Project Maelstrom: The Internet We Build Next

An invite-only Alpha to help build the distributed web.

It started with a simple question. What if more of the web worked the way BitTorrent does?

Project Maelstrom begins to answer that question with our first public release of a web browser that can power a new way for web content to be published, accessed and consumed. Truly an Internet powered by people, one that lowers barriers and denies gatekeepers their grip on our future.

If we are successful, we believe this project has the potential to help address some of the most vexing problems facing the Internet today. How can we keep the Internet open? How can we keep access to the Internet neutral? How can we better ensure our private data is not misused by large companies? How can we help the Internet scale efficiently for content?

The power of distributed technology that underpins BitTorrent and all of our products has long been an example in this regard and bringing more of this power to the web is only natural as these challenges loom.

Please join us in this project, become a fractional owner of this new Internet and help us shape the future of our network.

Related Reading:

Appeals Court Strikes Down FCC’s Net Neutrality Rules (Wall Street Journal) Coverage of Verizon’s lawsuit to strike down incumbent Net Neutrality guidelines in January 2014.

The Cliff and the Slope by Susan Crawford (Medium). An analysis of Measurement Labs’ report detailing consumer harm (traffic discrimination) by ISPs during Netflix negotiations in 2014.

How BitTorrent Change the Rules of the Internet by Drake Baer (FastCompany). The story of uTP, which helped solve the first Net Neutrality problem for the ISPs.

Net Neutrality: We Need a Better Deal OpEd from Eric Klinker

BitTorrent’s 10th Anniversary & The Internet We Build Next by Eric Klinker

Written by: Eric Klinker

Eric Klinker, BitTorrent's Chief Executive Officer, brings close to two decades of experience as a technologist and an innovator.

 Related Posts:
  • simon

    What about privacy? If i understand it correctly one can assume that a peer seeding the file has visited the same. So it will be possible to look up all people who visited the site via listing the peers?

  • mellamokb

    Isn’t this just another take on Tor?

    • Marko

      Bit Torrent and Tor are using different ways of accessing data on the web. Tor provides you with communication techniques and protocols that ensures you privacy and anonymity while browsing the web. It does so by directing your communication route through various of points, or relays. Each relay acts as a separate layer in communication between you and other endpoint (the content you are accessing) and each layer has algorithms for encrypting/decrypting the transferred data. In short words: it conceals your identity completely. Other than that, Tor access the content on web in the usual manner – content you are accessing is located on some server and you are accessing that server only.

      With Bit Torrent, the story is a little different. It has no way of masking your identity on the web, and thus the first difference between the two. Second, Bit Torrent access the content in totally different way. Here, the content you are accessing is split into many chunks and it’s spread on many different machines. To access it, you need to collect all those chunks and re-assemble it on your machine – all which is done by Bit Torrent Client, such is uTorrent.

      The main goal of this project, as I figured it, is to decentralize the hosting of the content on the web, so that each user connected on the internet becomes hosting provider for some part of it. Imagine having chunks of Facebook and Google on your PC. Of course, you wouldn’t be able to read anything from those chunks, as they alone would be like torn pieces of some paper – completely useless on their own. But, in order to access those web sites, you’ll need to get those chunks located on your machine and tie them together with other chunks located on some other machines connected on the internet (maybe some of them are located on your friend’s computer). In this way, there would be no single machine that would contain that content – it would be distributed all over the World.

      Good idea, by my opinion.

      • patelmr3

        The advantage of hosting server is that they run 24×7 to provide services. When all our PCs become servers with chunks of data hosted on them there’ll be no liability at all!

        • Rob Velasquez

          Thanks for the feedback — Project Maelstrom team member here.

          We’ve always believed in a web powered by people and think that for transferring a lot of content that currently exists on the web, BitTorrent is a better protocol.

          • Laxman Niroula

            Dear Rob I am Academic researcher for the P2P web browsing. I found Project Maelstrom interesting to me is it possible to get some more information about this project. I am planing to use as academic research.. Thank you for your support.

      • Mateus Almeida

        I remember vaguely about a similar project from the late 90’s. The goal was exactly that: storing the “internet data” on the hds of each user, in a inaccessible chunk (for the pc owner). Obviously, never took off. Too ambitious then. Sounds ambitious even now. But who knows? I’m really curious about what they can get of this.

        • Rob Velasquez

          Thanks for bringing this up — Project Maelstrom team member here.

          We’re not asking our users to store the entire ecosystem on their computer. It’s definitely an ambitious project, but we think it’s worth the effort.

        • jdrch

          @kaotisch:disqus You may be thinking of freenet?

          • Mateus Almeida

            Sorry, I don’t remember that project’s name. It was really a long time ago. I just knew about its existence because an old brazilian computer magazine mentioned it at that time.

      • Rob Velasquez

        Thanks sharing this — Project Maelstrom team member here.

        Your right about the differences from Tor. We’re not focused on anonymity the same way that they are, we’ve always been a P2P company and we’re just expanding upon that idea with this project. We believe that BitTorrent is a better protocol for a lot of content that currently exists on the web and we’re trying to make using it in that way more straight forward.

        • handjob

          не нужно

        • Phill Sheldon

          Where do you draw the line between anonymity and privacy? When i hide my ip am i using my right for privacy or would you say by being anonymous i have no rights (since there is no way to prove my place of residence and as such, no way to tell if the law is applicable)?

      • jdrch

        @disqus_CGDzTvEYwt:disqus Well said. While Tor is about anonymizing users, BitTorrent is about making content resistant to/resilient against takedown actions.

  • @ Disqus

    Very disappointed that this new project is not supporting Linux out of the gate. What does that say about privacy and personal security right from the start?!

    • Rob Velasquez

      Thanks for the feedback — Project Maelstrom team member here.

      We really wanted to get Linux support added by our first Private Alpha, but it just didn’t work out that way. We understand the importance of supporting it and are working towards it.

      • Roman2K

        I like the concept, very interesting and noble initiative. However, if I understand correctly, you’re building yet another browser, a.k.a. reinventing the wheel. Including page rendering and whatever surrounds the network layer; which is not warranted by your cause. I’d rather you architected Maelstrom as a local HTTP proxy which any browser (including Linux compatible ones, in this case) can connect to and take advantage of both the P2P nature and the hard work from dedicated browser developers.

        • Aaron Ogle

          Agreed. Just run a local socks proxy and let everyone forward their traffic through it. Much like the way tor allows.

        • sizeXLundies

          I don’t see the problem with reinventing the wheel if the wheel has turned into an annoying shit covered wheel like all of the browser’s today. The wheel has become square and I am waiting for a functional wheel and am hoping all of the lovelies at bitTorrent give me what I want. Project Wheel…I mean Maelstrom.

          • Roman2K

            Haha! You actually made me laugh 🙂 Not that I disagree. It’s just that I tend to lean more toward a UNIX philosophy where each component should do one thing and do it well. So my point is to decouple the UI from this new decentralized transport. If today’s browsers could be improved / overhauled, why not (good luck though), but prefer modularity over building one big monolithic mammoth to enable flexibility whenever possible, which is the case here.

          • Vince

            This will require mass adoption, unless it’s coupled with a UI that simply won’t happen.

        • Lanza

          Using Chromium isn’t exactly “reinventing the wheel”. Maelstrom is basically Chromium + bittorent protocol. Although your comment make sense from a technical point of view, you skip the social issue : almost nobody will ever install a http proxy. Almost nobody even know what a proxy is. A browser is way more appealing.

          • Roman2K

            I see what you mean. I didn’t know they forked Chromium at the time of this article. I thouht they would just re-use a rendering engine and build a new UI around it. Of course people wouldn’t want to install a proxy separate from the browser. I was thinking of a browser extension that would include the proxy, hide away all the technical details, and be OS-agnostic by definition.

          • sunk818

            Look at zeronet. Runs a proxy, written in Python, and actually works on chrome. It seems to be what project maelstrom wants to be but zeronet is actually being developed, updated, and enhanced every day.

          • Dark Shroud

            I just found this discussion looking for p2p web and more importantly p2p video streaming options. It’s shocking that no one has built an extension for this yet.

            Zeronet, IPFS, & a few small projects seem to be the only things close to what we were looking for.

          • sunk818

            I guess I’m confused why Maelstrom just can’t run as a Chrome/Chromium extension. Maelstrom seems to allow the recognitions of bittorrent:// and magnet:// as a URI. Within the extension, you include all the Bittorrent protocol settings. What am I missing here? Why does it have to be bundled with a web browser?

          • Low Eel

            Just about you don’t know what a proxy is, then “nobody” knows? Bah.

        • Ajedi32

          Maybe instead of a whole browser they should just implement an HTTP server that runs on your computer that any existing browser can use to access Maelstrom. Seems like a much better approach…

      • Bruno Maximo e Melo

        FreeBSD or any BSD too, please. BSD is academic and powerful for web servers, I think we (FreeBSD) can help you :D.

      • Atwas911

        YOU don’t need to support linux.. All you need to be is opensource.. Linux will support itself. You can’t claim to be doing anything for “freedom” yet masking the code in secrecy. This project either goes opensource for community review and support or its dead out of the gate. We already have closed source operating systems that we’re (expected) to trust when in reality they’ve been infiltrated and used to turn our own systems into weapons against us.. We’ve all had enough of things like that. Its either opensource or there is no reason to trust you or your software.

      • Samantha Chu

        Your project will be a complete and utter failure.

    • MustBeSaid

      It doesn’t say anything. You start where you can make the biggest impact. What does security have to do with choosing to go on Windows first?

  • Peter Keogh

    Class stuff!

  • Brad Laue

    Not open source? Private beta? How does this foster the kind of trust inherent in the current web?

    As it is, the open source browsers of today are being short circuited by a litany of differing agendas.

    Am I to allow a program to receive untrusted instructions with no recourse at all? How is that progress?

    • Rob Velasquez

      Thanks for the feedback — Project Maelstrom team member here.

      The BitTorrent protocol remains open. Project Maelstrom is an implementation of the protocol that is being optimized for web content. Because we care so much about this project, we wanted to keep the initial group of testers small so that we could focus on their feedback.

      • alexvoda

        We have seen how closed source for testers worked out for Sync. To put this simply: Source or GTFO.

        • Atwas911

          Agree’d. We can no longer “trust” software developers. Either the source is released or its to be considered malware, another tool to turn our own systems against us.

          • sunk818

            Explain how open source is better? Explain how OpenSSL that is open source failed to protect us due to bleeding heart attack.

          • Atwas911

            Heatbleed was an exploit.. It was not a “Feature” built into OpenSSL. The fact that openssl was open source meant once the bug was discovered, there were countless people looking for a solution to fix/patch the exploit… Had openssl been closed source.. First reaction would have been to deny responsibility.. Then claim it was because of something else, then emergency calls for shareholder meetings.. Then the PR people.. Exploits in closed source application hardly ever get fixed.. They just get denied until the point there is no other possible way to to continue to deny it.. How do you even prove it? Having the source to a closed source application in order to prove a bug in the code is a crime.. Decompile it and post your findings? You’d be sued into poverty. Publish details without proof? you’d be slammed with legal teams..

            You can not trust closed source developers.

          • sunk818

            I think your understanding of how exploits are patched is overly skewed based on whether code is open source or closed. It has more to do with how a company operates and available resources to fix bugs.

          • Roman2K

            No offense but I’m not sure you understand Atwas911’s point: it’s all about transparency. Of course there’s a chance the company’s closed source app is free of exploits, and maybe they communicate openly about flaws and fix them quickly with honesty and humility. Maybe not. Very unlikely, in fact. That’s the point: closed source means we don’t have a clue if we can trust them. If you’re fine with letting your personal info flow through a black box on the off chance the company that made it is straight, go ahead. People who have learned from past events know better and expect the source for code review and installs from unadulterated source.

          • Atwas911

            Very well said.

          • Tom

            Atwas911 you ignore the fact that the vast majority of software users have no ability (nor interest) in reading source code. On top of that no one is going to read the source code from start to finish on every release so your Open Source everything idea fails there. Being an open source developer myself I agree with your general point but seriously dude, do some coding before you post anymore of this trash. Look at obfuscation competitions to see how easy it is to write code that looks like it does one thing while doing another.

          • Andrew

            And how do you verify how a “company” operates? Just like uTorrent added in a Bitcoin miner in later updates we can’t just assume the first release of something is going to remain morally justified. Action speaks louder then words and in this case the apps source code is there action at heart… but as it is now we only have there word. Sorry but thats not good enough.

          • sunk818

            Yes, actions speak louder than words. Nothing stops you from running wireshark or process monitor on any application you use. I don’t agree with the malware bundling either… Ask toolbar was okay, bitcoin miner went too far.

          • Michael Miles

            No kidding. Torrents went from worldwide ban to being adopted by all the communications companies to serve up their media. it is simply the most efficient method of sending media.
            You must ask why they are adopting the technology.
            Is is just another rip off so that they do not have to spent huge bucks on development of transmission protocols or are they intercepting the data and embedding code into the stream.
            Pics, movies, music the works can have viruses in them now. Speaking of viruses.
            Where do the come from. People still believe that some kid is sitting in his room with a computer inventing very sophisticated software to attack a server or whatever.
            Why, I think that it would be in the interest of Virus detection software companies to remain in business and invent these viruses themselves.

            As far as source code being introduced to the public how can we be absolutely sure that executable object is not changed through transmission. On the fly it can be decoded, changed, re-coded and given a fake MD5 hash value to simulate no change in the exe while being transmitted.
            Every time Windows starts a exe it lifts it off the drive, places it into memory and executes it. Then when it closes it is saved back to disk. In the time it takes to lift it off the drive it can be changed. just like a virus would change it then executed and re-saved back to disk again with a fake MD5 so the system is none the wiser.

            It is said that Linux unix style OS is 100% immune to virus attack or are they. they simply are not.
            It is just that virus developers are writing for the most widely used OS, Windows. I don’t blame them. Ownership of file properties were easy to overcome. They are getting mush better now due to UAC. Shut down UAC and it’s a free for all again. As Unix type OS’s are now being used more and more we shall see exploits coming up for them. Again the virus detection companies are the ones coming up with the most dangerous type of viruses.
            this new Ransom ware is a PITA. I really don’t know why the police are not all over these writers. Its because it is mainstream corporations doing. I took off Picture files from an infected lap[top and placed them on a usb flash drive. Scanned it with Eset and nothing showed. I backed it up to my system. I redid the laptop and went to put back pictures. To my horror and then laughing in disbelief the entire system was encrypted. they wanted 500 buck to de-crypt these files. This is a crime. It is called extortion and is a federal offense. I called the police. They laughed and told me not to pay. That’s it no other action at all
            I wiped out 6 Tera bytes of media and system files and redid my system. The only option available.

            I hope that the developers of all the software companies come up with a revolt against having their work modified by the actual owners of said software.
            I somehow think having a job is more important to them than moral standards.

            If you think you are safe….. Think again

          • Tom

            It also went over two years in constantly updated open source code WITHOUT being noticed by anyone.

      • Andrew

        Just because the “protocol” is open doesn’t mean your implementation is nor does it mean you didn’t slap some NSA backdoor in that implementation either. There is no way i’m installing that software on my computer unless I know its only accessing files it claims to be.

        • sunk818

          If you’re so paranoid, run Process Monitor on the application and see what files it works with. What’s with the paranoia? Smoking too many joints?

          • Atwas911

            Did you happen to miss the Snowden Leaks? ALL of the major tech firms have been conspiring against the public in accordance with groups of criminals that have infiltrated and taken control of government agencies… People are paranoid because they have good reason to be.. For years people have been saying it.. and have been being dismissed as being crazy.. Now the truth comes out.. and you what? You still deny it?

          • sunk818

            If you’re referring to PRISM, you’d have to explain how making a software open source will prevent log tracking or any other aggregated data collection. How are you not able to sniff network activity using wireshark or other tools where traffic originates from Maelstrom? You make some decent points, but your conspiracy theories make all your arguments less effective.

          • Atwas911

            You discredit conspiracy theories.. even when they are true? Even when they are admitted into public record?

          • sunk818

            I don’t deny that PRISM occurred. My question to you is how making Maelstrom’s code public will help your end goal. Yes, the code can be reviewed at the cost of competitive edge by keeping the code private. There’s nothing to stop you from monitoring the activity of any application on your computer. You also don’t prevent logging on the ISP or provider level by using only open source applications.

          • Michael Miles

            It is the hardware itself in computers that are laced with spy technology. The software can be clean as a whistle from spy tech but it will not matter as the hardware is the one spying on you.
            i am not saying that there is no spy technology in Microsoft products because there is. Apple is no better. Linux used to be free from that type of software but who knows now.
            Every router , WiFi, bluetooth device is coded with routing channels to NSA.
            I know for a fact that Win 95 was to hit the shelves with inverse pixel code to use the display as a spy tool. the V chip is another such device.

            believe me if you can dream it up the NSA has it.
            the one I am very curios about is sonar from cell phones creating 3d maps in real time.
            Movies sometimes have little plots built in to get the public accustomed to such ideas.
            Every aspect of our lives is planned from the get go by our traitorous governments.

            Use Google as your search engine. The NSA is in your system.
            A small company like that does not get super big overnight unless they sold out and acquired big, big funds to spy on USA, Canada and the rest of all the nations public.
            Within 1 year they went from one office to the mega giant they are now.. can’t say that about Yahoo or any other such search engine.
            When the big companies offer free email eg; hotmail, outlook, gmail you have to ask yourself why.
            Are they just being nice. I think not. They are spying on you

          • sunk818

            Google got big because of their superior search engine r&d along with the Adwords revenue that came with it. Stop your paranoid nonsense.

          • Andrew

            The process monitor (aka task manager) on Windows doesn’t let you view the files being read (what a waste of time regardless as things can kick off other tasks), furthermore if the source code that gets installed on my computer was open anyone could verify it before use and no one need worry or wonder further. Being skeptical of software under the name of “freedom” is smart and critical as we move forward, NOT paranoia.

            Security through absurdity is no security at all. The problem with data collection is not that it happens but rather how it happens. If data collected was anonymous and open to everyone globally there would be no issue or question about its use, in fact it would be very useful in science projects but giving a small group access to info that is unverifiable is stupid on the part of the user and is only promoting bad behavior in the system at large. Communication and being open about something is how issues get solved (science would not work otherwise) NOT starting techo/info wars like countries do now. They are using outdated forms of thinking and need to catch up. Its hard for Christians and Muslims to emotionally get over the error of there ways just as it is with war / power control freaks to get over theirs.

          • sunk818

            I’m referring to Process Monitor by Sysinternals.

          • Vessesh Hebbar

            There are some of us here who really care about privacy and stuff. The US Govt has clearly shown to what extents it is willing to go to to gather information from the individual. Ever read the book ‘1984’ by George Orwell? I hope that if you read the book you will be able to comprehend the danger of unceasing surveillance. When we cannot even trust Google, how on earth will we know the intentions of the developer if he does not release the source?

          • sunk818

            I understand your point about “privacy and stuff”, but it is a weak connection between Project Maelstrom not being open source and US Govt. Open Source in itself is not a guarantee that you will have “privacy and stuff”. I think those points have been covered in other comments.

          • Gabriel González

            Open Source allows you not only to have a look to the code, but to modify and build your own version of it for the platform / system you want, contribute to the community with improvements and be truthful of what it says it is.

      • Samantha Chu

        Brad made some good points and you simply diverted them by talking your nonsense. I’m a very senior software engineer, try to say the same to me 🙂 and see how far that bs gets you. Maelstrom will be a failure of catastrophic proportions. Just kidding, it’ll fail right out of the gate.

    • Strawberry

      Come on.. alwas the same garbage “If it is not Open source, so it is crap”!

      Take a look at Firefox guys, they have been once a proud Open Source dev team, now they are only servants of the industry and big money and filling their browser with crap while removing useful features.

      So, Open Source can be damn crappy too. It is not the business model of a software which decides about trusting it or not, it is how the developer team acts towards their users. Do they talk to them? Do they listen to them?

      Mozilla does not. Now take a look to Slimjet and Vivaldi developers.. both closed source porojects, the Developers listen.

      And now tell me again that only Open Source is the good thing!

  • Martin Hall

    An interesting idea but how would I be able to trust this P2P browser with my passwords? It seems like it would be easily hacked to steal them.

    • Rob Velasquez

      Thanks for the feedback — Project Maelstrom team member here.

      We take security seriously and as we continue to open this project up to more users we’ll be sure to address all issues and concerns about private data such as passwords.

  • beBoss

    Are you using chrone core? Looks like chrome, so what security…

  • Сёма Мрачный

    why is it not a browser plugin?

  • Hoser

    Now bake bitcoin architecture in and ya really might be getting somewhere. Until the trusted 3rd party disappears we I’ll continue to have the NSA etc listing in.

    • Phill Sheldon

      Bitcoin architecture has proven to not work for privacy.

  • Mauricio Giordano

    How the synchronization will work? Only the static files will be distributed as P2P?

  • Guest

    I love the principles behind BT technology, but if the core code remains closed and proprietary how can we really truly trust it?

    When it comes to software, technology and the Net, openness MUST begin with open source software. Sure this removes your ability to monetize, but you can raise capital in plenty of different ways.

    Look at BTSync for example, most of the features I have come to rely on will become premium with version 2.0, whereas ownCloud remains free and open.

    The other issue is that of trust. With open source code we don’t have to trust the company creating it, we can inspect it or recompile it ourselves. But with the BT protocol we have to trust that BT hasn’t created a backdoor for government agencies…for example.

    • Atwas911

      Not only that they’ve “backdoored” it.. but are also as a matter of law ordered not to disclose that it’s backdoored. Look how long all the major tech firms (Google, MS, Apple etc) were all lying to us about the NSA programs. They would still be lying if it wasn’t for the leaks. YOU CAN NOT TRUST ANYTHING CLOSED SOURCE!

  • CountGlueGoo

    This has some parallels to the MAIDSAFE network. Can you talk about how your technology is different and if it is compatible with what MAIDSAFE is already doing? I would hope that radical decentralization technologies could interconnect for maximum redundancy of the 2nd and 3rd internet.

  • rwkaru

    can’t imagine the possibilities…..way to go, bittorrent!

  • Dustin

    So if a site is hosted across many different computers, what happens when the site owner issues an update or content changes? Would it then have to send the update to all the computers hosting a piece of the code? And does anyone browsing the internet almost get an outdated version? – I mean, the web is constantly changing so all the browsers would have to constantly push and pull from the original sites

    • sunk818

      Read up on BEP39. This allows you to include an update URL in the torrent. If that torrent exists, the current torrent will be replaced with the updated torrent. For example, your torrent has s01e01 only. In that torrent, you point to the s01e02 torrent that has both e01 and e02. As long as you have an update URL in each torrent, the newer torrents with new content can be downloaded.

  • Francesco

    Is this only a distributed Content Delivery Network for static files or do you plan to distribute also the compute and DB part of a web site?

  • Jack3rror

    Clearly a fork of ethereum
    , without currency on top of it

  • M. de k.

    This project concerns me, I think it is a good idea though, but I am really worried about the security and privacy risk it brings with it, If I understand correctly a lot of data will be send through the bit torrent protocol. So wouldn’t there be an increased risk for MITM attacks. Wouldn’t it be possible to target a specific IP address, and Hijack their Sessions?

  • Rob Wijhenke

    Another disappointed signed up geek here. Without Linux support I can’t do any testing or development…

    • Ryan Morris

      Virtual machine?

    • Arseniy Fokin

      Maybe wine?

  • Suzamax

    So cool, but, what about PHP or Node.js based websites? They need server-side applications, and that’s not LAMP or REPL on every computer.

    Possible solution: Full integration of LAMP and other modules like Node on the browser. The only problem is that we’ll have a 1GB-sized web browser that consumes more than 2GB of RAM. Resources… chomp-chomp. Perhaps am I wrong and you had discovered a magical solution. Node.js-tracker or PHP interpreter?

    • Sean

      Are you kidding me with your possible solution?? That was a joke right? *crossing fingers*

      No serious online business is ever going to open up it’s website to let 3rd parties access their database directly, have source code to parse their webpages, and let those others re-distribute across a network spoofing as if it came from them.

      I believe that Project Maelstrom is trying to solve problem of improving static content being distributed across the internet. Dynamic content (HTML/JS produced by PHP/Node.js/Python/etc) will always have to come from the original content producer otherwise it would be stale data.

      • Nathan Reu’l Ngassam

        No I can be solve. I think every body can have a small php interpreter and share compil can be used to solve the problem of ressources.

      • Daniel Alexandre

        I think maybe all data for the dynamic pages could be encrypted and only end users would be able to access it. There must be a way…

  • Andrew

    Correct me if i’m wrong, but how can we trust security in a product thats not open source? You could have tons of data collection or backdoors all under the name of “freedom”.

    • Atwas911

      You can’t.

    • sunk818

      You can run a network sniffer such as Wireshark or Process Monitor by Sysinternals to see what any process is up to on your computer. If data is being collected, it has to be phoned home at some point. That is regardless of an application being open source or closed.

      • Andrew

        No thanks. Not worth the time as it could change at any point… not going to test every build. This project is a great concept but its implementation is a no go for me and many others. Long term the world is just going to have to change.

        • Tom

          Sorry but are you going to read the source code from start to finish every time you install an update? No.. good point _b

          • sunk818

            With GitHub you only need to read what has changed since the last build… although I don’t understand the code most times.

          • Tom

            Fair point, had not considered this actually which is kinda dumb since I do this all the time with git ;p Regardless there is still a point where you have to read the initial source code back to front when the project initially gets off the ground (assuming an existing codebase pre-github). You could do this by commit but it would just result in reading every commit anyway. Also it is extremely hard to know effects a small change in one file can have on the software as a whole when all you have is the change to that one file and none of the context around how its used. To get the context you are once again back to reading a LOT of source code depending on what application it is.

            Secondly you might think it’s impossible for say.. the rendering engine in a browser to have an exploitable bug, thereby ignoring any commits made to the rendering engine. In my opinion the vast majority of people who blow the open source evangelist horn eg Atwas911 do not have the skill to actually do what they claim open source allows (not targetting, just an example, he might be a very skilled programmer).

          • Andrew

            As sunk818 said, you only need to read the change log. Also I probably wouldn’t need to as many others who enjoy that application type would. Also you miss the point. Its not a “secure” code base unless it can be verified to be as such… stop making excuses for something so elementary. The answer to your basic question is all over the internet.

          • Tom

            So you would rather trust a random person on the internet to read the source code for you and diligently report and fix any bugs/security flaws? No code base is secure, ever, you just think it is. Blackhats are always one step ahead or we wouldnt have a problem in the first place. Additionally keep in mind that open source goes both ways, I can FIND security flaws in open source MUCH easier and EXPLOIT them without telling anyone about the problem. eg Heartbleed. No need to decompile binaries/vulnerability scan possible targets when I already have the source code 😉

          • Andrew

            Umm i’m just going to say ‘no’ as your argument has been killed a million times over by others who have these discussions and actually care to continue them. Maybe you’ve read some, idk and really I don’t care as your opinion doesn’t matter anymore. You’re logic is fallacious.

          • Tom

            In the interest of furthering my education then, please provide some links to refute my fallacious logic.

          • Tom

            Ah nevermind, just read through your past comments and noticed you have no interest in sources, but quite an interest in sweeping statements. Guess we’ll leave it here then.

          • Andrew

            In 3 words and as a real world example: “Linux” vs “Windows”.
            Linux the “Open Source” OS and software stack runs most of the web today.. why? Because its more “secure” then the closed source alternatives. Linux is designed around security, Windows is not. If there is a flaw in Linux’s security, guess what, we can fix it. If there is one in Windows, you can’t. You would be wrong to think people and companies don’t care about this.

          • Tom

            Uh.. like the Shellshock vulnerabilities in bash which went from 1989 until 2014 without being noticed?

            A simple Google for Apache Market Share refutes your claim that it runs most of the web and IIS is catching up quickly, “In the same period, Apache’s market share fell by 0.18 percent,
            despite gaining an additional 4.3 million sites. Microsoft is now just
            4.1 percentage points behind Apache, which, as the most popular Web
            server software on the Internet, now powers about 37.6 percent of all sites” So apache doesnt even power close to half the web. If you delve into any of the links under this google search you will notice that Apache tends to have higher numbers of sites with lower traffic where IIS sits in the lower numbers of sites with higher traffic. nGinx also has a massive market share and is open source like Apache. So overall yes, open source powers the web. But would that be case if the vast majority of us wern’t making hobby style sites in our own time? I certainly don’t want to spend a couple of hundred dollars to setup my stack, and that’s where I turn to Apache. All the work I have done professionally for web development has used IIS.

            Please don’t think I am in anyway against open source, I agree with most of your points. In saying this however, I never bother to read the source code and go with the same mindset as you “Someone else will find and fix it”. The problem I have is you are putting the same faith in open source developers that you claim makes closed source non-viable for security. Quite often closed source developers have legal and financial obligations to their customers to resolve these issues (again I realize a lot of companies have a poor track record with this)

            Monitors like wireshark or SysInternals process monitor can tell you EVERYTHING an application does and if you really really don’t wanna run a monitor grab an isolation environment and run any dodgy software in there… At the end of the day unless its financial you don’t have a lot to lose.

            On top of all of this the browser is just the mediator, you cannot stop logging at the ISP/DNS/Cable level so no matter how open source your software is the Five Eyes still gets a copy of everything you send over the net. Who needs to worry about backdoors at that point? (Aside from backdoors in encryption algorithms)

          • Andrew

            I think I understand your perspective more but monitors like Wireshark or SysInternals cannot tell you everything. If that was true then the Apple iOS, OSX and Windows Phone 8 stores apps wouldn’t need sandboxing and permissions as the testers could “see” if the app was doing what it claims to. In reality a program could randomly send and read personal data after you have used the software for long periods of time and you “think” its safe. If the desktop OS’s ran software in a sandbox like WinRT, OSX, iOS and Android a big part of these security risks to your computer would go away when it came to installing software like this as they couldn’t install viruses or adware randomly in the future.

            I don’t have faith that open source software is fully trust worthy without consideration. I do however believe that if a group of people are willing to be open with there product they usually are much less likely to implement NSA spyware in the future ect as the person who made the commit to the source code is accountable and recorded for all to see and reference. Its also the only way to support a single implementation instead of having others hack together buggy versions that just cause fragmentation which in turn makes things less secure. Hardware this is another story as we don’t yet have Star Trek replicators.

            Close sourced developers can also be blacked mailed by governments to add in back door and have obligations there. If income is needed to support the development of a product in our monetary systems I can understand that but this is not the way. One way is Kickstarter, after that i’m not sure but someone probably has a clever idea. Also for this reason, open source hardware is needed.

            With Linux you do have the source code to write a patch.. not sure what you mean? Its GPL, Diable2 is not so thats not a valid argument.

            You can stop ISP from monitoring your traffic even with simple HTTPS, just not the root address name. This was one reason China attached GitHub just a little while ago as they can’t monitor what sub address Chinese people are looking at on GitHub and thus have a hard time blocking it without blocking all of GitHub which is totally impractical when working with others globally.

            I’m not against data collection if it was anonymous and the data was globally available to everyone to make use of. This would allow people to focus on fixing issues that are now visible in the data rather then targeting individuals or selling data to a few as that helps nothing in the long run.

          • Samantha Chu

            Clearly you’re not a software engineer Tom! Shut up and go back to being the mindless drone that you are.

          • Tao J

            It is not that you as an individual read the source code every update, but the fact that it is open is a proof of goodwill from the developers, and if there is some nasty bug, most probably one of the million users will notice it and publicly show where the flaw is. Get it? It is about statistics, probabilities. No matter how big the source code, if you show it to a monster of million heads, surely more than one of those heads will notice any weird or not acceptable behavior. If detecting spyware or what you may call it was so difficult and tedious as you might imply, why would all the companies that are tricking us bother to go through the trouble of having their code technically and legally as closed source? Because it only takes a minimal amount of users to detect a flaw before the news goes viral. Just crunch the numbers. Even a half percent of probability of detection among millions of users becomes a sure detection. Even with most people not being IT savvy, with open source it only takes a rumor that something fishy is happening before any coder here and ther will dig into the source and even already with a hint of what to look for…capici?

          • Tom

            And which part of your SURE DETECTION helped with shellshock or heartbleed? Granted it was fixed quickly, but shellshock went from 1989 to 2014 BEFORE it was noticed by the LINUX maintainers. As Linux is pretty much the holy grail of open source you would of thought it would be noticed much earlier. Perhaps you should read the comments after this one, which directly address all your points.

            You also blatantly ignore the fact that if I crunch the numbers, using probability, there is also a chance of no one noticing is and no one fixing it, no matter how small. How do you turn half a percent of maybe into 100% certainty?

            I also contest that “any coder here” is capable of working in every programming language in existence, and therefore has the skills to work on ANY open source project as the drop of a hat. When heartbleed was announced, did you go to OpenSSL source right away and contribute?

  • rsh007


  • Vuden Graham

    cant wait to test it out. I hope this new torrent based web protocol gets implemented in the other browsers as well.

  • Luis Carlos

    bela novidade estou louco para testar


    The API’s ‘ll save the world !

  • CreationBuzz

    I can’t wait to see where this leads!

  • ricaesmit

    This project will support web applications to be distributed? I mean, how will the server-side application and the database gonna be distributed? I have some ideas on how that might be possible. For the server-side application I imagine something like a compiled python plugin that handles the requests, and for the database a new ODBMS that handle each data as a file and works like DNS servers and/or magnet links.

  • Michael Harker

    How can I get my site up and running on this to see how it handles? Would love to be involved.

  • Ryan Morris

    So where can I find documentation about this project?

  • Ryan Morris

    So would my local store of visited sites simple grow as I visit more sites?

    • sunk818

      There’s a cache setting. The default is currently 5GB. They recommend up to 10GB. Any more they said could cause performance issues. When you reach the cache limit, your old content is removed to make room for new content.

  • nofish

    If every website is a torrent file, then how do you handle site changes? Is it distributed automatically? Can I access the site using same DHT url?

    • sunk818

      Torrent requires an Update URL that points to a new torrent. If it exists, the new torrent will be downloaded.

  • Shaughn Dolcy

    Color me intrigued, but Linux support is a must for distributed computing.

  • Igor Carlier

    This is another deepweb platform … if you make the owner of the site anonymous and everything heavily encrypted …
    my question is , how much did NSA payed you to keep them involved ?

  • Luiz Paulo Kenny


  • Hugh Briss

    With no details, we can only assume that this will be a browser with integrated torrent support, which is a useless waste of time. Please provide actual details on what this vaporware hopes to accomplish.

  • Bruno Maximo e Melo

    Make a BSD version like BTSync has, please or open the source for anyone can use it. 😀

  • SaschaNaz

    Still not getting any invitation. Sad…

  • The Zlatan

    Any ETA on this?

  • Badr Bellaj

    it seems very cool idea. Did you use the blockchain? is there any reward on using this browser ?

  • Sebastian Vega

    support to Linux!!!. Regards

  • Manuel

    If this is a distributed CDN… why not make a http proxy that internaly works with bittorrent instead of a full browser? This will work with all apps and not only in your browser.

  • M Babcock

    Given the pre-beta status, are you targeting primarily web launch points like search engine homepages (and the like) and other high volume sites?

    If not, how do you plan to solve for the random and somewhat ADHD-inhibited browsing behavior of casual web users? Such usage patterns are guaranteed to cause connection and transfer thread fragmentation. Web browsers have long been faced with the challenge of connection management but this seems to be especially troubling given the connection heavy nature of the torrent protocol.

  • Ross Bille

    Doesn’t the technology for this already exist in today’s browsers

  • OurAnonGuardian

    Hey, we signed up. How long will it take for us to get an invite?

  • Vincenzo Romano

    I fear your project is going to bump against a technology wall.

    First. P2P relies on trackers which are servers whose known IP addresses are stored in files distributed by servers.
    Even if only for a part of the communication process, servers are centralization means.

    Second. More and more end-user traffic is going mobile over cellular networks. This means no incoming traffic or connections.
    Then we’d need relays whos IP addresses need to be known before establishing any communication.
    Again, I need to download a file with a list of known relays and a relay can hardly be an end-user terminal if he’s on a mobile network.

    There is also a third point, but it’s just a side effect from the previous. Mobile IP traffic is subjected to frequent change in the IP address.
    This is the way the GGSN/SAE works with sessions.

    In the end, in order to find my communication partner, at the IP level, I need a directory on some sort of centrakl server(s).
    Then, once I have found her, I need to establish a true bidirectional communication.
    Both parties need to keep the data up to date on the directory.

    Problems and challenges are rather big, in my opinion.

    Just like the prize for overcoming them.

  • BooBoo65


    Probably not the newest version, but it works, however the main listing site went down in the evening. Hope it will be back up tomorrow.

  • Igor Ganapolsky

    I participated in Maelstrom evaluation. I did the survey, and was promised a $50 Amex gift card. Never got one though!

  • rootint

    I love the idea. But there are some issues I can’t figure out with this. Perhaps someone could explain to me.. What happes when a website publishes an update? How is this updated on all the seeders?

    • sunk818

      The new BETA gives you a way to update with a new torrent. Search on BEP39 on how the process will actually work.

  • William Holeksa

    Hell Yeah ! 😀

  • William Holeksa

    Hell Yeah ! 🙂

  • David Black

    Where can you go to get information about hosting a site on this network?

  • Joe

    Doesn’t install on my machine just silently crashes (win7 64). I don’t even want to troubleshoot it at this point. I’ll wait.

  • Atwas911

    closed source = malware

  • John Foster

    Great job so far, now Open Source it and it might become a serious contender for ‘the Internet we build next.’ Until that happens, no chance.

  • marcube

    il y a -t-il un blog en français?

  • Animal Penseur

    Hello. Thanks for this project.
    – I would like to know… Why include Chrome Web Store ? Why is Google by default search engine ?
    Is Google not the enemy ? 😉
    – The search engines are : yahoo, google and bing. Can you purpose others (privacy killer less) ?
    – You send data to bittorrent (checkbox on by default)… can you ask the question for this (i.e. at the installation) ?

  • big dick bro

    closed source? no thanks. at least not until your NSA backdoor has been leaked so i can know i’m being raped instead of 99% suspect it.

  • ljt

    Looking at Maelstrom just shortly, a remark came just into my mind. Most essentially it’s about the clientel’s favourite browsers. Using Maelstrom as BTSync is used, i.e. open pages for a defined group, Chromium-Maelstrom is feasible. But, publishing pages for everyone, Maelstrom should support any browser, i.e. should be barrier-free for usage.

  • Strawberry

    Oh welll.. Another Chromium based browser which only will be different with how webpages can be accessed…

    Guys.. instead of all that crappy simplicity infested browsers, how about making something customizable like Firefox or Opera was?

    The only Chromium based browser i love is Vivaldi… Because it IS different… Does not add alibi features but instead useful features for power users.

    Make something like that or stop wasting our time with wannabe useful browsers which feature only more of the ugly simplicity and minimalism garbage!


  • hotus94

    Good browser with nice features but why it is not startting any download of files loade from magnet????

  • hotus94

    I actually found bug that when i dl something from magnets it starts about 10-20min after adding and every time when it starts it starts from e.g. 9mb/s and goes down to 0 in few sec of downloading the file 🙁

  • Kyle

    I just read all the comments (that’s a lie: maybe a third of them).
    And I just wanted to let you know that I full support this initiative! I realize everyone is screaming about privacy, but what you’re offering (privacy wise) is baseline with the other major browsers. Privacy is not what you’re trying to solve from what I can tell: You’re trying to solve the localized-hosting problem that leaves websites open to attack/take-downs.

    So as far as I’m concerned, you’re solving the issue that you promised you’d solve perfectly! I’ll be an avid user once this is released. People are demanding their dream browser without realizing that you made no-such promises to be “more-secure” than other browsers (just to keep our data away from big-companies: which you’re not a big company).

    Calm down people, fight that fight somewhere else, this is not what it’s about right now.

  • ginogun

    For some reason my Maelstrom browser stopped loading magnet links. Tried closing it down, force stopping it and clearing all kinds of data. Still behaves weird and it is in fact weird since I could read magnet links literally 15 mins ago.

  • Erick Soares Figueiredo

    How I’m find magnetic links in the browser? It has some sort of “Google”? I’m really interested in seeing a Youtube equivalent to “torrent sites.” And The Pirate Bay and Wikileaks has an obligation to make their sites in this model.

  • Chaos

    Thanks for stealing my idea!!! No, srsly, thx, it’s not as if I kin code these things myself, and as long as it’s open source I’m happy.

  • Ricardo Vendramini

    Without a *.deb pachage I can’t test it.

  • Goel Biju


    Scrolling needs to be added fully in the torrent setting tab in the settings page in Maelstrom as currently I cannot scroll down fully to see all the options.

  • SuperTidosho

    I don’t join anything related to BitTorrent Inc. Everything they touch turns to adware riddled, bitcoin mining junk. uTorrent, anyone? Get stuffed, stop trying to control the web.

    Your idea has already been done. Torch is a Chromium browser with torrent client. And as for the distributed bit, what happens when there’s no seeders for the Internet? Torrents are crap when there’s leechers all round, and most of the morons use uTorrent.

    Avoid BitTorrent Inc like some avoid Nestle.

  • Mike Daesa

    can u on some website live cummunity cam switch between bittorrent protocol or chrome engine

    the camera not working
    one famous worked other chat not

  • Ruben Remus

    Closed source means intent to capitalize. There is no other point to hide your work than to hide it from competitors.
    I would be very afraid to invest my safety or trust anyone who felt a need to hide their operation.

    The idea, though.. creating a browser who is everyone is a great idea.

  • Fearless

    Interessante… espero que o projeto siga em frente. Com certeza irei aderir.
    Interesting … I hope that the project go ahead. Surely I will join.

  • Gabriels Game Series

    Maelstrom is having problems with the YouTube website if you guys don’t already know but today it just acts weird with the website. I hope it is helpful but I can do what ever you need me to do to help you diagnose the reason of the problem. I love the idea and concept. Keep up the good work guys 🙂

  • Tejón de la Sabána

    If you look for photos of beautiful women, i ould say that such like ‘task’, results to be ‘really imposible’, tbecause he only thing you find through torrent (because there isn’t really available a paying option, to get photos of women) is the same filthy pornografic ugly ‘she-male’ crap full of disease. Literally, the whole interned is infected by the same filthy pornografic disease, and it’s really imposible to find ‘something clean and beautifull’, because till now, maybe i have seen like 10 millon of photos through torrent, to find women photos i may like, but, i have to say that “it is really imposible to get what i want”: my impresion is that all torrents, somehow is controlled “trough back-doors” by the eshtablishment , the eshtablishment wants us to ‘pornify’ with disease and filthyness for several reasons.
    The fact is that all photos are previously_’consciously’ selected she-males, or ‘woman-like males’, or ‘man in womans body’.
    Roughly considered: if you allready have seen one single torrent site, in fact, you “have seen them all’, to say that, the hundreds of torrent_sites, in fact offer the same filthy pornographic ‘shemale-crap’. My frustratión and anger has no limits. Simply there is NO content available on the internet in cuestion of photos of beautiful classy woman, wether in beautiful clothes or simply posing naked. Imposible to get.