Nextcloud App Development Tutorials: 1 step closer to creating an app!

Originally published at: Nextcloud App Development Tutorials: 1 step closer to creating an app! - Nextcloud

Does it :sparkles: excite :sparkles: you when new Nextcloud Apps come out?

Perhaps the Cookbook app brought you joy to store all your favorite recipes, or the Bookmarks app helped you organize your favorite websites.

But what if you have 💡the best idea 💡 for an app that would help you and others, but nobody has done it yet?

What if we told you YOU could develop one yourself?

Well, we are happy to announce that we now offer Nextcloud App development tutorials!

Nextcloud App development tutorials

It’s hard to get into the coding world sometimes even with all the information out there.

Tutorials offered online are often very hard and stressful to follow and leave you feeling defeated and disappointed.

We are offering a different approach.

Our tutorials are:

  • Written in a language that does not assume pre-knowledge
  • Meant to enable any developer who wants to enter into the world of Nextcloud
  • Tested by someone who is not a developer, to ensure the tutorials are easy to follow

So if you lack extensive coding experience or are hesitant to start, we are providing you with all the guidance, instructions and support you need in these new tutorials.

What’s inside?

In the Nextcloud folder – Nextcloud app development tutorials final – we are providing tutorials for:

  • Setting up a development environment
    • Tutorial for Mac
    • Tutorial for Ubuntu
  • Developing a simple files plugin

More coming soon!

Start Development Tutorials!

We love to support our community

We really want to provide our community members the best experience possible, especially if it’s their first attempt at a Nextcloud coding project! Our goal is that these tutorials put you at ease and help flatten the learning curve.

See what some participants have already said about our development tutorials:

“Great job! This is certainly a much better experience than I had bootstrapping my first app back then. Very approachable 👍.”

– theCalcaholic , NextcloudPi Developer

“Thank you so much. This is really very helpful for me. I am looking forward to further tutorials.”

– olheem

Already an expert?

Help the next generation of #Nextcloud app developers and contribute to this project!

We need:

  • Create tutorials about setting up a development environment in the same format for other operating systems
  • Help with answering the questions that arrive on the forum posts [1] [2]
More information

I once maintained an extension (grauphel, to sync notes between tomboy on PC, Android and N900) but stopped eventually because every new major Nextcloud version brought API breakages that required me to adjust my app.

This meant I had to do unnecessary work every six months just to keep the app installing on the latest release, although the app itself was feature-complete years ago.
The ChangeLog was pretty sad: For several years, it only contained entries “Make compatible with Nextcloud X”.

In the end I would have had much less problems and unnecessary work if I had written a standalone web application instead of a Nextcloud app.

so just to confirm I understand, the issue was that the API was changed too frequently? Can you give an example of how a change in the api broke your app?

Generally I agree with your point though, I’m worried about this as well.

1 Like

API breakages that had effect on my grauphel app:

  • NextCloud 14: class \OCP\Util was dropped that I used
  • NextCloud 15:
    • Display broke because “There may not be any element between navigation and content.” in HTML (I had a script tag there)
    • CSS files must be registered via API now, JS files as well
  • NextCloud 16: Release a new version without any changes because the max-version needs to be updated
  • NextCloud 17: Release a new version without any changes because the max-version needs to be updated
  • NextCloud 18: Release a new version without any changes because the max-version needs to be updated
  • NextCloud 19: ILIKE SQL condition changed, broke search
  • NextCloud 20:
    • my Javascript broke because JS variable was not defined anymore in some circumstances
    • the “Unified search API” completely changed. Even the new maintainer has not re-implemented this, so the app has no search since this version.

Then I gave up.

thanks a lot for taking the time to write this detailed reply. I’ll address the concerns to the engineering leads and see what the reasoning for it was and if we can do better in the future.


Hi there,
I sat down with the team leads to reflect on this and it resulted in an improved process for documentation, for which I started a new thread.