Announcing Ring, a distributed and secure multimedia communication platform

Savoir-faire Linux inc. and the SFLphone Development Team are very excited to announce the first public alpha release of a new voice, video and chat communication platform that requires no centralized server and leave the power of privacy in the hands of the user.
By adopting the same technology that is used by popular Torrent networks – Distributed Hash Tables (DHT) – this platform creates its own secure network over the Internet by which it can distribute directory functions, authentication and encryption across all systems connected to it – that’s why we call it Ring: http://ring.cx.

Just as SFLphone, Ring is also fully standard compliant and inter-operable with existing communication infrastructure such as most enterprise SIP phones and accounts. Some features that were part of SFLPhone-KDE are currently not available in Ring-KDE:

  • Akonadi integration is on hold until a KF5 enabled Akonadi version is released. As a workaround, using a shared vCard directory between Ring-KDE and the KDE4 version of Akonadi is possible.
  • The IAX2 protocol is not supported
  • The ZRTP encryption mechanism is no longer supported (please use TLS+SRTP)
  • Conferences, transfer and holding are known to be broken.
  • Translations are not fully re-integrated yet, this will be addressed soon

The KDE client is based upon SFLPhone-KDE and is now a KF5 application. The client now support the Ring-DHT distributed SIP communication cloud.

  • The client is now fully KF5 based
  • The Ring-DHT distributed communication cloud is now supported.
  • Better asset security awareness from top to bottom
  • The SIP negotiation code has been reworked for better standard compliance
  • Multiple dependencies including commoncpp/ucommon, ccrtp and zrtp have been replaced by LibAV
  • OpenSSL has been replaced by GnuTLS
  • The Ring daemon and LibRingClient have been ported to Windows and Mac OS X
  • An Evolution data server and a Mac OS X AddressBook contact backends has been developed for the Gnome and OS X clients respectively

snapshot10

If you wish to try this alpha version, to migrate from SFLPhone-KDE to Ring-KDE, it is recommended to re-configure each account manually. However, if you are adventurous, you can attempt to use the old configuration files directly:

$ cp ~/.config/sflphone/sflphone.yml ~/.config/ring/dring.yml
$ cp -a ~/.kde/share/apps/sflphone-client-kde/ ~/.local/share/ring-kde
$ cp ~/.kde/share/config/sflphone-client-kderc ~/.config/ring-kderc

To share vCards between Akonadi and Ring-KDE, please do:
(1) Open KAddressBook and File->New->Add Address Book
(2) Select “vCard directory”
(3) Select the “/home/your_user_name/.local/share/ring-kde/vCard” folder
(4) Press OK
It will now be possible to access and edit your contacts from KAddressBook. Again, this is a temporary workaround until a KF5 version of Akonadi is available (be it Akonadi-NG or a KD5 of Akonadi 1).

Packages are available for Kubuntu 15.04, Fedora 21 and Fedora 20:

$ sudo sh -c "echo 'deb [arch=amd64] http://nightly.apt.ring.cx/ubuntu_15.04/ ring main' >> /etc/apt/sources.list.d/ring-nightly-man.list"
$ sudo apt-get update && sudo apt-get install ring-kde
$ sudo wget http://nightly.yum.ring.cx/fedora_21/ring-nightly-man.repo -O /etc/yum.repos.d/ring-nightly-man.repo
$ sudo yum install ring-kde
$ sudo wget http://nightly.yum.ring.cx/fedora_20/ring-nightly-man.repo -O /etc/yum.repos.d/ring-nightly-man.repo
$ sudo yum install ring-kde

snapshot11

Read more:

Say Hello to Ring ― Ultimate Privacy and Control for your Voice, Video and Chat Communications
https://blog.savoirfairelinux.com/en/2015/ring-ultimate-privacy-and-control-for-your-voice-video-and-chat-communications
The Ring Project — Decoding a Decentralized and Secure Communication System
https://blog.savoirfairelinux.com/en/2015/the-ring-project-decoding-a-decentralized-and-secure-communication-system/
At the Heart of Ring: OpenDHT — A Distributed Hash Table
https://blog.savoirfairelinux.com/en/2015/ring-opendht-a-distributed-hash-table/

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9 thoughts on “Announcing Ring, a distributed and secure multimedia communication platform

  1. Pingback: 1p – Announcing Ring, a distributed and secure multimedia communication platform | Profit Goals

  2. This is very cool! I’ve been waiting for something like this.

    I’ve tried SFLPhone KDE and thought it was great, but there is so much for a alternative-communications newbie to understand and figure out, that it’s daunting, and I’ve given up several times.

    I wish there was a blog that could show me how to use this, assuming I know Skype, but want to get away from that world. A step-by-step tutorial would be great. Because I want to share this with my friends, and the acronym jungle is huge, even for me, a programmer 🙂

  3. Oops, yea, the API of a dependency broke a few days ago and the KDE patch is still not merged because it dependent on an unmerged upstream patch. It should be back tomorrow or so. Sorry about that

  4. There’s no package “ring-kde” for Kubuntu 15.04 via apt-get after adding your sources. Will this Package be back soon or do we have to use the gnome version?

  5. The KDE version is still being developped and maintained. The upstream ring devs apparently switched to a new .deb generator and didn’t port the KDE package yet. I am investigating my options. The KDE package can be compiled, but of course, this is suboptimal. I may add a new PPA or wait for them to add the KDE client to their new build system. This will hopefully be solved within a week (the switch happened 2 weeks ago, I was in vacation and didn’t notice until @Matthias Schuster commented). For now, the Gnome client is an option, but the KDE client should be back one way or another soon.

    • Hi Elv13,

      I joined the mailing list of the ring upstream devs. Sounds like they don’t have the resources to integrate the ring-kde package to their branch. Are you in touch with them? Maybe a ppa – maintained by you – would be the best solution. Would this be possible? A lot of poeple would love to see ring on KDE desktops soon :)))

    • One way or another, hoping we can get a KDE KF5 version back somehow, even if it isn’t with all of the fancy features like Akonadi integration.

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