Curl-proxy / wget-proxy scripts in Templates so users can add GPG distro keys linked to added external repositories

And my attempt was to address both use cases. There is nothing wrong with standalone qubes or insecure templates. But we are mixing things here. Step back: TemplateVMs are OS layer where nothing untrusted should be ran and shared amongst qubes having that base trust level in mind . A user can decide for himself to clone a Template qube and install whatever he wants there. No problem. But I do not see anything wrong into users wanting to deploy a new repository (including GPG public key…) into a trusted Template if that Template being debian-11 is a conscious choice and installing Signal repository there is ok. Nothing is ran by the deb package, nothing autostarts… Fits the bill. Going into other examples will give different results. But in that use case, like many others, the user should be able to download that GPG key without having to mess around.

The idea with the wrapper script would be to warn the user that what he is doing is actually to download something in the Template. If the user learns that calling wget-proxy actually downloads (bypass) no-network policy, but the big fat warning is still there (@fsflover: an alias is just a way to call the expected binary. You could set aliases of all sorts… alias ls="ls --color" being a shitty example, where alias curl=curl-wrapper would pass the command line from curl to curl-wrapper in all cases). So having a wrapper on dangerous commands, and modulate behavior depending of environement (qubesdb-read to the rescue) would fit both needs without too much complexity…)

  • .bashrc would append the aliases
  • curl-wrapper and wget-wrapper would contain the logic to deal specifically with TemplateVM type, and deal differently if there is gateway (network) or not.
  • curl-proxy and wget-proxy would not be called automatically, but the wrappers would invite users to adapt their commands when typed in TemplateVMs to confirm their understanding of the risks.

Otherwise, I have no other idea, folks. I just know that GUI installer will have to deal with this issue as well, and that most if not all customers have problems.

And no @Sven

As said in past comments, that would work without any change when upstream instructions are doing it ok, but if the call is wget -O- blablah, the user will be confused and annoyed and will ask for help… Once again, this is why secure wrappers would fit the bill, but seeing all this reluctance makes me doubt of the approach to resolve the real problem while people seem to mix things.

Non-technical users won’t know what to do! Right? We agree on that? No. Signal not being installable is not a good solution. And going with other software alternatives flatpak/snap/standalone is not a good approach because the user never knows if there are updates. Repositories, managed upstream, are still the best solution, IMOH. And installing GPG keys should not be a burden, untrusted/trusted templates not being a debate here. Something working for all cases should be possible… and what I was trying to achieve.

Oh, wow, you’re right! I never had a reason to try it myself. I just saw the pages of posts from confused users over the years and all the replies suggesting jumping through weird hoops, so naturally I assumed there must not be a trivially easy solution like simply… giving the template network access. There is no problem after all, then.

However, I also never encountered this in the official documentation. Seems like we should at least document this on the how to install software page. I just noticed that this section is out-of-date, since it still references changing only the template’s firewall rules, which of course won’t solve anything when the template has no NetVM.

1 Like

@Insurgo, what about this solution (using Signal as an example)?

User instructions:

  1. In the template’s settings, change Networking from default (none) (current) to sys-firewall.
  2. Open a terminal in that template.
  3. Follow the Signal website’s instructions.

Much simpler, no?

I’m just trying to get a concrete sense of where any remaining disagreements lie.

1 Like

Oh, I see you already addressed this a bit above.

But what’s the point of installing the Signal repository without using it to install the Signal app? The repository by itself does nothing unless it is used for installing packages, so there is no reason for it to exist in templates in which Signal is not installed.

…and then we’re back to just installing Signal in the template the normal way.

In this case,

Should become:

  • Clone your template first
  • In the new template’s settings, change Networking from default (none) (current) to sys-firewall
  • Go to firewall rules tab, select “Limit outgoing internet connection to…”
  • Tick “Allow full access for 5 minutes”
  • Open a terminal in that template.
  • Follow the Signal website’s instructions.

Mix/match 5 minutes with instructions to deactivate Template access when done. (But keep in mind that most users won’t turn it off, and that a lot of them then report weird behaviors from their qubes based on Templates they swear having be diligent but their bash history proves otherwise).

I suppose I had too many bad experiences with customers, which would go in all directions linked to a Template that was exposed to the internet without knowing the past exposure of such template. Users do errors. They will launch firefox that is assigned by default with the template (which I remove shortcut). They will type commands in Template that was aimed to be typed in qubes afterward. My background goes in the direction of limiting what can happen by default in a Template, pushing forward prevention mechanisms and making sure users understand what they are doing, but a lot do not understand. So limiting access to internet (as a big no) while permitting to convert generally simple instuctions (given by software providers) should be permitted with easy to understand swaps in commands. While still not permitting Firefox or any other installed software to be able to access the internet. But that is what I learned in the past years. I would love those users (which a lot of them are vulnerable and need those protections) to be safe by default, while not preventing them to actually do what they want to do.

If you have any improvements to suggest to push me into doing a PoC, let me know.

2 Likes

Please allow me to leave this here for all the lost souls finding this thread in an attempt to install signal:

#!/bin/bash

min_template=debian-11-minimal
signal_template=deb-11-signal

# clone

qvm-clone $min_template $signal_template

# install networking, curl, notification daemon & nautilus

qvm-run --pass-io -u root $signal_template "apt install --no-install-recommends qubes-core-agent-passwordless-root qubes-core-agent-networking curl xfce4-notifyd nautilus qubes-core-agent-nautilus zenity -y"

# add signal key & repo

qvm-run --pass-io -u root $signal_template "curl --proxy http://127.0.0.1:8082/ -s https://updates.signal.org/desktop/apt/keys.asc | apt-key add -"
qvm-run --pass-io -u root $signal_template 'echo "deb [arch=amd64] https://updates.signal.org/desktop/apt xenial main" | tee -a /etc/apt/sources.list.d/signal-xenial.list'

# update & install signal

qvm-run --pass-io -u root $signal_template "apt update && apt full-upgrade -y && apt install --no-install-recommends signal-desktop -y && poweroff"

This will obviously also work with a debian-10, debian-10-minimal or a debian-11 template. The notification daemon is required, otherwise signal will hang the first time you get a message and the focus was away from the app. Nautilus is not required but obviously useful when handling files.

2 Likes

Yeah, I understand. This is also the rationale for limiting template access in the first place.

Well, as for the PoC, that’s really @marmarek’s call.

And here we go the path of redoing guides to install specific softwares. Sigh.

Sorry. :slight_smile: Didn’t want to upset you. In case of signal I too think that we should probably just add the repository to the debian-11 template. Not as a general solution, but recognizing that Qubes OS users are in fact highly likely to be signal users too. On the other hand this one concession would probably open the flood gates for all kinds of requests … :frowning:

Upstream instructions are not unified! Without unified solution, it means

  • Upstream should provide qubes related instructions (nope)
  • Users without clear understanding of piping, tools used (wget? what? gpg? curl? tee? what?)

The general idea behind my proposition is based on accepted trust of upstream installation instructions (not to be confounded with commands given on other sources).

And then we open the gates of the old persona problem which is to have different templates downloadable/installable at OS install to fit different use cases with those repositories/softwares already installed. I’m not against the idea. But the current proposition was aimed at lowering the bar for users just wanting to follow as cose as possible upstream instructions.

Reminder. Signal instructions could simply be:

  • follow upstream trustable instructions.
  • Open Template Terminal
  • replace wget by wget-proxy, curl by curl-proxy where written.
  • shutdown Template when installation is over.
  • Assign application to the qube that application is aimed to be used.

Users go on, says ok, ok, I can do this and then…

wget-proxy -O- https://updates.signal.org/desktop/apt/keys.asc | gpg --dearmor > signal-desktop-keyring.gpg
cat signal-desktop-keyring.gpg | sudo tee -a /usr/share/keyrings/signal-desktop-keyring.gpg > /dev/null
echo 'deb [arch=amd64 signed-by=/usr/share/keyrings/signal-desktop-keyring.gpg] https://updates.signal.org/desktop/apt xenial main' |\
  sudo tee -a /etc/apt/sources.list.d/signal-xenial.list
sudo apt update && sudo apt install signal-desktop

He waits. shutdowns the template. Assign Signal to qube. Run it and…
Wow. It just worked ™.
He loves Qubes. Doesn’t doubt of the OEM who prepared his laptop of having broke the internet… He feels confident about life. And goes back at using applications, knowing it will be updated as any other.

(while we limited the possible impact of having followed shitty instructions downloading stuff to be autoran in all used qubes by following randomly found instructions, or having access to internet for anything else then wget and curl through wrappers using the proxy).

Bonus: he can generalize the concept instead of searching for answers, and then type obscure commands that were trusted because given by @sven on a random post on the forum. Who is @Sven ? Should he be trusted? I feel we are going in the opposite direction. Don’t get me wrong, I reviewed your commands and they are fine.

But… The absolute thing we do not want is users typing randomly found commands in forums with a template having full internet access!!! :slight_smile:

The goal desired is journalists/whisleblowers not being tekksavvy being able to get home to commands translation, hand on on their shitty internet connection over tor and be able to install needed software without any complication, without opening holes in their templates, without them having to understand all the architecture, without them having to know qvm-run (that is teksavvy btw!!!) and just… seriously, just, be able to trust the open source software supply chain, understand rudiments of GPG and have just works ™ without looseing up security of their system without having to worry and trust who they should trust! You use Signal? Trust their instructions. Not a random post on the internet. That would be my ideal.

Now, the user will memorize weird process of replacing wget (what?) with wget-proxy (what? stupid Qubes, making complicated things even more complicated). Will it help security? I don’t think so. Instead, explicitly asking a user to create a dedicated non-trusted template should make them think about compartmentalization.

Indeed, it makes the cloned template less secure. But it unifies the installation experience, provides an easy onboarding to Qubes and opens a path to further secure the OS later. Remember, Qubes is a reasonably secure OS. This is how I understand it.
In my opinion, your suggestion is relevant for advanced uesrs and not for newbies. The former can already follow @Sven’s instructions (and verify them themselves), while the latter will simply be turned away by unnecessary complexity, which Qubes forces on them. Qubes is complex enough already without it.

I don’t think it’s a right place for this script, but it looks like an extremely helpful thing to me. If you could share your other scripts like this in a dedicated thread, you would help a lot of semi-advanced users, including me.

This is not necessarily true. I personally hate Signal for it’s walled-garden policy and for forcing users into Android or iOS. Please do not make a special case for it in Qubes.

3 Likes

@Sven your solution is good.
But…

Script requires to be copied over to dom0 (which needs complicated qvm-run commands from dom0 to have written copy-pasted script passed over qube to dom0), which is also not so desirable and implies running code on dom0.

This is why I reacted so much.

I am dozing out of my suggestion, really do not like the idea of giving internet access to even untrusted templates, but I agree with you: this might be to contain user errors who needs security the most, while I agree with @fsflover that wget-proxy would require from the user to convert upstream instructions everytime it fails(I liked that error/learning approach).

Where giving internet access to Template may be the easiest solution and should maybe be simply better documented in the core (@adw ) documentation, as Qubes documentation (which is the referecne for all users) was not current.
Edit: was done by @adw : awesome.

Meanwhile, I will simply deploy wget-proxy and curl-proxy to limit the flood in my support box. Ping me again if the idea of a better, upstreamed solution to deal with daily, real-users facing problems of wanting to add a trusted repository should be done in a non-duplicated, untrusted template (which duplicates network bandwith as well for updates, still today, and is not a luxury all end-users have).

@Insurgo I am not trying to be dense and I admit I haven’t read the entire thread – so ignore me if that’s over the line.

But now I have the impression what we are really talking about is to create Qubes OS specific scripts called ‘curl-proxy’ and ‘wget-proxy’ and deploy them to all templates so that we can then document somewhere:

If you see ‘curl’ or ‘wget’ in an install script, replace them with ‘curl-proxy’ and ‘wget-proxy’

… so you, I and other can in future just point to that documentation page and say “do this”.

But then, we could simply document:

In case of ‘curl’ add the ‘–proxy http://127.0.0.1:8082/’ parameter and in case of ‘wget’ add ‘-e use_proxy=yes -e http_proxy=127.0.0.1:8082’

Same effect, no changes in Qubes OS required. Alternatively we could educate users about ~/.wgetrc and
~/.curlrc and provide examples that already include the required proxy config. Yes?

In the case of Signal, Element, and other widely used applications, I plan to include the public keys in a package that is installed by default. This means that the “download the public key” step is not only unnecessary, it’s actively harmful: the copy in the OS is trustworthy, while the one downloaded might not be (if someone fooled a CA into giving them a rogue certificate, say).

More generally, I think @adw is much better than I am explaining these things than I am :slight_smile:. This post of his is right on the money.

I see your point @demi. However, I don’t think in this particular case it will help the situation. Users won’t look for how to specifically install software X in Qubes. Rather they will look for upstream instructions (e.g. from signal’s website). So they will inevitable try to run the wget command to obtain the gpg. They’ll do all sort of things in a desperate attempt to get it to work.

In your solution this requires prior knowledge of what a GPG key is and that it’s available in the keyrings. But most new users will not know that. However, for more advanced users equiped with that knowledge it will be a nice to have.

On the other hand in @Insurgo’s solution the user will type the commands and see an error indicating a clear solution (replacing wget with wget-proxy) – something which hands the solution to the user instead of waiting for them to go look for it.

1 Like

Here comes the PoC.

Config changes

/etc/profile.d/download-wrapper-aliases.sh

alias curl="curl-wrapper"
alias wget="wget-wrapper"
# sudo will not use aliases unless https://linuxhandbook.com/run-alias-as-sudo/
alias sudo="sudo "

Append the following under /etc/bash.bashrc

#/etc/profile.d scripts are not loaded in interactive non-login shells (https://linuxhandbook.com/run-alias-as-sudo/)
if [ -d /etc/profile.d ]; then
  for i in /etc/profile.d/*.sh; do
    if [ -r $i ]; then
      . $i
    fi
  done
  unset i
fi

Scripts

/usr/bin/wget-wrapper

#!/bin/env bash
# wget-wrapper script around wget
#  Goal is to give a chance to the user of knowing what is going to happen next, educate and explain what is different in Templates
#
# This wrapper script detects if the wget command was ran in a TemplateVM (Which by default is prohibited)
#   In case the Template is trusted (No Network assigned), it warns the user to call wget-proxy instead and exits
#   In case the Template has network assigned, it warns the user the template should not be trusted anymore and proceeds in 3 seconds
#   In case we are not in a template, just add a warning and proceed with original wget call
# 
#Depends on : 
# this file being deployed in OS searchable path (eg: /usr/bin)
# alias being previously defined on the system prior of running wget. 
#   To test this:
#     alias wget="wget-wrapper"
#   To permanently define the alias for a user, add the alias in ~/.bashrc


if [ "$(qubesdb-read /type)" == "TemplateVM" ]; then 
	if ! $(qubesdb-read /qubes-gateway > /dev/null 2>&1); then 
		echo "You attempted to download a file with wget in a Template without direct internet access. (no network assigned)." >&2
		echo "" >&2
		echo "The attempted downloading command was: wget $@" >&2
		echo "" >&2
		echo "You either:" >&2 
		echo " 1- need to replace wget by wget-proxy in previous attempted shell command line (Recommended)." >&2
		echo " 2- assign a Networking qube to this Template which should consequently be less trusted. (Untrusted)." >&2
		exit 1
	else
		echo "You attempted to download a file with wget in a Template WITH DIRECT INTERNET ACCESS. (network assigned)." >&2
		echo "" >&2
		echo "The attempted downloading command was: wget $@" >&2
		echo "" >&2
		echo "Continuing in 3 seconds... Type CTRL+C to prevent the download now!" >&2
		sleep 3
		/usr/bin/wget "$@"
	fi
else
	echo "wget download attempt not in TemplateVM. Continuing..." >&2
	/usr/bin/wget "$@"
fi

/usr/bin/curl-wrapper

#!/bin/env bash
# curl-wrapper script around curl
#  Goal is to give a chance to the user of knowing what is going to happen next, educate and explain what is different in Templates
#
# This wrapper script detects if the curl command was ran in a TemplateVM (Which by default is prohibited)
#   In case the Template is trusted (No Network assigned), it warns the user to call curl-proxy instead and exits
#   In case the Template has network assigned, it warns the user the template should not be trusted anymore and proceeds in 3 seconds
#   In case we are not in a template, just add a warning and proceed with original curl call
# 
#Depends on : 
# this file being deployed in OS searchable path (eg: /usr/bin)
# alias being previously defined on the system prior of running curl. 
#   To test this:
#     alias curl="curl-wrapper"
#   To permanently define the alias for a user, add the alias in ~/.bashrc


if [ "$(qubesdb-read /type)" == "TemplateVM" ]; then 
	if ! $(qubesdb-read /qubes-gateway > /dev/null 2>&1); then 
		echo "You attempted to download a file with curl in a Template without direct internet access. (no network assigned)." >&2
		echo "" >&2
		echo "The attempted downloading command was: curl $@" >&2
		echo "" >&2
		echo "You either:" >&2 
		echo " 1- need to replace curl by curl-proxy in previous attempted shell command line (Recommended)." >&2
		echo " 2- assign a Networking qube to this Template which should consequently be less trusted. (Untrusted)." >&2
		exit 1
	else
		echo "You attempted to download a file with curl in a Template WITH DIRECT INTERNET ACCESS. (network assigned)." >&2
		echo "" >&2
		echo "The attempted downloading command was: curl $@" >&2
		echo "" >&2
		echo "Continuing in 3 seconds... Type CTRL+C to prevent the download now!" >&2
		sleep 3
		/usr/bin/curl "$@"
	fi
else
	echo "curl download attempt not in TemplateVM. Continuing..." >&2
	/usr/bin/curl "$@"
fi

/usr/bin/curl-proxy

#!/bin/env bash
curl --proxy http://127.0.0.1:8082/ --tlsv1.2 --proto =https --max-time 180 $@

/usr/bin/wget-proxy

#!/bin/env bash
https_proxy=http://127.0.0.1:8082/ http_proxy=http://127.0.0.1:8082/ wget --secure-protocol=TLSv1_2 --timeout=180 "$@"

Testing instructions

  1. Clone Template
  2. Deploy scripts
  3. Apply system wide changes above related to aliases (Should probably file a bug report @marmarek ?)
  4. Reproduce results
  5. Assign network to Template. Reproduce results
  6. Create qube based on previous cloned template. Reproduce results.

No network assigned to cloned Template use case:

user@debian-11:~$ alias
alias curl='curl-wrapper'
alias ls='ls --color=auto'
alias sudo='sudo '
alias wget='wget-wrapper'

Non-Networked Template: gpg key download of signal from user

user@debian-11:~$ wget -O- https://updates.signal.org/desktop/apt/keys.asc 
You attempted to download a file with wget in a Template without direct internet access. (no network assigned).

The attempted downloading command was: wget -O- https://updates.signal.org/desktop/apt/keys.asc

You either:
 1- need to replace wget by wget-proxy in previous attempted shell command line (Recommended).
 2- assign a Networking qube to this Template which should consequently be less trusted. (Untrusted).

user@debian-11:~$ wget-proxy -O- https://updates.signal.org/desktop/apt/keys.asc | gpg --dearmor > signal-desktop-keyring.gpg
--2022-04-21 10:52:38--  https://updates.signal.org/desktop/apt/keys.asc
Connecting to 127.0.0.1:8082... connected.
Proxy request sent, awaiting response... 200 OK
Length: 3090 (3.0K) [application/pgp-signature]
Saving to: ‘STDOUT’

-                                     100%[=======================================================================>]   3.02K  18.1KB/s    in 0.2s    

2022-04-21 10:52:41 (18.1 KB/s) - written to stdout [3090/3090]

Non-Networked Template: gpg key download of session (sudo curl call per instructions) use case:

user@debian-11:~$ alias
alias curl='curl-wrapper'
alias ls='ls --color=auto'
alias sudo='sudo '
alias wget='wget-wrapper'

user@debian-11:~$ sudo curl -so /etc/apt/trusted.gpg.d/oxen.gpg https://deb.oxen.io/pub.gpg
You attempted to download a file with curl in a Template without direct internet access. (no network assigned).

The attempted downloading command was: curl /etc/apt/trusted.gpg.d/oxen.gpg https://deb.oxen.io/pub.gpg

You either:
 1- need to replace curl by curl-proxy in previous attempted shell command line (Recommended).
 2- assign a Networking qube to this Template which should consequently be less trusted. (Untrusted).

user@debian-11:~$ sudo curl-proxy -so /etc/apt/trusted.gpg.d/oxen.gpg https://deb.oxen.io/pub.gpg

user@debian-11:~$ ls -al /etc/apt/trusted.gpg.d/oxen.gpg
-rw-r--r-- 1 root root 2213 Apr 21 11:58 /etc/apt/trusted.gpg.d/oxen.gpg

Assigned network to Template use case:

Networked Template: Signal wget use case (normal user)

user@debian-11-networked:~$ wget -O- https://updates.signal.org/desktop/apt/keys.asc | gpg --dearmor > signal-desktop-keyring.gpg
You attempted to download a file with wget in a Template WITH DIRECT INTERNET ACCESS. (network assigned).

The attempted downloading command was: wget -O- https://updates.signal.org/desktop/apt/keys.asc

Continuing in 3 seconds... Type CTRL+C to prevent the download now!
--2022-04-21 12:01:23--  https://updates.signal.org/desktop/apt/keys.asc
Resolving updates.signal.org (updates.signal.org)... 172.64.155.131, 104.18.32.125, 2606:4700:4400::6812:207d, ...
Connecting to updates.signal.org (updates.signal.org)|172.64.155.131|:443... connected.
HTTP request sent, awaiting response... 200 OK
Length: 3090 (3.0K) [application/pgp-signature]
Saving to: ‘STDOUT’

-                   100%[===================>]   3.02K  --.-KB/s    in 0s      

2022-04-21 12:01:23 (13.0 MB/s) - written to stdout [3090/3090]

Networked Template: Session sudo curl use case (runs as root)

user@debian-11-networked:~$ sudo curl -so /etc/apt/trusted.gpg.d/oxen.gpg https://deb.oxen.io/pub.gpg
You attempted to download a file with curl in a Template WITH DIRECT INTERNET ACCESS. (network assigned).

The attempted downloading command was: curl -so /etc/apt/trusted.gpg.d/oxen.gpg https://deb.oxen.io/pub.gpg

Continuing in 3 seconds... Type CTRL+C to prevent the download now!

user@debian-11-networked:~$ ls -al /etc/apt/trusted.gpg.d/oxen.gpg
-rw-r--r-- 1 root root 2213 Apr 21 12:02 /etc/apt/trusted.gpg.d/oxen.gpg

curl and wget direct calls in Networked Templates

user@debian-11-networked:~$ wget
You attempted to download a file with wget in a Template WITH DIRECT INTERNET ACCESS. (network assigned).

The attempted downloading command was: wget 

Continuing in 3 seconds... Type CTRL+C to prevent the download now!
wget: missing URL
Usage: wget [OPTION]... [URL]...

Try `wget --help' for more options.

user@debian-11-networked:~$ curl
You attempted to download a file with curl in a Template WITH DIRECT INTERNET ACCESS. (network assigned).

The attempted downloading command was: curl 

Continuing in 3 seconds... Type CTRL+C to prevent the download now!
curl: try 'curl --help' or 'curl --manual' for more information

Normal Qube depending on that cloned template use case

user@wrapper-test:~$ wget
wget download attempt not in TemplateVM. Continuing...
wget: missing URL
Usage: wget [OPTION]... [URL]...

Try `wget --help' for more options.

user@wrapper-test:~$ curl
curl download attempt not in TemplateVM. Continuing...
curl: try 'curl --help' or 'curl --manual' for more information

Notes

@marmarek @adw @Sven @fsflover @Demi @deeplow : Am I making my point?
@Demi @marmarek: Fell upon two interesting bugs

  1. sudo cannot invoque aliases unless alias sudo="sudo " per How to Run an Alias With Sudo in Linux
  2. /etc/profile.d/* are ignored when using graphical shells (interactive, non-login shells: Why are scripts in /etc/profile.d/ being ignored (system-wide bash aliases)? )

This is why /etc/bash.bashrc was modified to also source /etc/profile.d/*.sh.
@marmarek @demi @fepitre : Qubes Bug/Feature?

Edit: Sorry for all the edits. I’m done now.
Edit2. I’m done for real, sorry. This is why writing documentation is so hard.

2 Likes

As you can see in my PoC

  1. Some upstream instructions (See Session example) asks the user to call curl with sudo. (wait what? sudo? curl? gpg? I just want to use session in 5 minutes, damnit. I’m already late.)
    1- sudo calls would require also the user to apply some changes on that user as well, otherwise commands will fail. And no, I do not believe having the use pass additional command line options is a good way to deal with the problem (adds more problems.)
  2. As @deeplow said, when things do not work as expected, non-teksavvy users will do extended stupid shit. True story. Sometimes to the point of having to reinstall (doing things in dom0 is the next stupid step a lot of users will do, taking snippets found on the internet…)
  3. If you add that to stress (I’m not even sure my camera will work in Signal… Damnit, already 5 minutes late to the meeting…) users even do more extended stupid shit. This is not a good time to neither ask them to find best practices or ask them to even memorize/ask them to type the proxy extensions to their wget and curl calls.
  4. This is a time to tell them what to safely do. Now. And remind them, at the same time, that if they are in a cloned Template (good, at least!) with wide internet access (meh, but better then in the main trusted Template @adw), that that Template should now be untrusted to use widely in other qubes depending on it (as the core documentation now reflects. Thanks!)

I hope that with the console output given in previous PoC post, I was able to prove my point and the pertinence of this massive UX improvement for Qubes OS (@marmata?). Of course, take it, modify it, improve it. But please consider the need and effectiveness of such solution.

Otherwise, as @deeplow said and I cannot agree more:

Missing piece:

  • tinyproxy logs should at least be kept in memory and a return on past actions should be possible to at least audit what urls were accessed by that update proxy for TemplateVMs using it.

An alternative idea to the alias: set https_proxy=http://127.0.0.1:8082 env variable. This will make curl/wget work automatically, in this terminal only. No need to change anything in upstream installation instruction then. The steps are then:

  1. Open terminal in the template
  2. Enter export https_proxy=http://127.0.0.1:8082
  3. Follow upstream instructions

The command is easy to enter wrong, but we could have an alias like enable-network-proxy. I think that’s significantly simpler than wrapping curl, wget and whatnot. And also, should allow only https traffic, but not plain http (at least in theory).

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But, if users have to enter this, how will they know they need to enter this?

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