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Re: Packages fields

On Thu, Dec 13, 2001 at 04:45:48PM +0000, Jules Bean wrote:
> On Thu, Dec 13, 2001 at 01:05:30PM +0000, toad wrote:
> > would save a large amount of bandwidth on various centralised ftp servers,
> > downloading only the Packages file from ftp.debian.org or a reliable mirror
> > and then getting the rest from Freenet. It would also speed up downloads over
> > fast links through downloading several packages at once from different nodes,
> > many of which also on cable/DSL.
> This is of doubtful benefit in many countries. For example in the UK
> (which you appear to be from if your email address is any guide) there 
> exist mirrors which can saturate any connection I've ever had. And
> those same mirrors are unlikely to complain about the bandwidth hit
> anytime soon, as far as I can determine.
> I could believe it would be an advantage in less well-connected
> countries (NZ?) though.
Well, firstly, some people may actually want some anonymity - if an attacker
knows exactly what is on your system, it makes his job easier. For example,
I have squid rewrite the HTTP User-Agent field on all my outgoing traffic.
Secondly, those mirrors are often down or outdated, in which case we have to
connect to the master. This is of course automated, but it is slow.
Thirdly, alternative networks with lots of internal bandwidth (wireless
ethernet via 802.11{b,g, possibly a if it's ever legalised, Ronja devices - 10
Mbps home-made point to point laser link, 1km+ range with a small one, cable
through to next door, etc - see www.consume.net), could use such a system;
getting the Packages file from a known trusted source - either FTP from
debian.org (the master), or ideally via an official debian inserted Packages
file in Freenet under an SSK (signed subspace - you need the private key to
insert, you fetch using the public key), gives you anonymity and speed at the
same time (hopefully :).
> Jules

The road to Tycho is paved with good intentions

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