eyeOS: Clouds for the Crowd


Cloud computing from the likes of Google and Amazon has become quite the rage in the last few years. Nick Carr's The Big Switch and other works have pointed toward a future of “utility” computing where we'll all use hosted apps and storage, thanks to the “scale” provided by big back-end companies and their giant hardware and software farms. But, there also has been pushback. Most notable among the nay-sayers is Richard M. Stallman, who calls it “worse than stupidity” and “a trap”.

At issue is control. Of Web apps, RMS says, “It's just as bad as using a proprietary program. Do your own computing on your own computer with your copy of a freedom-respecting program. If you use a proprietary program or somebody else's Web server, you're defenseless. You're putty in the hands of whoever developed that software.”

We wrote about it here on LinuxJournal.com, and among the many comments was one that pointed to eyeOS: a cloud computing approach by which people can make their own clouds: “...all you need is a Web server that supports PHP and OpenOffice.org to get the most out of the included office suite”, the commenter said. “It's cloud computing, but at the same time you still have control over your data.”

eyeOS is based in Barcelona, and obviously, it doesn't believe you need to be a Google or anyone special to run a “cloud” Web service environment. Unlike Google's cloud, you don't need to run the eyeOS's hosted apps. You can upload your own or choose ones from eyeOS or other developers. The UI is a virtual desktop, inside a browser (just as with Google), and the initial suite of apps are the straightforward set you'd expect, plus many more. These come with user ratings and a very active set of forums for developers and users.

eyeOS is a commercial company, privately held (and debt-free, it says). Its business model is service and support. If you need help installing eyeOS or adapting apps for your company, they're available.


Doc Searls is the Editor in Chief of Linux Journal


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A (relatively) new eyeos service!

Hifzu's picture

http://www.eye-os.co.uk has a free public eyeos service with a 1GB quota, plenty of extra applications and features great eye candy!


edpimentl's picture

Thanks, for the EyeOS write up. EyeOS is like a precious gem that keeps getting more valuable with time. We have been an EyeOs user for sometime now.....Currently integrating it with AgileCLOUD.net

Using eyeOS for several years

David B.'s picture

I've been running (and using) eyeOS on my servers for several years now. With each release, eyeOS gets better all of the time.

It's a very easy system to set-up and use, but on top of that, it's very useful. And because I run it on my own servers, the feeling of knowing my data remains mine - and mine alone - is very comforting.

I think eyeOS has so much more to offer than any other "cloud" system I've ever seen or used. Glad to see Linux Journal finally writing about it. Hope to see more about eyeOS here in the near future - they deserve the attention.

Long live open source! :o)

eyeOS Founder speaking at SCALE

Anonymous's picture

Pau Garcia-Milà who is one of eyeOS' cofounders will be presenting at SCALE 7x in Los Angeles,CA. SCALE will be held February 20-22, 2009.