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Software The Internet

Who is Still Using FSP? 39

orangesquid asks: "So what on earth has happened to FSP, the original 'underground filesharing' system? I know it dried up a long time ago, but most old protocols still tend to have a few odd users (gopher, finger, etc.). However, I haven't found a single FSP site out there that still works. Googling is difficult, because all of the search hits are dated 1996 or earlier, and none of them are accurate. Is FSP still around at all? What are people using it for now?"
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Who is Still Using FSP?

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  • by Alpha27 ( 211269 ) on Wednesday August 20, 2003 @05:10PM (#6749085)
    "chirp chirp"
    • by Anonymous Coward
      The last time I used FSP was way back in December '93 when David Datta @uwp.edu was begging people not to clobber his FTP server trying to get Doom.

      Poor guy. I bet he'll never forget 12/10/93.
    • You waited three minutes before commenting that no one was responding? In an article that didn't make the front page? Isn't that a little premature? REmember, most of the First-Posting Karma Whores only pay attention to stories that make the front page. More mods read them.
    • Scary! Just as I read the parent crickets started chirping as if they were cued. I've been awake too long.
  • He's dead, Jim. (Score:4, Informative)

    by FreeLinux ( 555387 ) on Wednesday August 20, 2003 @05:12PM (#6749097)
    And it's a good thing too. Contrary to what the FSP FAQ says, FTP is a better solution, especially with resume. But an even better protocol is SFTP. That's the future as P2P is about to be litigated out of existence.
    • Re:He's dead, Jim. (Score:4, Informative)

      by gl4ss ( 559668 ) on Wednesday August 20, 2003 @05:43PM (#6749313) Homepage Journal
      ..or automated process of the whole tedious process of using (s)ftp programs to find the stuff from your friends servers.

      like, some program like waste [sourceforge.net]

      the whole 'new' thing that p2p programs made was that it made it simple enough for non-geeks to share stuff(and of course making it much much faster to find people to share with).
      • Waste doesn't work unless you have a sufficiently large group of friends that have the music you're interested in. If the group is too large, then making sure its members are trustworthy becomes a difficult task.
    • Re:He's dead, Jim. (Score:3, Interesting)

      by GigsVT ( 208848 )
      The major things holding back the adoption are a lack of native anonymous SFTP capabilities, and a really shitty default SFTP client.

      I, for one, would like to see a SFTP that used something like rsync become the standard. Screw resume, who needs resume when your client can pick out any missing or corrupt parts and correct them?

      Rsync has saved me tons of time in the past. I've downloaded several hundred meg files, only to find them corrupted in transit (thanks Starband!), but if I can find someone who is
      • My former college has resorted to using DAV when they decided to disable FTP for security reasons.

        They chose to use DAV instead of FTP for security reasons? That is a riot.
      • sftp is little more than an additional layer ontop of ssh (much like scp, which is also file transfer through an ssh tunnel). It still comunicates ith ssl to to an ssh daemon.

        Since you need to have ssh set up, anyways, you could try tunneling rsync through ssh. Just "rsync -e ssh ...", and, bang, there you go: it's like "rsync mode for sftp".

        All told, though, I don't really know that this is the solution for safe file sharing, though. This is just a way to do file *transfer* well. At least as importan
      • WebDAV is a great replacement for FTP, actually. I don't see why you think otherwise.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday August 20, 2003 @05:15PM (#6749119)
    Hello? Hello? Anyone there?
    Please connect to my gopher server...
  • by josephgrossberg ( 67732 ) on Wednesday August 20, 2003 @05:15PM (#6749120) Homepage Journal
    You've probably caused a lot of people to Google, download and then use it.

    Heisenberg would be proud.
  • by Ayanami Rei ( 621112 ) <rayanami@gmai[ ]om ['l.c' in gap]> on Wednesday August 20, 2003 @05:24PM (#6749189) Journal
    The lightweight aspect is covered by a much better-known solution (datagrams and all) called TFTP.

    FTP servers have become much more tolerant, configurable, and featureful. Plus we have sftp and scp which make command-line coddling + security a reality.

    Finally, if you want to keep directories updated between sites passively or sporadically, you can always use rsync, which uses less bandwidth by virtue than FSP right off the bat.

    Where does FSP fit in? Nowhere, anymore. I don't feel nostalgic as I'd never even heard of it. ::shrugs::
    • by Nathan Ramella ( 629875 ) on Wednesday August 20, 2003 @08:42PM (#6750627) Homepage

      FSP was popular because you could setup sites in your home directory, and run the daemon without root privs.FSP at the time was "important" for the role it temporarily played. It allowed people to 'casually' serve and retrieve files without needing a lot of infrastructure.

      Back when FSP was 'hot', lots of people didn't have Linux servers laying around, or root access, or lots of bandwidth, or p2p gui tools. They had FTP which was a pain to setup in your home directory and sometimes wasn't configurable to non-priv ports, they had TFTP which didn't allow for any authentication.

      So, while you bring up some interesting points about why FSP is obviated, since you weren't around when it was 'hot', you may lack the perspective to know why it was at one point useful.

      If anything, P2P has really obviated FSP, not Rsync, SCP or SFTP.

      Rsync, SCP, and SFTP obviate FTP, but not FTP-SSL..


      Besides, who ever heard of an 'public underground rsync site' ? :)

  • old tech (Score:1, Funny)

    by joelpt ( 21056 )
  • waiting to patent it (Score:4, Interesting)

    by PapaZit ( 33585 ) on Wednesday August 20, 2003 @07:16PM (#6750128)
    My guess is that someone at Microsoft is waiting for people to forget about it so that they can re-introduce and patent the embraced, extended version for patch downloads.

    Now that you've brought it up, you've set their plans back by years, you bastard!

    Seriously, I pulled out the FSP sources that I had a while ago, and they didn't even compile cleanly. (I think they worked on SunOS 3 or so). I decided that using rsync would work almost as well with a lot less work.

    FSP has a future, but only for non-critical software transfers, and nobody's ever willing to admit that their transfer is non-critical. So, you really do need someone like an OS vendor to sneak it in behind-the-scenes. Maybe, uh, Redhat could use it for their patch transfer system.

    Sick thought: BitTorrent over FSP. After you get over the nausea, it starts to sound like an okay idea. :)
    • by sql*kitten ( 1359 ) * on Thursday August 21, 2003 @05:29AM (#6752924)
      My guess is that someone at Microsoft is waiting for people to forget about it so that they can re-introduce and patent the embraced, extended version for patch downloads.

      Microsoft already has [microsoft.com] a new technique for downloading things. It's far smarter than most other transfer methods, since it can sense in real time how much bandwidth you need interactively and adjust its speed to only use the spare capacity.
  • No need today (Score:5, Informative)

    by Krellan ( 107440 ) <krellan.krellan@com> on Wednesday August 20, 2003 @08:52PM (#6750687) Homepage Journal
    I used to use FSP. I even hacked the source to dramatically shorten the time delay it waits between sending requests for data, to get faster service :)

    There were 2 main reasons to use FSP:

    1) It used UDP, not TCP. Many monitoring/logging tools and firewalls back in the day only really had a tight control on TCP. Using UDP was a good way to slip under the wire.

    2) It deliberately kept its data rate very small. Something on the order of 2K per second. Even with a hacked client, the server simply wouldn't send data any faster than a certain cutoff point, and ignored any requests that came in faster than that. This data rate throttling was done, again, to help stay under the radar. Many sites were detected only because a huge upward spike in consumed bandwidth was noticed. Using FSP, a site could stay up for a much longer period of time before being caught and deleted.

    Nowadays, we all have great P2P applications to make good use of UDP, and bandwidth usage is usually adjustable on them, so the main reasons to use FSP have gone away. Good riddance, I say, as it was truly a terrible protocol (think of XMODEM over IP)!
  • Freshmeat Project [freshmeat.net]

    Back in the day, fsp was much better than ftp because it did not keep open connections per client, and used much less memory. This was very important when you had 100 request and only 8 meg of memory. Yes a server with 8 megs at one time was possible.
    • FSP is a UDP-based protocol for transferring files. It has many benefits over FTP, mainly for running anonymous archives. It is usable on lines with high packet loss ratio (70% WiFi), can go behind firewalls and unoticed by port scans (because of UDP), does not overload networks when hosting ISOs or movies, share files on modem lines without eating all of the bandwidth, and keeps lamers away from your site (they don't know how to get to it).
      .... /me bursts out laughing like Agent Smith in the Revolutions t
  • I used to use fsp to download stuff from my shell account to my home box, over my 24x7 dialup line.

    fsp had very little effect on my other uses of the line, so I could have it downloading while I'm doing other stuff and not even notice. Other forms of file transfer would send my ping times up to about one second.

    Alas, I finally got rid of it when I got my cable modem. I considered keeping it around, but it just wasn't needed.

    Looks like I still have my log file around!

    % tail -2 ~/tmp/fsp/l

HELP!!!! I'm being held prisoner in /usr/games/lib!