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).

Information for 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:

  • EtherPad (Apache 2.0): collaborative document editing only
  • FirePad("MIT")
  • LibreOffice Online: still in early stages of development, but based on the existing LibreOffice codebase gives them a headstart, and a solid development infrastructure.
  • 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.

See also: Authoring Platforms‎‎


Common proprietary examples: Google Calendar

Free code packages:

  • Cozy: also offers contacts synchronization and webmail
  • DAVical (GPL)
  • Radicale: also offers contacts synchronization


Common proprietary examples: GMail, Yahoo Mail

Free code packages:

social media

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

Free code packages:

project management

Common proprietary examples: Slack, Asana

Free code packages:


Combines a number of the packages and functions listed above into a unified package

Common proprietary examples: FaceBook, Google

Free code packages:


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