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LimeWire Brings Darknets To All 126

Posted by samzenpus
from the yes-have-some dept.
An anonymous reader writes "LimeWire's new version lets people create private darknets with contacts on any Jabber server (like GMail or LiveJournal). It's different than the recent p2p darknet announcement because it doesn't use onion routing. Sharing with a friend connects directly to that friend. If you're worried about exposing personal information, LW5 doesn't share documents with the p2p network by default."
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LimeWire Brings Darknets To All

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  • by Chabil Ha' (875116) on Thursday March 05, 2009 @09:02AM (#27076139)

    Until you start letting 'friends' join your peer network with usernames like Riaa250k into your 'private network'.

    • Re:Great idea... (Score:5, Insightful)

      by briggsl (1475399) on Thursday March 05, 2009 @09:08AM (#27076167)
      Unfortunately, the social networking society we're in now, where the norm is to accept anyone who 'sends a friend request' will make darknets unworkable for the majority
      • Re: (Score:1, Insightful)

        by gravos (912628)
        People still fileshare? Everything I want to listen to and watch can be streamed now. Thanks to Hulu and Netflix and iTunes I can get the latest movies and just about everything else! The costs for these activities are no longer prohibitive.

        As for Limewire they are basically forcing the hand of the RIAA/MPAA... With a darknet how can you detect who is sharing what? You can't if you choose your friends wisely.
        • Re:Great idea... (Score:5, Insightful)

          by Anonymous Coward on Thursday March 05, 2009 @09:24AM (#27076253)

          Yes, people still fileshare. I like streaming (youtube) but I still want high quality copies on my local machine which I can have access to even when the network/stream service goes down. And filesharing is useful for rare stuff.

        • Re:Great idea... (Score:5, Insightful)

          by meist3r (1061628) on Thursday March 05, 2009 @09:41AM (#27076355)

          Everything I want to listen to and watch can be streamed now. Thanks to Hulu and Netflix and iTunes I can get the latest movies and just about everything else! The costs for these activities are no longer prohibitive.

          Lucky for you, Windows using American. I as a Linux using European can use none of the aforementioned services. Arrrhhh. Off to the bay where they don't geo-judge.

          Segmenting the internet back into region specific chunks is probably the worst thing that happened since MySpace.

          • Re:Great idea... (Score:5, Insightful)

            by Ninnle Labs, LLC (1486095) on Thursday March 05, 2009 @09:42AM (#27076367)

            Segmenting the internet back into region specific chunks is probably the worst thing that happened since MySpace.

            So you'd rather Hulu and Netflix be sued into bankruptcy for streaming content to places in the world they have no right to do so? Yeah, that'd be a much greater idea...

            • Re:Great idea... (Score:4, Insightful)

              by Dorkmaster Flek (1013045) on Thursday March 05, 2009 @09:59AM (#27076531)
              No, we'd rather they be able to stream content into other places in the world. I don't give a rats ass about the legal crap. It's their mess, and they need to work it out. Until then, don't expect us to stop going to places like The Pirate Bay to get content we can't stream otherwise.
              • Re:Great idea... (Score:5, Interesting)

                by Anonymous Coward on Thursday March 05, 2009 @11:02AM (#27077137)

                As a similarly affected European, I empathize, but I think it's important not to bite the hand that feeds you here; Hulu is one of the good guys. If they can succeed at showing the cartels at the local level that digital distribution is a good idea, then it will eventually expand to the global level. I wish them none but the best success.

                Until that actually happens I will join you in pirating, however.

                • No they're not, unless you think that turning the internet into some kind of glorified TV is a worthy idea.

                  They're business people, who see an opportunity to make money, that's all. They have no interest in making the world a better place or even just improving the internet for its users. Don't call them good guys, they just want to get signed contracts to show TV to people, maybe show some ads as well.

                  If you want good guys, try the EFF, they qualify for that word a lot more than Hulu et al does.

              • by Artemis3 (85734)

                No problem! We have torrents, some even subtitled in our language...

            • Re:Great idea... (Score:5, Insightful)

              by MightyYar (622222) on Thursday March 05, 2009 @10:02AM (#27076557)

              So you'd rather Hulu and Netflix be sued into bankruptcy for streaming content

              You missed his point... he doesn't care what happens to Hulu or Netflix. They don't exist as far as he's concerned.

            • by aonaran (15651)

              Of course, they would not be sued if they bothered to negotiate world wide distribution instead of only negotiating "domestic" distribution Limiting who they can accept money from to a tiny fraction of their possible customers, and instead paying loads of money for technology to make that possible.

              • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

                by foniksonik (573572)

                I'm certain that Hulu at least has tried to get international distribution... most likely it is because the organization which holds the rights to that is not interested.... often each country will have a company which has previously negotiated distribution rights for various content. The details of these contracts are likely very convoluted due to some special circumstance.

                I can imagine a scenario where a media company gives some other media company distribution rights to general content so that they can g

                • by meist3r (1061628)

                  most likely it is because the organization which holds the rights to that is not interested.... often each country will have a company which has previously negotiated distribution rights for various content.

                  That's exactly the segmentation problem. Every country has it's own greedy branch of the same company. They basically hold the same rights but try to out-do each other on revenue. So they segment the global market into these chunks and try to make as much money as possible in individual places other than providing the best possible service. This is what I'm complaining about. I still have to wait months or certain TV shows never air at all. I still have to wait months for a shitty dubbed version of an Engli

            • by Scrameustache (459504) on Thursday March 05, 2009 @10:25AM (#27076765) Homepage Journal

              Segmenting the internet back into region specific chunks is probably the worst thing that happened since MySpace.

              So you'd rather Hulu and Netflix be sued into bankruptcy for streaming content to places in the world they have no right to do so? Yeah, that'd be a much greater idea...

              Yes!

              Well, no, I wish them a violent, painful death. But bankruptcy is an acceptable compromise.

            • by trawg (308495)

              So you'd rather Hulu and Netflix be sued into bankruptcy for streaming content to places in the world they have no right to do so? Yeah, that'd be a much greater idea...

              The specific reason they HAVE no rights is because the people that OWN the rights refuse to adapt to the Internet and license these rights on a global scale, presumably so they can price gauge people on a territorial basis.

              Until these rights owners realise the Internet is one place, we'll keep seeing territorial licensing agreements and most people outside the US will still be boned.

          • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

            by Tribaal_ch (1192815)
            Where are my mod points when I need them?
        • Re: (Score:2, Offtopic)

          by MightyYar (622222)

          Hulu, iTunes, and Netflix are great if you want to watch the content on your computer, or buy a few different boxes to watch content on your TV. For me, it is way faster to just download the content from usenet and pop it on a USB stick for watching on my DiVX DVD player. Perhaps when that dies I'll look into building a Hulu/Netflix/iTunes streamer - since you sure can't buy one.

          Even then, you are at the mercy of the content providers and their whims. Usenet seems to be much more resistant to a point failur

          • Re:Great idea... (Score:5, Insightful)

            by Hognoxious (631665) on Thursday March 05, 2009 @10:38AM (#27076907) Homepage Journal

            The first rule of u*****: never talk about u*****.

            • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

              by MightyYar (622222)

              I figured that gig was up after they went after the alt.* hierarchies and forced newzbin to go private.

              • by LanMan04 (790429)

                astraweb.com

                USD$11 per month, unlimited transfer, 190 day retention. Fantastic provider, has ALL the groups, quite fast.

            • Is u***** even alive anymore? I've wanted to try to use it, but the big ISPs have been trying to kill it (for the children), and I can't find any news servers that don't involve me handing them credit card information (or are otherwise free).

              Whose leg do I have to hump to get access to newsgroups anymore?

          • by genner (694963)

            Perhaps when that dies I'll look into building a Hulu/Netflix/iTunes streamer - since you sure can't buy one.

            Netgear has one on the horizon.
            I got to mess with it at the last CES.

        • by X.25 (255792)

          People still fileshare? Everything I want to listen to and watch can be streamed now. Thanks to Hulu and Netflix and iTunes I can get the latest movies and just about everything else! The costs for these activities are no longer prohibitive.

          Yes, everyone is living in the United States.

        • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

          by Scrameustache (459504)

          People still fileshare? Everything I want to listen to and watch can be streamed now.

          Yeah, nothing like low-quality, [BUFFERING] media that can suddenly "become unavailable" with no warning! That's the best!

        • Re:Great idea... (Score:5, Insightful)

          by poetmatt (793785) on Thursday March 05, 2009 @10:50AM (#27077021) Journal

          So how's last year's season of movies and independent music artists who are not crap, working out for you? Can't find them on the streaming websites? Enjoying your guns n roses, aerosmith, metallica etc? I'm not saying those are great artists but just easy examples.

          The only way to get the stuff at the real cost of distribution is to instead get it at completely scam-worthy prices online (10$ for a digital CD? 4$ for a movie?) simply because you didn't record it yourself and/or get it off filesharing networks for free, which is what it's truly worth: 0$. Honestly why should you pay later for something that you could have recorded yourself for free?

          whoops.

          Guess you can't do that, because they're all taken down or removed due to licensing issues, or label you a pirate for daring to fileshare.

        • Well, let's see what happens, when Hulu, Netflix and iTunes go down... or change their business model, removing your access.

          If it's mine, it's on my computer.

        • by Cruciform (42896)

          All three things you mention are region restrictive for content.
          That makes them useless to the majority of the world.

    • with usernames like Riaa250k

      I think "Riaa750k" might be more appropriate, given that's what they'll try to score with every file they download from you.

    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      reading the neauseatingly gushing article, I couldn't quite figure out how this works - does it require limewire servers or exspose you to lime wire ? what is this jabber client ?
      my impression is that the software basically lets you share a folder, or the equivalent of a folder between a set of computers; the problem, for making this useful, is that only downloaded files appear - what if I just want to share some word docs ?
      surely someone on /. can offer a clean, simple explanation

  • Funny (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Thursday March 05, 2009 @09:06AM (#27076155)

    I thought we had gotten past this whole INVITE PLZ PLZ PLZ PLZ business years ago.

    • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

      by aliquis (678370)

      Let me guess, you don't have a facebook account?

      • by guruevi (827432)

        Neither do I. I think he is referring to the days of IRC. Those were the days...

        I don't really care about any of the social networking sites. The furthest I've gone is Jabber (with my own Jabber server) and it works great. Don't know why I need anything else. I've had my finger wetted with MSN Messenger but didn't really like it (ads and spam) and closed it after a good year.

        • by aliquis (678370)

          Neither do I. I think he is referring to the days of IRC. Those were the days...

          I think he's referring to companies which makes it easy to invite your friends, even if they don't care or want all the invite spam. On IRC? Can't remember I was asking for invites much, though then I wasn't around in many channels with a topic where invite would be necessary.

          Anyway, if you have had a facebook account you would now lots of applications more or less forced the users to invite all of their friends, even more so earlier, and that many "friends" want to you join all the crap they join. I don't

  • Darknet != Freedom (Score:4, Insightful)

    by onion2k (203094) * on Thursday March 05, 2009 @09:07AM (#27076165) Homepage

    Being anonymous is not the same as being free.

    To that end, using a darknet is actually reducing how free you are because you're not standing up to the authority or laws you're circumventing. Freedom is being able to do what you want to do without having to hide it.

    • Correct, but being able to do it in hiding means more freedom than not being able to do it at all.
    • by Anonymous Coward

      "Freedom is being able to do what you want to do without having to hide it."

      I think you're thinking of anarchy. "Freedom" is usually a little more nuanced than "do what you want, when you want, as often as you want."

    • by impaledsunset (1337701) on Thursday March 05, 2009 @09:36AM (#27076327)

      And how is the ability to exercise a freedom which you weren't given, but should have been, is bad for you? Of couse that if an essential freedom is missing, anonymity won't give it back to you, but it will still give you the ability to exercise it.

      Of course, after reading the first half of TFA, I don't see what anonymity you're talking about. It's about sharing files only with people you want. It's a cool feature, which I would find usefull, but it seems useless if you want anonymity.

    • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

      by unixan (800014)

      Freedom is being able to do what you want to do without having to hide it.

      Hiding is what precedes [wikipedia.org] freedom [wikipedia.org].

      Otherwise premature [wikipedia.org] openness can get you shot down [wikipedia.org].

    • Like ripping off the movie industry of their product. Yeah that's our freedom right there.
      This is more of a way to bypass the laws that would normally include file sharing of regular files,
      in the generalization of p2p torrent laws enforced by the ISPs, but fall into the category, you are using torrents so this file must be a bad pirated one.

    • by jonhaug (783048)

      Being anonymous is not the same as being free.

      To that end, using a darknet is actually reducing how free you are because you're not standing up to the authority or laws you're circumventing. Freedom is being able to do what you want to do without having to hide it.

      This is not true. Freedom is whatever makes you feel free. With your definition, noone is ever going to be free. In small societies, you don't find many "odd men out" because any of them keeps quiet, like gays or other political incorrect individuals. Anonymity and stepping forward and outing yourself whenever you decides yourself is freedom.

  • I like the 65 yearold grandmother example. And given that, this app looks interesting. The security features could make it an interesting app for businesses; keeping legal, personal, and medical records safe.
    • by ovu (1410823)
      I AM the 65 year old grandmother example, and you're looking pretty nice too, sonny!
  • huh? (Score:5, Funny)

    by Cornwallis (1188489) * on Thursday March 05, 2009 @09:35AM (#27076325)
    "LimeWire's new version lets people create private darknets with contacts on any Jabber server (like GMail or LiveJournal). It's different than the recent p2p darknet announcement because it doesn't use onion routing." For some reason reading that statement brings to mind Clarke's Third Law: Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic.
  • by wjh31 (1372867) on Thursday March 05, 2009 @09:38AM (#27076343) Homepage
    If it's what i actually think it is. Which is private sharing within your own group without others being able to see what's going on. It would only take a modest half dozen or so friends to share thier video collections, and you could have a pretty extensive collection, with some reasonable speeds and redundancy. And by videos i of course mean all those silly videos from when you were drunk that night, definately not those feature length things shown in cinemas.
    • Don't forget about trading back and forth all that public domain movies/music and Linux ISOs!
    • And by videos i of course mean all those silly videos from when you were drunk that night, definately not those feature length things shown in cinemas.

      Did I ever tell you about the most embarrassing event I have ever experienced - in a cinema?

  • When I worked in a computer shop I'd get a lot of computers coming in infected with so much spyware/adware that they were struggling just to remain "idle". In just about every case I could trace the infection back to something downloaded off of limewire.

    I wonder if this is just going to make that spread faster, since these darknets will compose of your friends and you'll think "Well this file must be clean, it's on my friends computer, I trust him!" Meanwhile the friend downloaded the file ("Britney spears

    • by tsstahl (812393)

      When I worked in a computer shop I'd get a lot of computers coming in infected with so much spyware/adware that they were struggling just to remain "idle". In just about every case I could trace the infection back to something downloaded off of limewire.

      Because all the spyware executables have something like "Thanks to Limewire for timely reliable delivery" in the properties or something?

      • by Zakabog (603757)

        Because all the spyware executables have something like "Thanks to Limewire for timely reliable delivery" in the properties or something?

        No, it was the executable files in their limewire downloads folders that gave it away.

    • by sameb (532621)

      The article didn't mention it, but LW5 doesn't let the user share or download programs unless he/she explicitly allows it (by changing some scary looking settings). So virus complaints with LimeWire should go way down.

      • by BLKMGK (34057)

        Yes now if it would only index my library correctly and consistently AND manage to pickup my MKV files. I've been playing with this software for hours with some friends and they cannot even see what *I* have displayed as "indexed" and I'm not able to get it index my complete collection either. It has yet to index a single MKV file and insists that ISO files are programs and will not allow a change - go figure.

        I am now looking for an alternative cross-platform program because this sucker sure ain't it. The f

  • by meist3r (1061628) on Thursday March 05, 2009 @09:44AM (#27076387)
    So right now we have open, public sharing infrastructure that can be arguably used for both purposes. Legal and illegal sharing. The people trying to sue users can't automatically assume that just because you're using the technology you must be a criminal. Darknets are satan's work and for terrorists only amirite? So you get caught using one of those and you're auto-screwed (interval 5sec).

    This is of course adapted thinking from the way our authorities work atm.
  • Has a third party tested limewire to make sure it is safe?
    • by jgtg32a (1173373)
      It's GPL'd
      • Re: (Score:1, Offtopic)

        by vtcodger (957785)

        ***Why do I get marked Flamebate/Troll every time I ask a question about Python?***

        You think you get heat for questioning Python? Try saying something negative about Ubuntu and see what happens.

        • by cptnapalm (120276)

          "Try saying something negative about Ubuntu and see what happens." /me non-nonchalantly starts his chainsaw...

  • by stevied (169) * on Thursday March 05, 2009 @09:45AM (#27076405)

    So basically it allows encrypted file transfers between people who are communicating on a chat / IM network? Is it me or is that not exactly a huge innovation [wikipedia.org]?

    • by Aladrin (926209)

      Yeah, that's my thought every time someone brings up a 'secure' network that relies on only talking to your friends on it. There are already -tons- of ways to get that file from someone you know. The problem that P2P solves is getting a particular file from a stranger.

    • by jonaskoelker (922170) <jonaskoelker AT gnu DOT org> on Thursday March 05, 2009 @12:13PM (#27078065) Homepage

      Is it me or is that not exactly a huge innovation?

      Haven't you read other news in IT lately?

      MSN msgr, Yahoo chat, ICQ, Google talk et al. all reinvented IRC each in their own mutually incompatible way. Then they added file transfer that wasn't FTP.

      Web 2.0 is a reinvention of the mainframe with thin clients on dumb terminals. JavaScript is becoming a reinvention of python, except with curlies. JSON is a reinvention of XML, which is a reinvention of s-expressions.

      Next up, someone's going to reinvent the business process of reinventing the wheel in slightly different and incompatible ways ("for added value", of course) and patent the method. Hey, that'd be a good use of business method patents.

      Can you tell I'm bitter? ;)

      • MSN msgr, Yahoo chat, ICQ, Google talk et al. all reinvented IRC each in their own mutually incompatible way. Then they added file transfer that wasn't FTP.

        Except that the IM's got around the NAT problem (without the limits of port forwarding). To say nothing of eliminating the need to configure an ftp server. For most people, transfering a morderately large file over the internet, IM is much easier than ftp. IMHO, IM file transefer ability is a nice feature and not just a new wheel.

        • by stevied (169) *

          I'll concede that it looked like a nice UI. What I really objected to is their use of the term "darknet." I understand terminology is fluid, and that my own use of it is probably quirky, but to me a net(work) implies the ability to reach beyond explicitly configured directly connected peers (e.g. even a single ethernet broadcast domain is a network because you don't have to explicitly list the nodes on it to communicate them, but a machine with multiple dial-up connections to other machines is not really pa

        • To say nothing of eliminating the need to configure an ftp server.

          You could still have an interface that says "send this file" which runs FTP and automagically configures it.

          It's not like the various IM protocols are particularly chatty about what your firewall should and shouldn't do.

          In the worst case, you could use HTTP instead over some high port, and send the other party some "download-from-here" message.

          There was no need to reinvent the file transfer wheel. Also, the braindeadness of having to go through their servers (for MSN at least) when one party has a public I

      • by stevied (169) *

        Heh, it's true. It must be a sign that I'm getting soft in my old age, but I've more or less accepted all these lunacies... not that I actually use them, mind you.

  • Are you really serious? Even with open source software, reaching a good level of confidence is *hard*. Then with closed source proprietary software... please keep a bit of common sense...
  • Secure P2P with a friends list... yeah, people will be setting up those pay to play web pages where you have to get a password by signing up for a pron account in no time....

    This is a step backwards in my book.

  • Yeah, but... (Score:2, Insightful)

    by Crimson Wing (980223)
    ...does it still autonomously and secretly download malware in the background?
    • by sameb (532621)

      Uh, no. And it never did.

  • LimeWire

    I'll wait for the Frostwire release, thank you very much.

    • by sameb (532621)

      Why? FrostWire _is_ LimeWire. They take LimeWire's open-source GPL code and repackage and rename it.

      • Limewire connects to no more than 3 'supernodes' (or something like that), and if you buy Limewire Pro it will connect to 5.
        Frostwire connects to 5, but you don't have to pay for it.
  • Abbie Hoffman used to say that an undercover cop would smoke marijuana with your group but he sure as hell wouldn't drop acid because the drug classes at the time were telling people it made you permanently crazy. So how do you test a new member of your dark net?

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