What is PureNet?
PureNet is a peer-to-peer distributed webserver for either small intranets or global nets. Users can create and access web pages that have been created either by them or by others. Publishing a site on PureNet is as easy as copying files to a special directory.
How does it work?
The PureNet client software connects to a "Listing Server" and informs the server of what files it has- both those it is publishing and those cached from browsing. When the user requests a page in their web browser, the client software asks the Listing Server for the names of users who have that file. The client then requests and recieves the file from the users and then returns the data to the web browser for display. The file is also cached locally, so that the next user who requests it might be able to retrieve it from the first.
How does it compare to other p2p web servers like Freenet?
Freenet provides much more functionality in terms of confidentiality and fancy networking. Currently PureNet is not confidential at all- it is easy to see who has what files on their computer, and these files are not necessarily encypted. Freenet is self-organizing, whereas PureNet requires central servers (although these servers will eventually be able to synchronize).
On the other hand, PureNet should be significantly faster. Speed is a major issue in web browsing, and so PureNet could be very useful in situations where confidentiality is not a priority.
What kind of user interface does it have?
Currently PureNet doesn't have a GUI. It is completely configured using text config files. In later versions I hope to have a web-based interface for configuration and monitoring.
Copyright 2004 by Jesse Himmelstein