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lynx-dev priorities (was 2.8rel.2)

From: Philip Webb
Subject: lynx-dev priorities (was 2.8rel.2)
Date: Thu, 28 Jan 1999 14:34:10 -0500 (EST)

990127 Doug Kaufman wrote:
> On Wed, 27 Jan 1999, Philip Webb wrote:
>> freenet security isn't a top priority for Lynx these days,
>> but no-one wants to allow problems which can be fixed easily:
> I don't know that this is correct. Security should always be a priority.

`top priority' <> `a priority' (smile).

> There only has to be one developer willing to attempt the fix
> to make it happen.

as i said: "no-one wants to allow problems which can be fixed easily".

990127 Henry Nelson wrote:
> 990127 Philip Webb wrote:
>> freenet security isn't a top priority for Lynx these days,
> If someone should quote that without your name on it

which is what you did, for some unknown reason ...

> as coming from the developers mailing list and written
> by a coordinating developer, the repercussions could be enormous.

if someone were so irresponsible as to misattribute my comment in that way,
it would need to be corrected, but repercussions would not be enormous,
affecting only those freenet administrators who are not prepared
to contribute their own time & effort to solving freenet security problems.

re irresponsible misattributions, i myself took the trouble this month
to rebut an out-of-date accusation vs Lynx re insecurity
(from an outfit in Australia: see the Archive).

>> basically, anonymous users should be confined to a separate box
> There is absolutely no reason why shell account and captive users
> cannot be on the same physical machine.

there is the obvious reason that in the same box security lapses can have 
much more serious consequences: if one student or library user misbehaves
on a dedicated machine, all s/he does is cause temporary inconvenience
to other similarly ephemeral users & a bit of work for the administrator;
if the same person gets out into the world of shells,
s/he can do enormous damage to research files, personal information etc.
these days -- in G7 countries at least -- hardware is cheap.

> The only reason I invest anytime anymore into Lynx is the very reason
> that the  -anonymous  command line option exists and functions properly.

you are too honest!

> There are probably tens of thousands of users, that must have
> a working  -anonymous  switch to be able to access the WWW.

anonymous users are mostly on freenets at libraries or colleges
in well-heeled places like Vancouver & Phoenix,
as was shown by the response when this issue came up last year.
how many Lynx volunteers donate their time to facilitate freenets,
whose special security problems can be addressed thro' hardware & personnel
which could easily be afforded by the tax-payers of those places,
who rarely contribute to Lynx themselves?

rejoinders to you: when did you last contribute a patch
to solve a security problem presented by anonymous use of Lynx?
why have you not replied to the original query?

i try to see that users' queries all get some kind of reply,
eg the one above -- to which only LP has replied -- & the one below:

990128 Mark Crane wrote:
> we just had lynx 2.8.1 installed school-wide, at the list's suggestion.
> Thanks!  It looks great!                         ^^^^^^^^^^

from the Archive:
>     * To: Philip Webb <address@hidden>
>     * Subject: Re: lynx-dev Lynx 2.7.1 + Minuet = wacky characters
>     * From: "Mark E. Crane" <address@hidden>
>     * Date: Sun, 17 Jan 1999 07:24:14 -0500 (EST)
> I've asked IT to install the newest version,
> and I will try to install a local version myself
> On Sat, 16 Jan 1999, Philip Webb wrote:
>> 990116 Mark Crane wrote:
>>> Is there any way to configure Lynx 2.7.1 for Unix?
>> first, get the upto-date Lynx 2-8-1 from :
>> in practice, earlier versions are not supported by lynx-dev volunteers.
>> if you have problems compiling etc, ask here for advice.

SUPPORT     ___________//___,  Philip Webb : address@hidden
ELECTRIC   /] [] [] [] [] []|  Centre for Urban & Community Studies
TRANSIT    `-O----------O---'  University of Toronto

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