If you asked me what a good documentation solution was a few weeks ago, I would have recommended Atlassian Confluence. You can host it on your own network and it was cheap – $10/year for 10 users which is more than enough for a family.
Long story short, Atlassian is discontinuing sales of the Server line of on-prem software and you can renew existing licenses through February 2024. They’re pushing users to the cloud version which is more expensive, more limited, and it’s cloud. One of the reasons I like Confluence was that I hosted it within my network behind a firewall. I could control access to it. I can’t do that with the cloud version.
Open Source & Free (as in Speech)
Since Atlassian decided to screw me over, I decided to screw them over by not renewing and moving to a free and open source solution. The benefits to this? For one, I don’t have to pay anything for it. I can use it how I’d like, including within my own network.
A few months ago, I came across an open source wiki solution called XWiki. It was in use by a business which intrigued me. Thinking it was a commercial solution, I had delight upon finding out that it’s actually open source and free. I tried to install it, but failed miserably. But lo and behold, it turns out that you can easily install it on Debian/Ubuntu. Since it’s installed via APT, it’ll stay up to date with the operating system.
Once I got it installed along with an NGINX reverse proxy to handle Tomcat (it’s written in Java), I found that it is very simlar to Confluence. It’s different. It doesn’t look as polished, but it’s very easy to customize. It’s also a lot faster than Confluence as well. I suggest giving it a try if you’re looking for a wiki solution.