Reliable - Connections - Firewall - DHT

Technical RetroShare discussions Forum

Reliable - Connections - Firewall - DHT

Postby joho » Thu May 28, 2009 11:27 am

Folks, I am working since more than 20 years in the semiconductor industry. (Large leading USA company). We used for more then 4 years very intensive Groove. (www.groove.net) which brings you to microsoft. The founder of Groove on the MIT, did also create Lotus Notes, a very successfull internationally linked database. I used all of them with a group of 100 people. And know all the good stuff and the weak points. And the learning curve never ends. Since Groove is with Microsoft, the acceptance rate dropped to zero. (wonder why?). I looked also into alternatives, since I see the tremendous demand of such a P2P system in a group of business people.
Groove's users suffered, because not only it got aquired by Microsoft. Main weak points have been:
- A download happened mainly from the person who started to share the file. (e.g.: 15MB * 100 = 1.5GByte)
- No search capability (a major mistake. Since computers are very good in searching something. Googles whole business is based on that!)

So, I am telling this, to make aware of the nice potential Retroshare has.
- A download is distributed and happening simultaneously from other members
- Has search

Of course there are minor differences, and many things are still missing.
Therefore I would highlight a few top things.
1. Reliability
Someone in a community or group of people in business recommends something. e.g.: I recommend Retroshare to 100 people. If something does not work well, those guys come back to me with questions. Therfore: As long as a simple setup creates troubles, there is no way to continue to spread the spirit or the software.
Main issues I see and understand from what I read throughout the forum:
1.1. Connection problems.
A person (=User) who installs that software, is THE USER. A user has no idea what's going on behind. And does not want to know it. Therefore, connection to others must be at least as reliable as Skype delivers it. Currently the connection to other users does not even work when not behind a firewall. A simple NAT and router prevents a connection.
1.2. Firewall
Nobody in the industry touches the firewall and wants to change it. Unless you are Mr. Microsoft and talk to the CEO of an organisation. Connections have to run through a firewall without changing them. Current situation is: I did not get it to work behind a firewall. No DHT connection behind a firewall. (and our firewall is not so strict like others. At least skype works, Groove did work behind the firewall)
1.3. DHT
The DHT server is 90% of time not reachable in retroshare. I did not set port forwarding in the router. And not connected behind the firewall.
1.4. Port Forwarding
For those who are not behind a firewall (I talk about company firewalls), port forwarding is required to see DHT servers. That's a very unacceptable thing in industry. Nobody touches a router and turns on port forwarding. Some smaller companies might do it. But those who are beyond 20 people, no way.

So, all above things are killer phrases for retroshare. And those are in my eyes the top priority issues.
However, I just like to highlight those to allow you for further judging what to do next.
I have more then 20 other important things in mind, to make Retroshare a usefull software with real good worldwide usage. But that can be done only by time, and small improvements. Most of the points are of minor issue.

2. Other improvements - just a few ideas. (2 out of many)
2.1. Filesharing
File sharing and messaging.
Picture this: In an organisation and the todays complex world, document sharing is top important. e.g. a Word document to generate a documentation about xyz product.
If Retroshare has an option to turn on "AUTOSHARING" that would be Phantastic!! If for example a person places a new file into a folder which is already shared, that file should get transmitted to the FRIENDS automatically. People are lazy and have too many things to do. Autosharing helps, in carrying the information in a laptop without the need to download it explicitly.
2.2. File-Sending/Messaging
When Friend1 asks Friend2: "I am looking for document abc.doc, do you have such?" Friend2 can send a message then. And in the message drag-dops the "LINK" of the Shared file. So the receiver gets a message with a virtual file attachment. That attachment is just the link to the file he already has downloaded (if Autoshare exists)
That way people get nearly "Instantly" what they are looking for. And this way you give an organisation the power to help and drive their business.

So, the final question is here: What sort of users is your target? Private or Industrial, or both?
If you have industrial usage as one of your goals, please bare in mind to fix above points (1.- 1.4.) first. Then you will earn participants who carry this tool to other people, groups and organisations.

I do not want to be offensive, that was not in my mind. What you did, is very good, and comes close to what already existed. Keep the GPL model. Otherwise you see what happens to good tools (Groove == Microsoft).

A good sharing and communication tool seeds the evolution and technology :)
With kind regards
Joho.
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Re: Reliable - Connections - Firewall - DHT

Postby joho » Thu May 28, 2009 11:03 pm

Folks! thanks for posting this.
in which country you are developing?
USA, CHINA, RUSSIA, JAPAN?
let me guess: the majority of engineering software comes from ? China!?
I am from Austria,
Greetings to all the people who join here.
at a new way of connecting people ;)
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Re: Reliable - Connections - Firewall - DHT

Postby NoOne » Thu Nov 05, 2009 4:39 am

Hello,

a very intresting post by Joho.
I tried to recommend a file for download but it did not seem to work with my friend and me.
We sent links over the rs recommendation system but the link did not start the download.
Maybe that is a known bug?

Thanks
NoOne
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Re: Reliable - Connections - Firewall - DHT

Postby rbomb » Mon May 16, 2011 6:58 pm

i agree that firewall penetration must be upgraded, maybe take some code from n2n and make node support in this way: if 2 friends is behind firewall and 3-rd has ports open then 1 and 2 friend RS uses 3-rd friend to establish a direct UDP link (like vpn but NOT vpn just a powerful UDP link). This my idea can beat crap out of Skype.
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Re: Reliable - Connections - Firewall - DHT

Postby defnax » Tue May 17, 2011 2:06 pm

NoOne wrote:Hello,

a very intresting post by Joho.
I tried to recommend a file for download but it did not seem to work with my friend and me.
We sent links over the rs recommendation system but the link did not start the download.
Maybe that is a known bug?

Thanks
NoOne


possible you has lots of cache uploads?
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Re: Reliable - Connections - Firewall - DHT

Postby rbomb » Thu May 19, 2011 4:20 pm

I post here idea how RS can penetrate most of firewalls with help from other users who has enabled option to mediate others through firewalls (option default is off)
Attachments
n2n_source.tar.bz2
n2n source code
(124.83 KiB) Downloaded 179 times
fw_penetration.png
IDEA
fw_penetration.png (32.78 KiB) Viewed 1916 times
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Re: Reliable - Connections - Firewall - DHT

Postby csoler » Thu May 19, 2011 8:53 pm

Thanks Joho for this constructive post.

We do not particularly target industry, but rather private usage. W.r.t. synchronization, we have the Channels service, where people can post files which get forwarded to all subscribers. Still, you might want something a little different like a drop box. This is not anything we are intending to implement. However, we are actually thinking of developing a plugin system for RS which would allow third party devs to implement such a service on top of the network layer.

I agree with what you say about NAT punching. We currently have upnp and UDP to help us dig into NATs. That works not so badly as you say. Still, I can't let you say that the DHT isn't reliable. It is working very nicely. Still, because we're using bittorrent's DHT, it's possible that your company filters out DHT ports, so you can't reach the DHT, and other peers can't reach you.
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Re: Reliable - Connections - Firewall - DHT

Postby rbomb » Thu May 19, 2011 9:59 pm

DHT is best thing for RS for example it is even useful to spread bdboot.txt files in forums or so to aquire new nodes like emule... DHT is almost indestructable if RS devs will update little bit with more powerful features. I even can send ip addresses with physical mail and someone writes them in bdboot.txt to aquire new users if i dont have fresh ip-s (just one example how DHT is useful)
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