A New Direction

For 2019, we are looking to get a network running using bmx7 on devices running OpenWRT. Layer 3 meshing may be done using Yggdrasil, but getting the physical mesh up is top priority!

For more information, check out the updated State of the Network page, or come chat with us via Matrix at #phillymesh:phillymesh.net!


Yggdrasil Public Nodes & Services

In support of the Yggdrasil project, an experimental IPv6 network, several Philly Mesh nodes are now operating as Yggdrasil peers, listed here.

Additionally, the peer at 200:8993:bb44:e1f3:bde7:6234:3f3e:fdd1 supports DNS resolution of traditional TLDs, as well as OpenNIC TLDs.


SKS Keyserver Offline

A little housekeeping. Due to hardware limitations of the server and concerns about the SKS software/protocol, the Philly Mesh keyserver will be offline until further notice.


Please Sign the Philly Mesh GPG Key!

Now that we have erected an SKS keyserver, I invite everyone to sign the Philly Mesh GPG key to help verify our identity. There are many GPG/PGP applications out there, but below I will provide steps for the gpg utility available on many POSIX systems (Linux, Darwin, etc.). Ideally, with enough signatures, the Philly Mesh key has a higher probability of entering the Web of Trust strong set, the largest collection of strongly-connected gpg keys.

Receive the Philly Mesh Key

Before you can sign the Philly Mesh key, you will need to download it to your system via a keyserver. Here is an example using the SKS server pool:

$ gpg --keyserver pool.sks-keyservers.net --recv-keys 0x8f5b291d3a3ca65a
gpg: requesting key 3A3CA65A from hkp server pool.sks-keyservers.net
gpg: no ultimately trusted keys found
gpg: Total number processed: 1
gpg:               imported: 1

Now, you should be able to list the Philly Mesh key in your public keyring. Make sure that the key has not been revoked and is not expired:

$ gpg --list-keys 0x8f5b291d3a3ca65a
pub   4096R/3A3CA65A 2017-11-25 [expires: 2027-11-23]
uid                  Philly Mesh <phillymesh@protonmail.ch>
uid                  Philly Mesh <hello@phillymesh.net>
uid                  Mike Dank <mike@phillymesh.net>
sub   4096R/1744B74A 2017-11-25 [expires: 2027-11-23]

Bootstrapping Trust

Before you sign the Philly Mesh key, you want to make sure that it is actually owned by Philly Mesh. For some people, this is as easy as asking me online somewhere or in person. For others, you might want to check the verifications for Philly Mesh on Keybase which shows that this key has been verified by the phillymesh.net domain. For those who want some instant verification that this key is associated with the domain phillymesh.net, you can query against a DNS record on the domain which holds the key’s fingerprint.

First, let’s see the fingerprint for the key you have just received:

$ gpg --fingerprint 0x8f5b291d3a3ca65a
pub   4096R/3A3CA65A 2017-11-25 [expires: 2027-11-23]
      Key fingerprint = C58B 0431 C815 F315 7310  0959 8F5B 291D 3A3C A65A
uid                  Philly Mesh <phillymesh@protonmail.ch>
uid                  Philly Mesh <hello@phillymesh.net>
uid                  Mike Dank <mike@phillymesh.net>
sub   4096R/1744B74A 2017-11-25 [expires: 2027-11-23]

Now, let’s query against fingerprint.phillymesh.net, which pulls a live TXT record set up on the domain housing the trusted fingerprint:

$ dig +short -t txt fingerprint.phillymesh.net
"C58B 0431 C815 F315 7310  0959 8F5B 291D 3A3C A65A"

The fingerprint from the gpg --fingerprint command should match the result from the dig command. If it doesn’t match, don’t trust the key. Someone may be in control of the phillymesh.net domain and try to get you to trust their false key.

Sign the Key

Now, you are ready to sign the Philly Mesh key. At this point, we assume that you have already created a key of your own. While receiving the key in the initial section above, we also assume you have made sure the key has not expired or been revoked.

Sign the Philly Mesh key with your own key, following the prompts as they come up. At the time of this writing there are 3 uids (email addresses) associated with this key (listed below in the command output). They can each safely be signed:

$ gpg --sign-key 0x8f5b291d3a3ca65a
gpg: checking the trustdb
gpg: 3 marginal(s) needed, 1 complete(s) needed, PGP trust model
gpg: depth: 0  valid:   1  signed:   0  trust: 0-, 0q, 0n, 0m, 0f, 1u
gpg: next trustdb check due at 2027-11-23
pub  4096R/3A3CA65A  created: 2017-11-25  expires: 2027-11-23  usage: SC
                     trust: ultimate      validity: ultimate
sub  4096R/1744B74A  created: 2017-11-25  expires: 2027-11-23  usage: E
[ultimate] (1). Philly Mesh <phillymesh@protonmail.ch>
[ultimate] (2)  Philly Mesh <hello@phillymesh.net>
[ultimate] (3)  Mike Dank <mike@phillymesh.net>

Really sign all user IDs? (y/N) y

After signing, send the key back to the keyserver so the signature is recorded:

$ gpg --keyserver pool.sks-keyservers.net --send-key 0x8f5b291d3a3ca65a
gpg: sending key 3A3CA65A to hkp server pool.sks-keyservers.net

That’s all it takes! Your signature will now be recorded and the record will update across all keyservers in the SKS pool. You can check that your signature has been recorded here (it might take a few minutes to populate).

The Philly Mesh key has been signed by 0x1619ae4d7cf2a8f7.


Torrent Tracker Now Online

I’ve gone ahead and set up a BitTorrent tracker that only faces the Hyperboria network. This tracker runs the opensource OpenTracker software written by Dirk Engling, compiled with IPv6 support. It is available via either udp or tcp (udp preferred, as it is less resource intensive):


You can add this tracker to any torrent you create to distribute over the Hyperboria network. No peers outside of Hyperboria will be able to contact this tracker or send/receive any torrent data.


Philly Mesh OpenPGP SKS Keyserver Now Online

Hey all,

After a trial run of setting up a keyserver over the summer, I am now making the Philly Mesh OpenPGP Keyserver public for all to use.

The keyserver currently runs SKS, and is ideal for uploading or downloading gpg/pgp keys. A great feature of SKS is that it has what are known as “gossip peers.” Gossip peers help with the transmission of keys uploaded on each node by sending them to all other nodes they gossip with. This creates a web that allows all nodes to communicate and transfer keys through one another. Ultimately, if a key is uploaded to one node, it will end up on all of the others in the network.

The Philly Mesh keyserver, available at gpg.phillymesh.net, is now part of several official server pools run by sks-keyservers.net. If you currently use the gpg utiliy, you may already be accessing it!

Of course, you can always use gpg.phillymesh.net specifically instead of via a server pool. The server has unencrypted HKP available on ports 80 and 11371, and encrypted HKPS available on ports 443 and 11372.

Additionally, this keyserver is available with HKP access over Hyperboria at the address h.gpg.phillymesh.net, and over the Tor network at the address phillygoh7mkcb44.onion. HKPS is not necessary over these networks as they are already end-to-end encrypted.

Here are some examples of how to access the keyserver:

# Clearnet access over HKP (IPv4/IPv6)
$  gpg --keyserver gpg.phillymesh.net --recv-keys 3A3CA65A

# Clearnet access over encrypted HKPS (IPv4/IPv6)
# Note, you may need gnupg-curl, not just gnupg
# Do: sudo apt-get install gnupg-curl
$  gpg --keyserver 'hkps://gpg.phillymesh.net' --recv-keys 3A3CA65A

# Hyperboria access over HKP
$  gpg --keyserver h.gpg.phillymesh.net --recv-keys 3A3CA65A

# Tor access over HKP
$  gpg --keyserver phillygoh7mkcb44.onion --recv-keys 3A3CA65A

Installing Yggdrasil – A Toy Implementation of an Encrypted IPv6 Network

2018-08-29 Update – This tutorial is now very out of date. The Yggdrasil team now maintains great installation guides here.

At Philly Mesh, we like to play around with pieces of technology that aren’t directly related to our core software stack. One such piece of software is Yggdrasil, an encrypted IPv6 networking implementation developed by Arceliar. Yggdrasil borrows many ideas from cjdns, but was primarily written to test a new routing scheme developed by Arceliar. While it is not production-ready software, Yggdrasil is an interesting foray into encrypted networking and fun to experiment with.

For this installation guide, we assume a Debian Stretch (or similar) Linux system with a non-root, sudo user.

First, we need to make sure we have a recent version of go. We can check our version using the following command:

$ go --version
go version go1.9.2 linux/amd64

Yggdrasil is built with Go 1.9. At the time of writing, Debian Stretch only comes with Go 1.3. If you need to install a more recent version of Go, you can do so manually. Below is an example installing Go 1.9.2 for the amd64 architecture using a download link from https://golang.org/dl/:

$ sudo apt-get remove golang
$ cd /usr/local
$ sudo wget https://redirector.gvt1.com/edgedl/go/go1.9.2.linux-amd64.tar.gz
$ sudo tar -xzf go1.9.2.linux-amd64.tar.gz
$ sudo ln -s /usr/local/go/bin/go /usr/local/bin/go

Now we will set up some environment variables to use Go:

$ mkdir ~/go
$ export GOROOT=/usr/local/go

Now we are ready to install Yggdrasil:

$ cd ~
$ git clone https://github.com/Arceliar/yggdrasil-go.git
$ cd yggdrasil-go/
$ ./build

If all goes well, Yggdrasil will have built successfully with no errors. Now we are ready to generate a config file:

$ ./yggdrasil --genconf > conf.json

The config file is pretty basic and allows for some customization:

$ cat conf.json
  "Listen": "[::]:0",
  "Peers": [],
  "BoxPub": "46d18cbcfa0d510fcd226f323efe279525c50eb15db925d4879ee675b99b0724",
  "BoxPriv": "727213ecb3caf601ee49596fa77469674bed177f10d8607ee76ec1f35e942310",
  "SigPub": "08565493e805e905dbcc22cdaa7e60bd6cb6fc1df21d1b807b46f6285f8b86fd",
  "SigPriv": "4173f91e08ab2b6f7c5ae96cf9d61f7ac30b36be7a5eff298e00e0d08f6f5c9608565493e805e905dbcc22cdaa7e60bd6cb6fc1df21d1b807b46f6285f8b86fd",
  "Multicast": true

If you want Yggdrasil to listen on a static port, you can change the Listen attribute to use an IP and/or port of your choosing like "". You can add entries to the Peers attribute by listing them as strings (IP:PORT) in the array (comma-separated). The Multicast attribute is currently set to true</code, but you could set this to false if you didn't want to auto-peer for some reason.

Here is a sample config that listens on port 1234 on all interfaces and connects to a peer at

cat conf.json
  "Listen": "[::]:1234",
  "Peers": [""],
  "BoxPub": "46d18cbcfa0d510fcd226f323efe279525c50eb15db925d4879ee675b99b0724",
  "BoxPriv": "727213ecb3caf601ee49596fa77469674bed177f10d8607ee76ec1f35e942310",
  "SigPub": "08565493e805e905dbcc22cdaa7e60bd6cb6fc1df21d1b807b46f6285f8b86fd",
  "SigPriv": "4173f91e08ab2b6f7c5ae96cf9d61f7ac30b36be7a5eff298e00e0d08f6f5c9608565493e805e905dbcc22cdaa7e60bd6cb6fc1df21d1b807b46f6285f8b86fd",
  "Multicast": true

Now, we can start Yggdrasil in the background:

sudo ./yggdrasil --useconf < conf.json &

You should now have a tun interface up for your Yggdrasil node:

$ ip a 
43: tun1: <POINTOPOINT,MULTICAST,NOARP,UP,LOWER_UP> mtu 1280 qdisc pfifo_fast state UNKNOWN group default qlen 500
    inet6 fd00:4645:d147:7c16:98f2:20ea:d0ba:7174/8 scope global
       valid_lft forever preferred_lft forever

Now, you can ping other Yggdrasil nodes on the network:

$ ping6 -c4 fd1f:dd73:7cdb:773b:a924:7ec0:800b:221e
PING fd1f:dd73:7cdb:773b:a924:7ec0:800b:221e(fd1f:dd73:7cdb:773b:a924:7ec0:800b:221e) 56 data bytes
64 bytes from fd1f:dd73:7cdb:773b:a924:7ec0:800b:221e: icmp_seq=1 ttl=64 time=14.4 ms
64 bytes from fd1f:dd73:7cdb:773b:a924:7ec0:800b:221e: icmp_seq=2 ttl=64 time=12.6 ms
64 bytes from fd1f:dd73:7cdb:773b:a924:7ec0:800b:221e: icmp_seq=3 ttl=64 time=15.1 ms
64 bytes from fd1f:dd73:7cdb:773b:a924:7ec0:800b:221e: icmp_seq=4 ttl=64 time=12.9 ms

--- fd1f:dd73:7cdb:773b:a924:7ec0:800b:221e ping statistics ---
4 packets transmitted, 4 received, 0% packet loss, time 3004ms
rtt min/avg/max/mdev = 12.673/13.783/15.105/1.017 ms

Further documentation for Yggdrasil is available here, and a whitepaper draft is available here.


GPG and ProtonMail

Philly Mesh now has a public GPG key that you can use for any email correspondence you would like (it is completely optional to use). Using GPG ensures that Philly Mesh will be the only entity that can read any email you send. The 4096-bit GPG key has been uploaded to the MIT Public Key Server, and can be checked here, where you will also be able to see that it was signed by me personally. Additionally, you can also see the key over on Keybase.

Philly Mesh now also has a ProtonMail email address at for any sensitive matters that you do not believe can be discussed through any other email provider. The address for this account is at phillymesh@protonmail.ch.

In our ever-changing world, you never know who or what may be reading.

For easy access, the GPG key is pasted below!

Version: SKS 1.1.6
Comment: Hostname: pgp.mit.edu


State of the Network Page Now Live

Hey all,

I’ve created a State of the Network page to summarize what we are doing and how we are doing it. I hope that this is a good compliment to the About page as well as the Get Involved page, though there may be some overlap for the time being.

We have received a lot of interest in Philly Mesh this week, and I hope this new page helps provide more information to newcomers.

As always, come chat with us if you have any questions or want to say hi!


OpenNIC DNS Server Now Online

I’ve recently configured a public DNS server in Amsterdam that resolves domains within the OpenNIC root, as well as the traditional ICANN registry. This means you can resolve domains using free OpenNIC TLDs (such as .geek, .null, and .pirate) as well as all of your old favorites (you know, those sites on .com, .net, and all the others).

My DNS server is available on the clearnet via IPv4 (at and IPv6 (at 2a03:b0c0:0:1010::1a7:c001) on port 53. Additionally, you can also access the server via Hyperboria with the address fc16:b44c:2bf9:467:8098:51c6:5849:7b4f, also on port 53.

I have also added DNSCrypt support on port 5353 for all of the addresses above, which allows for authentication between client and server using cryptographic signatures. To connect using DNSCrypt, you will have to install the client and authenticate with the DNSCrypt-Name2.dnscrypt-cert.opennic.peer3.famicoman.phillymesh.net, and the DNSCrypt-KeyB88F:4860:5517:3696:A3D2:BFE0:ECC7:6175:198F:E012:E101:B4FE:869C:1E9C:4C35:E74F.

I perform no logging on the server, so you don’t have to worry about your queries being cached!

Feel free to try it out, or check the health of the server here.