ANNOUNCING Tahoe-LAFS v1.4

zooko zooko at zooko.com
Tue Apr 14 19:26:50 CEST 2009


ANNOUNCING Tahoe, the Least-Authority Filesystem, v1.4

The allmydata.org team is pleased to announce the release of version
1.4.1 of "Tahoe", the Lightweight-Authorization Filesystem. This is the
first release of Tahoe-LAFS which was created solely as a labor of love
by volunteers -- it is no longer funded by allmydata.com (see [1] for
details).

Tahoe-LAFS is a secure, decentralized, fault-tolerant cloud storage
system.  All of the source code is publicly available under Free
Software, Open Source licences.

This filesystem is distributed over multiple servers in such a way the
filesystem continues to operate correctly even when some of the servers
are unavailable, malfunctioning, or malicious. Here is the one-page
explanation of Tahoe's unique security and fault-tolerance properties:

http://allmydata.org/source/tahoe/trunk/docs/about.html

This is the successor to Tahoe-LAFS v1.3, which was released February
13, 2009 [2].  This is a major new release, adding garbage collection,
improved diagnostics and error-reporting, and fixing a critical
performance problem when downloading large (many GB) files.

See the NEWS file [3] and the known_issues.txt file [4] for more
information.

Besides the Tahoe core, a crop of related projects have sprung up,
including frontends for Windows and Macintosh, two front-ends written in
JavaScript, a Ruby interface, a plugin for duplicity, a plugin for
TiddlyWiki, a new backup tool named "GridBackup", CIFS/SMB integration,
an iPhone app, and three incomplete frontends for FUSE. See the Related
Projects page on the wiki: [5].


COMPATIBILITY

Tahoe v1.4 is fully compatible with the version 1 series of Tahoe. Files
written by v1.4 clients can be read by clients of all versions back to
v1.0. v1.4 clients can read files produced by clients of all versions  
since
v1.0.  v1.4 servers can serve clients of all versions back to v1.0  
and v1.4
clients can use servers of all versions back to v1.0.

This is the fifth release in the version 1 series. The version 1 series
of Tahoe will be actively supported and maintained for the forseeable
future, and future versions of Tahoe will retain the ability to read
files and directories produced by Tahoe v1 for the forseeable future.

The version 1 branch of Tahoe is the basis of the consumer backup
product from Allmydata, Inc. -- http://allmydata.com .


WHAT IS IT GOOD FOR?

With Tahoe, you can distribute your filesystem across a set of servers,
such that if some of them fail or even turn out to be malicious, the
entire filesystem continues to be available. You can share your files
with other users, using a simple and flexible access control scheme.

Because this software is new, we do not categorically recommend it as
the sole repository of data which is extremely confidential or
precious.  However, we believe that erasure coding, strong encryption,
Free/Open Source Software and careful engineering make Tahoe safer than
common alternatives, such as RAID, removable drive, tape, "on-line
storage" or "Cloud storage" systems.

This software comes with extensive tests, and there are no known
security flaws which would compromise confidentiality or data integrity.
(For all currently known issues please see the known_issues.txt file
[3].)

This release of Tahoe is suitable for the "friendnet" use case [6] --
it is easy to create a filesystem spread over the computers of you and
your friends so that you can share disk space and files.


LICENCE

You may use this package under the GNU General Public License, version
2 or, at your option, any later version.  See the file "COPYING.GPL"
[7] for the terms of the GNU General Public License, version 2.

You may use this package under the Transitive Grace Period Public
Licence, version 1 or, at your option, any later version.  (The
Transitive Grace Period Public Licence has requirements similar to the
GPL except that it allows you to wait for up to twelve months after you
redistribute a derived work before releasing the source code of your
derived work.) See the file "COPYING.TGPPL.html" [8] for the terms of
the Transitive Grace Period Public Licence, version 1.

(You may choose to use this package under the terms of either licence,
at your option.)


INSTALLATION

Tahoe works on Linux, Mac OS X, Windows, Cygwin, and Solaris, and
probably most other systems.  Start with "docs/install.html" [9].


HACKING AND COMMUNITY

Please join us on the mailing list [10].  Patches are gratefully
accepted -- the RoadMap page [11] shows the next improvements that we
plan to make and CREDITS [12] lists the names of people who've
contributed to the project.  The wiki Dev page [13] contains resources
for hackers.


SPONSORSHIP

Tahoe was originally developed thanks to the sponsorship of Allmydata,
Inc. [14], a provider of commercial backup services.  Allmydata,
Inc. created the Tahoe project, and contributed hardware, software,
ideas, bug reports, suggestions, demands, and money (employing several
Tahoe hackers and instructing them to spend part of their work time on
this Free Software project).  Also they awarded customized t-shirts to
hackers who find security flaws in Tahoe (see http://hacktahoe.org
). After discontinuing funding of Tahoe R&D in early 2009, Allmydata,
Inc. has continued to provide servers, co-lo space and bandwidth to the
open source project. Thank you to Allmydata, Inc. for their generous and
public-spirited support.


Zooko Wilcox-O'Hearn
on behalf of the allmydata.org team

Special acknowledgment goes to Brian Warner, whose superb engineering
skills and dedication are primarily responsible for the Tahoe
implementation, and significantly responsible for the Tahoe design as
well, not to mention most of the docs and tests and many other things
besides.

April 13, 2009
Boulder, Colorado, USA

[1] http://allmydata.org/pipermail/tahoe-dev/2009-March/001461.html
[2] http://allmydata.org/trac/tahoe/browser/relnotes.txt?rev=3620
[3] http://allmydata.org/trac/tahoe/browser/NEWS?rev=3835
[4] http://allmydata.org/trac/tahoe/browser/docs/known_issues.txt
[5] http://allmydata.org/trac/tahoe/wiki/RelatedProjects
[6] http://allmydata.org/trac/tahoe/wiki/UseCases
[7] http://allmydata.org/trac/tahoe/browser/COPYING.GPL
[8] http://allmydata.org/source/tahoe/trunk/COPYING.TGPPL.html
[9] http://allmydata.org/source/tahoe/trunk/docs/install.html
[10] http://allmydata.org/cgi-bin/mailman/listinfo/tahoe-dev
[11] http://allmydata.org/trac/tahoe/roadmap
[12] http://allmydata.org/trac/tahoe/browser/CREDITS?rev=3758
[13] http://allmydata.org/trac/tahoe/wiki/Dev
[14] http://allmydata.com


---
Tahoe, the Least-Authority Filesystem -- http://allmydata.org
store your data: $10/month -- http://allmydata.com/?tracking=zsig
I am available for work -- http://zooko.com/résumé.html




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