The open source ownCloud project is moving fast to help enterprises displace proprietary cloud storage sharing technologies. The ownCloud project got commercial backing in December and is now out with a new release that paves the way for wider adoption.
OwnCloud’s offering is analogous in many ways to what Dropbox and Box provide in that it enables users to store and share files in the cloud. The key difference is that ownCloud is open source, enabling any user or enterprise to roll its own cloud storage service. In the new ownCloud 3.0 release, the technology now includes improved LDAP integration for corporate directory interactions. The system also supports Microsoft’s ActiveDirectory which is widely used in enterprise deployments.
The new ownCloud release includes an application store as well, which enables third-party developers to list integrations with the project. Markus Rex, CEO of ownCloud explained that over time the goal is to expand the application store to enable more extensibility as well as a possible revenue model for the company.
The ownCloud 3.0 release is currently available only as an open source release, although an enterprise product is currently planned for a March release date. Rex noted that to date there has been significant interest in the open source ownCloud project, and his company is currently debating whether it should also offer stand-alone support for the open source project.