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APAS Anonymous Remailer Use [FAQ 6/8]: Software

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Subject: APAS Anonymous Remailer Use [FAQ 6/8]: Software

This is the sixth of eight parts of a list of frequently-asked
questions and their answers regarding anonymous remailer use.  This
part answers the question, "Which software should I use?"

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The following topics are in this FAQ:

   1: [FAQ 6.1] Do you recommend that I learn PGP (Pretty Good Privacy)?
   2: [FAQ 6.2] Which remailer client should I choose?

Subject: [FAQ 6.1] Do you recommend that I learn PGP (Pretty Good Privacy)? Yes. Absolutely. There are many excellent tutorial pages on the Web with links pointing you to the version that's right for you. A really excellent tutorial for newcomers is here <> . The latest stable version is PGP is 6.5.8 <> Thankfully there are many places to download PGP <> . Desktop Security, Personal Privacy or Freeware versions; all these are recommended although they are rather bloated (7-11 megs). Whatever version you choose, it must be capable of creating and working with RSA keys since this is what remailer software and nym server software use for the most part. Check out this excellent Web site for the lowdown on which versions support RSA keys, Diffie-Hellman keys or both. <> Earlier command line versions of PGP are very popular with remailer users. PGP 2.6.3i-win32 <> has become something of a standard for Windows users. It is small, "rock" stable and seems to "play well with others". 'An excellent companion to any remailer client. See also Tom McCune's very readable FAQ about PGP <> ; and another PGP tutorial <> ;
Subject: [FAQ 6.2] Which remailer client should I choose? Get comfortable with using PGP encryption by itself. Find a friend who uses it and exchange keys. Then, get yourself a remailer client. As for which one to choose: well... the short answer: Quicksilver or Jack B. Nymble. The long answer: I have listed a handful of remailer tools below. There are a handful of others (Anonpost, Crusader, John Doe...) I've chosen to highlight the ten programs below because they are the ones that are readily available on the Internet and free of charge. However, I would add a word of warning before trying these programs: To my knowledge there currently does not exist a remailer client that functions "out of the box". All remailer clients (especially the ones that are no longer maintained) require a certain amount of tinkering and configuring to make them work with the current crop of remailers and stats URLs. Just so you know... I highly recommend QuickSilver because it is one of the only programs out there that is actively being maintained and developed. If you've spent any amount of time in APAS you'll have seen many Quicksilver updates announced there. JBN is great too. And you'll find answers to your JBN questions simply by lurking here in APAS. For Windows: QuickSilver <> Finally, Mixmaster made easy! This free program is the newest of the remailer clients. It's a Mixmaster email client program. It can send anonymous email and post anon articles to newsgroups via Mixmaster remailer chains. QS, itself, doesn't possess any encryption capabilities. Instead, it serves as a GUI "front end" to Ulf Möller's Mixmaster 2.9beta. Recently, QS author Richard Christman has written a PGP-plugin for Quicksilver. <> So now it's not only a Mixmaster client. It's a Cypherpunk remailer client as well! Jack B. Nymble 2 <> (From the User's Manual:) "Jack B. Nymble 2 (or JBN) is a feature-rich Windows email client which facilitates the use of anonymous remailers for anonymous email and newsgroup posting. It includes ease of access and automation for beginning users, as well as sophisticated control of remailer messages for more advanced users. Support is included for PGP encrypted messages, Mixmaster messages, attachments, and MIME mail. JBN2 also includes support for nym mail and nym account reply-block creation (see #7.1-#7.4), centralized queuing and sending via SMTP, POP3 retrieval, NNTP retrieval, and automated nym mail decryption. It also includes a mini web browser used for downloading remailer reliability statistics, keys, and web pages. Support is included for PGP versions 5.5.3x and 6.x, in addition to DOS version 2.6.x. Mixmaster 2.0.4 is also fully supported." Also, excellent documentation and help files can be found at the Potatoware Homepage <> . Private Idaho <> P.I. is an email client for Windows which simplifies the creation and the sending of anonymous remailer messages. It also simplifies the creation of nym accounts and the sending/receiving and decryption of nym messages. It is available in both 16-bit and 32-bit versions. A properly installed version of PGP is required. Additionally, Mixmaster messages can also be created and sent if Mixmaster is installed on your computer. The author, Joel McNamara, no longer maintains this program and it's age is showing.Trying to make PI do what you want it to do is probably more trouble than it's worth. If you want to give it a go I would recommend the 16-bit version by Ian Lynagh <> with source code available. See also this excellent page of FAQs related to Private Idaho <> and Thanatop's tutorial on Remailers, Nyms and Private Idaho <> . Potato and Decrypt <> Potato is a freeware DOS remailer client which operates well in Windows. This software prepares anonymous messages which are then mailed using your email client. Decrypt is a mail decryption utility provided with Potato, available as a separate application. These programs are early creations of RProcess the author of both JBN and the Reliable Remailer <> - a popular remailer server for Win95/98. Mixmaster <> For DOS users there is Mixmaster v 2.0.4. For DOS/Windows users Mixmaster 2.9beta is what you want.These are the two versions that are most commonly used. Mixmaster can be used by itself as a client or as remailer. But for Windows users we suggest using one of the excellent GUI clients mentioned above in concert with Mixmaster. For Mac: Mixfit (aka Macmixmaster) <> A Mac Mixmaster Client. Like Potato this program does not mail the Mixmaster message that it has created. You must cut and paste it into your favorite email client. For more Mac encryption and security-related downloads try here <> and here <> ; For a variety of interesting email-related software including a Mac Remailer(!) called AnonAIMouS try here <> ; For Unix/Linux: Mixmaster <> Mixmaster for the Unix/Linux OS. The same executable can be used as a client or as a remailer. The remailer can be installed on any *nix account that can receive mail. Non-remailer messages will be delivered as usual. If you have root access, you may want to create a new user (e.g.,`remailer') and install Mixmaster under that user id. The iInstall script provides a simple way to set up the remailer. As a remailer Mixmaster can be configured to additionally accept and process Cypherpunk remailer messages. In fact, this is the way most remailers run today: as a hybrid of Cpunk and Mix. Premail <> Premail is an older but still useful program written by Raph Levien for use with remailers. It fully supports the creation of Cypherpunk and Mixmaster messages. Perhaps most useful is its ability to create and manage nym accounts with good security and easy commands. In addition to being a remailer client, Premail supports PGP and S/MIME for standard secured Internet e-mail. It works with mh, elm, Mutt and newer versions of Netscape. It requires Perl to be installed on your computer. The RemOp of the now defunct Septic Remailer warns: "Premail breaks when fed mail to a nym which has been signed with something other than PGP 2.6.x." See also <>. SendNym < et&dwSession=vapp03-7be21aa956ea322b&view==0> A brand new program by It takes the place of Sendmail in relation to your mail client and facilitates the use of nyms by sending simple nym commands to your mail client, allowing users to easily switch between sending through their nym or sending through their regular e-mail account. It will not create a nym for you. This must be done manually by the user before using Sendnym. It supports Usenet posting,and random chain selection (through Mixmaster.) Sendnym has been successfully tested on Linux 2.2.17 . It requires: a *nix system with Sendmail, Perl and Mixmaster installed. Also, your mail client must allow you to configure the name and location of Sendmail (e.g. Pine). Mailcrypt <> Although not a remailer client, Mailcrypt is an Emacs interface to PGP and GnuPG <> encryption with features for encrypting and decrypting email and news. See also this page <> for more anonymous remailer clients including the no-longer-maintained Anonpost, Easynym etc... ------------------------------ End of faq.6 Digest *******************

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