[Freedombox-discuss] BitTorrent Sync

Philip Hands phil at hands.com
Tue Jan 29 21:44:26 UTC 2013

Jonathan Wilkes <jancsika at yahoo.com> writes:

> ----- Original Message -----
>> From: Philip Hands <phil at hands.com>
>> To: Chris Troutner <Chris.Troutner at PACCAR.com>; freedombox-discuss at lists.alioth.debian.org
>> Cc: 
>> Sent: Tuesday, January 29, 2013 8:02 AM
>> Subject: Re: [Freedombox-discuss] BitTorrent Sync
>> Chris Troutner <Chris.Troutner at PACCAR.com> writes:
>>>  I ran across this article on Slashdot about the new Sync platform in
>>>  alpha test by BitTorrent. Apparently it's 'like' Dropbox, but 
>> it uses
>>>  your own machine. It allows file synchronization between two (or more)
>>>  computers, like your laptop and personal server.
>>>  http://hardware.slashdot.org/story/13/01/25/1941226/bittorrent-launches-
>>>  dropbox-alternative
>>>  Does anyone know more about this?
>> I don't, when I read about it I thought that if I wanted such a thing,
>> I'd almost certainly use git-annex instead (and 'git annex 
>> assistant' in
>> particular).  See:
>>   http://git-annex.branchable.com/assistant/
> It's like bittorrent sync, except it doesn't scale and doesn't use
> encryption out of the box.

Well, since you put it like that, I guess I have to set you straight:

It uses ssh out of the box -- so there's your transport encryption, and
it optionally uses GPG encryption for special remotes (i.e. dumping your
files in Amazon S3, or a USB stick, say), so yes, it does do encryption
out of the box in the places where one might actually want it.


As for scaling, it depends what you're after, but since (if using the
assistant) you can nudge remotes into attempting to pull from one
another via XMPP, I think it's got quite a few of the real world use
cases covered for scalability too.

The big win for me is that it builds on proven technology, that is easy
to trust.  I know I'd much rather trust the crypto in ssh and GPG than
something alpha from bittorrent.

Git's had a fair amount of testing too (as has git annex).

Bittorrent sync on the other hand is currently in an invitation-only
pre-alpha phase, it seems.

Cheers, Phil.
|)|  Philip Hands [+44 (0)20 8530 9560]    http://www.hands.com/
|-|  HANDS.COM Ltd.                    http://www.uk.debian.org/
|(|  10 Onslow Gardens, South Woodford, London  E18 1NE  ENGLAND
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