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I have an openwrt installed router. I can attach my hdds to the router and access my files from my any computer in the local area network. I am using the university housing wired internet service. Actually, my router acts as a wifi access point and shares the wired internet. So I cannot open ports or do any modifications outside of my local network. I want to access my files through internet from anywhere. To do this, I guess, I need a server running outside. I heard about pogoplug and other alternatives. With them, it is possible to setup such a system even if you are restricted behind a firewall or NAT. I want to setup my own "pogoplug" thing. Is there any open alternative to this kind of service?

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Pogo plug would not work, it is essentially a small linux system, that you could plug hard drives in to, and then it would do exactly what your router does now, and still be running behind the router. i.e. it will have the exact same problem. You would need something you could sync up externally, liek dropbox, box, or one of the alternatives (I think box might still have a deal going to get 50gb for free since it is relatively new)

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An alternative would be to to set up a VPN between your computer and a site external to the university, and then connect back to your PC via the VPN. There is generally a small cost for VPN's, but something like OpenVPN (program) should be able to get through most firewalls etc.

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