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Freenet 0.5 Released

timothy posted more than 11 years ago | from the makes-node-difference dept.

The Internet 406

An anonymous reader submits "After over a year in the making, Freenet 0.5 stable has been released. This new version is far superior to previous versions of Freenet." The announcement specifically thanks Matthew Toseland, "without whom this release would still be vaporware," noting "On the 11th of November, Matthew will no longer be able to work full-time unless more people donate, so please give whatever you can spare at our Donations page."

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406 comments

frpst iost (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4545847)

suckit d00dz!!!!

Ahh, more excellent reporting! (-1, Redundant)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4545848)

What the shit is Freenet?

first post (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4545849)

oh yeah

So anyway (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4545850)

Back to my story about raping that Indian girl.

MAN! Her pussy smelled like somebody took a DUMP in it! But the reason for that is because I actually took a dump in it.

At Last (-1, Redundant)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4545854)

I was already getting worried about my mp3 inflow.

Just some info (1, Informative)

bluFox (612877) | more than 11 years ago | (#4545862)

Personaly i think it is some kind of a cross between Kazza and everything2 some info on web site What is Freenet?

Freenet is a large-scale peer-to-peer network which pools the power of member computers around the world to create a massive virtual information store open to anyone to freely publish or view information of all kinds.

Freenet is:
Highly survivable: All internal processes are completely anonymized and decentralized across the global network, making it virtually impossible for an attacker to destroy information or take control of the system.
Private: Freenet makes it extremely difficult for anyone to spy on the information that you are viewing, publishing, or storing.
Secure: Information stored in Freenet is protected by strong cryptography against malicious tampering or counterfeiting.
Efficient: Freenet dynamically replicates and relocates information in response to demand to provide efficient service and minimal bandwidth usage regardless of load. Significantly, Freenet generally requires log(n) time to retrieve a piece of information in a network of size n.

Re:Just some info (5, Insightful)

mumblestheclown (569987) | more than 11 years ago | (#4545873)

Ah. You mean the usual:
  • In theory it's about truth, justice, and the american way.
  • In practice it's an Eminem / Photoshop Plug-Ins / pr0n delivery mechanism.

Re:Just some info (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4545886)

Exactly!

Because in practice, truth, justice and the american way are about $, $, and $.

Re:Just some info (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4546061)

truth, justice and the american way

Dare I say it, but its been a long time since the first 2 things had anything to do with the last one...

Re:Just some info (1, Funny)

glubbs (526448) | more than 11 years ago | (#4545894)

Maybe its first steps are Eminem / Photoshop Plug-Ins / pr0n delivery, and the next few are truth, and justice (imo, american way has gone the way of large corporations, so i'm looking for a way other than the american one), then alright, bring on the pr0ninem, Photo delivery, and Emi-Ins.

Re:Just some info (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4545957)

Fucking pinko communist!

Re:Just some info (2, Informative)

packeteer (566398) | more than 11 years ago | (#4545903)

From the website:

Freenet is free software designed to ensure true freedom of communication over the Internet. It allows anybody to publish and read information with complete anonymity. Nobody controls Freenet, not even its creators, meaning that the system is not vulnerable to manipulation or shutdown.

Freenet is also efficient in how it deals with information, adaptively replicating content in response to demand. We have and continue to pioneer innovative new ideas such as the application of emergent behavior to computer communication, and public-key cryptography to creating secure namespaces. For more information please read this paper on the Freenet architecture.

BTW its also a Good Thing TM.

Just some info on your biological parents (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4546034)

Personaly i think they were artificially cross-bred from jews and negros some info on web site Who is your mom?

Your mom is a large-scale prostitution ring who pools the jizz of member johns around the world to create a massive virtual semen repository open to anyone to freely masturbate or view raw, swollen genitalia of any kind.

Your mom is:
Highly survivable: All internal organs have been thoroughly plasticized, making it virtually impossible for a sexual partner to mutilate or impregnate her.
Private: Your mom makes it extremely difficult for anyone in law enforcement to spy on the sperm that you are unloading, co-mingling, or wallowing in.
Secure: Semen stored in your mom is protected by a cybernetic refrigeration unit
Efficient: Your mom dynamically re-schedules and relocates in response to demand to provide efficient service and minimal orifice cramping regardless of load. Significantly, your mom generally requires only $50 to disrobe and begin fornicating.

Re:Just some info (5, Insightful)

e8johan (605347) | more than 11 years ago | (#4546092)

It is nice to see that one can get +5 Informative by simply copying the What is Freenet? [freenetproject.org] page and saying that it is a bit like Kazza.

It is not like Kazza! This is because it is not spyware and has/will never be accused of being. It is an open source (GPLed) reaction to the growing restrictions of the on-line rights of expression. The point is not that you can copy your warez and p0rn, the point is that you can express yourself anonymously.

Dear moderators, if you haven't read the article and followed at least some of the link, do not moderate! Does "...some kind of a cross between Kazza..." and "...provide efficient service and minimal bandwidth..." sound like something written by the same author in the same message?

Anarchists, Lunatics and terrorists (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4545863)

...teh TARGET (and exclusive) audience of freenet
No WONDER it's taken a year just to hit alpha stage, LOL! ;-D

Thank you! (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4545864)

I just would like to be the first to say a big "Thank you!" to the entire FreeNet team.

When I first heard of FreeNet, I thought, "I live in America, what would I need of this?" No, this isn't a troll. I was happy and complacent and slightly distrustful of the Big Bad Brother. Now the purpose of a network like FreeNet has become quite clear, as I'm neither happy nor complacent and I'm more distrustful of Big Brother with each passing day, as he takes further swipes at the freedoms my Constitution tells me I'm supposed to have.

Thanks, FreeNet, for standing up. More importantly, thanks for the foresight. Imagine if they'd waited until it was really necessary.

Re:Thank you! (5, Insightful)

mumblestheclown (569987) | more than 11 years ago | (#4545887)

How ironic that you mention the Constitution, when Freenet's de facto purpose is to subvert the following:

Article I, Section 8. Powers of Congress

The Congress shall have the power ...

[paragraph 8] To promote the progress of science and useful arts, by securing for limited times to authors and inventors the exclusive right to their respective writings and discoveries;

Re:Thank you! (4, Insightful)

glubbs (526448) | more than 11 years ago | (#4545902)

I have to point to this:
to authors and inventors
In other words: NOT to the people who make mony off of the authors and inventors.

Re:Thank you! (5, Insightful)

mcubed (556032) | more than 11 years ago | (#4545997)

How ironic that you mention the Constitution, when Freenet's de facto purpose is to subvert the following:

I might almost agree with you, had Congress not already subverted it by turning copyright from a limited monopoly into an effectively unending one. So now it becomes a question of "which subversion of the Copyright Clause is better?" My vote goes to Freenet & P2P.

Michael

Can someone educate me? (3, Interesting)

chrisseaton (573490) | more than 11 years ago | (#4545868)

Freenet is free software designed to ensure true freedom of communication over the Internet. It allows anybody to publish and read information with complete anonymity. Nobody controls Freenet, not even its creators, meaning that the system is not vulnerable to manipulation or shutdown.

Yeah.... but what is it? P2P? Blogger? Messenger?

Re:Can someone educate me? (1)

bluFox (612877) | more than 11 years ago | (#4545906)

They dont have any direct information on their web site,. but after going through their web site, the impression i get is that it is some kind of cache and mirroring server distributed across individual computers.

God ,, i miss a howto here :((

Re:Can someone educate me? (5, Informative)

blonde rser (253047) | more than 11 years ago | (#4545962)

Yeah.... but what is it? P2P? Blogger? Messenger?

As I understand it, it is none of those things... but it can facilitate those things. What it is is kind of a different paradigm for the internet. At the moment with the internet I type in an address and I get data from the person who has registered that address - if he has the bandwidth. I know who is sending the info and who posted it. And if that person has spare bandwidth or is being /.'ed and needs more bandwidth, well that's just tough. With freenet I put info on freenet that is connected to some sort of name (I don't fully get how that works). Then freenet somehow determines where to actually store that data, in parts, depending on demand and who running freenet has bandwidth; ie what freenet clients to store parts of the file. Then if somebody is running freenet they can run some 3rd party freenet client (or any normal internet client I think) and enter 127.0.0.1:8888 followed by the name of the link. This queries freenet (that is running on your computer) and figures out where that data is stored and the most efficient way to retrieve it. One of the interesting things is nobody knows what data is being stored on there computer so nobody can feel guilty for that info. Of course that cuts both ways. You may feel guilty for every bit of naughty data spread by freenet because it may have come from your computer.

If I'm wrong anywhere please correct. Or if I'm right but kind of shaky please reassure me. Hope this helps

Re:Can someone educate me? (4, Insightful)

PerryMason (535019) | more than 11 years ago | (#4546082)

One of the interesting things is nobody knows what data is being stored on there (sic) computer

The one thing that always makes me wonder with Freenet is the potential liability for hosting 'questionable' content. If for instance, my node is used for storing some part of some kiddy pr0n and the authorities decide for whatever reason to inspect my PCs, how am I to prove that I didn't source the file myself. In fact, by hosting a node, it could be argued that I am soliciting for files of that nature.

Whilst the files are presumably encrypted in transit and on disk, its still an illegal file stored on my system.

Makes you think anyway....

Re:Can someone educate me? (3, Informative)

Hast (24833) | more than 11 years ago | (#4546094)

The point is that the data on your disc in encrypted. Neither you nor the authorities are going to be able to actually find out which specific files (or parts of files) Freenet has stored on your hdd.

Re:Can someone educate me? (1)

packeteer (566398) | more than 11 years ago | (#4546006)

Its like a giant p2p proxy. But its anonymous too. Might as well say its like pgp i suppose.

Anyway the main way to decribe it is this. Its essentially makes all your internet traffic anonymous. You and everyone else on freenet can do whatever you want, read whatever you want and nobody knows its YOU... just another freenet user.

Re:Can someone educate me? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4546076)


"Might as well say its like pgp i suppose."

Bzzzt. Wrong. It's nothing like PGP! PGP lets you encrypt (and digitally sign) files and messages. It does not act as an anonymous transport for data. PGP won't let you share MP3's, kiddie porn or instructions on bomb making.

In conclusion: Packeteer is a slashbot with an IQ so low you could trip over it.

I thank you.

I really hope so! (-1, Offtopic)

lingqi (577227) | more than 11 years ago | (#4545872)

After over a year in the making, Freenet 0.5 stable has been released. This new version is far superior to previous versions of Freenet

Or what? inferior to previous versions? I suppose I will believe that... but you never know these days, I guess...

the same headline can read, for example: After over two years in the hyping, Windows 2004, codenamed Longhorn, has been released. This new version is much more broken than previous versions of Windows, and will allow you to exploit even more security holes than before. (subsitute "cause more blue screens of death", or "even more restricted EULA", etc to your heart's content.)

yawn, (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4545897)

obligatory OT anti-MS post above.

Maybe, TWAT, 0.5 could have had only minor improvements. But in fact, it is 'far superior'. And it has NOTHING TO DO with Microsoft. TWAT.

front-page summary (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4545876)

And now your slashdot front-page summary.

Let's All Be Co-Opted By Bloatware Vendors On Oct 29: timothy
Can you troll Ask Slashdot?: cliff
Let's All Rise Up In Anger Against Microsoft (Again): timothy
Let's All Help Promote Another Commercial Search Technology: timothy
God, Spammers Are Unstoppable!: timothy
Let's All Get Psyched About Videogames: timothy
Let's All Bask In The Glory of a Linux Installer: timothy
I Love The Sci-Fi Channel: timothy
Wow Another Commercial Product Co-Opting Open Source (Cool!): timothy
If Palm Gets Any More Impressive, I Will Replace My Macintosh: timothy

and finally,

The 0.5 Version of This Open Source Crapware Is Awesome: timothy

Re:front-page summary (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4545948)

heh... I didn't even notice that timothy is the only person doing any "work" on the site until you pointed it out. What happened to that Taco guy?

Re:front-page summary (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4545986)

heh... I didn't even notice that timothy is the only person doing any "work" on the site until you pointed it out. What happened to that Taco guy?

michael, timothy, cliff, and supertaco rotate taking it in the ass from cowgirlkneel. the stories they post to /. are veiled homoeroticism. "freenet" is probably about a bondage session, "spam" is a facial, "divx on dvd" is a tribute to homemade porn, "palm" you can guess, but "tungsten" i don't even want to speculate.

Donation's Page?? (5, Funny)

charon_on_acheron (519983) | more than 11 years ago | (#4545878)

I thought that Freenet just received a large 'donation' from Abiword's PayPal account a few weeks ago. :^)

Re:Donation's Page?? (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4545923)

ROFL! "Informative"? Make that "funny"!

Moderators!!!!! (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4545929)

Informative, my ass. Check this [slashdot.org].

Paypal (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4545907)

I'd donate, but I already canceled my Paypal account. I guess Freenet needs to speak with Abiword.

Re:Paypal (1)

MathewR (17723) | more than 11 years ago | (#4546046)

From the donations page:

Mailing Donations
Alternatively you can make donations by mail. Checks should be made payable to "Freenet Project Inc". The address for donations is:
Freenet Project Inc.
2554 Lincoln Blvd #712
Venice, CA 90291

Usability Engineering ... (5, Interesting)

fleppir (563959) | more than 11 years ago | (#4545909)

... is a little lacking. Having dl'ded and installed the program, I can't seem to connect to anything. Helpfiles are not helpful. Being a computer geek and not getting it running in 2 minutes flat annoys me to no end. Cool Idea thou.

Re:Usability Engineering ... (4, Funny)

yatest5 (455123) | more than 11 years ago | (#4545921)

"not getting it running in 2 minutes flat annoys me to no end"

hope you don't run Linux then ;-)

Re:Usability Engineering ... (1)

trezor (555230) | more than 11 years ago | (#4545938)

Actually... I didn't get it up and running as well. Some complaints from my java-engine :) But I really didnt try any hard, though.

But this is definetly a good idea! All honour to the makers!

nice propaganda (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4545911)

Unlike most open-source projects, the Freenet website seems to spend more time evangelizing than talking about the technology. Check out their architecture [freenetproject.org] page, and compare with their philosophy [freenetproject.org] page.

Now that many people have FreeNet... (5, Informative)

Big Mark (575945) | more than 11 years ago | (#4545915)

Please remember NOT to set yourself as anything other than a transient node, unless you have a great big fat unfirewalled Internet pipe and never turn your PC off.

Really. There is nothing more annoying than broken links on Freenet which takes ages to resolve.

wrong (5, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4545944)

Please set your node up as non-transient as long as you're online most of the time (where most is something like 75% and above). The network desperately needs non-transient nodes (high bandwidth is not that important). Also, your anonymity is a lot higher when running a non-transient node.

Re:Now that many people have FreeNet... (2)

perlyking (198166) | more than 11 years ago | (#4545958)

I tried freenet a while ago and that was the problem with it, waiting ages for a page to resolve and most of the time it didnt appear at all. I'll check out this version when I get a chance, it cant be worse than the one I tried.
I love the idea though, the power for anyone to publish everywhere without restriction.

On remembrance day... (2, Funny)

silvaran (214334) | more than 11 years ago | (#4545916)

On the 11th of November, Matthew will no longer be able to work full-time unless more people donate

On the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month, let's take this time to remember our veteran programs, without whom we wouldn't have freedom of software. Don your antiquated RAM chips on your lapel and be proud to be a programmer.

Re:On remembrance day... (2)

silvaran (214334) | more than 11 years ago | (#4545925)

s/programs/programmers/

Re:On remembrance day... (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4545963)

I kinda liked it better the first way you had it. After all, RMS and his cadre of fanatics seem to think that programs deserve freedom more than people do, so why not give honor to veteran programs? The software-- which wants to be Free!!-- deserves the recognition much more than greedy, imperfect human beings do.

A few tips for those trying to get this up (5, Informative)

blonde rser (253047) | more than 11 years ago | (#4545917)

the package appears to not be gzipped (despite the suffix). Hence use tar -xf freenet-0.5.0.tgz. Also the shell scripts in the package don't have the proper executable attributes set so that also needs to be modified. After that just follow the instructions :)

Re:A few tips for those trying to get this up (3, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4545954)

This sounds more like you're using a braindead browser (some older versions of netscape, for instance) that decompress gzipped files transparently without changing the extension.

A quick description (5, Informative)

IamTheRealMike (537420) | more than 11 years ago | (#4545922)

For those who have never heard of FreeNet, here's a quick rundown.

FreeNet is essentially the bulletproof P2P data exchange. It's practically impossible to destroy, or track down people who are on it. It is NOT designed for swapping MP3s or porn for those who have got the wrong idea, it's purpose is (as the name implies) to guarantee freedom of speech by allowing totally anonymous yet scalable publishing.

Scalable? Yes, one of the more interesting aspects of Freenet is it's intelligent caching and retrieval system. This isn't Gnutella, when you request a file it traverses the nodes being cached at each level. Therefore, the more a file is requested, the more distributed it becomes and the easier it becomes to get to - the opposite of the web.

FreeNet takes the form of a web for new users, you can "surf" the FreeWeb, and there was at one point a google-style search engine for it, I have no idea if that's the case. Some of the problems I remember were that it was often hard or impossible to reach certain pages as they hadn't propagated enough to be found before the timeouts were hit, and even then the timeouts were pretty high (like 2 minutes). On the more popular sites the owners would have to manually request it from different parts of the FreeNet in order to make it accessible.

Another problem was that because nothing can ever be deleted from the FreeNet once published, it was hard to do news/blog style sites: at the time they used JavaScript date based redirects, I think that shows how long ago I used it. Suffice to say that I'll be trying this release with interest.

Re:A quick description (4, Funny)

yatest5 (455123) | more than 11 years ago | (#4545936)

"designed for swapping MP3s or porn for those who have got the wrong idea, it's purpose is (as the name implies) to guarantee freedom of speech by allowing totally anonymous yet scalable publishing"

Yes, I cannot see how anonymous posting would be useful for porn or MP3's.

Re:A quick description (3, Informative)

IamTheRealMike (537420) | more than 11 years ago | (#4545959)

Yes, I cannot see how anonymous posting would be useful for porn or MP3's.

Although of course you could use it for trading porn/mp3s, in reality the upload/propagate nature of it means that it's not simply a case of "publishing" a folder, you have to explicitly upload files to it. Due to the lack of a built in search protocol (hence the existance of search engines for it) you'd be much better off using Kazaa.

Re:A quick description (2, Informative)

yatest5 (455123) | more than 11 years ago | (#4545968)

Not if you wanted to distribute / collect illegal pornogaphy, you wouldn't.

Incidentally, I don't run freenet - before the police come knocking down my door.

Re:A quick description (1)

bluFox (612877) | more than 11 years ago | (#4545951)

for a little more detailed info go to

http://www.freenetproject.org/in-freenet-keyindex. html

a quick info on what is in that page:

Freenet is a network that allows anonymous publishing of data to avoid censorship and other bad things. In Freenet, everything is stored in mapped to key-data pairs. That is, you ask Freenet for a key, and it will return the data for that key. If you're publishing data, you tell Freenet what key to store it under, and then others can use that key to get it back out again.

One problem with Freenet is that up until now there has not been an easy way for a data publisher to advertise keys that they've inserted. The ways that have existed are somewhat questionable in terms of preserving the anonymity of the publisher. Some ways that have been used before are:

Sending the key to an email list
Sending the key to a Usenet newsgroup
Registering on a Web key index
Emailing the key to a Freenet Web site owner

The new and preferred method for advertizing new keys is with In-Freenet Key Indices. In-Freenet key indices don't use mail or the Web to communicate between the index administrator and the data publisher. Instead, they use the Freenet network itself. In this way, the anonymity of both publisher and administrator are preserved.
[i think some what like the web links]

the rest of the page deals with how to insert the keys and retrive them

Re:A quick description (3, Informative)

wossName (24185) | more than 11 years ago | (#4545977)

"nothing can ever be deleted from the FreeNet"

That's not how I understood it. AFAIK, everything disappears automatically if nobody requests it. Even your own files, because instead of sharing a folder, you upload stuff to your datastore, which is part of the distributed cache that is Freenet. Am I wrong ?

Re:A quick description (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4546057)

You're right.

uncontrollable network? (3, Interesting)

krazyninja (447747) | more than 11 years ago | (#4545926)

From the explorers area of the freenet pages [freenetproject.org]:
6. Isn't censorship sometimes necessary? ..Governments seek to prevent people from advocating ideas which are deemed damaging to society....The second argument is that this "good" censorship is counter-productive even when it does not leak into other areas. For example, it is generally more effective when trying to persuade someone of something to present them with the arguments against it, and then answer those arguments....

But what about questions that are not answerable? For instance, some anonymous person "places" a file containing the source codes for all the windows operating systems+MATHEMATICA source code+xyz corporations major software. The software companies attitude could be bad, and mainly oriented towards profit and monopoly. But do even such companies deserve such a death blow? At one stroke, their entire product goes down the drain.
While I am not against freenet, it is not without its disadvantages. Taken to its limits, nobody can control us, yah, but nobody can control this "network" either!

Re:uncontrollable network? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4546024)

"but nobody can control this "network" either"

That's the whole point of Freenet.

By the way, if someone manages to steal source code of some major product. This company will have more serious problems than Freenet.

Re:uncontrollable network? (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4546062)

I do not see how placing the code makes the product 'go down the drain'.
Linus code is al over the net, and does't really makes it unsellable (look at Redhat).
What it would do was making some insanely rich companies become a little bit poorer.

DMCA RIAA Bush... (3, Insightful)

e8johan (605347) | more than 11 years ago | (#4545930)

Isn't this the nightmare of all anti-freedom lobbyist organisations: Any one can publish anything, while still being anonymous.
IMHO there are three optional futures:

* It is deemed illegal and shut down.

* It is stopped by Palladium and shut down.

* All developers and users are sued and it is shut down.

I still wounder why everything good has to go.

Re:DMCA RIAA Bush... (1)

anshil (302405) | more than 11 years ago | (#4546010)

But maybe you're just a pessimist?

"If you're depresive, don't care to call us, nobody wants to help you anyway"

Re:DMCA RIAA Bush... (2)

e8johan (605347) | more than 11 years ago | (#4546047)

"But maybe you're just a pessimist?"

Yes, probably. The FreeNet site says "Uncensorable dissemination of controversial information". At least we living in the free world (not the USA, China, etc.) will be able to enjoy it! 8^P

Re:DMCA RIAA Bush... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4546016)

I still wounder why everything good has to go.

because these good things reduce the power corporations have over 'the little people'.

The USA had a revolution once. Don't you think it's time for another one?

Why I don't use it (3, Interesting)

wossName (24185) | more than 11 years ago | (#4545955)

The idea of Freenet is really great, but there were two things in the implementation that really annoyed me:

1) I cannot control what is in my datastore. Free speech or not, I'm not going to cache your kiddieporn for you. So if I know that there's a file I don't want, give me a way to blacklist it. If it's encrypted then it's another story.

2) My files aren't shared permanently. If nobody requests the files I injected, they are thrown out after a while, even if my node is online 24/7. That's just plain stupid.

If I'm wrong or this has changed, please feel free to correct me.

Re:Why I don't use it (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4545999)

1) I cannot control what is in my datastore. Free speech or not, I'm not going to cache your kiddieporn for you. So if I know that there's a file I don't want, give me a way to blacklist it. If it's encrypted then it's another story.

The whole point of freenet is that all speech is free. Your first point goes against those ideals by judging what should and should not be on freenet. By allowing people to filter their content, you would break the system. Doing so would limit material from ever even getting the chance to spread, which according to you would be good in this case, but how could you limit it to just kiddie porn? Can't happen.

Re:Why I don't use it (2)

IamTheRealMike (537420) | more than 11 years ago | (#4546004)

1) I cannot control what is in my datastore. Free speech or not, I'm not going to cache your kiddieporn for you. So if I know that there's a file I don't want, give me a way to blacklist it. If it's encrypted then it's another story.

That's the whole point. If people could figure out what was in your data store, then the concept of free speech would be meaningless as you could be forced to hand over lists of content and then have it removed. Having the owner not able to see is the only way of guaranteeing that content cannot be deleted.

2) My files aren't shared permanently. If nobody requests the files I injected, they are thrown out after a while, even if my node is online 24/7. That's just plain stupid.

If you run a non-transient node this isn't the case, but this is like running a web server, so you need a 24/7 machine with lots of bandwidth. If you publish data that is popular, and then go offline however, that data is still available - it's more like the web than Gnutella.

Re:Why I don't use it (5, Informative)

aqua (3874) | more than 11 years ago | (#4546011)

1) I cannot control what is in my datastore. Free speech or not, I'm not going to cache your kiddieporn for you. So if I know that there's a file I don't want, give me a way to blacklist it. If it's encrypted then it's another story.

It is. The store is cryptographically opaque; you don't know what you're hosting. Whether it's possible to identify whether a particular item is in the store when you know its key, I'm not sure.

2) My files aren't shared permanently. If nobody requests the files I injected, they are thrown out after a while, even if my node is online 24/7. That's just plain stupid.

It's necessary for a distributed-storage system where the injection point needs to be distanced from the storage points. Data flows to where it's being requested, so you could keep an item in your own store by requesting it automatically every so often. It won't go anywhere else, but it will stay in the keyspace should it ever be requested later on. You could do much the same thing to prolong the longevity of someone else's data that you valued -- but again, it would tend to live only on your own node if no other nodes were requesting it.

Re:Why I don't use it (2)

tunah (530328) | more than 11 years ago | (#4546059)

Whether it's possible to identify whether a particular item is in the store when you know its key, I'm not sure.

Well it must be, otherwise how would a server know whether to answer a request?

Re:Why I don't use it (1, Offtopic)

PerryMason (535019) | more than 11 years ago | (#4546090)

hehehe

Maybe its like Windows Update where they can figure out what updates your system needs "Without sending any information to Microsoft"

That always makes me laugh, every single time.

Re:Why I don't use it (3, Informative)

McFiegolx (168360) | more than 11 years ago | (#4546012)

The idea of Freenet is really great, but there were two things in the implementation that really annoyed me:

Yes but these aren't bugs they are a fundemental parts of the design.

1) I cannot control what is in my datastore...

Then neither can anyone else, if a blacklist was implemented (keys a node should not cache) then Evil Organisation of your choice (RIAA,FBI,MI5), could publish a blacklist that you MUST use.

2) My files aren't shared permanently..

Because its not just about storage but about routing. The requesting of files should cause data to "migrate" across the network allowing for specialisation. The caching and expiring of data is a fundemental part of this process. It is this that gives the scalability thats I feel is lacking in other P2P networks.

Re:Why I don't use it (1)

vadim_t (324782) | more than 11 years ago | (#4546021)

None of those things are stupid, IMO, on the contrarary, they're very smart.

1) If you could control your data store, the governement could just determine you're running a Freenet client and decide to send a policeman to your house. Then they could check if you have some child porn there. After all, if you can control it it's your responsibility to keep it legal, right? And they could bet most of the people wouldn't bother filtering much. In any case it's impossible to filter everything unwanted.

By encrypting the data store and keeping it obscure Freenet tries to protect you from liability. It's an attempt of making you become just a carrier, who transfers data but is not liable for it, like phone companies aren't liable for murders planned over the telephone.

2) That's just how the network works. If your files are thrown out that just means nobody wanted them. If nobody wanted them, why waste resources on keeping them? That space can be used for things people are more interested in. If you indeed think your data is valuable you could announce them in boards.

Yea! (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4545956)

Time to steal more MP3s!!

Down with those greedy artists who copywrite their songs!

Re:Yea! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4545966)

It's not so much the artists, but the greedy record companies.

I don't believe that any *true* artist would care if you listened to an MP3 w/o paying for it.

God FORBID any musician should feed their family! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4545983)

They can. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4545989)

There's plenty of work to be found in the fast-food industry.

i've used freenet, it's awesome (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4545971)

I FUCK SHIT CUNT. Crap Nigger Kike. Jew Slope Assfuck. Prick Feces Faggot. Splooge Infant Rape. Gook Poop Chute. Mexi-Melt Hasidic Bonanza.

I FUCK MOMMY CUNNY. Anal Wop Retard. Bukkake Towelhead Whore. Retail Spicano Dungbeetle. Anti-Establishment Dysentery Terrorism.

I FUCK BABY PEE-PEE. Homosexual Pinko Assblast. Crooked Surgical Scatology. Interspecies Negro Herpes. Chinaman Maggot Invasion.

"God Gave Us AIDS To Rid The World Of Niggers and Faggots"

LOL Maybe they should call it "freeloader" instead (0, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4545979)

no legitimate use (3, Insightful)

Twirlip of the Mists (615030) | more than 11 years ago | (#4545985)

I know I'm going to get moderated back to the stone age for saying this, but I suspect that I'm not the only one thinking it. I'm having a very hard time imagining any nontrivial legitimate use for this technology.

Consider for just a minute that given a situation in which one individual distributes material to which another individual or group objects, most of the time there's a good reason for the objection. Maybe the material being distributed is copyrighted (like movies or music), maybe it's dangerous (like blueprints to a nuclear reactor), maybe it's offensive (like child pornography). Most of the time when the distribution of material is opposed, there's a good-- or at least understandable-- reason for it.

Now, it's possible to imagine a scenario in which it might be justifiable, or even imperative, to distribute certain pieces of information. "Soylent Green is people" is a silly example, but a more realistic one might be distributing news of the outside world to a society whose media is heavily controlled. But in that sort of scenario, is the Internet really going to be a useful communication pathway? Assuming the people who need the media have access to the Internet at all, what are the chances that they're going to have unrestricted access to the network of Freenet servers? If you think about it, I think you'll agree that it sounds pretty unlikely.

What I'm saying is this: it sounds to me like there's no realistic, nontrivial, legitimate use for this software. The idea sounds cool on the surface, but I have some serious doubts about its practicality.

Re:no legitimate use (5, Insightful)

R.Caley (126968) | more than 11 years ago | (#4546015)

I'm having a very hard time imagining any nontrivial legitimate use for this technology.


The first which comes to mind is whistle blowing.


OTOH, I think the most likely impact on freedom of speech is

  1. A resonable number of people start using it
  2. It becomes flooded with stolen goods and kiddie porn
  3. The powers that be make a fuss.
  4. They use it as an excuse to pass sweeping anti-encrypton (etc) laws.
  5. We have all taken a big step backwards.


On the whole, I think in resonably open societies, suc a the US and Uk still are, the only sane option is `publish and be damned'. That way they at least have to be somewhat public in acting against you. If you hide, they can attack you in hiding, perhaps by attacking everyone who looks a little like you.

Re:no legitimate use (1)

aqua (3874) | more than 11 years ago | (#4546048)

The first which comes to mind is whistle blowing.

Hmm. If Karen Silkwood had had Freenet, she might have lived, or at worst found asleep on her keyboard the next morning.

They use it as an excuse to pass sweeping anti-encrypton (etc) laws.

Probably not anti-crypto, at least not in the US; that fight has already been had, and the government lost. A likelier tack would be for legislation to prohibit technology that could be used for anonymous piracy-with-impunity. Such legislation would inevitably be overbroad, but it would merely require some creative judicial interpretation (which wouldn't be difficult to arrange, if the 2600/DMCA case is indicative) to make it stick.

Re:no legitimate use (5, Informative)

IamTheRealMike (537420) | more than 11 years ago | (#4546026)

What I'm saying is this: it sounds to me like there's no realistic, nontrivial, legitimate use for this software. The idea sounds cool on the surface, but I have some serious doubts about its practicality.

On the contrary, FreeNet is used by a lot of Chinese people as it's a good way of distributing information without being traced. Right now freedom of speech may not be a problem for us, but we're lucky.

dude (1)

yatest5 (455123) | more than 11 years ago | (#4546058)

your sig kinda looks like a slashdot reply to eahc of your messages - is that intentional ;-)?

Re:no legitimate use (5, Insightful)

aqua (3874) | more than 11 years ago | (#4546032)

Anonymous publication and retrieval are tools for the politically oppressed. Freenet could, in theory, make any information of value unsuppressible. F'rinstance, an outlawed political group publishing a manifesto, someone reporting the actions of a corrupt government, that sort of thing. Suppose that during the demonstrations in Tiennamen Square, there had been only one camera in private hands; getting that video out would be a perfect job for Freenet.

For which reason, tools like Freenet are banned in China and a number of other nations.

There does exist a tricky bit of how to deliver such technologies to the people in need of them; possession of crypto is still a crime in much of the world, much less crypto intended to do that which oppressive regimes cannot allow.

Re:no legitimate use (3, Informative)

Maniakes (216039) | more than 11 years ago | (#4546073)

Anonymous publication and retrieval are tools for the politically oppressed. Freenet could, in theory, make any information of value unsuppressible. F'rinstance, an outlawed political group publishing a manifesto, someone reporting the actions of a corrupt government, that sort of thing. Suppose that during the demonstrations in Tiennamen Square, there had been only one camera in private hands; getting that video out would be a perfect job for Freenet.

What's wrong with usenet for anonymous publication? Posting is over SMTP, so you can put whatever you want in the from block, and you can post through any public SMTP server you want. Once you post, the document is rapidly spread throughout the world's news servers and is permenantly cached by several servers.

The only problem I see with usenet is that your local ISP has a carnivore-like packet scanner, the MIB can catch you in the act of posting. You'd need to encrypt your message and send it to a confederate who decrypts it and posts it to usenet.

BTW, usenet is great for piracy as well. They'll never shut down alt.binaries.sounds.mp3.*, alt.binaries.multimedia, alt.binaries.warez.*, and alt.binaries.pictures.erotica.*. They're hosted by the ISPs, and the ISPs can use the phone company defence (ie, "We provide a medium for legitimate communication. Not our fault if people abuse it").

Re:no legitimate use (1)

mcubed (556032) | more than 11 years ago | (#4546039)

You make some great points, but what if the documents were not blueprints for a nuclear reactor but photographic and documentary proof that a particular nuclear plant is an accident waiting to happen? Freenet could prove an invaluable conduit for getting something out to the press and public. "Deep Throat," if such a person really existed, managed to get information to Woodward & Bernstein, but did Karen Silkwood really get to share everything she knew? It is hardly unprecedented for reporters to come under an enormous amount of pressure to reveal their sources. What an easy out Freenet would provide:

Reporter: I don't know who stole the documents. I got an anonymous tip to check Freenet and there they were.

As for me, I just hope to be able to use it to swap MP3s someday. :-)

Michael

Re:no legitimate use (4, Insightful)

blkwolf (18520) | more than 11 years ago | (#4546043)

How about Fulan Gong practitioners being able to post or read information about their religion in a country that bans and outlaws it?

How about women in the middle east being able to safely find information about women's rights in other countries, and possibly even using such a network as medium for creating political change in their own countries?

How about cuban, south african, (name your favorite country here) being able to safely speak out against atrocities performed by their own governments or provide proof of such acts without fear of retaliation?

How about americans being able to express their disagreement with current "anti-terrorist" laws or actions of the Bush administration without fear of ending up on some FBI list as a potential terrorist or disadent?

lack of choice. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4545992)

unfortunatly there is no freedom of choice in what platform you want to run on. only linux, mac and windows are supported. I'm sorry, but maybe i'll give a damn when this project supports solaris and freebsd at the very least....

Oh well, it will die a horible death then (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#4545994)

On the 11th of November, Matthew will no longer be able to work full-time unless more people donate, so please give whatever you can spare at our Donations page.

just goes to show that open source can't work for commercial apps. Way to go GPL!

Freenet makes loads of enemies. (3, Insightful)

spacefight (577141) | more than 11 years ago | (#4546002)

As the Freenet Philosophy [freenetproject.org] says it all:
You cannot guarantee freedom of speech and enforce copyright law
This is exactly where the big media/entertainment industry should get to. Either you forget freedom of speech or you forget copywright laws over there in the U.S. or maybe your whole country will end in a bigger destater (internet related) that it already is.

Re:Freenet makes loads of enemies. (2, Insightful)

mcubed (556032) | more than 11 years ago | (#4546067)

This is exactly where the big media/entertainment industry should get to. Either you forget freedom of speech or you forget copywright laws over there in the U.S.

If only Europe and the Far East would let us here in the U.S. If you read the Eldred v. Ashcroft transcript, you'll see that harmonization with European copyright term was an important part of the government's argument that the Sonny Bono Copyright Term Extension Act was perfectly legitimate.

And then, of course, there are the RIAA Big Five:

AOL Time Warner - U.S.
Bertlesmann - Germany
Vivendi - France
EMI - U.K.
Sony - Japan

Michael

Re:Freenet makes loads of enemies. (1)

spacefight (577141) | more than 11 years ago | (#4546077)

Hm, I'm not sure if I got the point in your posting. I'm aware thet the Big Five are not only U.S. based - but it seems to me that only in the U.S. the copyright nonsense begun 4 years ago. And the problem is: what the U.S. invents in Copyright laws, it will swap over to the Europe and other countries. Do you support this?

US Free Speech? (3, Insightful)

mobileone (615808) | more than 11 years ago | (#4546055)

From the philosophy [freenetproject.org] page:

in some European countries propagating information deemed to be racist is illegal.

I often hear how US citicens have a constitutional right of free speech. This i not so.

On the contrary the legal system in the US poses a number of restrictions on free speech. This includes libel, porn, patent and copyright laws. These laws all in some ways limit your right of free speech. So don't tell me that the US has free speech - because you don't.

Besides I personally think it makes sense for racist propaganda to be illegal. Look at it as a sort of class action libel case. Also rasism is one of the key points governed by the UN Human Rights declaration.

Yawn (-1, Flamebait)

I'm not a script (612110) | more than 11 years ago | (#4546060)

Freenet is a solution looking for a problem.
And what's the deal with that java crap ?
I thought the fad has died off already.

How? (2, Insightful)

neroz (449747) | more than 11 years ago | (#4546069)

What is new? I don't want to download it just to find out that it is just as slow as before. _How_ is it "far superior"?

quotation (3, Insightful)

jukal (523582) | more than 11 years ago | (#4546071)

Today is a role-play day. In my normal role, I like the idea of free speech, but lets take a role of those on the other side. Quoatation from the front page [freenetproject.org]:

"'Daddy, where were you when they took freedom of the press away from the Internet?'"

"Daddy, where were you when they took pictures of me playing naked on the beach when I was five, and when they posted me to the pedophilia board."

The concept of free speech/press is not so simple.

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