ownCloud Server Development Second Half of August

We’re already in November and the last months have been very busy. We’ve had the ownCloud Contributor Conference at the tail end of August, followed by the ownCloud Server 8.2 release 6 weeks later. Now, it is time to go and catch up to our development reports! We’ll cover the second half of August and […]

We’re already in November and the last months have been very busy. We’ve had the ownCloud Contributor Conference at the tail end of August, followed by the ownCloud Server 8.2 release 6 weeks later. Now, it is time to go and catch up to our development reports! We’ll cover the second half of August and all of September in this one.

The biggest items during this period include security- and encryption improvements- as well as very visible changes for users, like the integration of the new sidebar and changes to icons, colors and menus in ownCloud.

Development conversations

Development conversations

ownCloud Core

There have been many changes throughout ownCloud, as usual. Here are some highlights.

Security and Encryption Improvements

To improve security, a session wrapper was added which encrypts session data (like external storage passwords) before storing it on disk. More importantly, using a password hash rather than the password itself to encrypt the private key (which is, in turn, used to encrypt user data) makes it much harder for an attacker to brute force his way into user data. We’ve also added mitigation against the BREACH security threat.

Encryption users who need to integrate ownCloud in their infrastructure sure appreciate this PR to make root of key storage configurable. Also useful for users of the Encryption app is the addition of an ‘encrypt all files’ to the occ tool and it was made possible for the admin to set a master key for all files which are encrypted.

Of course, this covers just a few of the security hardening and encryption improvements which made it into ownCloud 8.2 and, in many cases, were also backported to earlier ownCloud releases! ownCloud is dedicated to continuous improvements in the area of security, something which shows in the numbers. Also, see the talks covering the state of ownCloud security, the improvements to the ownCloud Encryption app and ideas for client side encryption at the ownCloud Contributor Conference.

brand new sidebar

the new sidebar

Performance

As always, there have been several changes with a focus on performance. This includes better usage of the cache for previews, but there has also been work to compensate for a slow-down which was caused by safely encrypting sessions on the server. Combined with caching, some results for GET requests have had the time cut in half for these common operations. Since the release of ownCloud 8.2, many more performance optimizations have been added, but that’s for another report!

Design and Style of ownCloud 8.2

ownCloud 8.2 has introduced a new sidebar. More than a dozen pull requests were related to the sidebar, even though the initial version was merged earlier in August. There were also a number of other changes to the user experience, many of them added in these pull requests:

And of course there are many more design related pull requests in this period!

If you would like to get involved with coding on ownCloud – check out this page! And you can join the technical ownCloud discussions on this page.

Other ownCloud Happenings

On Planet ownCloud there were, of course, many posts covering the ownCloud Conference. We’ve been busy putting videos on YouTube and we’ve also got a nice overview blog post here with many pictures.

We also covered the release of the ownCloud Desktop Client version 2.0, which introduced multi account support among other features. In other client news, we published a blog about the following:
timeline-crop

Getting ownCloud News

Note that you can sign up to our newsletter to stay up to date with monthly summaries of what is going on in ownCloud. And if you’re an ownCloud contributor, you should get your blog aggregated on owncloud.org/news! Ping Jos with your RSS feed.

You should also, absolutely, be signed up for our announcement mailing list if you administer your ownCloud server. We don’t send mails often, but when we do you know they are important!

More on the social side– there are ownCloud events coming up. You can meet fellow ownCloud users and developers at our ownCloud meetups or see us at conferences. Find a calendar of ownCloud events on owncloud.org/events. ownCloud meetups are great a chance to learn more about ownCloud or to get coding work done. If you know of other (regular or not) meetups or if you are interested in organizing one yourself, check out this page on how to get involved.

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