Since Google announced they were shutting down their Google Reader service it has come to light how dependent I was on a third party. Fortunately, Google allows data to be exported in a variety of formats including standard variants.
I had discovered Tiny, Tiny RSS (TT-RSS) through various articles whilst searching for Google Reader alternatives.
TT-RSS requires the following:
Run the following command to install all the above with my preferred software. If the software already exists on the system then it will automatically skip them:
sudo apt-get install apache2 mysql-server php5 php5-mcrypt php5-curl php5-mysql php5-gd screen
It may ask the root password for the administrator’s account to be set up for MySQL database.
Download the zipped TT-RSS file. The below uses the latest one at the time (version 1.8):
Extract the zip file to the default web root directory:
sudo tar -zxvf 1.8.tar.gz -C /var/www
The extract directory would be /var/www/Tiny-Tiny-RSS-1.8 which is a bit long so I renamed it to ttrss:
sudo /var/www/Tiny-Tiny-RSS-1.8 /var/www/ttrss
Change the ownership to allow the Apache user to modify files:
sudo chown -R www-data:www-data /var/www/ttrss
Open the browser and go through the setup e.g http://localhost/ttrss
Follow the onscreen instructions to setup TT-RSS.
The admin user is already created with the default credentials username: admin password: password. Make sure this is changed by logging in, Actions > Preferences. The settings are in Personal data / Authentication section.
Once setup ensure a new user is created instead of using the admin account as a day to day account.
The preferred method (and the one I use) is to run a PHP script which will check feeds on a scheduled interval. To keep this running whilst not connected to the system is to use something like screen.
sudo apt-get install screen
Start a screen session:
Press enter to skip the message which is displayed when screen starts up. After it will drop to the command line prompt as per normal.
Go to the TTRSS directory:
Start the script by using the following command:
The script should run and start filling screen with logging information. To disconnect from the screen to leave it running press Ctrl+A D in quick succession. Then exit or log off as per usual.
TT-RSS is very easy to setup and install. It even allows importing of OPML file which can be exported from Google Reader. The Mobile app is also very usable.
I am skeptical about the way it performs it’s scheduling of updates. I’d rather use an integrated solution without the need of something like screen. Also having such script in the web directory seems risky.