Central Data-Hub and degoogling my life

Hi folks

I made the decision to degoogle my life a year ago and am slowly replacing all google apps until I am ready for the final step: getting rid of android and install graphene OS on my new phone (propably by the end of the year) :sweat_smile:

The app I am currently trying to replace will propably be the hardest one for me: Google Photos. Pretty sure, I am overcomplicating this, but it seems to be the perfect opportunity, to get rid of a few service providers and make a bigger step into self hosting and getting back ownership over my own data.
I am trying to figure out what fits my needs the best, but due to a lack of knowledge, I am realizing, that your pointers at the start of this project will propably save me a lot of trial and error. So here I am asking for your help - and therefore also: thanks in advance for all ideas and support you are willing to share and provide :smiling_face_with_three_hearts:

What I currently use:

I currently use my OnePlus 8 Pro with its version of Android as my daily driver.
I use a Windows PC with a 8TB SSD for all my Documents and Media and I have the same 8TB SSD mounted on a Raspberry PI on which I run OpenMediaVault.

The 8TB SSD on my PC and on the Raspberry are “manually mirrored”. Obviously this should be done better with an automatic raid, but more about that in the next chapter :wink:

In the future I plan to use a Pixel Phone with Graphene OS and maybee also a Linux PC in addition to my Windows Laptop.

What I want to achieve:

  • I am looking for a solution to store all my data in a centralized place. This includes stuff I do on my PC as well as Pictures I take or are sent to my on my phone.
  • The solution should be mirrored in order to prevent data loss. I assume the best way would be to have a central “hub” where my PC synches its Drive regularely.
  • The solution should allow me to backup all my data on my Mobile. For me this means: all new pictures and videos I save on my Phone will automatically be uploaded and backed up; all pictures and videos I delete on my Phone are automatically deleted from the central hub; when connected to the hub, I will be able to see older saved pictures without downloading them to the phone (because the phone will not have enough storage…).
  • I would love to have a solution which protects me from unintentionally deleting files. I feel like a “bin” like in Google Photos or on Windows should do the job for that.
  • I still need to be able to stream media to other devides in the same network. E.g. to see stored films on my SmartTV. Therefore I need something like MiniDLNA which I am using at the moment. There might be better solutions tho…
  • The solution shall stay scalable. In the future I might need to add a nother SSD to increase my storage and that should also be easy to handle.

Where I need your help:

I feel like OpenMediaVault might not be the best solution for what I need. But there are a lot of options and it feels like I cannot see the forste through the trees…

Do you think Nextcloud is the right way to go or are there other opensource solutions which fit me needs more?
On what Hardware should I run Nextcloud to be successfull. I propably need more than the new Raspberry 5…

As you might see, I still do not feel comfortable with the topic. So again: thanks for any help!

Have a good day and hear you soon!
Degoogler

I’m running Nextcloud since 5 years community version in Docker on an Intel NUC (NUC7PJYH with Pentium Silver J5005 4-core with 32 GB and a 4 TB SSD) with Ubuntu 22.04 LTS. Power consumption is around 10 Watt.

My DSL connection at home has around 220/31 Gbps down/up with fixed IP address. That is sufficient to have my private cloud at home. I have a domain, but you can do it with VPN.

The Android Nextcloud client has a feature called ‘Instandupload’ that I use for pictures. Video I upload manually at home.

Pictures that I want to keep, I move to Piwigo, which I run on the same mini server, also in Docker (Linuxserver.io image). Piwigo is good at organizing and tagging pictures and with a plugin it can write tags as IPTC metadata to the image files. AFAIK Nextcloud Photos doesn’t have that capability.

Since I have everything in my cloud I do not backup the phone.

I also do not backup Nextcloud on the server. Never found a good solution for that. I’m not a Linux expert. I backup the data from one of the clients to a target share on my Synology NAS. If my Nextcloud server fails I rebuild the docker container within a minute and restore the data from a client while having a good night sleep. This is of course only workable for a one-user setup.

I had no notable issues at all for 4 years up to NC 27. Starting with NC 28 it has become less stable and I had to practice the restore scenario above 3 times over the past year.

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Thanks a lot for the description of your build and also for the links. This already gives me something to get more information and analyse how to procede with my own build :slight_smile:

I see, that you are using a Synology. Would it also be possible to just backop the data from nextcloud to the Desktop automatically every time it is running? Basically the same solution but without running a Synology…

I am definitely checking out Piwigo :slight_smile:

The Synology is not important. To the Windows desktop where I’m running backup it is just a network share. You can use anything that stores…
But again: this is only safe in an environment with 1 user who knows a bit what he’s doing.

A more professional solution is to have backup running on the NC server. A solution based on Borg Backup is available with Nextcloud All-in-one but to me that would be overkill.

Nextcloud mobile app has integrated photo upload. Nextcloud server comes with built-in versions and recycle bin support.

if you are not an expert an look for an easy turnkey Nextcloud solution I would recommend Nextcloud AiO today. I you want more advanced but customizable solution based on the Docker community image look at docker-compose-setup-with-notify-push-2024

media

Photo app (and memories app as well) are pretty basic so it’s not a replacement of Google. You might want to look at something more comprehensive - Photoprism is often referred to be a good image management tool. Same applies for streaming requirement - there is no good integrated app - look at Jellifin, Kodi, Plex some run as Docker as well and provide DLNA support or Smart TV apps (not easy to implement with Docker).

backup

data on the client is not complete and you can not perform a real backup of you Nextcloud system from the client. you must backup your config, database and files if you want a complete solution. if your backup doesn’t include first two it doesn’t include versions, recycle bin, shares, calender, user rights, comments and meta data of your system. Dozens of threads exist on this forum describing different solutions and approaches check out backup backup-app. I would recommend following official backup/restore manuals and look at backup app which allows proper backups of the whole easily.

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Well I spend a long day trying to get the Docker AiO version working and gave up. It took me only half an hour to get the community docker image working. Complications I ran into with AiO:

  • It doesn’t work with alternative ports, 80/443 only as the documentation states. But I have a WordPress staging site on that server already occupying those ports. Other services I have running allow alternative ports (Piwigo, Discourse)
  • My Synology NAS has a very nice GUI based reverse proxy and a LetsEncrypt certificate manager. But running docker AiO behind a proxy… hell. The documentation starts with:

Note: The maintainers of AIO noticed that this documentation is not easy.

Indeed!

  • Remote borg backups are not supported. I’ve always learned that you shouldn’t backup to a local drive. Of course there are solutions to replicate the backups to remote storage but they require knowledge of rsync or rclone, modifying sample scripts etc.

The AiO docker version is a great piece of work, but I don’t understand why it is marketed by the regulars on this forum as a ‘turnkey solution’. IMHO it requires a lot of knowledge, way beyond that of the average computer enthousiast.

That requires “Allow untested app” and I get:

This app cannot be installed because the following dependencies are not fulfilled:

Server version 28 or lower is required.

It’s probably most important to make the complete switch to a “Free” OS (*Linux, *BSD, …) first. You could then run a small homeserver that fulfills everything you need. I think for this kind of homeuse Nextcloud is suboptimal because the fileops are done with WebDAV; server-based homedirs with NFS are much faster and more flexible. Another easy way to sync/backup everything on your home-PC(s) is to run regular (eg on startup/shutdown) syncs/backups to this homeserver on them. you’ll be amazed how fast and easy this is in a linux-environment.
disk-redundancy does not protect you from accidental (ie human error) data loss, but you could use a variety of fs-snapshots.
for the personal data on your phone nextcloud is just perfect (i cut ALL contacts to google et al in the days when nextcloud was still owncloud (9, i think)). It works best with a “real” internet-server but can be made to work with a dyndns-home-solution. the nextcloud-datadir (and everything else) must also be backed up, of course, which can be easily done from your linux homeserver (ssh pull etc.)
GOOD LUCK!