Re: please help FreeNet by becoming a node

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From: Steven M. Bellovin (
Date: Thu Mar 02 2000 - 06:56:46 PST

In message <>, Bill Stewart writes:
> It would be very nice if there were a Freenet _client_
> instead of, or in addition to, the Freenet _server_.
> What's the functional difference? None, actually :-)
> The problem is that many US cable modem networks,
> and some US xDSL networks, have strong policies
> against running network servers, but not network clients.
> So if Freenet is a server, I can't run it on my cable modem,
> but if it's just a client with maybe some peer-to-peer capabilities,
> that's just fine :-) Unfortunately, it would have more credibility
> if there were some server to talk to in addition to other clients,
> perhaps analagous to ICQ registry server, but that's probably not
> very compatible with the rest of the system.
> The transparency and stupidity of the request has nothing to do
> with its importance. :-)

It is worth noting that some bans on running servers are based on technology,
not the business model of the provider. In IP over cable systems, there is
much less bandwidth available upstream than downstream, and it's much more
expensive to add more upstream bandwidth than it is to add downstream
bandwidth. If you run a server, you're chewing up a lot of capacity, and
affecting your neighbors.

But you're right, it's a real concern for users of Freenet (btw, isn't that a
trademarked term?) -- I have the same problem as you do.

                --Steve Bellovin

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