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Unread Feb 13th, 2015, 12:00 PM
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Newspaper The anonymous P2P network, Freenet, received the SUMA Award 2014/15 for 'protection against total surveillance'

11th February 2015

At this year's congress of SUMA-EV, association for free access to knowledge, the SUMA award was awarded in the venerable Karl-H.-Ditze lecture hall of the Hamburg University of Applied Sciences. The topic of the award, was the surveillance scandal, revealed by whistleblower Edward Snowden: 'protection against total surveillance'. From submissions of about 50 projects for the SUMA award 2014/15 the panel of SUMA-EV selected the Freenet Project as the winner. The prize money of 2500€ will be used like regular donations to fund our one paid developer.

If you don't know the Freenet, let me give you an easy briefing:

What is the Freenet ?

The Freenet is an anonymous P2P network, separated from the web, constructed as a decentralized, anonymous data storage: All participants of the Freenet network provide a portion of their storage and bandwidth to the network.
All internal processes use this network; these internal processes are decentralized, completely anonymous and encrypted. Everything that is being uploaded is cut into chunks during the process and then distributed across the network. The chunks are then saved redundantly on thousands of participating computers across the globe.
When being downloaded the chunks are pieced together again into a single file. There is no need for the uploader to stay on the network after upload. Uploads are being kept within the Freenet as long as there is a sufficient demand. Spam resistence is ensured by means of a web of trust. It is possible to use pseudonyms which are recognizable by others. The 'Darknet' mode allows for connections exclusevely with friends.

The Freenet is designed to allow for anonymous, censorship resistant communications of any kind: it is possible to send e-mails with encrypted content and meta data, the Freenet enables secure peer-to-peer communication and censorship resistant publishing even in a hostile environment; the Freenet provides for anonymity using dependable pseudonyms and enables decentralized publishing without a single-point-of-failure.
The Freenet offers a Darknet-mode providing secure communication among friends: used in this manner it is not even possible to see that the Freenet is being used.
Additionally the Freenet could be seen as one of the last resorts of anonymous filesharing: each and every type of filesharing haven been subject to crackdowns by specialized law enforcement agencies around the world, resulting in law suits for filersharers.
The Freenet does not have such an unfortunate history. Any knowledge of what is being held within the cache of ones own node could plausibly be denied since everything in there is encrypted and dynamically forwarded.
In addition, it is not only possible to anonymously upload files but also websites, to programm anonymously via the Freenet, do micro-blogging like on Twitter, but anonymously, and to discuss anonymously in forums.

Political Significance
In times of global, complete surveillance next to political solutions also technical solutions are needed, in order to win the fight for press of freedom and other basic rights. The Freenet creates the technical background, which is needed for this, because the Freenet makes censorship and surveillance too expensive for enforcing it politically and to unpracticably for enforcing it in practice.
The Freenet enables a journalist in a countrywide newspaper, maintaining a point-of-contact to anonymous sources without requiring lots of infrastructure on the side of the journalist or the source.
The freenet enables a whistleblower in a medium-sized state-contractor, sending documents to a journalist and being available for questions to verify their origin without disclosing the whistleblower’s real identity to the journalist or anyone else. This is priceless, because otherwise it's not possible anymore to report, if there are strong interests against this, as otherwise it would be possible to de-anonymize everyone, who wants to publish
Additionally relying on the Freenet is one of the strongest moves, which the filesharing community can do now facing the increasing, massive attacks against the filesharing community – just think of all those international raids against the filesharing community or the leaked strategy paper how Hollywood plans to act against the filesharing community the next years.
But regarding Freenet the anonymous filesharing aspect is just a side effect of the fight for real freedom of press, because where a filesharer can be sued, a whistleblower can't feel safe, either.


On the project's main site there is a download button for the newest client version, as you can see.
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Unread Jul 12th, 2015, 01:03 AM
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Default Re: The anonymous P2P network, Freenet, received the SUMA Award 2014/15 for 'protection against total surveillance'

After almost 8 months of intensiv development time a new, big release of freenet is released right now:
Freenet 0.7.5 build 1468 stable - download:
Correspondingly it contains a lot of updates, changes and bug fixes.

Release Notes:
The Freenet team is very happy to announce the stable release of
Freenet 0.7.5 build 1468.

*Important notes*: downgrading from build 1468 is not supported; if you
want to go back to build 1467 without losing the upload and download
queues, *before* upgrading, back-up the following files and
directories: master.keys, persistent-temp-*/, and node.db4o (see
). Please note that
running transfers will be restarted from scratch too. A reminder to
those testing auto-update to 1468-pre4: please restore your auto-update
key to the default. One way to do this is to stop Freenet, remove the
"node.updater.URI" line from freenet.ini, and start Freenet again.

In this release, the way Freenet stores data locally has changed
drastically by no longer using the now-deprecated db4o object storage.
It is replaced with the product of toad's summer of work - a custom
on-disk format that is much more robust against corruption and more

* Existing unfinished downloads and uploads will be imported to a new
format, which requires restarting them from the beginning.

* Space for downloads is now all allocated at the start, so machines
very low on disk space may run out, which causes downloads to
temporarily fail until more space is available.

* CHKs will change due to metadata bugfixes.

* Some unofficial plugins will need to be updated because of API
changes. Sone already works, as do all official plugins.

* The queue format changes should make it extremely rare to lose the
entire queue: the impact of corruption will almost always be

* Multi-container / site uploads can now be persistent, making it more
practical to upload large sites.

* Passworded physical security is now much stronger. (Full-disk
encryption is still preferable.)

* The Windows installer now defaults to starting Freenet on login.

* There is a new Windows tray app with some useful features that is
included with new installations. [0] If you are using the existing
Windows tray app you can download the new one here. [1] No need to put
it in a specific directory - it will try the default installation
location and prompt if it can't find it.

* The list of download keys moved from downloads/listFetchKeys.txt to

* A list of upload keys is now available at uploads/listKeys.txt

* Gantros' index is now in the default bookmarks. It uses the same
software as Enzo's index, which is no longer updated.

* The obsolete and deprecated XMLLibrary and XMLSpider plugins are no
longer officially supported. They will still load for those who have
them added, but are no longer shown on the plugin page.

* In the interests of releasing this build more quickly, the new
version of FlogHelper does not support exporting and importing backups
from the web UI. The old backup code did not work with the new Freenet
version after removing db4o. People can instead back up
"plugins.floghelper.FlogHelper" files in the plugin-data directory.
These can be dropped into the directory after unloading FlogHelper to
restore a backup.

* ThawIndexBrowser works again. Thanks saces!

* Fred translations are updated.

* Add two seed nodes, one sponsored by meshnet.pl - the Polish
radio/meshnet darknet users group, and another run by ArneBab. Thanks!

* Update existing seed node references.

Thank you for using Freenet!

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anonymous, filesharing, p2p, security, surveillance

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