Sogo vs WebTop (for contacts, calendar etc with DAV)

I came across NethServer partly due to having set my mind on using Sogo on my home server.

Now I see from the forum that while Sogo is supported (as a module) there are some issues and the preference seems to be for WebTop.

Is there somewhere where I can find a clear overview of the advantages of each one in its current version? So far I have found stuff from a couple of years ago and it might be outdated. I’d appreciate hearing from people who have used both and would recommend one over the other (or not).

For whatever reason I tend to feel nervous about running Java-based systems on my home server, preferring systems written in PHP or Python etc or even native binaries. Java feels like a management headache. Is that completely unfounded, especially on NethServer where I could hope for it to be taken care of for me?

Thanks in advance!

I should add that I did feel that Sogo felt safe due to being a well-known project for quite a few years which was built on known libraries, but when it comes down to it, the feature set is what matters to me.

I feel you as regards Java but IMO Webtop still responds quickly and works fast for such a java/tomcat ressource monster.
If it’s about features you should have a look at Webtop. In comparison to SOGo, Webtop provides 2fa, chat, cloud and documents managing with ejabberd, nextcloud and onlyoffice.
Another advantage is that the webtop devs are community members providing awesome support, check out the #webtop category.
You are right that SOGo is a nice, well-designed, good working groupware, but they don’t care much about integrating external features IMO.
In the end both have it’s place.

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Thanks @mrmarkuz

SOGo appealed (when I researched) because I’d prefer to assemble a set of things which aren’t necessarily so integrated but where each one does its main thing best without too much overlap (last night I read The Trouble In Calendars which reflects the concern I have). Specifically I didn’t want to get involved with NextCloud and the like as I was also looking for relatively lightweight server applications. Is WebTop built on top of NextCloud?

Maybe I can ask a related question here. NextCloud does give a nice solution for cloud storage and OnlyOffice would be nice to have if I don’t have to work too hard to maintain it. But I was concerned that using NextCloud would make it harder to have my storage directly - and smoothly - available on the desktop, whether via Samba, SSHFS or DAV. Without having used these systems yet, I don’t quite understand how NextCloud can talk to a storage backend (something I could, ideally, back up directly/independently) and still manage file versions and so on, while at the same time I can access the same storage via Samba or DAV and see a sane file layout and also not wreck any versioning going on in the background. It seems to me that that can only be possible if all the access is done through one layer which manages the storage. Will NextCloud or WebTop or whatever handle that for me? I am inclined to avoid the headaches and stick with a simple file system on top of which I would apply whatever access mechanisms I want.

For perspective, right now on my home server I have a basic file system which is accessible via sshfs, or Samba, or a DAV web interface which talks to the Samba. The only versioning support I have (and it has been enough) is a separate backup drive maintained with rdiffbackup which lets me look at how the files were at various points in the past.

NethServer is a great option in that it brings us a set of packages which are better integrated than a regular Linux distro does with its package manager, but I’m still a little confused by the package and implementation decisions I need to make…

If you can tell me that WebTop does allow functions like that to work together relatively seamlessly, I’ll be very happy.

I wrote a lot there but the essential question is: If I go with WebTop, if it’s built from a number of different packages which I might not have wanted to set up independently, am I going to see big benefits from the integration which WebTop and NethServer add? Particularly in the areas of groupware and file/content management and storage.

@ylavi

Hi

I use NethServer on Proxmox at about 20-30 clients. At all clients, I use NextCloud on NethServer as Groupware.
Calendering and Adressbook runs very stable - for a few years now! I’m using plain vanilla IMAP for Mail - on NethServer. Outlook is catered for, but a large amount (about 80%) of my clients do not use Outlook. They use Thunderbird on Windows (With Lightning for CalDAV and SoGO Connector for Adressbook). The Mac users use the built in Calender and Adressbook, synched with NextCloud.

And file sharing works VERY well. All important shares on the NethServer (and on NAS, if used) are available in Nextcloud, using the external storage feature. Even the User Home directories are available this way.
So, no matter if a user just uses Nextcloud on a home PC, or a Samba Network Drive on his PC in the office, it’s the same drive/place. Think of External Storage in Nextcloud as a similiar to a Network Drive in Windows, pointing to a storage holder. This can be a NAS, a Server or Cloud like Azure or AWS.

My 2 cents
Andy

PS: I mostly agree with you concerning Java. It’s also not my favorite programming language… But: There are some very well written Java Apps out there, fast sleek and mean!

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@ylavi I have deployed one of the most ambitious server, basically pushing nethserver and its modules to the limts on one of the smalelst spec servers.

it had 1 GB RAM, 1 GB swap fro ram, and 20 gb hdd.

the server ran on Nethserver, nextcloud, webtop, freepbx,portainer, and was using to tinker with another software phabricator

so basically, webtop performs well even in low spec.
webtop also has good onlyoffice integrations, for previewing docs, edidting etc. so no more need to download documents.

there is also nextcloud intgrations, which allows you to be able to send and receive docs from nextcloud within webtop.

So the version management that NextCloud allows isn’t visible (and also won’t be damaged) if one uses the NethServer storage directly (eg via Samba)? And that’s because they’re nicely integrated?
Or it is the normal practice to access everything through the NC layer?
Like the discussion regarding calendars, I’m trying to understand whether NC is a server or a client or some sort of combination to the extent that it’s effectly a proxy for the storage

@ylavi

Hi

NextCloud:
I think it evolved into a sort of gateway service for files out of necessity. Too much stuff globally are already stored somewhere safe, be it on NAS, SAN or Servers. No need to copy them all into one place (again).

As to Calender and Adressbook, those services are provided by the database behind NextCloud (usually MariaDB nowadays). NextCloud is a capable CalDAV and CrdDAV server. I am using those functions for 20-30 SME companies, from 2 to 50 users. It works quite well and few hassles for the llast couple of years now.

Institutions like the European Community use NextCloud, large Institutions and small. It’s well scalable.

If any institution has say a few Petabyte of data on a couple of powerful SANs and want’s to make the archive web-accessible, just put up a Nextcloud Instance in front of it.

You need more “oompf” behind it?

Put in an array of NextCloud instances, all refering to the same backend Database Server (Cluster), a reverse proxy at front and you’ve got full high availability, extremly high accessibility, scalable to whatever needs and budget allows…

Hope that generic explanation helps understanding what Nextcloud can do…

My 2 cents
Andy

Yes, that was helpful.
I’m getting more comfortable with the idea of WebTop and NextCloud on top of NethServer as you guys are confident in them.
Ultimately these aren’t going to be heavily used, only two users, but over the years I’ve appreciated having a system I can integrate as much as I like.
From what I think I’ve seen, WebTop and NextCloud have a lot of overlap in their groupware functionality. Do you typically lock down (or not install) parts of each, or just leave the users to have the discipline to work with one or the other? Or can NextCloud be a client of the calendar and contacts etc parts of WebTop and so on, like the storage can work?
I suspect I’ll understand all this better if I just set up a system and try it… (and then do it again properly)

@ylavi

AFAIK, Webtop can point CalDAV / CrdDAV to another Server (Like NextCloud), but NextCloud can’t point those two to another server.

I don’t use Webtop or SoGo on my instances, having decided on Nextcloud a while back and never regretting it.

Andy

Reading this thread has awaken my interest in Nextcloud; which I have been avoiding up until now only because I never completely understood it and felt basically like a waste of real estate and resources on my server.

The bundle that you have put together sounds very appealing; the only thing that ties me to SOGo is ActiveSync. My only question is have you integrated Z-Push successfully into this environment?

Look forward to getting your insight on this.

@Andy_Wismer Since obviously you have experience with calendar and address books, what is the most suitable/preffered setup in NS for calendar and address book for clients such as Outlook?
Is it WebTop as all in one solution for CalDAV/CardDAV or you recommend to go with NextCloud? You have also mentioned that Webtop can point to NextCloud CalDAV/CardDAV, any link to point out or howto?

I have tried WebTop CalDAV/CardDAV capabilities with Thunderbird and Outlook and CalDavSynchronizer addon, works, but doesn’t feel that smooth.

Roundcube as web mail also have plugins for calendar and CalDAV support, but they are not installed and/or enabled in NS. What is the experience or view to expand the Roundcube with plugins to be groupware web fronted?

I would appreciate your view for best setup, work with Outlook client but also web mail and calendar. capabilities.

@miroj

Hi Miroslav

All three options in NethServer work (SoGo, WebTop and NextCloud) with Outlook and other Clients like Thunderbird or Mac.
It is basically if you prefer using ActivSync or CalDAV/CrdDAV protocolls.

NextCloud works well with Outlook with the Outlook Connector provided. Mail remains IMAP for all three, but with the Outlook Connector the Calendar and Adressbook synches well with NextCloud.

Mobile devices work well too, no matter if iOS or Android.

So it’s basically what feels better to you, as Administrator. I admit prefering NextCloud, but it works well for me and my clients!

I use the Roundcube not from NethServer, but from Stephdl, in the Modules Section. It has the newer GUI, and it’s easier to add in plug-ins.

https://wiki.nethserver.org/doku.php?id=roundcubemail

My 2 cents
Andy

Thank you for the tips. I will continue with the WebTop, otherwise in the past I also had a positive experience with NextCloud concerning CalDAV/CardDAV.

Webtop is well supported here, the guy’s from the webtop team do a great job here!

My 2 cents
Andy

Hello Andy

can i hold Nexcloud mail/adress syncron with SOGo ?

Webtop has Activesync/Z-Push support too

Nextcloud and SOGo will use the same underlying IMAP server so e-mail should be oke.

AFAIK nexcloud can only be a {CALL CARD}-DAV server not a client for other {CALL CARD}-DAV servers like SOGo

Also see: