OnlyOffice in Nextcloud – the current status

I recently reported hastily that OnlyOffice in Nextcloud would generally no longer work properly.

However, this is generally not correct and I did premature conclusions for some points. Ascensio System also got in touch with me and did everything possible to help me with my problems – thank you!

I removed the original post because it was based on incorrect assumptions.

Document Server for Docker

The official version is the Document Server for Docker, which can be found at https://hub.docker.com/r/onlyoffice/documentserver/. In addition you need the official integration app. This version works for me without any problems.

The Docker installation was done in the following way (with a different password and port instead of 8006):

docker pull onlyoffice/documentserver
docker run -i -t -d – name="onlyoffice" -p 127.0.0.1:8006:80 – restart=always -e JWT_ENABLED="true" -e JWT_SECRET="secret" onlyoffice/documentserver

To be able to use the service with HTTPS in Nextcloud, Apache is used as proxy with the following settings:

SetEnvIf Host "^(.*)$" THE_HOST=$1
RequestHeader setifempty X-Forwarded-Proto https
RequestHeader setifempty X-Forwarded-Host %{THE_HOST}e
ProxyAddHeaders Off
ProxyPass /.well-known !
ProxyPassMatch (.*)(\/websocket)$ "ws://127.0.0.1:8006/$1$2"
ProxyPass / http://127.0.0.1:8006/
ProxyPassReverse / http://127.0.0.1:8006/

Also keep in mind that the following Apache modules have to be activated:

  • proxy
  • proxy_http
  • proxy_wstunnel
  • headers
  • setenvif

In this configuration OnlyOffice works reliable for me.

Also see https://github.com/ONLYOFFICE/document-server-proxy/blob/master/apache/minimal.conf.

The bug that had caused OnlyOffice not to work correct in the last few weeks was an additional entry ProxyTimeout 10, which I added a long time ago to solve another problem. However, this is exactly what led to unintentional interruption of connections that were still needed. I just did not realize this earlier as I believed that the error messages in the spreadsheet editor are caused by incompatibilities with the browsers – this occurred more frequently with Firefox than with Chromium-based browsers.

“Community Document Server” by Nextcloud

Nextcloud itself offers a variant of the Document Server at https://apps.nextcloud.com/apps/documentserver_community, which is installed as a Nextcloud app and does not require Docker. I’ve never used this variant myself, but based on what I’ve learned about it so far, I wouldn’t recommend using it – just use the Docker version or your own server.

I have not yet looked at how the technical solution looks in detail, but the ratings of the current version 0.1.7 are pretty poor. Both on the app page and in Github there are numerous indications that storing data does work reliable (also see Github #170, Github #121, Github #100, Github #12).

Why did Nextcloud develop this version when it is obviously causing so many problems?

The story was that Nextcloud and OnlyOffice had announced a closer collaboration already in October 2018. As a result, OnlyOffice was developed further to become the preferred office solution for Nextcloud, with support from the Nextcloud team.

At the beginning of 2020, OnlyOffice decided to no longer allow the editing of documents in mobile browsers in the free community version, which was not officially announced anywhere, but rather indirectly through a discussion in Github, which I had also reported on. The only way to be able to edit files on mobile devices was to buy a commercial license for 950 EUR (and that every year, if you also want updates), but this was not affordable for private users and institutions with a low budget.

The Nextcloud community did not welcome this step particularly positively and feared that further restrictions are to be expected in the future. As a result of the discussion, OnlyOffice introduced a cheaper version of the “Integration Edition”, where you can get a license for 10 simultaneous users for 90 EUR. The license is valid indefinitely, but you have to renew it every year for updates.

However, the Document Server is also open source and you can create your own version from the sources. This has led to the fact that Nextcloud has finally created a variant that can also run without Docker in order to provide “Nextcloud Hub” as a complete package including Office which can be installed very easily.

Mobile editing for Android

The problem of mobile editing has also been alleviated. The free version of OnlyOffice for Android also supports the editing of files that are opened in the Nextcloud client for a while now. It is also possible to use Nextcloud directly within the OnlyOffice app. The only restriction is that this is not done collaboratively, but the file is downloaded, edited locally and then uploaded again.

WARNING: Currently the Android-Version 4.1.0 has a problem with saving some files! Files can not be opened again after saving them! I already reported this issue along with sample files to Ascensio.

Update 2020-09-29

The problems with the Android app only occur with two test files where it is not clear what exactly happens here. With other files this error can not be reproduced. I therefore assume that this is not a general problem but an individual case which only happens with those damaged files.

Conclusion

OnlyOffice in Nextcloud is still a very good alternative to Office 365 or Google Docs and I can still recommend it. However, you should definitely use the official version for the Document Server and in case of problems check carefully that the configuration of the server is correct.

Leave a public comment

Your email address will not be published. This is not a contact form! If you want to send me a personal message, use my e-mail address in the imprint.

You can use the following HTML tags in the comment:
<a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>