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Five Nextcloud Do’s and Don’ts

Five Nextcloud Do’s and Don’ts

Here are a five Do’s and Don’ts you should consider when using Nextcloud. These are examples that have of course already happened a few times in the past.

Do’s

1. When you activate an app, make sure you read the instructions first. Not reading them could cause serious problems with your Nextcloud.

2. If many people are working on a document it is better to do this online as there are no conflicts with the document. However, if you work offline, the document may not yet be synchronized and everyone gets a different version of it.

3. It is more helpful and clearer if you create a separate account for each user in the nextcloud. For example, you can see which user has deleted a file.

4. If you share a file via link, it is highly recommended to set a password and an expiration date of the link. This ensures more security for your data.

5. Always have a backup independent of the provider when working with sensitive or company relevant data. If you or one of your users makes a mistake and data is accidentally deleted, you should always have a backup of all your data stored locally.

Don’ts

1. Don’t put all files in one folder and share it with all users, so they all work on it at the same time. If several users work in the same folder at the same time, this can lead to problems during synchronization, especially if the same file is edited or uploaded.

2. But even if one of the users deletes the folder locally from the sync folder, you may lose all your data.

3. Don’t enable server side encryption because you can’t turn it off again. If you activate server-side encryption in Nextcloud, you will not receive a key to decrypt it again. To do this you would have to encrypt it on the command line where you also get a key to decrypt it again.

4. Don’t use the End-to-End-Encryption if you are not familiar with it. In addition the End-to-End-Encryption is still in beta testing. As you may know, betas may contain problems and shouldn’t be used without caution, especially when it comes to data that is very important for companies or yourself.

5. Don’t delete data from the local sync client folder. All data you delete from the sync folder will be deleted in the cloud as well. The data you delete from the sync folder will be synchronized with the cloud as well as with the local sync folders of all other users. Everything you change in the local sync client folder will also be changed in the cloud, please keep this in mind.

Please try to follow these guidelines, so you can work safely with Nextcloud without encountering particularly serious problems. If you stick to these Do’s and Don’ts, you will have no problems using Nextcloud.

Marius Gebert
Marius Gebert
Systems Engineer

Marius ist seit 2013 bei NETWAYS. Er hat 2016 seine Ausbildung zum Fachinformatiker für Systemintegration absolviert und ist nun im Web Services Team tätig. Hier kümmert er sich mit seinen Kollegen um die NWS Plattform und alles was hiermit zusammen hängt. 2017 hat Marius die Prüfung zum Ausbilder abgelegt und kümmert sich in seiner Abteilung um die Ausbildung unserer jungen Kollegen. Seine Freizeit verbringt Marius gerne an der frischen Luft und ist für jeden Spaß zu...

Jitsi vs Zoom vs BigBlueButton

Because of Covid-19 there are a lot of precautions right now. Many companies are now forced to work remotely and this has caused a huge increase in digital work over the last few months. The classic office job naturally also includes meetings, which now have to take place online. Video conferencing platforms such as Zoom, Jitsi and BigBlueButton are suitable for many companies. But the question for a lot is, which is the most suitable platform for their own company or own personal use.
We have taken a closer look at these different appications and this is our conclusion.

What is Jitsi Meet, Zoom and BigBlueButton and how do they work?
The three applications are video conferencing and messenger services. You can create video rooms where you can video chat with co-workers, friends and relatives. You can chat with participants, share appointments and documents as well as your screen. All you need is a device capable of running the applications and a stable Internet connection.

Jitsi

Jitsi meet is a part of the open source software project Jitsi. This application requires no download and can be used on the web without registration. You can easily and quickly create a conference room and share it to others. Of course it is also possible to assign a password to this conference room. In addition, it is possible to add an unlimited number of participants to the chat, but please note that the use with video is limited to about 50 participants. The Internet connection is the problem here, each participant has an estimated input of 2 MBps with audio and video. Since not every participant has high-speed Internet access, it will be difficult to play back video transmissions from 50 or more participants. Other features include end-to-end encryption, chrome extension, an IOS and Android app as well as free unlimited use. A very important factor is data security, which is well provided by Jitsi. No data is passed onto third parties, but remains within the company.

Zoom

Zoom is a very popular way of video chatting and is widely used for professional applications. Of course, screen contents can be shared with other participants. The chat function, whiteboarding, breakout and waiting rooms are further features of Zoom. The free basic version of Zoom allows the use of a maximum of 40 minutes, which is a small disadvantage. In addition an account must be created to use Zoom. However, there are other versions available which are subject to a charge. With the paid versions it is possible to add up to 500 or even 1000 participants and use unlimited cloud memory. According to heise.de, Zoom sent data to Facebook every time the iOS version of the software was launched until the end of March – even if the Zoom user does not have a Facebook account. We cannot assess the data security at Zoom.

BigBlueButton

BigBlueButton is also an open source product like Jitsi and offers the possibility to extend your application with add-ons. This makes it suitable for many companies that like to integrate their application into another product. Also with BigBlueButton no additional software has to be installed, because the application runs on the web. However, BigBlueButton requires a server to be running first, after which users can access it via the web. BigBlueButton is not for communication in teams or among individuals, but rather for seminars and other interactive event formats with a manageable number of participants.

Conclusion

To summarize, Jitsi is now a very successful alternative to Zoom and can compete with its security and ease of use. However, we would be happy for a few more features.
Zoom is currently very successful and offers a simple and great solution for many companies. However, you need to be well informed about how user data is handled.
BigBlueButton is a very successful application which is becoming more and more interesting for many people. Unfortunately, the ease of use is not as good as the competition.
In general the platforms are quite similar, but still very different in their own way.

Marius Gebert
Marius Gebert
Systems Engineer

Marius ist seit 2013 bei NETWAYS. Er hat 2016 seine Ausbildung zum Fachinformatiker für Systemintegration absolviert und ist nun im Web Services Team tätig. Hier kümmert er sich mit seinen Kollegen um die NWS Plattform und alles was hiermit zusammen hängt. 2017 hat Marius die Prüfung zum Ausbilder abgelegt und kümmert sich in seiner Abteilung um die Ausbildung unserer jungen Kollegen. Seine Freizeit verbringt Marius gerne an der frischen Luft und ist für jeden Spaß zu...

Mattermost vs Rocket.Chat

Rocketchat vs Mattermost: Which one is right for you?

Communication inside the company is crucial for any business, whether you have 20 members of staff or 1000. Every business needs a way to get their message across and a platform to do so. Why should messaging services just be used for social means? The capabilities of an open-source chat platform brought into a business environment is a utility that everyone needs to consider. Two of these contenders that are in the spotlight today are Rocketchat and Mattermost.

Both are great open-source chat apps with a clean interface that isn’t cluttered and all of your groups neatly categorized so you can see exactly whats going on. They have taken simplicity, efficiency and productivity and rolled it all into a package that can really propel the level of communication in your business. Think of the success of Whatsapp and Messenger and how they both deliver on a social platform, now apply that to a business environment where you can expand the possibilities of communication to greater heights.

Lets jump right into Rocketchat and what see they have to offer.

 

Rocket.Chat

Right from the get-go you find yourself with a comfortable user interface that doesn’t jump out at you, but instead has been carefully laid-out to keep all of your chats and groups organized without having to trawl through 100s of contacts. The ability to manage groups and contacts gives you full control over what you see on your homepage neatly separated into categories of whats important to you. Being available for desktop and mobile devices you can take your chats everywhere with you and always be in the loop. Not only that but admin may also grant permissions to different users giving you control over how your chat operates.

 

Ease of Use

Due to current circumstances more and more people are now doing home-office and Rocketchat is well equipped to make sure that business flows uninterrupted and could even be the bridge to new working opportunities. With audio/video conferencing, screen sharing and live translation in nearly 40 languages already integrated, it will almost feel like your employees never left the office. As well as with email you also have the option to sign in from 3rd party apps like Facebook, Google and even Github. There’s no need to bring everyone into a meeting especially when some have to travel great distances or some are not currently in the office, just setup your meeting through Rocketchat and give everyone the ability to join from wherever they are.

Privacy

For those of you concerned about privacy, you also have the option to self-host your chat, especially if you are interacting with your customers. You can have thousands of people in designated chatrooms which you have control over and you also don’t have to pay per person which could save you a lot of money! All of your data stays safe so none of your information will be passed onto a 3rd party.

  • Clean user-friendly interface
  • Control over permissions
  • Audio/video conferencing and screen share
  • Privacy is key, nothing is forwarded

Mattermost

Now lets take a look at what Mattermost has to offer and for those of you coming from Slack, you will have an easy time transitioning. Much like Rocketchat, you will see how nicely laid-out all of your menus are and you even have the opportunity to separate your groups further so each department can have their own channel for private or group chatting. You can also import your data from Slack directly so you will be away in no time.

Privacy

Mattermost takes privacy to the next step with self-hosted deployment on premise or even to private or public clouds. Take control of your data and even after you decide to cancel, all of your information stays with you. Everything about you like IP addresses, usage patterns and even the details in your messages are kept secret so you don’t have to worry about them being passed onto anyone. There is also the option of Data loss prevention and complete operational auditability which grants you full access to logs of all server records, infrastructure/database changes and user activity.

Customization

One thing I love most about Mattermost is the customization of over 700 UI and UX apps and tools that can be integrated. You have an entire catalog of extensions, web-hooks and even chat bots that can be implemented into the program to boost productivity and avoid consistent switching of apps and programs. Why have email, video call and screen share in 3 different programs, when you integrate everything into one and use it as a hub for all of your communication needs. Here you have the freedom to customize everything to how you want it to look and even create your own plugins.

Smooth Features

Gone are the days of sending an email and waiting for a reply and having to cc everyone into the message. Here you can live chat with anyone in any group and even @ mention people where they will be notified either in app or when they are offline by email. Not only that but with silk smooth features like drag and drop file sharing, project management and custom emojis, your contacts will have no problem presenting projects and showing off their latest ideas.

  • Privacy when you delete any of the NETWAYS Web Services apps, all of the data is deleted with it
  • Integration from over 700 apps and tools
  • Smooth features for sharing and messaging
  • Endless customization possibilities

 

The great thing with both of these apps is it doesn’t just end there. Both being open-source opens the doors to unlimited possibilities in order to meet your needs. Make it your own and customize it however you like, don’t just be happy with the default you are given. And don’t just think of them as business only apps, they are perfectly suitable for private use especially now more people are spending time at home, possibly away from family, this is a great way to stay connected.

With plans to suit all of your needs NETWAYS Web Services offers various packages that can be deployed instantly and ready to use within minutes. Whether you choose to host it yourself or publicly over the cloud, a more secure communication service with endless customization options is here and it’s working wonders.

Marius Gebert
Marius Gebert
Systems Engineer

Marius ist seit 2013 bei NETWAYS. Er hat 2016 seine Ausbildung zum Fachinformatiker für Systemintegration absolviert und ist nun im Web Services Team tätig. Hier kümmert er sich mit seinen Kollegen um die NWS Plattform und alles was hiermit zusammen hängt. 2017 hat Marius die Prüfung zum Ausbilder abgelegt und kümmert sich in seiner Abteilung um die Ausbildung unserer jungen Kollegen. Seine Freizeit verbringt Marius gerne an der frischen Luft und ist für jeden Spaß zu...

Gitlab Johnyj12345 Hack

Yesterday we received the information that there is a new Gitlab “hack” which could affect older versions of Gitlab. If affected it will behave like this:

The publicly visible procedure is always the same: Johny creates one or more issues that are linked with each other and at the end of the link cascade there’s either an attached file or a link to a file which holds Gitlab’s secrets.yml.

Source: https://blog.philipp-trommler.me/posts/2020/07/13/security-possible-gitlab-hack-johnyj12345/

It seems like the vulnerability was fixed with these security release:
https://about.gitlab.com/releases/2020/03/26/security-release-12-dot-9-dot-1-released/

The NWS team wrote some scripts to see if any of the Gitlab CE / Gitlab EE apps are affected, which was not the case, also because NWS apps are running on the latest version of Gitlab.

This issue is very critical since the secrets.yml can be found with a simple web search and contains informations like:

  • secret_key_base
  • db_key_base
  • otp_key_base

 

If you are affected, you should

  • take down your Gitlab instance
  • remove the user
  • remove the issues
  • update your instance.

Best would be to also reset the “secrets.yml”, but as far as i know, there is currently no way to do so.

 

Here is a short script to check quick if the user exists (if you don’t want to check via web interface):

#!/bin/bash

echo "User.all" | gitlab-rails console | grep "Johny12345" 2>&1
response=`echo $?`

if [ $response == "0" ]; then
echo "[ALERT] Johny was here ... "
else
echo "[OK] No Johny found ..."
fi

Marius Gebert
Marius Gebert
Systems Engineer

Marius ist seit 2013 bei NETWAYS. Er hat 2016 seine Ausbildung zum Fachinformatiker für Systemintegration absolviert und ist nun im Web Services Team tätig. Hier kümmert er sich mit seinen Kollegen um die NWS Plattform und alles was hiermit zusammen hängt. 2017 hat Marius die Prüfung zum Ausbilder abgelegt und kümmert sich in seiner Abteilung um die Ausbildung unserer jungen Kollegen. Seine Freizeit verbringt Marius gerne an der frischen Luft und ist für jeden Spaß zu...

NWS announces: Nextcloud Hub now available

Nextcloud released a new version. But it’s not just a normal update, since there are a lot of changes, as they already described in their press release:

“With the release of Hub, Nextcloud brings a free, open source, on-premises office suite to millions of users, lowering the barrier to use. Hub brings office integration to a new level with the built-in sidebar featuring an insight in file activities, file versions, comments, chat, and video calls. […] With Hub come major improvements in Nextcloud Files, Talk and Groupware. Files introduces Workspaces, […] Nextcloud Talk for Hub features a rewritten user interface […] Nextcloud Groupware was improved.” – Nextcloud, Press release 17.01.2020

Since yesterday Nextcloud Hub is also available on the NWS Plattform. The most interesting point is that the new version brought a huge performance improvement to our SaaS (Software as a Service) app. We saw in the past, that Nextcloud 17 was pretty slow with a S3 storage as primary storage. But now we have the best benefits of using our own S3 as a primary storage with a performance that is just awesome. You could call it a “Nextcloud Managed Hosting”

We also decided to stick with Nextcloud Collabora Online instead of OnlyOffice, since we invested a lot of time to optimize Collabora to ensure the best user experience.

What makes Nextcloud Hub as a NWS SaaS app so special?

Feature
Current Version Hub (18.0.0)
Users 25 / 50 / 100
Storage 50 GB / 200 GB / 1000 GB / More possible
Traffic Flat
Collabora Inclusive
Updates Inclusive
Backup (Of configuration) Inclusive
Storage Our own NWS S3 (NOT AWS)
Need to buy a domain No. Use one of our free CNAMEs or use your own Custom Domain
Support 8×5
Migrating to NWS Possible
Installed apps Use our preinstalled apps or install whatever you want from the appstore
Callable Monthly
Server locations Nuremberg, Germany
DC Certificate ISO 27001
Time the app needs to be ready Max. 5 minutes
Special offer First 30 days are for free. Note that it is callable monthly
Costs 9,99 € / 24,99 € / 99,99 €
Start now FOR FREE Show me more informations

What is the NWS SaaS platform about?

With our SaaS platform we provide our customers with applications on demand with almost no need to take care of them. We deliver the features, the updates, taking care of the security and offer support.
Not everyone has the know-how to build up an infrastructure that fits their needs as well as maintaining it. So we created NWS for everyone who don’t want to take care about things they need to work with – we created NWS for everyone who just wants to use the software.

It’s a platform for things like “one klick installation Nextcloud / Gitlab / Rocket.Chat” etc.

Give it a try. If you just want to try, it’s completely for free. WHAT ARE YOU WAITING FOR?

Marius Gebert
Marius Gebert
Systems Engineer

Marius ist seit 2013 bei NETWAYS. Er hat 2016 seine Ausbildung zum Fachinformatiker für Systemintegration absolviert und ist nun im Web Services Team tätig. Hier kümmert er sich mit seinen Kollegen um die NWS Plattform und alles was hiermit zusammen hängt. 2017 hat Marius die Prüfung zum Ausbilder abgelegt und kümmert sich in seiner Abteilung um die Ausbildung unserer jungen Kollegen. Seine Freizeit verbringt Marius gerne an der frischen Luft und ist für jeden Spaß zu...

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GitLab Training | Online

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