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Start hosting your own video chat software in a few easy steps.

If you are tired of using Google, Apple, Skype or any number of other proprietary software to host your video chats, try Jitsi Meet.  https://jitsi.org/ has information on the product and community around the project.

Jitsi Meet  https://meet.jit.si/ allows you to easily test out the software, or use it “all day, every day, for free — with no account needed.”  It is a fully encrypted and 100% open source video conferencing software that allows you to connect with distributed teams.  Divorcing yourself from google products is a difficult task as they have so many useful tools.

Previously our team used meet.google.com for all of our video and voice chats.  There are many redeeming factors about that web software, but knowing google is datamining as much as they can, we searched for alternatives to Google Meet.  We eventually found the product that is Jitsi.

Using meet.jit.si is great, however we were searching for more control and wanted to roll our own servers to be fully in control of what was happening with our data.

Setting up your own Jitsi Meet Server

Most any cloud-hosted server will run the Jitsi Meet software succesfully for small teams.  We have been using a $5 digital ocean server with up to 15 users connected simultaneously.

Quick install instructions can be found here. Using the quick install process is highly recommended unless you are very technical, or have a special need that isn’t available through quick install settings.
https://github.com/jitsi/jitsi-meet/blob/master/doc/quick-install.md

Advanced users, or those just wanting to explore the full process can use the full manual install document found here https://github.com/jitsi/jitsi-meet/blob/master/doc/manual-install.md

Community Support

As an open source project with repositories on github.com, you would expect some issues and support to be handled on the github platform.  Everything I have seen, the developers force people to use https://community.jitsi.org in order to get any help or report issues.  Once on the forum, you can find some help but you may not.

Cons

My biggest gripe against the jitsi meet project is that documentation is lacking and seems quite fragmented.   Better built out guides for some of the common modifications could help novice users better user jitsi.

 

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