setup. Add the built-in permissions and ability to add users, and you have one amazingly powerful personal cloud.
Does it work?
Yes. Tonido does a great job of doing exactly what the set out to do. File access from the web is a breeze. They set you up with a sub-domain and route it directly to your machine. Now, here’s the first caveat; each machine you want to access will have a different setup, and a different name. Depending on your use case, this could be a good thing. If you’re an advanced user (which chances are if you’re reading this, you are) you can get around this by using mounted network drives. With the personal use edition, you are limited to a single log in and password. This can put somewhat of a damper on things if you’re using this for your household. Again, there are ways around this, by sharing folders and adding guest accounts. Sharing permissions also include an expiration date if you want. Tonido also has a sync application, so that you can use it like OneDrive and DropBox. Keep in mind though, your data is only as safe as the machine you install the software on. If you’re using a surplus hard drive with no RAID or data redundancy, you’re asking to lose data. Sync Folders for the most part work well. Sometimes though the Sync Folder doesn’t actually show up in certain programs as a direct “save to” option. You can get around this by saving to the desktop and then dropping it in manually to the Sync Folder, however this does get annoying at times.
The low down
Tonido is a great FREE self-hosted cloud solution. I’ve added it into my own arsenal of self-hosted services. Applications are available on iOS, Android and even Windows Phone to access your Tonido cloud from anywhere. Setup was easy, quick, and their interface is easy to use. Tonido gets a B. They lose some points for the Sync Folder issues noted above, and at time of writing their Ubuntu Sync Folder app does not work, it will install, but fail to load. After 10+ hours of research, trial and error, I was unable to find a solution. Hopefully in the future this will be fixed. Until then, happy computing!
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