7 Best self-hosted Slack alternatives of 2019

How long you stay in a rented place with access to limited facilities? Is your data secure at your service providers server? Do you think your data has been shared to any third-party services? Forgot to renew the monthly subscription of your SaaS application?

 

Now put a halt to all those questions running in your mind, and let’s evolve with the solution of Self-hosting. It allows a private and secure communication and collaboration across your on-premise servers.  The name itself hints us its meaning. So we’ll see what it exactly does?

What is self-hosting?

Buy an application right upfront and host it on your servers, instead of accessing it from the public cloud servers. Self-hosting is the process of downloading, installing and accessing some software or application with your domain name from the servers that you own. It extends end-to-end application management with full-scale data privacy and security at your controlled infrastructure and environment.

Why there is a need for Self-hosted Slack Alternative?

Many businesses across the globe made Slack as their first choice for an uninterrupted and seamless team communications. But, the one thing that Slack is not economical any more to most of the people around, is because it’s getting too pricey day-by-day.  Despite self hosting being a dearer option as compared to SaaS business model, the advantages of the former far too offset the cost implications in terms of ease of use and safety.  

Considering the above observation of Self-hosting of Slacks’ being high-priced, users no more want to stick to this. Rather, a major shift has been noticed in the users choice for better Slack alternatives those are less-expensive with more unique features. 

Let's take a quick look into few self-hosted Slack alternatives:

Rocket.Chat

Rocket.Chat considered as one of the best self-hosted Slack alternatives for ‘open-source team communication’. It is a web-chat server that was developed in Javascript using the Meteor full-stack framework. Rocket.Chat is considered an ideal solution for developers and companies, those hwo want to evolve their private chat platforms within their servers. It is available across the platforms of web, desktop, and mobile. Going further, it allows adding incoming and outgoing Webhook integrations to it.

Why consider it?
 

    • It is free and unlimited

    • Users can install Rocket.Chat on their servers

    • Full-level access to the source code

    • Design your requirement and seamlessly integrate it into the application

    • Rocket.Chat provides powerful APIs, such as REST API, LiveChat API or Real-Time 

API

    • It uses machine learning for real-time message translation

    • It allows you to perform endless customizations in terms of adding features, choosing your integrations, plugins, and themes

    • It enables you to easily migrate from other chat applications with the help of seamless data importers.
 

Troop Messenger

Troop Messenger is specially made for teams and their communication! The self-hosted application provides complete control over all your message-exchanges to avoid data loss. It allows you to experience a flawless, secured, and private team communications across your on-premise servers. 

An end-to-end team chat software designed for all sizes of organizations to seamlessly interact with each other to stay always connected. The users of the Troop Messenger can connect via direct messaging, voice calling, audio messaging, video calling, screen sharing, etc., for all project updates and more. It allows organized conversations with the help of Groups and is available on Windows, Linux, Web, Android, and iOS.

Why consider it?

    • It is a perfect office messaging tool with an impressive user interface along with seamless navigational feature functional flows.

    • It facilitates the best features with highly affordable pricing quotes.

    • The freemium SaaS and self-hosted application has its presence across the platforms of desktop, mobile and web browsers.

    • Troop Messenger’s self-hosted version can be exclusively customized for Defence, Government, and Non-profit organizations to leverage high-level secured communications.

    • It has an exceptional guest feature or vendor collaboration feature- The Orange Member. With this, you collaborate with all your clients, customers and vendors for fruitful business interactions. 

Mattermost 

Mattermost stands as an exceptional open-source, self-hosted, and robust team chat application designed for enterprises of all sizes. The users can download Mattermost Enterprise Edition and deploy the application on their private cloud or on-premise for full-level data control. This application has been programmed in Golang and React and installs as a production-ready single Linux binary under an MIT license with MySQL or PostgreSQL. 

The highly secure and scalable open-source messaging application for DevOps teams allows to share ideas across channels, groups, one-to-one messaging with code snippets of the syntax of more than 50 programming languages. The self-hosted application is functional over diverse platforms like Windows, Linux, Mac OS, Android, and iOS.

Why consider it?
 

    • Mattermost provides highly informational application documentation for installation, set-up, and troubleshooting.

    • It allows data import from Slack during migration.

    • You are the owner of all your data even though you cancel the subscription.

    • The Mattermosts’ team edition comes free for 30 days, and the Enterprise E10 and E20 are billed annually at $3.25 and $8.50 per user respectively.

    • It supports 16 multi-language translations.

    • You can auto-deploy Mattermost to Amazon Web Services, Azure, Google Cloud Platform, or in Oracle via Bitnami.

    • It allows to built your Apps using Mattermost APIs and drivers.

    • It will send the users an article on How to integrate over 700 applications to Mattermost, such as Jira, Github, etc., using Zapier integration, right after you sign-up the application.

Matrix

Matrix is an open network light-weight protocol designed for secure, decentralized and real-time communication. The end-to-end encrypted protocol is out of beta as of June 2019 and is maintained by the Matrix.org Foundation. Matrix has been designed to allow users to communicate across accounts of one service provider with users of different service providers through online chat, VoIP, and video calls.

The motive of this protocol is to help users to seamlessly communicate between different communications service providers such as Slack, Telegram, Discord, IRC, Gitter, etc., including Matrix.org.

Why consider it?
 

    • It allows to create chat rooms, direct chats, and chatbots with its simple to implement HTTP APIs and SDKs. 

    • It provides best-in-class end-to-end encryption with the Olm and Megolm cryptographic ratchets. 

    • Reach over 9Million users with global Matrix ecosystem.

    • Communicate with the features of File transfer, formatted messages, synchronized conversation history, read receipts, bridging,  and more, for uninterrupted communications.

    • Integrates with third-party IDs.

    • WebRTC VoIP/ Video Calling using Matrix signaling.

Lets Chat 

Another team chat application, which was exclusively built for the communication needs of small teams is Let’s Chat. A self-hosted open-source team chats application built with the features of LDAP/Kerberos authentication, XMPP multi-user chat, etc., runs on Node.js and MongoDB. The free application is highly flexible to deploy and is a perfect fit for small teams. 

Why consider it?

    • It facilitates private/password protected multiple rooms.

    • You can use the features of desktop notifications, @Mentions, file uploads, and image embeds.

    • It is MIT licensed and Hubot Friendly.

    • It supports the REST-like API to get in touch with other tools.

Riot IM 

One of the efficient self-hosted Slack alternatives that were built on Matrix React SDK is Riot.im. The self-hosted and open source chat application allows you to chat the way you want right from the casual chat to high powered team collaboration. This free team chat software is available on the platforms of Windows, Linux, MacOS, Android, and iOS as a client application.

Why consider it?
 

    • It provides full-scale control on your data at your servers

    • The multi-lingual application supports 25 languages

    • Highly secured communications with state-of-the-art end-to-end encryption

    • Riot.im can bridge other applications such as Slack, IRC, Telegram, Gitter, etc.,

    • Seamless and transparent voice and video conferencing.

    • It allows you to easily browse archives and search files.
 

Zulip

Zulip open source and self-hosted team chat application were originally developed by a start-up called Zulip. It stands out as one of the best Slack alternatives with the features of LDAP/Active Directory Support, @ mentions, Desktop and audible notifications, support of third-party integrations, stream-wide announcements and many more. Initially, it was proprietary software, but later it was acquired by Dropbox under the Apache license. 

Why consider it?
 

    • Zulip client app is available for Windows, Linux, MacOS, Android and iOS. 

    • Developers can easily find its source code in Github.

    • It supports a single sign-on with Google, Github and Active Directory/LDAP 

Conclusion

Data is one of the crucial assets of any company. And when it comes to business chat applications, the need to secure it safely is of higher importance. To have full-level control over your data and message-exchanges, you can privately host applications in your own servers with the concept of self-hosting. This ensures no-third party access to your data, making it more robust. We have suggested you many self-hosted slack alternatives in this article, but I would personally suggest you to look for Troop Messenger for its exceptionally designed self-hosting customizations.

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