Free Code Self-Hosting Packages

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In response to the increasing concern among users about both the potential for surveillance, and the growing power of a handful of tech corporations (particularly Microsoft, Apple, Yahoo, Google, Amazon, and FaceBook), there has been explosion of activity over the last few years to develop free code software packages to allow users to host their own "cloud computing" services, or host services for other users without any dependencies on proprietary software. This list includes software that uses a server/ client approach, not software that runs only on the users computer using a peer-to-peer approach (eg FreeNet, BitTorrent, Tox, Ring). --Strypey (talk) 15:00, 1 May 2018 (UTC)


Information for the original version of this page was sourced from Disintermedia pages on leaving FaceBook and leaving Google.


web search

Common proprietary examples: Google, Bing, Yahoo

Free code packages:

  • YaCY (GNU GPLv2+, GNU LGPLv2+ for Cora library, Java) - a free code P2P search engine (or "distributed search engine"), where each user installs and searches with their own copy of the YaCy progam, but all the copies form a P2P network that shares the index of websites they search through. There is a demo search portal but the project ask that you run a copy of YaCy on your own computer rather than using that as a replacement for Google.
  • Searx (GNU AGPLv3, Python) - a free code packages that powers independent meta-search portals like A Searx instance can act as a meta-search portal for YaCy (P2P network - see above, technical details here). If there was a Searx instance that did that, and implemented !bang search, I would definitely make this my goto search engine.

document and file storage, synchronization, transfer, and publication

Common proprietary examples: DropBox, GoogleDrive, OneDrive

Free code packages:

document editing

Common proprietary examples: GoogleDocs, Office365

Free code packages:

  • CryptPad (AGPL): collaborative document editing only, like Etherpad, but allows pads to be limited to an approved group of users
  • EtherPad (Apache 2.0): collaborative document editing only
  • FirePad("MIT")

See also: Authoring Platforms‎‎

online office suite

  • LibreOffice Online: co-developed by the Document Foundation, who develop LibreOffice, and Collabora who provide commercial services to enterprise LibreOffice users
  • Feng Office (AGPL): a full web-based office suite
  • OnlyOffice: pitched as a full web-based office suite, server-side source code was released under the GNU AGPLv3 license in 2014 (according to Wikipedia article), and client-side desktop editors released in 2016.
  • Zimbra(GPLv2 backend, Common Public Attribution License v1 frontend) - as well as the usual office suite apps, Zimbra also include email and calendar, providing the functions of both MS Office and Outlook Express in one web-based package

See also: Authoring Platforms‎‎

events calendars

Common proprietary examples: Google Calendar, Meetup

Free code packages:

  • Cozy: also offers contact synchronization and webmail
  • DAVical (GPL)
  • Friendica
  • getTogether: goals include enabling sharing of event data between GetTogether instances, and possible federation with ActivityPub has been mentioned
  • Hubzilla
  • Radicale: also offers contacts synchronization
  • Upcoming:

group text chat

Common proprietary examples: Slack, Discord

Free code packages:

  • Rocket.Chat ("MIT"): Demo available at Messages can be edited after sending.

See Also: Disintermedia Fyre Exyt page on Slack replacements

group voice chat

Common proprietary examples: Skype, Hangouts, FaceTime

See also: Disintermedia Core-US page on voice and video conferencing


Common proprietary examples: GMail, Yahoo Mail

Free code packages:

social media

Common proprietary examples: Twitter, FaceBook, Google+, LinkedIn

Free code packages:

More examples: Distributed Social Network Projects

photo hosting

Common proprietary examples: Google Photos, PhotoBucket, FlickR

video hosting

Common proprietary examples: YouTube, Vimeo, DailyMotion

project management

Common proprietary examples: Slack, Asana, GitHub

Free code packages:

  • Crabgrass (GNU AGPL): developed by RiseUp Labs for use by activist groups
  • FusionForge: aimed at software project management, modeled on the 1990/2000s version of SourceForge, used by the Comunes Association to run
  • GitLab: aimed at software project management, but like GH, can also be used to collaboratively write documentation, or create and deploy static websites. Like GH it has spaces for working on code/ text, discussing bugs/ issues with the project, and son.
  • Kunagi (GNU AGPL): aimed at software project management using Agile/ Scrum practices
  • Kune: an experimental fork of Apache Wave, created by the Comunes Association who also run
  • OpenProject: popular fork of RedMine
  • RedMine

integrated library system (ILS)

Free code packages:

  • Koha: founded by Horowhenua Library Trust and Katipo Communications in 1999.
  • Evergreen

online portfolio

Free code packages:


Combines a number of the packages and functions listed above into a unified package, complete with an OS, ready to install and use out-of-the-box on a spare desktop PC (or a blank virtual machine in a datacentre).

Common proprietary examples: Google Apps, FaceBook

Free code packages:


Hardware projects supportive of software freedom and often used as personal "cloud" servers:

See also: