Entries tagged free

Droid-Break – high quality alternatives to proprietary Android apps

Posted on 23. Oktober 2013 Comments

After the NSA scandal 2013 the website prism-break.org got a little famous for recommending software, that would help keeping snooping intelligence services out of your private conversations. There are a couple of proprietary solutions, because there are just no alternatives but it’s mostly free and open source software(FOSS). While the disclaimer says „this site will not guarantee that 100% of your communications will be shielded against surveillance states“ it’s probably the best you can do. So that got me thinking and I created droid-break.info.

Prism-break.org lists a couple of Android apps, but only to security related issues such as encryption. Droid-Break is about FOSS apps in general because – as it turned out – for most of the apps we use everyday there is a good alternative FOSS solution. Most of the apps are in the F-Droid app store so you don’t have to rely on Google doing no evil.

The list includes the following categories: Browser, Social Networks, Messenger, VoIP, Audio/Podcasts, Video, Email, Notes, News Reader, File Manager, Navigation, Keyboards, Cloud, and a category for misc app that didn’t fit anywhere else.

If you have any suggestions, write a comment, an e-mail, tweet @repat123 or @droidbreak or fork the project on github.

Btw, it’s kindly hosted by neocities.org 🙂

Establish secure instant messaging connections via jabber and OTR

Posted on 12. April 2011 Comments

//update: even easier: My installer for both messenger and encryption

Instant Messaging is what most of you might know as ICQ, AIM, YIM, Windows Live Messenger(or „MSN“), Skype, Google Talk, etc.

What I’m going to show you is how to install the instant-messenger Pidgin, the encryption extension OTR and create a jabber-account with a provider of your choice. But don’t worry, this is not getting very technical, in fact, it probably takes you less than 5 minutes(!). At the end of the article you’ll find some more explanations and backgrounds, if you’re interested.

Step by step

1. Download Pidgin at http://www.pidgin.im/download (Link for Windows)

2. Download the OTR Pidgin plugin at http://www.cypherpunks.ca/otr/ (Link for Windows)

3. Install Pidgin, just doubleclick on the icon and press next every time you’re asked something. Then install the OTR plugin, same procedure.

4. Create a jabber account, for the beginning https://register.jabber.org/ will do. Just choose a nickname, that might be your real name, a nickname or some letter-number-chaos, just remember it and the password too.

5. Open Pidgin, you’re gonna be asked to create an profile/account. Choose XMPP as protocol. Username is the part in front of @jabber.org at your new jabber-address, so the nickname you chose before. Domain is jabber.org. Leave recource free and enter your password. Click Save.

7. Your buddy-list opens, as you might know it from ICQ or Skype. You can now add buddys via the main menu.

8. Enable OTR by clicking Tools/Plugins in the main menu, then scroll down, until you find Off-the-Records Messaging, make sure it’s checked.

9. As soon as you chat with someome who also has OTR installed, Pidgin creates a pair of keys(only for the first time). As from now on the connection is encrypted. Just make sure, the person you’re talking to, is really the person you think it is.

10. That’s what the verifying function is about. On the right side of a chat window, there is a button with encrypted but not authorized button, click on it and authorize your chat buddy via passphrase, question and answer or by compairing digital fingerprints over a secure connection, e.g. mobile phone or by standing next to each other.


Extra Information

Pidgin is a multi platform chat client. This means you can use whatever chat provider you want to, such as ICQ, Windows Live(MSN) or Skype and use just one programm for all of them. Also, OTR works with all of them, but to be completly independent on commercial providers, I chose jabber.

Jabber works a bit like e-mail (decentralized, that is). You have to choose a provider, just like you would choose hotmail.com, googlemail.com, yahoo.com etc for e-mail. There a quite a few providers, for example the Chaos Computer Club in Germany or even German Universities. Since most jabber software is free software you might even want set up your very own jabber server in your basement like me.

OTR has a pretty good encryption. The big advantage is the encryption from end to end, so unless the attacker is in control over your computer, no one can see what you’re writing. Plus, it’s plausible deniable, see Plausible Deniability at wikipedia

Jabber, or rather the protocol XMPP is used by various big companies such as Google(google talk) or Facebook(facebook chat). You just hardly ever get to know what’s behind a system.

iodine – free wifi hotspots mit IPv4 ueber DNS und Dockstar

Posted on 5. Dezember 2010 Comments

Jeder kennt das Problem, das man am Gate am Flughafen sitzt oder im ICE und es gibt einen W-LAN Hotspot, nur leider muss man dafür zahlen…In Australien gab es an jeder Ecke Paid HotSpots(häufig Global Gossip), zu horrenden Preisen und mit einer unverschämt langsamen Verbindung.

Nun hab ich grade eine Lösung für solche bzw. die meisten solcher unangenehmen Anbieter gefunden: iodine

Dieses kleine Programm sendet alle Pakete über Port 53, also DNS, welches die meisten Firewalls durchlassen, testen kann man das mit folgendem Befehl oder mit dig:

$ ping repat.de
PING repat.de ( 56(84) bytes of data.

Wenn sich also der Name in eine IP-Adresse auflöst, dann sollte das hier prinzipiell möglich sein.

Eine kleine Anleitung, da ich hier nicht alles aufschreiben kann, was gemacht wurde: Als erstes muss eine Subdomain eingerichtet und DNS richtig konfiguriert werden für die Domain, dazu braucht man vollen Zugriff. Es ist mit einer dyndns Adresse unseres Wissens nicht möglich, s. dazu das README .

Dann kann man auf der Dockstar, einem kleinen Homeserver, oder auch auf jedem beliegen Server, auf den man Root-Zugriff hat, den iodine-server starten :

iodined -P password meine.dyndns.tld

Auf dem Client jetzt die /etc/default/iodine anpassen:

# Default settings for iodine. This file is sourced from
# /etc/init.d/iodined
IODINED_ARGS="192.168.3 tunnel.domain.tld"

Falls man die Dockstar benutzt, muss man nur noch Port 53 auf die Dockstar IP im Router forwarden und den Client starten:

sudo iodine -f tunnel.domain.tld

tunnel.domain.tld ist die subdomain, die von der Domain für meine dyndns Adresse eingerichtet ist.

Voila, kostenloses Internet überall:)



  • Bilder ausstellen
  • Einen User-Agent von mobilen Geräten/Smartphones benutzen(z.B. mit User Agent Switcher als Firefox-Plugin)
  • Opera Turbo aktivieren beim Opera Browser(Website wird von Opera Servern angefragt, komprimiert, dir zugesendet und dort wieder entpackt, also quasi ein Proxy)
  • lynx als textbasierten Browser

Es gibt auch noch eine ICMP Version: ICMPTX