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View Poll Results: Should "Browse Host" be optional?
Yes, I like to share, but I don't like people to know all of what I share 7 58.33%
No, all hosts should be browsable, in the end I'll find out what you are sharing 5 41.67%
Voters: 12. You may not vote on this poll

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  #1 (permalink)  
Old May 18th, 2005
I'm an Android
 
Join Date: March 17th, 2005
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Unhappy BROWSE HOST (Should it be Optional?)

LimeWire has a really cool feature to Browse Hosts to see what files they are sharing.


Users who discover the browse host on right click and try it, are probably curious people, but personally I think you have a bigger chance of downloading a file faster from multiple hosts rather than downloading from just one host, since it might go offline, or it might be sharing or downloading, therefore having less bandwidth to give you.

I'd like to poll this issue, since it touches the feelings of many users, some defend browse host, some would just like to have the option to 'anonymously' share to some extent.

Last edited by mformel; August 9th, 2005 at 08:29 AM.
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Old May 18th, 2005
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You'd be surprised the no. of people out there who believe that if they can't browse someone then they consider that person is a leecher/Freeloader.

And people like myself like to browse people to see if they have more of what they find in searches. eg: find a song in the search results, then browse to see if they have more songs by that same artist. Or photos of Mt. Everest. Obviously someone who's been there may just have lots of them.

If you don't want people browsing particular files then why share them. There is a certain amount of anonymity in p2p. After all, the person who browses you might be over the opposite side of the world. Just IMHO

I also believe that your questionaire poll is rather silly the way it's been set up with limited options. Another mod may come along & adjust it. It is designed for only a highly biased outcome ... . 2 options is not enough! What about the people who totally disagree with your point of view or wording or are mixed somewhere in the middle of the extremes. You make it sound like there are spies out there. And why shouldn't people be allowed to know if someone is sharing "0".

Last edited by Lord of the Rings; May 18th, 2005 at 09:19 AM.
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  #3 (permalink)  
Old May 18th, 2005
Disciple
 
Join Date: May 17th, 2005
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Default Re: BROWSE HOST (Should it be Optional?)

Quote:
Originally posted by gubatron

Some people ask how to turn this off, so others won't browse their shared content.

If the LimeWire team put an option to disable browse host, it's very likely that somebody who has the technical knowledge, the interest, and the time, will (STILL)end up finding out what you are sharing.
Still, it would stop the average Joe from browsing your files, which conforms the majority of the users.
Here is my thoughts on the subject, after a lengthy discussion at LW where I was clearly in the minority...

Gnutella is a commons. Everyone who uses it shares resources, and consumes shared resources. No one node should be able to place its "desire to consume resources for itself" above the needs of the network as a whole to continue functioning, and provide public resources for consumption.

Based upon this principle, the LW team has decided, for example, to not allow automated re-queries.

It is with this in mind, that various LW team members propose "The desire of any LW user to not participate in the Browse Host feature (by disabling response to this feature on your node) should not supercede the network-wide benefits of having this feature always work".

Also, it is claimed by some here that "since it would still be possible to see (query) results from someone who has this (hypothetical) feature enabled, that it is really useless" or that "it would merely confuse users who mistakenly thought that the option stoped SHARING files."

Now, I can understand the reasoning behind all of these arguments. However, I don't think 1 & 2 are correct, and I am doubtful about 3.

1) The former principle is more about "what resources we allow a node to consume for themselves without damaging other nodes", not about "what additional features should a node provide that could improve the experiences of others".

Basically, it is the "resource consumption" side that should generally be limited, and not so much that "resource contribution" should be mandated.

There is a reason why LW doesn't require that ALL of a user's upstream BW be at all times used for sharing, right? Because that is the domain for choice on the part of the user, not the client software.

I propose that "query hits sent" fall into the same category as "upstream BW". Basically, that "the desire of a user to be able to browse host an average node shouldn't take precedence over my desire to not allow this to happen to my node".

2) Security is a series of compromises between the useability and the protection of resources.

If I am seeking 'X level' of security, then disregarding a possible solution to this because it doesn't provide 'absolute protection' is incorrect.

If I don't want to allow an average person to type my IP address, and get a list of my shared files, then telling me that "I cannot disable this feature because it is still possible to query for a shared keyword and see the file" doesn't hold up, because i wasn't TRYING to prevent that.

3) At a competitor to LW, this option was available for a LONG time, and I never ONCE saw a user complain that they were fooled in to thinking that "Disable other nodes from Browseing my host" meant "Don't let anybody download my files". It may have happened, but if it did, it didn't happen often or cause problems in general.


Now, on to the principle of the matter.

I am treating my computer similar to how I treat my house. There are some things in my house which I am willing to share, some things I would selectively share, and some things I wouldn't reveal to an average person.

Having a network policy like "User's cannot disable Browse Host because it doesn't fully protect you from all conceivable attempts to see your files" is like the Government telling me that "You are not allowed to close your door because it doesn't stop a determined burgler from entering your house, and it is too useful to allow anyone who wants to to walk through your apartment and look around."

I find that to be a repulsive argument against this feature. Why shouldn't I have say over who goes through my stuff? I couldn't care less about whether the average strangers "experience is diminished" by not being able to wander in through my (mandated) fully open door.

Just like the average homeowner wouldn't like me to mandate how their (private) home is to be open to the general public, I don't want some arbitrary body to decide for me that "the desire of the public to walk through my house at whim" superceeds my desire to "keep my house accessable only through channels of my choosing, in general."

If I want to close (but not lock) my front door, that is completely my choice. The fact that 'someone could still break down the door' is NOT a convincing argument as to why I should be prevented from closing it in the first place.

I hope you all agree with me, if not, please post WHY!
(And, please post how your experience of 'never closing your front door to your house' has enriched your life. Lol)

Cheers!

-dave-

[Editors note: Gee Dave what did you edit?]

Last edited by gbildson; May 18th, 2005 at 03:37 PM.
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  #4 (permalink)  
Old May 18th, 2005
Disciple
 
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Quote:
Originally posted by Lord of the Rings

I also believe that your questionaire poll is rather silly the way it's been set up with limited options. Another mod may come along & adjust it. It is designed for only a highly biased outcome ... . 2 options is not enough! What about the people who totally disagree with your point of view or wording or are mixed somewhere in the middle of the extremes. You make it sound like there are spies out there. And why shouldn't people be allowed to know if someone is sharing "0".
Actually, the poll is quite correct, since the subject being considered is "does LW allow X or not allow X".

The phrasing of it may seem biased, but the limitation of options to just 2 isn't.

The question this poll addresses is simply, "should a user be able to disable the channel of 'Browse Host' as a means by which query hits are sent." Plain & simple. =-)

Note that the option for "I'll get those shared file lists anyway" doesn't really address the actual 'Not allow X' issue, which (to use the poll submitters style fo phrasing) "It doesn't prevent you from seeing my files if you try hard enough, therefore I shouldn't be allowed to prevent you from seeing them based only upon knowledge of my IP address"

-dave-

Last edited by vDave420; May 18th, 2005 at 09:43 AM.
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Old May 18th, 2005
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Quote:
Originally posted by Lord of the Rings
Well perhaps I did misread it a bit lol.
Sorry for reposting but apparently someone didn't read what I said. That post is now gone. I was so tired I stopped posting after ...until I saw the intimidatory remarks. Thank you. Sorry for my mistake ... useless comments & useless to put any form of any type of argument of any form as was pointed out to me. Logic goes out the window when you're tired. I don't pretend to be a programmer b/c I'm not. lol (My comments are not refering to you gubatron but someone here on pretense)
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Old May 18th, 2005
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I like the browse host button. I am generally looking for old music that I used to enjoy. I began by putting in titles to search and DL those, but then the people who UL from me, must have some of the same taste in music that I do, so I like to browse them. If I see something I like (and forgot to search myself!) when the DL takes too long, I just search for it by titile and then more hosts jump on the same download.

I do feel "cheated" when I can't browse I host because maybe they have things that I "forgot" to search for.

Anyway, just an opinion rather than a yes or no on a poll!

I have enjoyed my LW experience!
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Old May 18th, 2005
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All threads I can remember on this board referring to Browse Host functionality were also related to anonymity, security, and especially **AA. Average user have unfortunately a very freaky imagination how the Internet works and I fear a such option may cause more harm than good in the long term (support, publicity). Under these circumstances I'd chose the 2nd option or maybe a 3rd option: "Don't care, in the end I'll find out what you are sharing".

Anyway, to pick up gubatron's sample with the 5000 files. Have you ever tried to browse host a node with 5000 files and found something useful in a reasonable time? I've pushed this even further and experimented with a Database driven FileManager. IIRC browse host worked with up to 90.000 files (it took ages and the browsing host was technically dead and spit OOMEs) and on the server side I was able to share 600.000 files (the DB was larger than all files together ).

What I'm trying to say is that Browse Host is a poor design (for me a "don't care" feature) and in the long term it will anyway disappear and will be replaced with something more advanced. Just my 0.02
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Old May 18th, 2005
A reader, not an expert
 
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I depend on browse host for others to find my files.

Like others sharing their digital pics, I've been too lazy to rename all my pictures. Instead I rely on others knowing "dscf .jpg" will find my server, and then they can browse and download to their heart's content. So, in practical daily terms, I make major use of "browse host" to find and distribute content.

I do NOT want to leave my door open. There's a porch they are welcome to visit though

Re security, I appreciate the warning that it's obvious from the get-go that others are aware of what I am sharing. It taught me to beware of a FALSE sense of security, which may be worse.

I would MUCH rather prefer anonymous file-sharing, but that has a long way to go (unless something like BShare's protection is almost available). Until reasonably anonymous file-sharing is a realistic for the majority of file-sharers, I prefer the warning of "browse host" to the false sense of security fostered by hiding the sources in the GUI.

good discussion btw--glad this thread exists. Sure beats the flames at slyk
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Old May 18th, 2005
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I would like to see a Private shared folder though: something only invited guests can browse.
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  #10 (permalink)  
Old May 18th, 2005
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May I ask why, exactly, you felt the need to ban me?

"Intimidate a mod & he will get what he deserves."

What are you TALKING about? Certainly not my posts above? I've never spoken to you outside this thread, I believe.

You should cool down, and don't let those moderator powers go to your head!

-dave-
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