Development Environment

Please follow the steps on this page to set up your development environment.

Basic tools

To be able to develop with ownCloud and also run unit tests, you will need to install Node.js.

Other required tools will be automatically installed by composer.

Set up Web server and database

First set up your Web server and database (Section: Manual Installation - Prerequisites).

Get the source

There are two ways to obtain ownCloud sources:

  • Using the development version from GitHub which will be explained below.

To check out the source from GitHub you will need to install git (see Setting up git from the GitHub help)

Gather information about server setup

To get started the basic git repositories need to cloned into the Web server’s directory. Depending on the distribution this will either be

  • /var/www
  • /var/www/html
  • /srv/http

Then identify the user and group the Web server is running as and the Apache user and group for the chown command will either be

  • http
  • www-data
  • apache
  • wwwrun

Check out the code

The following commands are using /var/www as the Web server’s directory and www-data as user name and group.

Make the directory writable:

sudo chmod o+rw /var/www

Then install ownCloud from git:

git clone

Run make to pull in dependencies:

cd /var/www/core

where <folder> is the folder where you want to install ownCloud.

Adjust rights:

sudo chown -R www-data:www-data /var/www/core/data/
sudo chmod o-rw /var/www

Finally restart the Web server (this might vary depending on your distribution):

sudo systemctl restart httpd.service


sudo /etc/init.d/apache2 restart

After the clone Open http://localhost/core (or the corresponding URL) in your web browser to set up your instance.

Enabling debug mode


Do not enable this for production! This can create security problems and is only meant for debugging and development!

To disable JavaScript and CSS caching debugging has to be enabled by setting debug to true in core/config/config.php:

$CONFIG = array (
    'debug' => true,
    ... configuration goes here ...
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