Ade Malsasa Akbar contact
Senior author, Open Source enthusiast.
Tuesday, April 14, 2020 at 13:13

This list presents generous free online providers who give multiple services that enables everyone chatting, video & voice conferencing, screen sharing, file sharing, collaborative document editing, and many more. The technology they give are mostly Jitsi, BigBlueButton, Mumble, Etherpad, and Jabber, with more additional ones. By "free" here I mean both ways that the services price are gratis and the software inside are also free as in freedom. I hope this list helps everybody worldwide to stay at home in the pandemic of COVID-19. Be safe and healthy!

Subscribe to UbuntuBuzz Telegram Channel to get article updates directly.

About This List

In Mastodon, I found awesome people working hard for community and people worldwide. Several among them are independent communication providers which provide their services at no cost while keeping ethics of Free Software and user's privacy. In the outbreak of COVID-19 diseases worldwide, it is very important to stay at home and their services are valuable to us to communicate and work remotely while still be safe technologically. I write this list based on my encounter of NixNet's, Linux.Pizza's, and's generous admins and NZOSS' president on Mastodon. However, this article is written 14 April 2020 so number of services available may be change in the future.

Knowledge Base

You will find technologies with names below:
  1. Jitsi: video conferencing, can be used as Skype or Zoom alternative, is able to share screen as well.
  2. BigBlueButton: video conferencing like Jitsi, but with teaching features like realtime whiteboard and presentation plus integration with other educational software like Moodle.
  3. Mumble: voice conferencing, can be used as Discord or Twitch alternative, is widely popular & used by online gamers. 
  4. Jabber: also known as XMPP, standard instant messaging technology which survives more than 20 years (predates all of WhatsApp, LINE, Skype, Viber, Google Talk, etc.).
  5. Riot/Matrix: modern chatting, integrated with many things, federated and universal. Read more about this here.
  6. Mastodon: social networking or more precisely microblogging service, can be used as Twitter alternative, is very big right now.
  7. Etherpad: collaborative text editor, can be used as Word Online alternative, is created by Mozilla the creator for Firefox.
  8. Ethercalc: collaborative spreadsheet, can be used as Excel Online alternative.
  9. Collabora: full office suite to replace Google Docs or Office 365, is actually LibreOffice made online.
  10. LibreSpeed: internet speed testing, can be used as SpeedTest alternative, is free from Flash Player or other proprietary software and ads.


What does NixNet provide? It provides BigBlueButton, Jabber, Mastodon, and Mumble services among many others. This service is generously provided by Amolith. If you love this service, you can help fund NixNet by Donation page.


What does Linux.Pizza provide? It offers Riot/Matrix, Mastodon, PrivateBin, and LibreSpeedTest. This means in respective order you can chat with friends easily, having a new social networking which challenges Twitter, publicly paste any text with password, and test your internet speed or ask friend to do so. This service is generously provided by Selea. Personally, I know him as he is also a Trisquel Forum's active user. You can help fund Linux.Pizza by Donation page.

What does provide? It offers Jitsi, BigBlueButton, Etherpad, Nextcloud, Mastodon, Pixelfed, among many others. This means in respective order you can use this service for video/voice conference including screen sharing, collaborative text editing, file sharing like Google Drive, having social network that challenges Instagram. I know this service after my encounter with the owner Tobi.

New Zealand OSS

What does NZOSS provide? It offers BigBlueButton, Mastodon, Rocket.Chat, and LibreOffice Online (Collabora). Rocket.Chat is similar to Riot/Matrix but the difference is in NZOSS it is integrated with BigBlueButton for video conferencing rather than Jitsi. This service is generously provided by New Zealand Open Source Society and personally I know this from the president Dave Lane. To help fund this awesome service, you can make Donation by member registration.

Chatons (Framasoft) 

What does Chatons provide? It is not a single service provider, but rather a central of multiple independent ones from different countries. On Chatons web page, you see multiple text boxes with join buttons and each of them is an instant gate to an online service among many ones. Services offered are Jitsi, Etherpad, Ethercalc, Framadate, etc. You just type a desired username in a box and press join button and use the service instantly.

Last but not least, I hope this widespread disease soon be perished and we all could be safe just as before. Let's stay at home and stay healthy.

This article is licensed under CC BY-SA 3.0.