Discussion:
signal desktop chrome requirements
(too old to reply)
Jack N.
2016-12-20 21:36:56 UTC
Permalink
Raw Message
I dont think I need to explain what harm chrome(and features in chromium that report to google) can do irregardless of whether you are using it for normal web browsing or strictly Signal desktop. But briefly Chrome and some features in chromium report back to the google mothership, certain people have issues with that level of online tracking and the privacy issues that come with using a product tied into google services. I really think this is kind of common knowledge now, specially with more technologically minded users.
If Signal is to continue to be championed as one of the best end to end crypto messenger services, as it should be, well wouldn't it be great if it didn't rely on a browser that is an antithesis to almost all the ideals of said messaging app.
If you would like me to be even more specific well then that is a whole other longer convo which imo is getting off topic a bit. For anyone who is working on a serious leak or journalist working to uncover x,y,z issues google tracking, and by extension the NSA's access to that are indeed part of a valid threat model that is all.

And no I am not on a mac computer, I said that previously ive tried to get chromium working on mac osx but for others, but it was never as seemless or user friendly as firefox safari or chrome

--
could you please explain what harm you think chrome/chromium can do to you if you're using it only for Signal Desktop? please, be specific.
i see you are on a Mac computer. are you aware that MacOS is not FOSS and you still trust with your files?
- jure
And I am sorry if it sounds like I am coming on here to put down the work of OWS/Moxie, that is not my intention at all. I love Signal and have tried to follow as close as possible with the great work that OWS has done, from axolotl to signal being used on whatsapp to fb.
What are they giving up?
If forced to use chrome there are privacy implications of having google software on your machine which is an issue for some and the tracking of what you do within chrome. Chromium solves this issue surely? well yes and no, I think chromium is a great browser, if it wasnt it wouldnt be used as the source for so many browsers right? But last I checked chromium had some buggy issues on osx/windows. Last I used it it wouldn't auto update. Some parts are closed source. Some functionality is reliant on google servers. These might be deal breakers for some people. And if there are no "power users" I think its silly that people need to download another browser onto their machine if they dont have chrome/chromium already.
I was just trying to understand how and why this came to be and now that the google web apps are dead, maybe the future solution shouldn't also make some silly choices that end up being imo counterproductive.
I fail to see how the benefits of webapps, distribution being one of them if I remember/read correctly are so great that they overshadow what are in my opinion valid concerns. You mention this affecting about 5% of the userbase but about 50-40% of internet users use a browser other then chrome, so I think its actually more then about 5% of the user base. Anyone who wishes to use signal desktop must use chrome/chromium as it stands, why cant they just use signal desktop.
I just wonder are distribution/updating that hard that OWS has/had to tie signal desktop with another software package rather then just releasing a standalone program?
What specifically are you referring to when you mention my thoughts on brave browser?
I think its a funny attempt at solving the ab-blocking and distribution problem. But its a browser with a different vision and attempt to solve issues that the creators see in the modern web, issues I dont see how they pertain to signal and OWS.
Apologies if I am also coming off as a moaner or complainer, I try to keep up to date with the OWS stuff but there is never enough time in the day for everything..
--
Yes that is great that those who run chromebooks have a desktop option, Its just a shame all those who aren't running a chromebook/chrome based browser don't have those same options, or do not without giving up something they value.
Huh? What are they giving up?
I'm not really sure what you're arguing here? It seems to me that
you're just trying to persuade people that firefox is a better option
over chrome/chromium? And because whispersystems chose one of these
over the other, they're abandoning users? No they're not, users can
install both. Don't like / trust google? fine, install chromium, it's
open source.
Additionally, it shouldn't take much work to convert signal desktop to
another platform, it's been discussed time and time again. There were
even pull requests that went in that made the codebase more firefox
compatible. All it is is html, js and css... If whispersystems decided
to change platform, then the majority of the app will stay the same,
and given that google chrome apps will be abandoned mid next year,
this decision will need to be made anyway, and something like electron
will have to be used instead?
I'd be curious what you think of things like the brave browser, which
is as much locked to the google chrome platform as signal desktop is
(in fact moreso, they use things like webviews), they just package it
using electron (with some changes they push upstream).
Sorry if this response seems aggressive, I just get annoyed when
people come on to the mailing list accusing OWS/Moxie of making
decisions that are the end of the world, and not respecting the work
that everyone does, when really the things that you're complaining
about are minor, and effect less than 95% of the userbase.
Yes that is great that those who run chromebooks have a desktop option, Its
just a shame all those who aren't running a chromebook/chrome based browser
don't have those same options, or do not without giving up something they
value.
I perhaps in my ignorance fail to see how distributing an open-source cross
platform application verifiable via the standard methods employed today
would be less secure/controllable over a browser extension.
Im aware Moxie is against the idea of a "power user" but secure download
from https encrypted website is more then enough security for the non
"power" users while still being able to offer sig files for verification for
the more paranoid users. Is this really such a large overhead in terms of
resources for OWS? Couldn't the software simply not allow the user to send a
message without upgrading to the latest version, like how signal does not
allow messages to non-verified contacts
--
Whatever the reasons,
I'm just thankful that the folks in my household using a Chromebook have a
desktop option.
Android is coming to Chromebook users which opens up Firefox as a
possibility...
Interesting element to Chrome Web-app-ness... I can open the Signal
application without opening up Chrome. Which is nice.
--
Pn0 | 0x2412CAE6
-------- Original Message --------
Subject: Re: [whispersystems] signal desktop chrome requirements
Local Time: December 20, 2016 10:08 AM
UTC Time: December 20, 2016 3:08 PM
Hi Jack,
There have been discussions on this mailing list, the archive is
available at [0].
I think, [1] and [2] might brush on the concerns you have voiced.
Basically, the original reason (if I recall correctly) comes down to
update management.
Best Regards,
Raphael
[0] >>>> https://lists.riseup.net/www/arc/whispersystems
[1]
https://lists.riseup.net/www/arc/whispersystems/2016-01/msg00018.html
(People want a standalone version of Signal for Desktop.)
[2]
https://lists.riseup.net/www/arc/whispersystems/2016-08/msg00011.html
(what will happen to Signal Desktop?)
Hello
Ive a few questions with regards to the Signal desktop application that
I wasn't able to find so I was hoping someone here probably knows the
answer.
Why is it that Signal Desktop is only available as a chrome/chromium
extension?
What was the design decision and implementation of the code that meant a
chromium extension was the best choice for Signal desktop over a more
open browser(such as Firefox) or a standalone application?
Chrome has more percentage of users but generally isn't "safe/secure" in
the eye's of many people as Google has its hands in every line of code.
Chromium is one step better but for many still isn't good enough
compared to Firefox.
Firefox while only having about 1/5th of the users of chrome would
probably lead chrome in percent of users who would have a privacy
issue/security issue. Its close ties with the tor project give credence
to its privacy/anonymity philosophy over the likes of Chrome.
Was Chrome chosen so that Signal desktop could have greater reach for
any and all users, ignoring those with security/privacy issues revolving
around the big G?
Was is some technical reason that meant signal desktop could only be
implemented in Chromium based browsers?
Why not avoid the worst of both worlds, where privacy and anonymity
focused users are not forced into using a browser they don't trust, and
casual users are not forced into downloading a browser they don't care
about or need( if Signal desktop was only on Firefox) and just develop
Signal desktop as a standalone application.
Please excuse any ignorance on my part and if this has been answered
before, I was not able to find material openly discussing this.
Regards
--
Jack N.
2016-12-20 21:51:59 UTC
Permalink
Raw Message
https://github.com/WhisperSystems/Signal-Desktop/issues/871 and
https://github.com/WhisperSystems/Signal-Android/pull/5962

Indeed these two issues look to be the solution to whats being discussed if they are implemented correctly and accepted to the main branch.
I for one look forward to less constraints on what potentially invasive software must be run for a user to be able to experience the full Signal suit of offerings.


--
The problems, that you are all writing about will soon be no longer valid. There is pull request that will allow Signal to work without google services and browser extension will be ported to something else.
Chceck out pull request  > #5962 in repo Signal Android and issue #871 in repo Signal-Desktop.
"Pseudonym0" (via whispersystems Mailing List)
2016-12-21 08:30:32 UTC
Permalink
Raw Message
"I was just trying to understand how and why this came to be"

Because a chrome app offers a platform that covers 100% of the user base in one motion, I would presume. At least that is the most obvious and logical reasoning to me.


--
Pn0 | 0x2412CAE6






-------- Original Message --------
On Dec 20, 2016, 1:49 PM, Jack N. wrote:


And I am sorry if it sounds like I am coming on here to put down the work of OWS/Moxie, that is not my intention at all. I love Signal and have tried to follow as close as possible with the great work that OWS has done, from axolotl to signal being used on whatsapp to fb.

What are they giving up?
If forced to use chrome there are privacy implications of having google software on your machine which is an issue for some and the tracking of what you do within chrome. Chromium solves this issue surely? well yes and no, I think chromium is a great browser, if it wasnt it wouldnt be used as the source for so many browsers right? But last I checked chromium had some buggy issues on osx/windows. Last I used it it wouldn't auto update. Some parts are closed source. Some functionality is reliant on google servers. These might be deal breakers for some people. And if there are no "power users" I think its silly that people need to download another browser onto their machine if they dont have chrome/chromium already.

I was just trying to understand how and why this came to be and now that the google web apps are dead, maybe the future solution shouldn't also make some silly choices that end up being imo counterproductive.
I fail to see how the benefits of webapps, distribution being one of them if I remember/read correctly are so great that they overshadow what are in my opinion valid concerns. You mention this affecting about 5% of the userbase but about 50-40% of internet users use a browser other then chrome, so I think its actually more then about 5% of the user base. Anyone who wishes to use signal desktop must use chrome/chromium as it stands, why cant they just use signal desktop.

I just wonder are distribution/updating that hard that OWS has/had to tie signal desktop with another software package rather then just releasing a standalone program?

What specifically are you referring to when you mention my thoughts on brave browser?
I think its a funny attempt at solving the ab-blocking and distribution problem. But its a browser with a different vision and attempt to solve issues that the creators see in the modern web, issues I dont see how they pertain to signal and OWS.

Apologies if I am also coming off as a moaner or complainer, I try to keep up to date with the OWS stuff but there is never enough time in the day for everything..

--

20. Dec 2016 17:25 by ***@samlanning.com:

Yes that is great that those who run chromebooks have a desktop option, Its just a shame all those who aren't running a chromebook/chrome based browser don't have those same options, or do not without giving up something they value.
Huh? What are they giving up?

I'm not really sure what you're arguing here? It seems to me that
you're just trying to persuade people that firefox is a better option
over chrome/chromium? And because whispersystems chose one of these
over the other, they're abandoning users? No they're not, users can
install both. Don't like / trust google? fine, install chromium, it's
open source.

Additionally, it shouldn't take much work to convert signal desktop to
another platform, it's been discussed time and time again. There were
even pull requests that went in that made the codebase more firefox
compatible. All it is is html, js and css... If whispersystems decided
to change platform, then the majority of the app will stay the same,
and given that google chrome apps will be abandoned mid next year,
this decision will need to be made anyway, and something like electron
will have to be used instead?

I'd be curious what you think of things like the brave browser, which
is as much locked to the google chrome platform as signal desktop is
(in fact moreso, they use things like webviews), they just package it
using electron (with some changes they push upstream).

Sorry if this response seems aggressive, I just get annoyed when
people come on to the mailing list accusing OWS/Moxie of making
decisions that are the end of the world, and not respecting the work
that everyone does, when really the things that you're complaining
about are minor, and effect less than 95% of the userbase.










On Tue, Dec 20, 2016 at 8:54 AM, Jack N. < ***@tutanota.com> wrote: Yes that is great that those who run chromebooks have a desktop option, Its
just a shame all those who aren't running a chromebook/chrome based browser
don't have those same options, or do not without giving up something they
value.

I perhaps in my ignorance fail to see how distributing an open-source cross
platform application verifiable via the standard methods employed today
would be less secure/controllable over a browser extension.
Im aware Moxie is against the idea of a "power user" but secure download
from https encrypted website is more then enough security for the non
"power" users while still being able to offer sig files for verification for
the more paranoid users. Is this really such a large overhead in terms of
resources for OWS? Couldn't the software simply not allow the user to send a
message without upgrading to the latest version, like how signal does not
allow messages to non-verified contacts
--

20. Dec 2016 16:27 by ***@lists.riseup.net:


Whatever the reasons,

I'm just thankful that the folks in my household using a Chromebook have a
desktop option.
Android is coming to Chromebook users which opens up Firefox as a
possibility...

Interesting element to Chrome Web-app-ness... I can open the Signal
application without opening up Chrome. Which is nice.

--
Pn0 | 0x2412CAE6


-------- Original Message --------
Subject: Re: [whispersystems] signal desktop chrome requirements
Local Time: December 20, 2016 10:08 AM
UTC Time: December 20, 2016 3:08 PM
From: ***@in.tum.de
To: Jack N. < ***@tutanota.com>, ***@lists.riseup.net

Hi Jack,

There have been discussions on this mailing list, the archive is
available at [0].

I think, [1] and [2] might brush on the concerns you have voiced.

Basically, the original reason (if I recall correctly) comes down to
update management.

Best Regards,
Raphael

[0] https://lists.riseup.net/www/arc/whispersystems
[1]
https://lists.riseup.net/www/arc/whispersystems/2016-01/msg00018.html
(People want a standalone version of Signal for Desktop.)
[2]
https://lists.riseup.net/www/arc/whispersystems/2016-08/msg00011.html
(what will happen to Signal Desktop?)


On 20.12.2016 15:53, Jack N. wrote: Hello
Ive a few questions with regards to the Signal desktop application that
I wasn't able to find so I was hoping someone here probably knows the
answer.
Why is it that Signal Desktop is only available as a chrome/chromium
extension?
What was the design decision and implementation of the code that meant a
chromium extension was the best choice for Signal desktop over a more
open browser(such as Firefox) or a standalone application?

Chrome has more percentage of users but generally isn't "safe/secure" in
the eye's of many people as Google has its hands in every line of code.
Chromium is one step better but for many still isn't good enough
compared to Firefox.
Firefox while only having about 1/5th of the users of chrome would
probably lead chrome in percent of users who would have a privacy
issue/security issue. Its close ties with the tor project give credence
to its privacy/anonymity philosophy over the likes of Chrome.

Was Chrome chosen so that Signal desktop could have greater reach for
any and all users, ignoring those with security/privacy issues revolving
around the big G?
Was is some technical reason that meant signal desktop could only be
implemented in Chromium based browsers?
Why not avoid the worst of both worlds, where privacy and anonymity
focused users are not forced into using a browser they don't trust, and
casual users are not forced into downloading a browser they don't care
about or need( if Signal desktop was only on Firefox) and just develop
Signal desktop as a standalone application.

Please excuse any ignorance on my part and if this has been answered
before, I was not able to find material openly discussing this.
Regards
--
Max Kellermeier
2016-12-21 09:44:33 UTC
Permalink
Raw Message
I shortly want to mention that there are alternatives to Chrome, simply without these privacy issues (or maybe only a few of them), with which you can still use all chrome apps, like Iron [1] or iridium . I use it, but not as my standard browser, only for Signal.

Otherwise it might be better to continue the discussion in the community forum. I think all pros and cons are already mentioned there or otherwise referenced.

For example this post [2] is about using the desktop app with alternatives.

I just think it was alreadydiscussed enough on the mailing list.

Max


[1] http://www.srware.net/en/software_srware_iron_download.php

[2] https://whispersystems.discoursehosting.net/t/use-signal-desktop-without-chrome/273



------ Originalnachricht------

Von: Pseudonym0

Datum: Mi., 21. Dez. 2016 09:30

An: ***@lists.riseup.net;

Cc:

Betreff:Re: [whispersystems] signal desktop chrome requirements


"I was just trying to understand how and why this came to be"

Because a chrome app offers a platform that covers 100% of the user base in one motion, I would presume. At least that is the most obvious and logical reasoning to me.


--
Pn0 | 0x2412CAE6






-------- Original Message --------
On Dec 20, 2016, 1:49 PM, Jack N. wrote:


And I am sorry if it sounds like I am coming on here to put down the work of OWS/Moxie, that is not my intention at all. I love Signal and have tried to follow as close as possible with the great work that OWS has done, from axolotl to signal being used on whatsapp to fb.

What are they giving up?
If forced to use chrome there are privacy implications of having google software on your machine which is an issue for some and the tracking of what you do within chrome. Chromium solves this issue surely? well yes and no, I think chromium is a great browser, if it wasnt it wouldnt be used as the source for so many browsers right? But last I checked chromium had some buggy issues on osx/windows. Last I used it it wouldn't auto update. Some parts are closed source. Some functionality is reliant on google servers. These might be deal breakers for some people. And if there are no "power users" I think its silly that people need to download another browser onto their machine if they dont have chrome/chromium already.

I was just trying to understand how and why this came to be and now that the google web apps are dead, maybe the future solution shouldn't also make some silly choices that end up being imo counterproductive.
I fail to see how the benefits of webapps, distribution being one of them if I remember/read correctly are so great that they overshadow what are in my opinion valid concerns. You mention this affecting about 5% of the userbase but about 50-40% of internet users use a browser other then chrome, so I think its actually more then about 5% of the user base. Anyone who wishes to use signal desktop must use chrome/chromium as it stands, why cant they just use signal desktop.

I just wonder are distribution/updating that hard that OWS has/had to tie signal desktop with another software package rather then just releasing a standalone program?

What specifically are you referring to when you mention my thoughts on brave browser?
I think its a funny attempt at solving the ab-blocking and distribution problem. But its a browser with a different vision and attempt to solve issues that the creators see in the modern web, issues I dont see how they pertain to signal and OWS.

Apologies if I am also coming off as a moaner or complainer, I try to keep up to date with the OWS stuff but there is never enough time in the day for everything..

--

20. Dec 2016 17:25 by ***@samlanning.com<mailto:***@samlanning.com>:

Yes that is great that those who run chromebooks have a desktop option, Its just a shame all those who aren't running a chromebook/chrome based browser don't have those same options, or do not without giving up something they value.

Huh? What are they giving up?

I'm not really sure what you're arguing here? It seems to me that
you're just trying to persuade people that firefox is a better option
over chrome/chromium? And because whispersystems chose one of these
over the other, they're abandoning users? No they're not, users can
install both. Don't like / trust google? fine, install chromium, it's
open source.

Additionally, it shouldn't take much work to convert signal desktop to
another platform, it's been discussed time and time again. There were
even pull requests that went in that made the codebase more firefox
compatible. All it is is html, js and css... If whispersystems decided
to change platform, then the majority of the app will stay the same,
and given that google chrome apps will be abandoned mid next year,
this decision will need to be made anyway, and something like electron
will have to be used instead?

I'd be curious what you think of things like the brave browser, which
is as much locked to the google chrome platform as signal desktop is
(in fact moreso, they use things like webviews), they just package it
using electron (with some changes they push upstream).

Sorry if this response seems aggressive, I just get annoyed when
people come on to the mailing list accusing OWS/Moxie of making
decisions that are the end of the world, and not respecting the work
that everyone does, when really the things that you're complaining
about are minor, and effect less than 95% of the userbase.










On Tue, Dec 20, 2016 at 8:54 AM, Jack N. < ***@tutanota.com<mailto:***@tutanota.com>> wrote:
Yes that is great that those who run chromebooks have a desktop option, Its
just a shame all those who aren't running a chromebook/chrome based browser
don't have those same options, or do not without giving up something they
value.

I perhaps in my ignorance fail to see how distributing an open-source cross
platform application verifiable via the standard methods employed today
would be less secure/controllable over a browser extension.
Im aware Moxie is against the idea of a "power user" but secure download
from https encrypted website is more then enough security for the non
"power" users while still being able to offer sig files for verification for
the more paranoid users. Is this really such a large overhead in terms of
resources for OWS? Couldn't the software simply not allow the user to send a
message without upgrading to the latest version, like how signal does not
allow messages to non-verified contacts
--

20. Dec 2016 16:27 by ***@lists.riseup.net<mailto:***@lists.riseup.net>:


Whatever the reasons,

I'm just thankful that the folks in my household using a Chromebook have a
desktop option.
Android is coming to Chromebook users which opens up Firefox as a
possibility...

Interesting element to Chrome Web-app-ness... I can open the Signal
application without opening up Chrome. Which is nice.

--
Pn0 | 0x2412CAE6


-------- Original Message --------
Subject: Re: [whispersystems] signal desktop chrome requirements
Local Time: December 20, 2016 10:08 AM
UTC Time: December 20, 2016 3:08 PM
From: ***@in.tum.de<mailto:***@in.tum.de>
To: Jack N. < ***@tutanota.com<mailto:***@tutanota.com>>, ***@lists.riseup.net<mailto:***@lists.riseup.net>

Hi Jack,

There have been discussions on this mailing list, the archive is
available at [0].

I think, [1] and [2] might brush on the concerns you have voiced.

Basically, the original reason (if I recall correctly) comes down to
update management.

Best Regards,
Raphael

[0] https://lists.riseup.net/www/arc/whispersystems
[1]
https://lists.riseup.net/www/arc/whispersystems/2016-01/msg00018.html
(People want a standalone version of Signal for Desktop.)
[2]
https://lists.riseup.net/www/arc/whispersystems/2016-08/msg00011.html
(what will happen to Signal Desktop?)


On 20.12.2016 15:53, Jack N. wrote:
Hello
Ive a few questions with regards to the Signal desktop application that
I wasn't able to find so I was hoping someone here probably knows the
answer.
Why is it that Signal Desktop is only available as a chrome/chromium
extension?
What was the design decision and implementation of the code that meant a
chromium extension was the best choice for Signal desktop over a more
open browser(such as Firefox) or a standalone application?

Chrome has more percentage of users but generally isn't "safe/secure" in
the eye's of many people as Google has its hands in every line of code.
Chromium is one step better but for many still isn't good enough
compared to Firefox.
Firefox while only having about 1/5th of the users of chrome would
probably lead chrome in percent of users who would have a privacy
issue/security issue. Its close ties with the tor project give credence
to its privacy/anonymity philosophy over the likes of Chrome.

Was Chrome chosen so that Signal desktop could have greater reach for
any and all users, ignoring those with security/privacy issues revolving
around the big G?
Was is some technical reason that meant signal desktop could only be
implemented in Chromium based browsers?
Why not avoid the worst of both worlds, where privacy and anonymity
focused users are not forced into using a browser they don't trust, and
casual users are not forced into downloading a browser they don't care
about or need( if Signal desktop was only on Firefox) and just develop
Signal desktop as a standalone application.

Please excuse any ignorance on my part and if this has been answered
before, I was not able to find material openly discussing this.
Regards
--
#359
2016-12-21 09:57:16 UTC
Permalink
Raw Message
about Iron Browser: check Critisism chapter here:
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/SRWare_Iron




- jure
Post by Max Kellermeier
I shortly want to mention that there are alternatives to Chrome,
simply without these privacy issues (or maybe only a few of them),
with which you can still use all chrome apps, like Iron [1] or iridium
. I use it, but not as my standard browser, only for Signal.
Otherwise it might be better to continue the discussion in the
community forum. I think all pros and cons are already mentioned there
or otherwise referenced.
For example this post [2] is about using the desktop app with
alternatives.
I just think it was alreadydiscussed enough on the mailing list.
Max
[1] http://www.srware.net/en/software_srware_iron_download.php
[2] https://whispersystems.discoursehosting.net/t/use-signal-desktop-without-chrome/273
------ Originalnachricht------
*Von: *Pseudonym0
*Datum: *Mi., 21. Dez. 2016 09:30
*Cc:*
*Betreff:*Re: [whispersystems] signal desktop chrome requirements
"I was just trying to understand how and why this came to be"
Because a chrome app offers a platform that covers 100% of the user
base in one motion, I would presume. At least that is the most
obvious and logical reasoning to me.
--
Pn0 | 0x2412CAE6
-------- Original Message --------
And I am sorry if it sounds like I am coming on here to put down the
work of OWS/Moxie, that is not my intention at all. I love Signal and
have tried to follow as close as possible with the great work that
OWS has done, from axolotl to signal being used on whatsapp to fb.
What are they giving up?
If forced to use chrome there are privacy implications of having
google software on your machine which is an issue for some and the
tracking of what you do within chrome. Chromium solves this issue
surely? well yes and no, I think chromium is a great browser, if it
wasnt it wouldnt be used as the source for so many browsers right?
But last I checked chromium had some buggy issues on osx/windows.
Last I used it it wouldn't auto update. Some parts are closed
source. Some functionality is reliant on google servers. These might
be deal breakers for some people. And if there are no "power users"
I think its silly that people need to download another browser onto
their machine if they dont have chrome/chromium already.
I was just trying to understand how and why this came to be and now
that the google web apps are dead, maybe the future solution
shouldn't also make some silly choices that end up being imo
counterproductive.
I fail to see how the benefits of webapps, distribution being one of
them if I remember/read correctly are so great that they overshadow
what are in my opinion valid concerns. You mention this affecting
about 5% of the userbase but about 50-40% of internet users use a
browser other then chrome, so I think its actually more then about
5% of the user base. Anyone who wishes to use signal desktop must
use chrome/chromium as it stands, why cant they just use signal
desktop.
I just wonder are distribution/updating that hard that OWS has/had
to tie signal desktop with another software package rather then just
releasing a standalone program?
What specifically are you referring to when you mention my thoughts on brave browser?
I think its a funny attempt at solving the ab-blocking and
distribution problem. But its a browser with a different vision and
attempt to solve issues that the creators see in the modern web,
issues I dont see how they pertain to signal and OWS.
Apologies if I am also coming off as a moaner or complainer, I try
to keep up to date with the OWS stuff but there is never enough time
in the day for everything..
--
Yes that is great that those who run chromebooks have a desktop
option, Its just a shame all those who aren't running a
chromebook/chrome based browser don't have those same options, or
do not without giving up something they value.
Huh? What are they giving up?
I'm not really sure what you're arguing here? It seems to me that
you're just trying to persuade people that firefox is a better option
over chrome/chromium? And because whispersystems chose one of these
over the other, they're abandoning users? No they're not, users can
install both. Don't like / trust google? fine, install
chromium, it's
open source.
Additionally, it shouldn't take much work to convert signal
desktop to
another platform, it's been discussed time and time again.
There were
even pull requests that went in that made the codebase more firefox
compatible. All it is is html, js and css... If whispersystems decided
to change platform, then the majority of the app will stay the same,
and given that google chrome apps will be abandoned mid next year,
this decision will need to be made anyway, and something like electron
will have to be used instead?
I'd be curious what you think of things like the brave browser, which
is as much locked to the google chrome platform as signal
desktop is
(in fact moreso, they use things like webviews), they just
package it
using electron (with some changes they push upstream).
Sorry if this response seems aggressive, I just get annoyed when
people come on to the mailing list accusing OWS/Moxie of making
decisions that are the end of the world, and not respecting
the work
that everyone does, when really the things that you're complaining
about are minor, and effect less than 95% of the userbase.
Yes that is great that those who run chromebooks have a desktop option, Its
just a shame all those who aren't running a chromebook/chrome based browser
don't have those same options, or do not without giving up
something they
value.
I perhaps in my ignorance fail to see how distributing an open-
source cross
platform application verifiable via the standard methods employed today
would be less secure/controllable over a browser extension.
Im aware Moxie is against the idea of a "power user" but secure download
from https encrypted website is more then enough security for the non
"power" users while still being able to offer sig files for verification for
the more paranoid users. Is this really such a large overhead in terms of
resources for OWS? Couldn't the software simply not allow the user to send a
message without upgrading to the latest version, like how signal does not
allow messages to non-verified contacts
--
Whatever the reasons,
I'm just thankful that the folks in my household using a
Chromebook have a
desktop option.
Android is coming to Chromebook users which opens up Firefox as a
possibility...
Interesting element to Chrome Web-app-ness... I can open the Signal
application without opening up Chrome. Which is nice.
--
Pn0 | 0x2412CAE6
-------- Original Message --------
Subject: Re: [whispersystems] signal desktop chrome requirements
Local Time: December 20, 2016 10:08 AM
UTC Time: December 20, 2016 3:08 PM
Hi Jack,
There have been discussions on this mailing list, the archive is
available at [0].
I think, [1] and [2] might brush on the concerns you have voiced.
Basically, the original reason (if I recall correctly) comes down to
update management.
Best Regards,
Raphael
[0] https://lists.riseup.net/www/arc/whispersystems
[1]
https://lists.riseup.net/www/arc/whispersystems/2016-01/msg00018.html
(People want a standalone version of Signal for Desktop.)
[2]
https://lists.riseup.net/www/arc/whispersystems/2016-08/msg00011.html
(what will happen to Signal Desktop?)
Hello
Ive a few questions with regards to the Signal desktop
application that
I wasn't able to find so I was hoping someone here probably knows the
answer.
Why is it that Signal Desktop is only available as a
chrome/chromium
extension?
What was the design decision and implementation of the code that meant a
chromium extension was the best choice for Signal desktop over a more
open browser(such as Firefox) or a standalone application?
Chrome has more percentage of users but generally isn't
"safe/secure" in
the eye's of many people as Google has its hands in every line of code.
Chromium is one step better but for many still isn't good enough
compared to Firefox.
Firefox while only having about 1/5th of the users of chrome would
probably lead chrome in percent of users who would have a privacy
issue/security issue. Its close ties with the tor project give credence
to its privacy/anonymity philosophy over the likes of Chrome.
Was Chrome chosen so that Signal desktop could have greater reach for
any and all users, ignoring those with security/privacy issues revolving
around the big G?
Was is some technical reason that meant signal desktop could only be
implemented in Chromium based browsers?
Why not avoid the worst of both worlds, where privacy and
anonymity
focused users are not forced into using a browser they don't trust, and
casual users are not forced into downloading a browser they don't care
about or need( if Signal desktop was only on Firefox) and just develop
Signal desktop as a standalone application.
Please excuse any ignorance on my part and if this has been answered
before, I was not able to find material openly discussing this.
Regards
--
Sam Lanning
2016-12-21 09:52:46 UTC
Permalink
Raw Message
I agree, let's move this to the community forums if people want to continue
the discussion.

Cheers,
Sam.
Post by Max Kellermeier
I shortly want to mention that there are alternatives to Chrome, simply
without these privacy issues (or maybe only a few of them), with which you
can still use all chrome apps, like Iron [1] or iridium . I use it, but not
as my standard browser, only for Signal.
Otherwise it might be better to continue the discussion in the community
forum. I think all pros and cons are already mentioned there or otherwise
referenced.
For example this post [2] is about using the desktop app with
alternatives.
I just think it was alreadydiscussed enough on the mailing list.
Max
[1] http://www.srware.net/en/software_srware_iron_download.php
[2] https://whispersystems.discoursehosting.net/t/use-
signal-desktop-without-chrome/273
------ Originalnachricht------
*Von: *Pseudonym0
*Datum: *Mi., 21. Dez. 2016 09:30
*Cc: *
*Betreff:*Re: [whispersystems] signal desktop chrome requirements
"I was just trying to understand how and why this came to be"
Because a chrome app offers a platform that covers 100% of the user base
in one motion, I would presume. At least that is the most obvious and
logical reasoning to me.
--
Pn0 | 0x2412CAE6
-------- Original Message --------
And I am sorry if it sounds like I am coming on here to put down the work
of OWS/Moxie, that is not my intention at all. I love Signal and have tried
to follow as close as possible with the great work that OWS has done, from
axolotl to signal being used on whatsapp to fb.
What are they giving up?
If forced to use chrome there are privacy implications of having google
software on your machine which is an issue for some and the tracking of
what you do within chrome. Chromium solves this issue surely? well yes and
no, I think chromium is a great browser, if it wasnt it wouldnt be used as
the source for so many browsers right? But last I checked chromium had some
buggy issues on osx/windows. Last I used it it wouldn't auto update. Some
parts are closed source. Some functionality is reliant on google servers.
These might be deal breakers for some people. And if there are no "power
users" I think its silly that people need to download another browser onto
their machine if they dont have chrome/chromium already.
I was just trying to understand how and why this came to be and now that
the google web apps are dead, maybe the future solution shouldn't also make
some silly choices that end up being imo counterproductive.
I fail to see how the benefits of webapps, distribution being one of them
if I remember/read correctly are so great that they overshadow what are in
my opinion valid concerns. You mention this affecting about 5% of the
userbase but about 50-40% of internet users use a browser other then
chrome, so I think its actually more then about 5% of the user base. Anyone
who wishes to use signal desktop must use chrome/chromium as it stands, why
cant they just use signal desktop.
I just wonder are distribution/updating that hard that OWS has/had to tie
signal desktop with another software package rather then just releasing a
standalone program?
What specifically are you referring to when you mention my thoughts on brave browser?
I think its a funny attempt at solving the ab-blocking and distribution
problem. But its a browser with a different vision and attempt to solve
issues that the creators see in the modern web, issues I dont see how they
pertain to signal and OWS.
Apologies if I am also coming off as a moaner or complainer, I try to keep
up to date with the OWS stuff but there is never enough time in the day for
everything..
--
Yes that is great that those who run chromebooks have a desktop option,
Its just a shame all those who aren't running a chromebook/chrome based
browser don't have those same options, or do not without giving up
something they value.
Huh? What are they giving up?
I'm not really sure what you're arguing here? It seems to me that
you're just trying to persuade people that firefox is a better option
over chrome/chromium? And because whispersystems chose one of these
over the other, they're abandoning users? No they're not, users can
install both. Don't like / trust google? fine, install chromium, it's
open source.
Additionally, it shouldn't take much work to convert signal desktop to
another platform, it's been discussed time and time again. There were
even pull requests that went in that made the codebase more firefox
compatible. All it is is html, js and css... If whispersystems decided
to change platform, then the majority of the app will stay the same,
and given that google chrome apps will be abandoned mid next year,
this decision will need to be made anyway, and something like electron
will have to be used instead?
I'd be curious what you think of things like the brave browser, which
is as much locked to the google chrome platform as signal desktop is
(in fact moreso, they use things like webviews), they just package it
using electron (with some changes they push upstream).
Sorry if this response seems aggressive, I just get annoyed when
people come on to the mailing list accusing OWS/Moxie of making
decisions that are the end of the world, and not respecting the work
that everyone does, when really the things that you're complaining
about are minor, and effect less than 95% of the userbase.
Yes that is great that those who run chromebooks have a desktop option, Its
just a shame all those who aren't running a chromebook/chrome based browser
don't have those same options, or do not without giving up something they
value.
I perhaps in my ignorance fail to see how distributing an open-source cross
platform application verifiable via the standard methods employed today
would be less secure/controllable over a browser extension.
Im aware Moxie is against the idea of a "power user" but secure download
from https encrypted website is more then enough security for the non
"power" users while still being able to offer sig files for verification for
the more paranoid users. Is this really such a large overhead in terms of
resources for OWS? Couldn't the software simply not allow the user to send a
message without upgrading to the latest version, like how signal does not
allow messages to non-verified contacts
--
Whatever the reasons,
I'm just thankful that the folks in my household using a Chromebook have a
desktop option.
Android is coming to Chromebook users which opens up Firefox as a
possibility...
Interesting element to Chrome Web-app-ness... I can open the Signal
application without opening up Chrome. Which is nice.
--
Pn0 | 0x2412CAE6
-------- Original Message --------
Subject: Re: [whispersystems] signal desktop chrome requirements
Local Time: December 20, 2016 10:08 AM
UTC Time: December 20, 2016 3:08 PM
Hi Jack,
There have been discussions on this mailing list, the archive is
available at [0].
I think, [1] and [2] might brush on the concerns you have voiced.
Basically, the original reason (if I recall correctly) comes down to
update management.
Best Regards,
Raphael
[0] https://lists.riseup.net/www/arc/whispersystems
[1]
https://lists.riseup.net/www/arc/whispersystems/2016-01/msg00018.html
(People want a standalone version of Signal for Desktop.)
[2]
https://lists.riseup.net/www/arc/whispersystems/2016-08/msg00011.html
(what will happen to Signal Desktop?)
Hello
Ive a few questions with regards to the Signal desktop application that
I wasn't able to find so I was hoping someone here probably knows the
answer.
Why is it that Signal Desktop is only available as a chrome/chromium
extension?
What was the design decision and implementation of the code that meant a
chromium extension was the best choice for Signal desktop over a more
open browser(such as Firefox) or a standalone application?
Chrome has more percentage of users but generally isn't "safe/secure" in
the eye's of many people as Google has its hands in every line of code.
Chromium is one step better but for many still isn't good enough
compared to Firefox.
Firefox while only having about 1/5th of the users of chrome would
probably lead chrome in percent of users who would have a privacy
issue/security issue. Its close ties with the tor project give credence
to its privacy/anonymity philosophy over the likes of Chrome.
Was Chrome chosen so that Signal desktop could have greater reach for
any and all users, ignoring those with security/privacy issues revolving
around the big G?
Was is some technical reason that meant signal desktop could only be
implemented in Chromium based browsers?
Why not avoid the worst of both worlds, where privacy and anonymity
focused users are not forced into using a browser they don't trust, and
casual users are not forced into downloading a browser they don't care
about or need( if Signal desktop was only on Firefox) and just develop
Signal desktop as a standalone application.
Please excuse any ignorance on my part and if this has been answered
before, I was not able to find material openly discussing this.
Regards
--
#359
2016-12-20 22:03:47 UTC
Permalink
Raw Message
using software is a matter of trust, especially if you're not a
computer/security expert. i am not a security expert and i assume you're
not either. but i read a lot. and i've read a lot about Signal, also a
lot of complaining and rant. but i haven't read a single well explained
obstacle about why not using Signal Desktop written by a security
expert. sure there were some ranting but they were all based on
ideology, like yours. not a single hard fact. that's why i asked you to
be specific.


yes, chrome/chromium is sending certain info to google. but if you're
not using it (except for Signal Desktop) there can't be much info to
send, what do you think? i also don't think it could send your
conversations to google, not even Signal Desktop metadata. if it could,
i don't believe OWS would choose it to build Signal on it.


as i said before, using software is a matter of trust.





- jure
Post by Jack N.
I dont think I need to explain what harm chrome(and features in
chromium that report to google) can do irregardless of whether you are
using it for normal web browsing or strictly Signal desktop. But
briefly Chrome and some features in chromium report back to the google
mothership, certain people have issues with that level of online
tracking and the privacy issues that come with using a product tied
into google services. I really think this is kind of common knowledge
now, specially with more technologically minded users.
If Signal is to continue to be championed as one of the best end to
end crypto messenger services, as it should be, well wouldn't it be
great if it didn't rely on a browser that is an antithesis to almost
all the ideals of said messaging app.
If you would like me to be even more specific well then that is a
whole other longer convo which imo is getting off topic a bit. For
anyone who is working on a serious leak or journalist working to
uncover x,y,z issues google tracking, and by extension the NSA's
access to that are indeed part of a valid threat model that is all.
And no I am not on a mac computer, I said that previously ive tried to
get chromium working on mac osx but for others, but it was never as
seemless or user friendly as firefox safari or chrome
--
could you please explain what harm you think chrome/chromium can do
to you if you're using it only for Signal Desktop? please, be
specific.
i see you are on a Mac computer. are you aware that MacOS is not FOSS
and you still trust with your files?
- jure
And I am sorry if it sounds like I am coming on here to put down
the work of OWS/Moxie, that is not my intention at all. I love
Signal and have tried to follow as close as possible with the great
work that OWS has done, from axolotl to signal being used on
whatsapp to fb.
What are they giving up?
If forced to use chrome there are privacy implications of having
google software on your machine which is an issue for some and the
tracking of what you do within chrome. Chromium solves this issue
surely? well yes and no, I think chromium is a great browser, if it
wasnt it wouldnt be used as the source for so many browsers right?
But last I checked chromium had some buggy issues on osx/windows.
Last I used it it wouldn't auto update. Some parts are closed
source. Some functionality is reliant on google servers. These might
be deal breakers for some people. And if there are no "power users"
I think its silly that people need to download another browser onto
their machine if they dont have chrome/chromium already.
I was just trying to understand how and why this came to be and now
that the google web apps are dead, maybe the future solution
shouldn't also make some silly choices that end up being imo
counterproductive.
I fail to see how the benefits of webapps, distribution being one of
them if I remember/read correctly are so great that they overshadow
what are in my opinion valid concerns. You mention this affecting
about 5% of the userbase but about 50-40% of internet users use a
browser other then chrome, so I think its actually more then about
5% of the user base. Anyone who wishes to use signal desktop must
use chrome/chromium as it stands, why cant they just use signal
desktop.
I just wonder are distribution/updating that hard that OWS has/had
to tie signal desktop with another software package rather then just
releasing a standalone program?
What specifically are you referring to when you mention my thoughts on brave browser?
I think its a funny attempt at solving the ab-blocking and
distribution problem. But its a browser with a different vision and
attempt to solve issues that the creators see in the modern web,
issues I dont see how they pertain to signal and OWS.
Apologies if I am also coming off as a moaner or complainer, I try
to keep up to date with the OWS stuff but there is never enough time
in the day for everything..
--
Yes that is great that those who run chromebooks have a desktop
option, Its just a shame all those who aren't running a
chromebook/chrome based browser don't have those same options, or
do not without giving up something they value.
Huh? What are they giving up?
I'm not really sure what you're arguing here? It seems to me that
you're just trying to persuade people that firefox is a better option
over chrome/chromium? And because whispersystems chose one of these
over the other, they're abandoning users? No they're not, users can
install both. Don't like / trust google? fine, install
chromium, it's
open source.
Additionally, it shouldn't take much work to convert signal
desktop to
another platform, it's been discussed time and time again.
There were
even pull requests that went in that made the codebase more firefox
compatible. All it is is html, js and css... If whispersystems decided
to change platform, then the majority of the app will stay the same,
and given that google chrome apps will be abandoned mid next year,
this decision will need to be made anyway, and something like electron
will have to be used instead?
I'd be curious what you think of things like the brave browser, which
is as much locked to the google chrome platform as signal
desktop is
(in fact moreso, they use things like webviews), they just
package it
using electron (with some changes they push upstream).
Sorry if this response seems aggressive, I just get annoyed when
people come on to the mailing list accusing OWS/Moxie of making
decisions that are the end of the world, and not respecting
the work
that everyone does, when really the things that you're complaining
about are minor, and effect less than 95% of the userbase.
Yes that is great that those who run chromebooks have a desktop option, Its
just a shame all those who aren't running a chromebook/chrome based browser
don't have those same options, or do not without giving up
something they
value.
I perhaps in my ignorance fail to see how distributing an open-
source cross
platform application verifiable via the standard methods employed today
would be less secure/controllable over a browser extension.
Im aware Moxie is against the idea of a "power user" but secure download
from https encrypted website is more then enough security for the non
"power" users while still being able to offer sig files for verification for
the more paranoid users. Is this really such a large overhead in terms of
resources for OWS? Couldn't the software simply not allow the user to send a
message without upgrading to the latest version, like how signal does not
allow messages to non-verified contacts
--
Whatever the reasons,
I'm just thankful that the folks in my household using a
Chromebook have a
desktop option.
Android is coming to Chromebook users which opens up Firefox as a
possibility...
Interesting element to Chrome Web-app-ness... I can open the Signal
application without opening up Chrome. Which is nice.
--
Pn0 | 0x2412CAE6
-------- Original Message --------
Subject: Re: [whispersystems] signal desktop chrome requirements
Local Time: December 20, 2016 10:08 AM
UTC Time: December 20, 2016 3:08 PM
Hi Jack,
There have been discussions on this mailing list, the archive is
available at [0].
I think, [1] and [2] might brush on the concerns you have voiced.
Basically, the original reason (if I recall correctly) comes down to
update management.
Best Regards,
Raphael
[0] https://lists.riseup.net/www/arc/whispersystems
[1]
https://lists.riseup.net/www/arc/whispersystems/2016-01/msg00018.html
(People want a standalone version of Signal for Desktop.)
[2]
https://lists.riseup.net/www/arc/whispersystems/2016-08/msg00011.html
(what will happen to Signal Desktop?)
Hello
Ive a few questions with regards to the Signal desktop
application that
I wasn't able to find so I was hoping someone here probably knows the
answer.
Why is it that Signal Desktop is only available as a
chrome/chromium
extension?
What was the design decision and implementation of the code that meant a
chromium extension was the best choice for Signal desktop over a more
open browser(such as Firefox) or a standalone application?
Chrome has more percentage of users but generally isn't
"safe/secure" in
the eye's of many people as Google has its hands in every line of code.
Chromium is one step better but for many still isn't good enough
compared to Firefox.
Firefox while only having about 1/5th of the users of chrome would
probably lead chrome in percent of users who would have a privacy
issue/security issue. Its close ties with the tor project give credence
to its privacy/anonymity philosophy over the likes of Chrome.
Was Chrome chosen so that Signal desktop could have greater reach for
any and all users, ignoring those with security/privacy issues revolving
around the big G?
Was is some technical reason that meant signal desktop could only be
implemented in Chromium based browsers?
Why not avoid the worst of both worlds, where privacy and
anonymity
focused users are not forced into using a browser they don't trust, and
casual users are not forced into downloading a browser they don't care
about or need( if Signal desktop was only on Firefox) and just develop
Signal desktop as a standalone application.
Please excuse any ignorance on my part and if this has been answered
before, I was not able to find material openly discussing this.
Regards
--
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