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  #1  
Old 27th November 2012, 06:15 PM
mchauber Offline
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linuxfirefox
Skype Goes to Jail

Greetings,

Being that Skype is not available in the form of open source, I hardly trust it (and I certainly don't trust it's owners). Would like to know if it is possible to run it chrooted, as I'd rather not run it in a full-blown vm if it's not necessary.

If anyone has had any success in doing this, I'd greatly appreciate some pointers.

Thanks
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  #2  
Old 27th November 2012, 06:53 PM
secipolla Offline
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linuxfirefox
Re: Skype Goes to Jail

Hm, I really don't know about these things, but if you're concerned with what it can do with your system (and not with what they can do with the transmitted data) maybe use a selinux sandbox?

https://encrypted.google.com/search?...l=&gs_l=&pbx=1
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  #3  
Old 27th November 2012, 10:26 PM
stevea
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linuxfirefox
Re: Skype Goes to Jail

I haven't tried, but It should be possible. Like you I am suspicious, and I have (6 months ago) analyses what it is doing. It does look benign, but you never know.

It will have access to audio/pulse the network and to X11 and some config files (all possible under chroot). My bigger concern is that with access to X11 and the network alone - all manner of naughtiness is possible. If it's hacked then it could implement a keylogger even if chrooted for example. I suppose it could listen in to your office space too, but that's getting a little too paranoid.
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  #4  
Old 27th November 2012, 10:28 PM
ElderSnake Offline
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linuxchrome
Re: Skype Goes to Jail

A little too paranoid is probably a good thing in this modern digital age.
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  #5  
Old 28th November 2012, 12:16 AM
beaker_ Offline
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linuxfirefox
Re: Skype Goes to Jail

My question is then, why bother with skype when sip clients such as jitsi, ekigia, kopete (i think it'll do sip and xmpp (local)).., exist???
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  #6  
Old 28th November 2012, 06:43 AM
ElderSnake Offline
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Re: Skype Goes to Jail

Quote:
Originally Posted by beaker_ View Post
My question is then, why bother with skype when sip clients such as jitsi, ekigia, kopete (i think it'll do sip and xmpp (local)).., exist???
I agree, I suppose the main reason is simply because of friends and family who typically wont use anything else since they don't know any better/don't care. Sucks but that's the problem with proprietary, well marketed products.
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  #7  
Old 28th November 2012, 07:02 AM
mchauber Offline
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linuxfirefox
Re: Skype Goes to Hell [SOLVED]

thanks, all;

Being that Skype is now the only mystical, binary "blob" left for me to deal with, I am certainly looking for alternatives. Thanks for the suggestions. Have played with all except for jitsi, and don't really have issues with any of them specifically.

The problem with using an alternative is simple. I either have to get something that is compatible with the Skype network (yeah, right), or I have to take the long, moral road, drop it altogether and hope that friends and family get a clue. Vendor lock-in is bs.

Thank you, secipolla, for the link. I found some interesting reads, and will definitely add this to my toolbox. One of the things that I left out of the equation (thank you, stevea), is that Skype (by design) has access to screen, camera, keyboard, etc. and who knows how and when these features are accessed, (user aware or beware). So the issue is not just user limitations on file space access. Skype needs limitations on everything it touches.

That being the case, my only options are to nix Skype altogether or keep it in a VM.

bah! That's too much nonsense to deal with, and I'm not dedicating that much landscape just for a chat program. To Hell it goes!


Thanks again.
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  #8  
Old 28th November 2012, 03:27 PM
sea Offline
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Re: Skype Goes to Jail

Camera is used as skype is a video phone by design.
Keyboard as you may chat as well.
Screen as it might display the video from your chat partner.

The listing is probably due to preparations to get skype for Metro-app-market.
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  #9  
Old 28th November 2012, 06:39 PM
mchauber Offline
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linuxfirefox
Re: Skype Goes to Jail

Quote:
Originally Posted by sea View Post
Camera is used as skype is a video phone by design.
Keyboard as you may chat as well.
Screen as it might display the video from your chat partner.

The listing is probably due to preparations to get skype for Metro-app-market.
You are 100% correct. Without the access to the video, keyboard, filesystem and mic, skype wouldn't be much of a chat & voip program. The problem that I have with it is that there is no way for me to know what it does with that access. What we see in the foreground is by no means all inclusive of what could be happening in the background. Blindly assuming that a piece of software is not malicious, when it is hidden by nature of it's owners, just doesn't stand to good reason.

While I am not suggesting that Skype is some massive infusion of spyware, trojan, malware, etc., the truth of the matter is that I can not say with any kind of reasonable certainty that it is not all of the above (or even worse). That's the problem with the old software business model. You just never know what you're getting.

It's a dead horse issue for me, anyway. I'm done with Skype.

So far, Jitsi looks pretty cool. Got a bit more playing to do, though. If this works out, I might even setup my own SIP server.
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