Going off the Grid: Part 1 – Breaking the Chains that Bind


Today my little semicolons we are embarking on an adventure. An adventure that will hopefully teach you a bit of the dangers of the internet and instruct you how to operate independent of the companies who sell your information. Today we break the chains that bind.

I’d like to preface this with some up-front statements. This series will range from highly technical topics to general computer principals. So let’s start with what this series isn’t.

This series is not a easy 1..2..3… tutorial on how to make your own cloud services. Some of these topics will involve the command line and even a bit of programming, if this isn’t your cup of tea I caution you to avoid doing this without the instruction of someone who knows what they are doing. Some of these sections will involve putting your home network facing the public internet, which comes with associated risks.

In fact this series will assume a few things about you the reader.

  1. You are a power user with some very basic familiarity with the command line of Windows and Linux(like how to create directories, set permissions, etc..)
  2. You know how to install, remove, upgrade consumer software on Windows and Linux
  3. You are familiar with networking and how the Internet works(Protocols, how to setup a home networks etc…)
  4. You aren’t afraid to extensively research a topic to gain a better understanding of it

If the above sounds like alien speak to you, or you aren’t sure then I would stop and do some research. This YouTube channel has videos on a variety of specific topics which should let you get a vague idea on how a lot of things work in computing and technology in general. From there you can research the individual topics on your own. For networking I’d recommend this page as a starter and this book for those who want to dig deeper.

So now to what this series is. If you follow along I’ll show you some clever techniques that will let you stop using services like the google cloud platform or office 365, and eventually be able to access your home media anywhere in the world. I know I’ve warned you before, but remember the risks associated with embarking on this kind of adventure! Here there be monsters, little to no support, and certainly no guarantees on the security or integrity of your data other than what you provide.

Hopefully if I haven’t scared everyone off, a few off you are ready to tread into the deep waters with me on how to make your own little cloud. A majority of the software we’ll be using to replace their commercial counterparts can be found on this GitHub page, if you haven’t seen that page before give it a nice long read. You’ll be surprised at how much control of your data you can actually have, if you have a need there is probably a free software that can do it.

In Part 2 I’ll be discussing various setups and ways of doing what we want to accomplish, as well as how each one gives you varing degrees of control over your data.

Side note: If you haven’t already, I recommend you watch the De-Google yourself videos on Level1Linux in parallel with this series. It’s a great channel about doing cool stuff on the computers

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