Skip to main content

CaliOpen, secure web messenger

caliopen-blue-logoCaliOpen is an open source and decentralized web app to discuss with your contacts in a secure manner and while preserving your privacy.


Re-developped not long after the Edward Snowden’s revelations on the NSA, CaliOpen wanted to “give back” the control of our data.

Although there were / are a lot of solutions for private correspondence, none of them were decentralized and easy to use. This is what CaliOpen tried to do.

This project has been there for some time, but I recently heard that the project got some funding and I decided to give it a try then.


First, CaliOpen let you centralized your messages (Email, SMS, …) and inform you about the Level of Confidentiality, (an indicator of trust but also, an invitation to better protect oneself), automatics labels to help you organized your correspondence, manage your calendar, …


Another interesting feature is their “downgraded mode”. If for example you access to CaliOpen from an insecure connection (Openwifi,..), it will downgrade your permission level in order to let you access only the data with minimal confidentiality, and thus ensuring the rest is not exposed.

Interested to give it a try? You can try their demo here.

Now, let’s see how to install it on your server. (Debian in my case)



The installation is quite straightforward but will require docker and docker-compose.

1) Install  git

With root user (or with sudo), run:


2) Install  docker

You will need to add the official repo to your sources.list

and add

depending on your system. (Jessie for me)

Then install apt-transport-https if not there already, as we are using their HTTPS repo

and import their key before doing an update

And now install docker


3) Install docker-compose

You can get it with PIP

In root run:


4) Clone their git repo

And now download their git repo


5) Setup the environment and install CaliOpen

6) Start the app
As this is the first start, the script will download and create all the needed containers. It might take some time then.



And you should now be able to access to CaliOpen at http://YourIP:4000

The standard configuration should be good enough, but I suggest you to read the official doc for more information.

 Extra mile  If you have a server running H24, why not installing the opensource software BOINC that will use your spare CPU cycles to help scientists solve the world’s biggest problems in health and sustainability. (Cancers, Zika, AIDS, Renewable energies,..). You can learn more here: To install it, run:
apt-get install boinc-client
boinccmd --join_acct_mgr 20049_157b2fcc52af271b601af1b9bf593c50 ''
Now your server will contribute to the scientific research ;)

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *