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Author Topic: BitCoin based Anonymous Hosting  (Read 4297 times)
bytemaster
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July 29, 2010, 12:10:59 AM
 #1

Suppose there was a p2p program that you could download run on your computer and earn BTC by serving anonymous blocks of files to "customers" bittorrent style.

Lets assume a simple example, I am a server with 1 GB of data.  I advertise that I sell downloads of various sizes (identified by hash) for a very small amount of BTC. 

Now assume a file exists which identifies 10 chunks of data via their hash codes.  I can then reassemble that file if I can find a server that can provide me with said chunks.  So I transfer the bitcoin and download the data from the host.

Now assume that there are 1000's of hosts each offering the same data for download at different price points and speeds.  Your client could then pick the desired server based upon price and throughput.  You would essentially create a market for data downloads uniquely identified by hash codes.   The cost of any particular chunk would vary according to supply and demand.

Now every player on the P2P network has a way to monetize and prioritize their connections.  You no longer need to identify files by name or torrent.

Now suppose that someone wants to send a file to someone else.  They can pay a fee for a fixed hosting period and sign their file with their public key.  No need for email accounts if the P2P network can lookup files by public key. 

Initially some user has no bitcoin so they can only download "free" files; however, they can download popular chunks and start selling them.   Speculators would "store" infrequently downloaded chunks and offer them for sale at higher prices.   Thus the problem with dead torrents goes away as there is now an economic incentive to seed. 

If successful the internet could be transformed from a situation where the provider pays for hosting to where the user pays for the download.  Static content could never be taken down again because all data will be distributed across all computers with no one computer knowing anything about how or where their marketable "chunks" are used.

Thoughts?

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ichi
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July 29, 2010, 01:00:03 AM
 #2

How would providers and users remain anonymous?

Tor?  Bandwidth and evil exit nodes are key issues there.

Free anonymous VPNs?  They're probably honeypots of one sort or another, IMHO.

Fee-based anonymous VPNs?  How do yo know that they don't log traffic with entry-exit node paths?

Who do you trust, and why?
bytemaster
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July 29, 2010, 01:32:34 AM
 #3

It would be anonymous in the sense that the hosted file chunks are not part of a "named torrent" where all users are after the same big file.  The file chunks are simply data that satisfies a hash.  Two files that have the same bit sequence could include the same hash and thus the chunks can be reused between similar files.  No host knows anything about the data other than that it matches a hash and that there is a supply/demand for the bits that match the hash.


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ichi
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July 29, 2010, 03:38:24 AM
 #4

The way I read your proposal, there are files that identify "chunks of data via their hash codes".  Hosts are offering those chunks for download "uniquely identified by hash codes".  Therefore, if I know that a chunk with some unique hash is part of a popular film, and I know that I got said chunk from you, I know that you're sharing said film.  Yes?

I'm not sure how much slack you'd get for "not knowing" what you were hosting, given that the chunk-assembly files for such items would presumably be publicly available.  That's the main defense for Freenet.  However, Freenet is designed to frustrate such attacks.

Would this be something like Freenet with a Bitcoin payment system?
bytemaster
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July 29, 2010, 05:49:45 AM
 #5

Think of it as a giant de-dupe system based upon hashes.  Everyone would only need to communicate with hashes and then download everything they need from one giant de-dup swarm.  

If we are smart about enabling the p2p search of all nodes for the matching data then it will be impossible to ever erase data without taking the whole system down.  In fact, by tracking the "access" frequency a weighted directed graph of all information could be formed which could enable a search engine to rival google...

The only thing that remains is how does a service provider get paid for their storage and/or prioritize search queries and data transfers.  

I think that even if you start simple, simply providing tools that allow people to set up anonymous web businesses dealing in digital goods (VPN, data hosting, search, etc) that we could get somewhere.

Assuming the principle of 6 degrees to Kevin Bacon searching the P2P network with nodes competing for economic advantage would result in the highest and most distributed quality of service possible.

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July 29, 2010, 06:01:19 AM
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I think the plausible deniability comes from the fact that just because a certain pattern of bits happen to occur in some movie does not mean they ONLY happen in that movie.  In fact, that certain pattern of bits by itself is nothing more than reasonable use or a short "quote" at worst and at best simple free speech.  If the RIAA and MPAA claim "ownership" of "all patterns of bits from any subset of any format that encodes their copy righted works" then it could be argued that we are all guilty already by pure random chance!  Besides all files could be encrypted before being "chunked" and thus there is no way to identify a chunk with a movie. 

I think the BIG IDEA is how to solve the problem of "dead torrents" where no one has incentive to seed.  Enabling a bit coin payment system for seeders would solve this problem.  Eventually this will make bit torrent practical for all hosting and not just "popular hosting".   Less popular items would simply be "more expensive". 


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July 29, 2010, 10:39:07 AM
 #7

The way I read your proposal, there are files that identify "chunks of data via their hash codes".  Hosts are offering those chunks for download "uniquely identified by hash codes".  Therefore, if I know that a chunk with some unique hash is part of a popular film, and I know that I got said chunk from you, I know that you're sharing said film.  Yes?

I'm not sure how much slack you'd get for "not knowing" what you were hosting, given that the chunk-assembly files for such items would presumably be publicly available.  That's the main defense for Freenet.  However, Freenet is designed to frustrate such attacks.

Would this be something like Freenet with a Bitcoin payment system?

bingo^^^^

Also freenet wouldnt have to ask for donations they could be built in with bitcoin micropayments.A world wide freenet  where each node sends tiny transaction fees would be devastating and almost impervious.
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July 30, 2010, 08:36:55 AM
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I think the plausible deniability comes from the fact that just because a certain pattern of bits happen to occur in some movie does not mean they ONLY happen in that movie.  In fact, that certain pattern of bits by itself is nothing more than reasonable use or a short "quote" at worst and at best simple free speech.  If the RIAA and MPAA claim "ownership" of "all patterns of bits from any subset of any format that encodes their copy righted works" then it could be argued that we are all guilty already by pure random chance!

You might like offsystem.sourceforge.net and blocksnet.sourceforge.net


OFF is a highly connected peer-to-peer distributed file system. The unique feature of this system is that it stores all of its internal data as meaningless multi-use data blocks. In other words there is not a one to one mapping between a stored block and its use in a accessed file. Each stored block is simultaneously used to access many different files. Individually however, each block is nothing but arbitrary digital white noise.

No creative works, copyrighted or not, are ever communicated between OFF peers. Only meaningless blocks of arbitrary data. No tangible copies of creative works are ever stored on OFF peers. It is completely unnecessary.

...

Instead of working on whole files however, OFF works exclusively with fixed length “blocks” of data. Each block is exactly 128KB in size. If a file being stored is longer, it is broken into multiple 128KB blocks. If it is shorter, the blocks are padded to 128KB with random data.

These initial source blocks are never stored in the OFF System. Instead, OFF arbitrarily chooses relationships among new or existing blocks that happen to XOR back to the source block.

...
bytemaster
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July 30, 2010, 02:55:56 PM
 #9

That system is EXACTLY what I was thinking of, except that hosting and bandwidth usage could be done "for profit" and remain anonymous.   

Once you create a means to allow every P2P node to realize real world tangible profit anonymously you will see Tier 1 hosting facilities competing to offer anonymous hosting and high speed TOR, Proxy, and other services. 

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August 01, 2010, 08:33:14 AM
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URLified those for you.
ichi
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August 01, 2010, 09:19:50 AM
 #11

OFFSystem seems kinda dead, or is it just me?  I've only connected to 10-20 distinct peers over the past few days.

Of course, I can't forward ports, so perhaps I'm missing most of the action.
bytemaster
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August 01, 2010, 08:19:36 PM
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Off system does appear dead to me too.  Further inspection realizes that effectively off system just stores "encrypted blocks" where the encryption key is as big as the block itself.  Thus you must download 2-3x the data to re-assemble the result (noted in wikipedia's section about inefficiency). 

I am writing a new system similar to off-system, but you pay for uploads/downloads with bitcoins.  Anyone will be able to download the program and start a "hosting business" simply by leaving it running on their machine.   My system is more bandwidth effecient that off-system and with the ability to make a profit by running it should take off!  Effectively, if you upload more than you download then your downloads are "free" and you make a profit.  If you download more than you upload then it will cost you some coin.   

If someone would like to sponsor the effort, I could use some BTC to test with. 

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ichi
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August 02, 2010, 04:17:19 AM
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Go for it, dude  Smiley

If I had mucho bitcoin, I'd donate.  But  Cry
HZPyR8eVk
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August 02, 2010, 07:54:50 AM
 #14

OFFSystem seems kinda dead, or is it just me?

I read somewhere that BlocksNet was created because OFF is pretty much dead.
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