In terms of file hosting only, DigitalOcean’s 640GB SSD Disk at $640 / mo is a very expensive service compared with Dropbox’s monthly fees of $9.99 for 1 TB of space.
I believe however that DigitalOcean prices will go down faster of a per GB basis than Dropbox will ever do for the cheaper plans.
Hosting in the cloud
I set up a Droplet on DigitalOcean for two reasons: they claim a 99.99% Uptime SLA and they have a few datacenters in Europe. The cheapest plan is about enough for personal use: 512MB Memory, 1 Core Processor, 20 GB SSD Disk and 1 TB Transfer by $ 5 / mo.
You can choose an Ubuntu image and and connect to it via terminal with your ssh keys.
The one issue with Owncloud is that they do not provide a simple client syncing installation for Ubuntu. Apparently the open source community are not interested in maintining one. Instead there is an OpenSUSE installation package that does the job.
Owncloud’s with a minimalist default theme is clean and simple. The features of the apps are all core and even the developed and maintained by 3rd parties work as expected. You may miss some of the advanced bells-and-whistles of your original applications.
Setup your DNS at your domain registrar by setting an A record pointing to the IP address of your droplet. I did so for an ad-hoc subdomain: whatever.domain.com.
Securing your connection with SSL certificates
Configure your server to require using HTTPS. This is probably the geekiest bit of the migration process. Purchase a Comodo certificate from Namecheap and upload the .crt and .key files to DigitalOcean.
You will want to force https on browsing clients. I tried, and failed, setting up the redirections from http to https, so I configured the .htaccess file instead at /var/www/owncloud/.htaccess
Client-server software for file storage
Install Owncloud by clicking on “One-click apps”. As an admin you can install and enable the apps that you want. As a user you have to import data like feeds on .opml from your reader, your .iCal for your calendar, etc.
Client Owncloud for your local computer
As per https://doc.owncloud.org/desktop/1.6/installing-linux.html#installing-linux
(datadirectory => /var/www/html/owncloud/data)
(datadirectory => /home/owncloud)
location by editing:
Update your home Dynamic DNS
$ sudo /usr/local/bin/noip2 -C
Auto configuration for Linux client of no-ip.com.
Multiple network devices have been detected.
Please select the Internet interface from this list.
By typing the number associated with it.
Please enter the login/email string for no-ip.com email@example.com
Please enter the password for user firstname.lastname@example.org **********
Only one host [subdomain.domain.tld] is registered to this account.
It will be used.
Please enter an update interval: 30
Do you wish to run something at successful update?[N] (y/N) y
Please enter the script/program name startnoip
New configuration file ‘/usr/local/etc/no-ip2.conf’ created.
The apps on the cloud
The star application of Owncloud. Unfortunately, there are not specific installation packages of Owncloud client for Ubuntu 14.04 and newer. Owncloud suggests using OpenSUSE’s packages, which happen to do the job just fine.
Note taking and archiving
I did not find the Notes app capable of replicating even the most basic features of Evernote. If you are curious how it would work for you, export your content on Evernote as .html files and import them into OwnNote. You need to set up your syncing intervals with crontab directly on the server.
Warning 1: You cannot import the tags or categories from Evernote
Warning 2: You will miss a search engine for your notes!
Export your feeds from Netvibes as .opml and import them into the News app. Setup the cron job with the command crontab. You will enjoy a cleaner interface than Netvibes. You will also be able to focus on the text rather than the images as in Flipboard, etc.
A nice surprise: Gpxpod, a cool app to read and compare your .gpx files. It is a simpler alternative to Sports-tracker.com
$ python -V
$ sudo apt-get install python-pip
$ sudo pip install gpxpy
$ sudo pip install geojson
I am yet to convert my .ics to .iCal file in order to import it into the app
Music streaming, gallery of pictures
Nice-to-have apps that work out of the box and do what they claim on the tin.
This is one cloud service that I will not move out of Pinboard.in.
I would love to have a Wallabag-like self hostable application for saving web pages. Also Airdroid for connecting to portable devices on own’s one LAN via Wi-Fi.
I hope that IFTTT integrates owncloud servers in its catalogue of recipes.
SEMrush and Searchmetrics are two well-know Data As A Service vendors in the search marketing community.
Many projects of SEO, SEM and social networks require research and monitoring. The pricing of both Searchmetrics and SEMrush is similar: monthly recurring fees for around $100 for basic features.
Now, one of the key features of these services are providing data about search keywords on the major search engines (Google) in the largest markets.
The data of keywords are typically used to understand the reach and depth of search engine positioning of websites. This in turns allow to map these websites in their category and in relative terms to their competitors.
Benchmark and methodology
In order to evaluate the quality and relevancy of data available at SEMrush and Searchmetrics.
Spearman’s rank correlation coefficient
It assesses how well the relationship between two ordinal variables.
I found out that all bicycles with gears have a single Aquilles heel. The rear mech hanger of my Ridgeback Meteor has a crack. It is unsafe to ride the bike. The piece is made of aluminium.
The store where I bought the bike in London (Evanscycle) cannot locate its reference. Ridgeback does not does not provide the information online nor answer to emails enquiring about the hanger.
I ordered a gear mech derailler hanger on ebay to a French merchant, Alpine Bikers. They do not answer to questions on ebay but they do ship spares made of aluminium.
If you think of the hanger as having the shape of a seahorse, the replacement piece has a mouth a bit too long. It cannot be attached to the frame for that reason. My local key-maker trimmed some 2 mm off the piece and the trick work: my bike is on the road again.
This is the result and how it fitted back in its place.
There are protectors of derailleurs available that are worth considering for all-terrain bicycles. It you attach one protector to your bike, leave one of its two holes without screw; this way it still protects the derailleur from direct lateral impacts but it would break or twist where one of the screws is missing thus preventing further damage to the frame, which would be fatal to the bicicycle.