Nextcloud versus Microsoft 365

The most deployed alternative to Office365

Why is Nextcloud the best alternative for Office365 and Onedrive?

Perfect fit

Not all organizations have the same needs. With over 200 apps for Nextcloud, more than for any other on-premises solution, you can add the integration and functional enhancements you need.

Ultimate control

Nextcloud is an on-premises solution which makes maintaining compliance and data security easier. Our extensive auditing, monitoring, and file access control features as well as capabilities like End-to-end Encryption and Video Verification are unique in the industry.

Best user interface

Nextcloud provides a far simpler and more integrated user interface, resulting in less calls to support and improved productivity of your teams.

Reduce risk, improve customer communication and reduce operational expenses with the leading content collaboration platform.

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Six key reasons to choose Nextcloud over 365

Three business benefits of Nextcloud

    1. Legal compliance - Privacy Shield, GDPR, California Privacy Act, none of those legal headaches matter if you keep your data in-house or on servers you control.

    2. Vendor Lock-in - The bigger picture is that your needs and wants and those of Microsoft are not always aligned. If they want to push some technology, you can not turn it off. If they abandon something, you will lose access to it. Not so with Nextcloud!

    3. Security and transparency - Those are the two sides of the same coin! You can audit the code of Nextcloud or pay a security firm to do that for you, making sure it does what we claim it does and nothing more.

Three practical benefits of Nextcloud

    1. You control updates - No more walking in on Monday morning to an inbox full of support requests due to broken workflows after an update you did not know was coming.

    2. You control the code - Add, modify or remove any functionality you want, at any time, or build custom integration in any platform you want, including in-house tech.

    3. You run your cloud - You now have the opportunity to consolidate your data floating on all kinds of public clouds in one place.

Privacy Shield is down

Office 365 not GDPR compliant

Use of Office 365 adds significantly to compliance risks. Like many other SaaS solutions, it, fails to follow the requirements and risk business data as a Data Protection Impact Assesment of Office 365 by the Dutch government showed again in mid 2020. This after serious flaws were found and promised to be fixed first in early 2019 and again later that year. Legal challenges are mounted continuously and can cause significant harm.

This harm became particularly clear after the EU Court of Justice struck down Privacy Shield, effectively nullifying GDPR compliance for US cloud services. In essence the ruling means that US companies can not handle data in compliance with the GDPR. European data centers or Standard Contractual Clauses (SCCs) are no solution, as access to data already defines a data transfer and US law supersedes contract law. The only legal solution to regain compliance with EU law is to immediately stop data transfers to the US businesses and repatriate data currently residing with them.


To make it easy to come to an informed decision, below we provide a high-level overview of the relative strengths and weaknesses of both products.

Pricing at 1000 users (basic to extensive option) $19000 - $75000 $48000 - $325,000/year
Easy migration
Vendor lock-in means you can't easily migrate to another solution
Open Source
Access to source code means you can audit the code and adjust functionality
Access through API
Enables third party apps to interact with service
Extensible through apps
Over 200 apps available

Only interaction through limited API

Storage and sync features

Maximum storage Unlimited Depends on plan
Max file size Unlimited 10 GB
Number of files Unlimited 20000

Infrastructure integration

LDAP/AD any number and type of user directories max 1 AD connection
Other auth solutions Kerberos, OpenID, OAuth2, CAS
direct connection to Samba or MySQL
and more
File storage solutions WND/Sharepoint/NFS/Object Storage/FTP
and many more

Privacy, control and security

Full Audit trail Unlimited Limited to 90 days for some data
Protection of metadata
GDPR compliance 100% certified Risky due to Cloud Act
Encryption Always on own infrastructure Server-side in MS data center

Communication and collaboration

One-on-one and group audio/video chat
Data and metadata remain on-premises
Access to calls and files for third parties (guests) without account
E2E encrypted one-on-one calls

Other features

Social network features
Online Office
mail server not included
Task/project management
Kanban, task list. No GANT chart view currently
(a collaborative space associated with each folder for context, todo lists, notes etc)
Mobile Device Management (Block devices, remote wipe, notification to devices)
Strictly enforce data and meta data locality
Limited Guest accounts
Secure Mailbox
(Outlook add-in sending email body & attachments only through secure server)
Protect shares with password, expiration date
Video Verification
(enforce video call with recipient to verify identity before granting access to share)
Ransomware Recovery
(automated recovery of data after ransomware attack based on file analysis)

Only time-based, after detection of ransomware based on file names. Risks overwriting useful changes and missing ransomware without predictable names.
No vendor lock-in
Make it easy to migrate to another solution by using open standards

Try our demo or contact us today to get started!

in action

German Federal Government, ITZBund

Nextcloud provides users with a modern, easy-to-use and productivity-oriented solution that enables efficient online and mobile collaboration and communication. ITZBund now provides an on-premises open source solution from a German provider to keep control over their own data.

European Governments deploy Nextcloud
in action

Zenuity - reshaping autonomous driving

Zenuity deployed Nextcloud for the purpose of safe and effective collaboration with our partner companies. We selected the product after comparing against several other alternatives. Particular advantages are the ability to run the service on premises and the good support for a wide range of client operating systems.

in action

Capital of Switzerland provides Nextcloud to 35.000 students and teachers

the largest open source order ever in Switzerland!

-- Matthias Stürmer, EPP city councillor

A wave of cities moving to Nextcloud
Nextcloud File Firewall

Under control of IT

No matter the storage solution used, Nextcloud can ensure corporate policies are followed. Sharing can be restricted through the file firewall, filtering on user properties like location or group, or file properties like (automatically or manually) assigned tags, file type and more. With storage transparent to users, generic data can remain where it is while IT can make sure that business critical or compliance-relevant information is stored on internal infrastructure and does not leave the company. Use our secure File Drop to let customers upload files to you in a easy and secure way!

end-to-end encryption

With unique layered encryption

Nextcloud offers a supremely easy to use, well integrated file sync and share solution with an uniquely layered approach to security. Together with the support for nearly any storage technology, it features server-side encryption and offers the ability to employ end-to-end, client side encryption for a subset of user files. Rather than making it an either-or choice, your business can rely on utmost security where it is needed but keep collaborative online document editing and full-text search on the server over the rest of the stored data.

extensive audit logs

100% visibility

Nextcloud features extensive monitoring and auditing capabilities to ensure actions of all users are transparent, both to the users themselves and to auditors.

Easy integration

Efficient deployment and management

Complexity is the enemy of security and Nextcloud is designed to offer quick and easy integration in existing infrastructure, leaving policies and procedures in place. Its powerful LDAP and storage integration seamlessly fits with existing user directories, Windows Network Drive, NFS and Sharepoint storage solutions.

The result: a quick implementation at low cost, and easy maintenance making a self-hosted Nextcloud the cloud compliance solution with the lowest TCO.

Deep integration

CanvasCreated using Figma

Nextcloud integrates in government infrastructure with support for SAML and Shibboleth, LDAP, Kerberos, Oauth, and other often used authentication mechanisms and runs on all enterprise Linux systems offering support options to match their life cycle.


Data storage can be one or multiple NFS, Object Storage, Samba or a variety of other powerful storage mechanisms. This way Nextcloud provides seamless access to data on existing storage mechanisms, respecting existing access control policies and transparently handling changes on the underlying storage layer.

Key features in Nextcloud

Fully self-hosted, meaning all data is under your control. Nextcloud can leverage your existing storage, security and privacy policies. There is no vendor lock-in or tracking by us of any kind!

Nextcloud offers an easy to use user interface which comes with powerful search functionality, trash and versioning, favorites, tags and more ways to quickly reach the files users need.

Desktop and mobile clients for Windows/MacOS/Linux, Android and iOS complement the web interface, integrating in the file system. Nextcloud can also be reached through WebDAV.

Authentication through LDAP / Active Directory, Kerberos and Shibboleth / SAML 2.0 and more and external storage supporting NFS, Object Storage and other protocols ensure easy integration.

First-class security policies, extensive security hardening features and File Access Control to ensure legal and privacy regulations are enforced at all times. Nextcloud comes with integrated logging, two-factor authentication and NIST compliant password policy control functionalities.

Nextcloud offers fine-grained control from mobile, desktop or the Web over data access and sharing capabilities. Advanced quota management with configurable accounting of external storage and configurable file retention policies.

Serving your needs

Nextcloud is committed to provide technology that is a perfect fit for your organization!


Nextcloud provides the highest security for protected health information.


Nextcloud has unique features for research and academic institutions.

Financial Services

Nextcloud delivers confidentiality, security and compliance.


Nextcloud offers the ultimate control to protect digital sovereignty in Government.

Global scale

Scale Nextcloud to hundreds of millions of users at commodity cost.

Media and Advertising

Nextcloud provides easy and efficient collaboration on large files.

Lawyers and Notaries

Nextcloud assures your clients that their documents stay 100% confidential.

Construction and manufacturing

Nextcloud has the easy, efficient UI engineers need to deliver on time.

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