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In the sprawling, neon-lit city of the internet, where every step is watched and every corner monitored, there exists a secret path, a magical cloak that grants you invisibility. This isn’t the plot of a sci-fi novel; it’s the reality offered by Lokinet, your digital cloak of invisibility, paired with Oxen, the currency of the shadows. Together, they form an unparalleled duo, allowing you to wander the digital world unseen, exploring its vastness while keeping your privacy intact.

Lokinet: Your Digital Cloak of Invisibility

Imagine slipping on a cloak that makes you invisible. As you walk through the city, you can see everyone, but no one can see you. Lokinet does exactly this but in the digital world. It’s like a secret network of tunnels beneath the bustling streets of the internet, where you can move freely without leaving a trace. Want to check out a new online marketplace, join a discussion, or simply browse without being tracked? Lokinet makes all this possible, ensuring your online journey remains private and secure.

Oxen: The Currency of the Secret World

But what about when you want to buy something from a hidden boutique or access a special service in this secret world? That’s where Oxen comes in, the special currency designed for privacy. Using Oxen is like exchanging cash in a dimly lit alley; the transaction is quick, silent, and leaves no trace. Whether you’re buying a unique digital artifact or paying for a secure message service, Oxen ensures your financial transactions are as invisible as your digital wanderings.

Together, Creating a World of Privacy

Lokinet and Oxen work together to create a sanctuary in the digital realm, a place where privacy is the highest law of the land. With Lokinet’s invisible pathways and Oxen’s untraceable transactions, you’re equipped to explore, interact, and transact on your terms, free from the watchful eyes of the digital city’s overseers.

This invisible journey through Lokinet, with Oxen in your pocket, isn’t just about avoiding being seen, it’s about reclaiming your freedom in a world where privacy is increasingly precious. It’s a statement, a choice to move through the digital city unnoticed, to explore its mysteries, and to engage with others while keeping your privacy cloak firmly in place. Welcome to the future of digital exploration, where your journey is yours alone, shielded from prying eyes by the magic of Lokinet and the anonymity of Oxen.

What is Oxen?

Oxen, on the other hand, is like exclusive, secret currency for this hidden world. It’s digital money that prioritizes your privacy above all else. When you use Oxen to pay for something, it’s like handing over cash in a dark alley where no one can see the transaction. No one knows who paid or how much was paid, keeping your financial activities private and secure.

Oxen is a privacy-centric cryptocurrency that forms the economic foundation of the Lokinet ecosystem. It’s designed from the ground up to provide anonymity and security for its users, leveraging advanced cryptographic techniques to ensure that transactions within the network remain confidential and untraceable. For a deeper technical understanding, let’s dissect the components and functionalities that make Oxen a standout privacy coin.

Cryptographic Foundations
    • Ring Signatures: Oxen employs ring signatures to anonymize transactions. This cryptographic technique allows a transaction to be signed by any member of a group of users, without revealing which member actually signed it. In the context of Oxen, this means that when you make a transaction, it’s computationally infeasible to determine which of the inputs was the actual spender, thereby ensuring the sender’s anonymity.
    • Stealth Addresses: Each transaction to a recipient uses a one-time address generated using the recipient’s public keys. This ensures that transactions cannot be linked to the recipient’s published address, enhancing privacy by preventing external observers from tracing transactions back to the recipient’s wallet.
    • Ring Confidential Transactions (RingCT): Oxen integrates Ring Confidential Transactions to hide the amount of Oxen transferred in any given transaction. By obfuscating transaction amounts, RingCT further enhances the privacy of financial activities on the network, preventing outside parties from determining the value transferred.
Integration with the Service Node Network

Oxen’s blockchain is secured and maintained by a network of service nodes, which are essentially servers operated by community members who have staked a significant amount of Oxen as collateral. This staking mechanism serves several purposes:

    • Incentivization: Service nodes are rewarded with Oxen for their role in maintaining the network, processing transactions, and supporting the privacy features of Lokinet. This creates a self-sustaining economy that incentivizes network participation and reliability.
    • Decentralization: The requirement for service node operators to stake Oxen decentralizes control over the network, as no single entity can dominate transaction processing or governance decisions. This model promotes a robust and censorship-resistant infrastructure.
    • Governance: Service node operators have a say in the governance of the Oxen network, including decisions on software updates and the direction of the project. This participatory governance model ensures that the network evolves in a way that aligns with the interests of its users and operators.
Privacy by Design

Oxen’s architecture is meticulously designed to prioritize user privacy. Unlike many digital currencies that focus on speed or scalability at the expense of anonymity, Oxen places a premium on ensuring that users can transact without fear of surveillance or tracking. This commitment to privacy is evident in every aspect of the cryptocurrency, from its use of stealth addresses to its implementation of RingCT.

Technical Challenges and Considerations

The sophistication of Oxen’s privacy features does introduce certain technical challenges, such as increased transaction sizes due to the additional cryptographic data required for ring signatures and RingCT. However, these challenges are continuously addressed through optimizations and protocol improvements aimed at balancing privacy, efficiency, and scalability.

Oxen is not just a digital currency; it’s a comprehensive solution for secure and private financial transactions. Its integration with Lokinet further extends its utility, offering a seamless and private way to access and pay for services within the Lokinet ecosystem. By combining advanced cryptographic techniques with a decentralized service node network, Oxen stands at the forefront of privacy-focused cryptocurrencies, offering users a shield against the pervasive surveillance of the digital age.

What is Lokinet?

Lokinet is like a secret, underground network of tunnels beneath the internet’s bustling city. When you use Lokinet, you travel through these tunnels, moving invisibly from one site to another. This network is special because it ensures that no one can track where you’re going or what you’re doing online. It’s like sending a letter without a return address through a series of secret passages, making it almost impossible for anyone to trace it back to you.

Diving deeper into the technical mechanics, Lokinet leverages a sophisticated technology known as onion routing to create its network of invisible pathways. Here’s how it works: imagine each piece of data you send online is wrapped in multiple layers of encryption, similar to layers of an onion. As your data travels through Lokinet’s network, it passes through several randomly selected nodes or “relay points.” Each node peels off one layer of encryption to reveal the next destination, but without ever knowing the original source or the final endpoint of the data. This process ensures that by the time your data reaches its destination, its journey cannot be traced back to you.

Furthermore, Lokinet assigns each user and service a unique cryptographic address, akin to a secret code name, enhancing privacy and security. These addresses are used to route data within the network, ensuring that communications are not only hidden from the outside world but also encrypted end-to-end. This means that even if someone were to intercept the data midway, decrypting it would be virtually impossible without the specific keys held only by the sender and recipient.

Moreover, Lokinet is built on top of the Oxen blockchain, utilizing a network of service nodes maintained by stakeholders in the Oxen cryptocurrency. These nodes form the backbone of the Lokinet infrastructure, routing traffic, and providing the computational power necessary for the encryption and decryption processes. Participants who run these service nodes are incentivized with Oxen rewards, ensuring the network remains robust, decentralized, and resistant to censorship or attacks.

By combining these technologies, Lokinet provides a secure, private, and untraceable method of accessing the internet, setting a new standard for digital privacy and freedom.

Architectural Overview

At its core, Lokinet is built upon a modified version of the onion routing protocol, similar to Tor, but with notable enhancements and differences, particularly in its integration with the Oxen blockchain for infrastructure management and service node incentivization. Lokinet establishes a decentralized network of service nodes, which are responsible for relaying traffic across the network.

Multi-Layered Encryption (Onion Routing)
    • Encryption LayersEach piece of data transmitted through Lokinet is encapsulated in multiple layers of encryption, analogous to the layers of an onion. This is achieved through asymmetric cryptography, where each layer corresponds to a public key of the next relay (service node) in the path.
    • Path Selection and Construction: Lokinet employs a path selection algorithm to construct a route through multiple service nodes before reaching the intended destination. This route is dynamically selected for each session and is unbeknownst to both the sender and receiver.
    • Data Relay ProcessAs the encrypted data packet traverses each node in the selected path, the node decrypts the outermost layer using its private key, revealing the next node’s address in the sequence and a new, encrypted data packet. This process repeats at each node until the packet reaches its destination, with each node unaware of the packet’s original source or ultimate endpoint.
Cryptographic Addressing

Lokinet uses a unique cryptographic addressing scheme for users and services, ensuring that communication endpoints are not directly tied to IP addresses. These addresses are derived from public keys, providing a layer of security and anonymity for both service providers and users.

Integration with Oxen Blockchain
    • Service Nodes: The backbone of Lokinet is its network of service nodes, operated by individuals who stake Oxen cryptocurrency as collateral. This stake incentivizes node operators to maintain the network’s integrity and availability. 
    • Incentivization and Governance: Service nodes are rewarded with Oxen for their participation, creating a self-sustaining economy that funds the infrastructure. Additionally, these nodes participate in governance decisions, utilizing a decentralized voting mechanism powered by the blockchain.
    • Session ManagementLokinet establishes secure sessions for data transmission, leveraging cryptographic keys for session initiation and ensuring that all communication within a session is securely encrypted and routed through the pre-selected path.
Networking Engineer’s Perspective

From a networking engineer’s view, Lokinet’s integration of onion routing with blockchain technology presents a novel approach to achieving anonymity and privacy on the internet. The use of service nodes for data relay and path selection algorithms for dynamic routing introduces redundancy and resilience against attacks, such as traffic analysis and endpoint discovery.

The cryptographic underpinnings of Lokinet, including its use of asymmetric encryption for layering and the cryptographic scheme for addressing, represent a robust framework for secure communications. The engineering challenge lies in optimizing the network for performance while maintaining high levels of privacy and security, considering the additional latency introduced by the multi-hop architecture.

Lokinet embodies a complex interplay of networking, cryptography, and blockchain technology, offering a comprehensive solution for secure and private internet access. Its design considerations reflect a deep understanding of both the potential and the challenges of providing anonymity in a surveilled and data-driven digital landscape.

How Lokinet Works with Oxen

Lokinet and Oxen function in tandem to create a secure, privacy-centric ecosystem for digital communications and transactions. This collaboration leverages the strengths of each component to provide users with an unparalleled level of online anonymity and security. Here’s a technical breakdown of how these two innovative technologies work together:

Core Integration
    • Service Nodes and Blockchain InfrastructureThe Lokinet network is underpinned by Oxen’s blockchain technology, specifically through the deployment of service nodes. These nodes are essentially the pillars of Lokinet, facilitating the routing of encrypted internet traffic. Operators of these service nodes stake Oxen cryptocurrency as collateral, securing their commitment to network integrity and privacy. This staking mechanism not only ensures the reliability of the network but also aligns the incentives of node operators with the overall health and security of the ecosystem.
    • Cryptographic Synergy for Enhanced Privacy: Oxen’s cryptographic features, such as Ring Signatures, Stealth Addresses, and RingCT, play a pivotal role in safeguarding user transactions within the Lokinet framework. These technologies ensure that any financial transaction conducted over Lokinet, be it for accessing exclusive services or compensating node operators, is enveloped in multiple layers of privacy. This is crucial for maintaining user anonymity, as it obscures the sender, receiver, and amount involved in transactions, rendering them untraceable on the blockchain.
    • Decentralized Application Hosting (Snapps): Lokinet enables the creation and hosting of Snapps, which are decentralized applications or services benefiting from Lokinet’s privacy features. These Snapps utilize Oxen for transactions, leveraging the currency’s privacy-preserving properties. The integration allows for a seamless, secure economic ecosystem within Lokinet, where users can anonymously access services, and developers or service providers can receive Oxen payments without compromising their privacy.
Technical Mechanics of Collaboration
    • Anonymity Layers and Data Encryption: As internet traffic passes through the Lokinet network, it is encrypted in layers, akin to the operational mechanism of onion routing. Each service node along the path decrypts one layer, revealing only the next node in the sequence, without any knowledge of the original source or final destination. This multi-layer encryption, powered by the robust Oxen blockchain, ensures a high level of data privacy and security, making surveillance and traffic analysis exceedingly difficult. 
    • Blockchain-Based Incentive Structure: The Oxen blockchain incentivizes the operation of service nodes through staking rewards, distributed in Oxen cryptocurrency. This incentive structure ensures a stable and high-performance network by encouraging service node operators to maintain optimal service levels. The distribution of rewards via the blockchain is transparent and secure, yet the privacy of transactions and participants is preserved through Oxen’s privacy features.
    • Privacy-Preserving Transactions within the Ecosystem: Transactions within the Lokinet ecosystem, including service payments or access fees for Snapps, leverage Oxen’s privacy-preserving technology. This ensures that users can conduct transactions without exposing their financial activities, maintaining complete anonymity. The seamless integration between Lokinet and Oxen’s transactional privacy features exemplifies a symbiotic relationship, enhancing the utility and security of both technologies.

The interplay between Lokinet and Oxen is a testament to the sophisticated application of blockchain technology and cryptographic principles to achieve a private and secure digital environment. By combining Lokinet’s anonymous networking capabilities with Oxen’s transactional privacy, the ecosystem offers a comprehensive solution for users and developers seeking to operate with full anonymity and security online. This synergy not only protects users from surveillance and tracking but also fosters a vibrant, decentralized web where privacy is paramount.

The Public Ledger

While the Oxen blockchain is indeed a public ledger and records all transactions, the technology it employs ensures that the details of these transactions (sender, receiver, and amount) are hidden. The ledger’s primary role is to maintain a verifiable record of transactions to prevent issues like double-spending, but it does so in a way that maintains individual privacy. 

The Oxen blockchain leverages a combination of advanced cryptographic mechanisms and innovative blockchain technology to create a ledger that is both public and private, a seeming paradox that is central to its design. This public ledger meticulously records every transaction to ensure network integrity and prevent fraud, such as double-spending, while simultaneously employing sophisticated privacy-preserving technologies to protect the details of those transactions. Here’s a closer look at how this is achieved:

Public Ledger: Open yet Confidential
    • Decentralization and Transparency: The Oxen blockchain operates on a decentralized network of nodes. This decentralization ensures that no single entity controls the ledger, promoting transparency and security. Every participant in the network can verify the integrity of the blockchain, confirming that transactions have occurred without relying on a central authority.
    • Prevention of Double-Spending: A critical function of the public ledger is to prevent double-spending, which is a risk in digital currencies where the same token could be spent more than once. The Oxen blockchain achieves this through consensus mechanisms where transactions are verified and recorded on the blockchain, making it impossible to spend the same Oxen twice.
Privacy-Preserving Mechanisms
    • Ring Signatures: Ring Signatures are a form of digital signature where a  signer could be any member of a group of users. When a transaction is signed using a ring signature, it’s confirmed as valid by the network, but the specific identity of the signer remains anonymous. This obscurity ensures the sender’s privacy, as outside observers cannot ascertain who initiated the transaction.
    • Stealth Addresses: For each transaction, the sender generates a one-time stealth address for the recipient. This address is used only for that specific transaction and cannot be linked back to the recipient’s public address. As a result, even though transactions are recorded on the public ledger, there is no way to trace transactions back to the recipient’s wallet or to cluster transactions into a comprehensive financial profile of a user. 
    • Ring Confidential Transactions (RingCT): RingCT  extends the principles of ring signatures to obscure the amount of Oxen transferred in each transaction. With RingCT, the transaction amounts are encrypted, visible only to the sender and receiver. This ensures the confidentiality of transaction values, preventing third parties from deducing spending patterns or balances.
The Interplay of Public and Private

The Oxen ledger’s architecture showcases a nuanced balance between the need for a transparent, verifiable system and the demand for individual privacy. It achieves this through:

    • Selective Transparency: While the ledger is publicly accessible and transactions are verifiable, the details of these transactions remain confidential. This selective transparency is crucial for building trust in the system’s integrity while respecting user privacy.
    • Cryptographic Security: The combination of ring signatures, stealth addresses, and RingCT forms a robust cryptographic foundation that secures transactions against potential threats and surveillance, without compromising the public nature of the blockchain.
    • Verifiability Without Sacrifice: The Oxen blockchain allows for the verification of transactions to ensure network health and prevent fraud, such as double-spending or transaction tampering, without sacrificing the privacy of its users. 

The Oxen blockchain’s public ledger is a testament to the sophisticated integration of blockchain and cryptographic technologies. It serves as a foundational component of the Oxen network, ensuring transaction integrity and network security while providing unprecedented levels of privacy for users.  This careful orchestration of transparency and confidentiality underscores the innovative approach to privacy-preserving digital currencies, setting Oxen apart in the landscape of blockchain technologies.

Installing the Tools

Installing the Oxen Wallet and Lokinet on different operating systems allows you to step into a world of enhanced digital privacy and security. Below are step-by-step guides for Ubuntu (Linux), Windows, and macOS.

Ubuntu (Linux)

Oxen Wallet Installation

    1. Add the Oxen Repository: Open a terminal and enter the following commands to add the Oxen repository to your system:
wget -O - | gpg --dearmor -o /usr/share/keyrings/oxen-archive-keyring.gpg echo "deb [signed-by=/usr/share/keyrings/oxen-archive-keyring.gpg] $(lsb_release -sc) main" | sudo tee /etc/apt/sources.list.d/oxen.list
    1. Update and Install: Update your package list and install the Oxen Wallet:
sudo apt update && sudo apt install oxen-wallet-gui

Lokinet Installation

    1. Install Lokinet: You can install Lokinet using the same Oxen repository. Run the following command:
sudo apt install lokinet
    1. Start Lokinet: Enable and start Lokinet with systemd:
sudo systemctl enable lokinet sudo systemctl start lokinet

Oxen Wallet Installation

    1. Download the Installer: Go to the Oxen downloads page and download the latest Oxen Wallet for Windows.
    2. Run the Installer: Open the downloaded file and follow the installation prompts to install the Oxen Wallet on your Windows system.

Lokinet Installation

    1. Download Lokinet: Visit the Lokinet downloads page and download the latest Lokinet installer for Windows.
    2. Install Lokinet: Run the downloaded installer and follow the on-screen instructions to install Lokinet on your Windows system.

Oxen Wallet Installation

    1. Download the Wallet: Navigate to the Oxen downloads page and download the latest version of the Oxen Wallet for macOS.
    2. Install the Wallet: Open the downloaded .dmg file and drag the Oxen Wallet application to your Applications folder.

Lokinet Installation

    1. Download Lokinet: Go to the Lokinet downloads page and download the Lokinet installer for macOS.
    2. Install Lokinet: Open the downloaded .dmg file. Drag and drop the Lokinet application into your Applications folder.
Post-Installation for All Platforms

After installing both the Oxen Wallet and Lokinet:

    • Launch the Oxen Wallet: Open the Oxen Wallet application and follow the setup wizard to create or restore your wallet. Ensure you securely save your seed phrase.
    • Connect to Lokinet: Open Lokinet (may require administrative privileges) and wait for it to connect to the network. Once connected, you can browse Lokinet services and the internet with enhanced privacy. Congratulations!

You are now ready to explore the digital world with Lokinet’s privacy protection and manage your Oxen securely with the Oxen Wallet.

Service Nodes

Service Nodes, sometimes referred to as “SNodes,” are the cornerstone upon which Lokinet, powered by the Oxen blockchain, establishes its decentralized and privacy-focused network. These nodes serve multiple critical functions that underpin the network’s operation, ensuring both the privacy of communications and the integrity and functionality of the decentralized ecosystem. Below is a detailed exploration of how Service Nodes operate within Lokinet and their significance.

The Role of Service Nodes in Lokinet
    • Decentralization and Routing: Service Nodes form a distributed network that routes internet traffic for Lokinet users. Unlike traditional internet routing, where your data packets travel through potentially centralized and surveilled infrastructure, Lokinet’s traffic is relayed through a series of Service Nodes. This decentralized approach significantly reduces the risk of surveillance and censorship.
    • Data Encryption and Privacy: As data packets navigate through the Lokinet via Service Nodes, they are encrypted multiple times. Each Service Node in the path peels off one layer of encryption, akin to layers of an onion, without ever seeing the content of the data or knowing both the origin and the final destination. This ensures the privacy of the user’s data and anonymity of their internet activities.
    • Staking and Incentive Mechanism: To operate a Service Node, participants are required to stake a certain amount of Oxen cryptocurrency. This staking acts as a form of collateral, incentivizing node operators to act honestly and maintain the network’s integrity. Should they fail to do so, their staked  Oxen is at risk, providing a strong financial incentive for proper node operation.
    • Network Support and Maintenance: Service Nodes are responsible for more than just routing traffic. They also support the Lokinet infrastructure by hosting Snapps (privacy-centric applications), facilitating blockchain operations, and ensuring the delivery of messages and transactions within the Oxen network. This multifaceted role makes them pivotal to the network’s overall health and functionality.
Technical Aspects of Service Nodes
    • Selection and Lifecycle: The operation of a Service Node begins with the staking of Oxen. The blockchain’s protocol then selects active Service Nodes based on various factors, including the amount of Oxen staked and the node’s operational history. Nodes remain active for a predetermined period before their staked Oxen are unlocked, at which point the operator can choose to restake Oxen to continue participating. 
    • Consensus and Governance: Service Nodes contribute to the consensus mechanism of the Oxen blockchain, helping to validate transactions and secure the network. They can also play a role in the governance of the network, participating in decisions regarding updates, development, and the allocation of network resources.
    • Rewards System: In exchange for their services, Service Node operators receive rewards in the form of Oxen coins. These rewards are distributed periodically based on each node’s performance and the overall needs of the network, encouraging ongoing participation and investment in the network’s quality and capacity.
The Importance of Service Nodes

Service Nodes are vital for maintaining the privacy, security, and decentralization of Lokinet. By providing a robust, incentivized backbone for the network, they enable users to enjoy a level of online anonymity and security that is difficult to achieve on the traditional internet. Furthermore, the integration of Service Nodes with the Oxen blockchain creates a unique ecosystem where privacy-focused applications can thrive, supported by a currency designed with security and anonymity at its core.

Service Nodes are not just a technical foundation; they are the guardians of privacy and decentralization in the Lokinet network, embodying the principles of user sovereignty and digital freedom. Their operation and the incentives for their maintenance are critical for the enduring health and efficacy of Lokinet’s privacy-preserving mission.


“Snapps” is the term used within the Lokinet ecosystem to describe privacy-centric applications and services that operate over its network. These services are analogous to Tor’s Hidden Services (now known as “onion services”), offering a high degree of privacy and security for both the service providers and their users. Snapps, however, are designed to run on the Lokinet framework, leveraging its unique features for enhanced performance and anonymity. Here’s a comprehensive breakdown of what Snapps are, how they work, and their significance in the realm of secure online communication and services.

Understanding Snapps

Definition and Purpose: Snapps are decentralized, privacy-focused applications that are accessible only via the Lokinet network. They range from websites and messaging services to more complex platforms like marketplaces or forums. The primary purpose of Snapps is to provide a secure and anonymous way for users to interact and transact online, protecting against surveillance and censorship. Privacy and Anonymity: When using Snapps, both the service provider’s and user’s identities and locations are obscured. This is achieved through Lokinet’s onion routing protocol, where  communication is routed through multiple service nodes in the network, each layer of routing adding a level of encryption. This ensures that no single node can see the entirety of the data being transferred, including who is communicating with whom.
Decentralization: Unlike traditional online services, Snapps are inherently decentralized. They don’t rely on a single server or location, which not only enhances privacy and security but also makes them more resistant to censorship and takedowns. This decentralization is facilitated by the distributed nature of the Lokinet service nodes.

How Snapps Work
    • Accessing Snapps: Users access Snapps through Lokinet, using a Lokinet-enabled browser or client. The URLs for Snapps typically end in “.loki,” distinguishing them from regular internet addresses and ensuring they can only be accessed through the Lokinet network.
    • Hosting Snapps: To host a Snapp, a service provider sets up their service to run on the Lokinet network. This involves configuring their server to communicate exclusively through Lokinet, ensuring that the service benefits from the network’s privacy and security features. The decentralized nature of Lokinet means that hosting can be done from anywhere, without revealing the server’s physical location.
    • Communication Security: Communication to and from Snapps is encrypted multiple times by Lokinet’s layered encryption protocol. This ensures that all interactions with Snapps are private and secure, protecting against eavesdropping and interception.

The Significance of Snapps Enhanced Privacy and Security: Snapps represent a significant advancement in the pursuit of online privacy and security. By providing a platform for services that is both anonymous and resistant to censorship, Snapps offer a safe space for freedom of expression, private communication, and secure transactions.

    • Innovation in Decentralized Applications: The technology behind Snapps encourages innovation in the development of decentralized applications (dApps). Developers can create services that are not only privacy-focused but also resilient against attacks and control, fostering a more open and secure internet.
    • Community and Ecosystem Growth: Snapps contribute to the growth of the Lokinet ecosystem by attracting users and developers interested in privacy and security. This, in turn, promotes the development of more Snapps and services, creating a vibrant community centered around the ideals of privacy, security, and decentralization.

Snapps are a cornerstone of the Lokinet network, offering unparalleled privacy and security for a wide range of online services. They embody the network’s commitment to protecting user anonymity and freedom on the internet, while also providing a platform for innovative service development and deployment in a secure and decentralized manner.

Setting up a Snapp (a privacy-centric application or service on the Lokinet network) involves configuring your web server to be accessible as a service within the Lokinet network. Assuming you have Lokinet installed and your web server is running on on an Ubuntu-based system, here’s a step-by-step guide to making your web server accessible as a Snapp.

Step 1: Verify Lokinet Installation

First, ensure Lokinet is installed and running correctly on your system. You can verify this by running:

lokinet -v

This command should return the version of Lokinet installed. To start Lokinet, you might need to run:

sudo lokinet-bootstrap sudo systemctl start lokinet

This initiates the bootstrap process for Lokinet (if not already bootstrapped) and starts the Lokinet service.

Step 2: Configure Your Web Server

Ensure your web server is configured to listen on Since this setup is common, your server might already be configured correctly. If not, you’ll need to adjust your web server’s configuration. For example, in Apache, you would adjust the Listen directive in the configuration
file (/etc/apache2/ports.conf for Apache).

Step 3: Create a Lokinet Service

You’ll need to generate a .loki address for your Snapp. Lokinet services configuration is managed through the snapp.ini file located in the Lokinet configuration directory (/var/lib/lokinet/ or ~/.lokinet/).

Navigate to your Lokinet directory:

cd /var/lib/lokinet/ # or cd ~/.lokinet/

Create or edit the snapp.ini file:

sudo gedit snapps.ini

Add the following configuration to snapps.ini, replacing your-snapp-name with the desired name for your Snapp:

ifaddr= localPort=8080

This configuration directs Lokinet to route traffic from your .loki address through to your local web server.

Save and close the file.

Step 4: Restart Lokinet

To apply your configuration changes, restart the Lokinet service:

sudo systemctl restart lokinet

Step 5: Obtain Your .loki Address

After restarting Lokinet, your Snapp should be accessible via a .loki address. To find out what your .loki address is, check the Lokinet logs or the generated key file for a hostname:

cat /var/lib/lokinet/snapp-keys/your-snapp-name.dat

This file will contain the .loki address for your service.

Step 6: Access Your Snapp

Now, you should be able to access your web server as a Snapp within the Lokinet network by navigating to http://your-snapp-name.loki using a web browser configured to work with Lokinet.

Additional Tips:
    • Ensure your firewall allows traffic on the necessary ports.
    • Regularly check for updates to Lokinet to keep your service secure.
    • Consider Lokinet’s documentation and community resources for troubleshooting and optimization tips.
    • Setting up a Snapp on Lokinet enables you to offer services with a strong focus on privacy and security, leveraging Lokinet’s decentralized and anonymous network capabilities.
Non-Exit Relays

In the Lokinet ecosystem, a non-exit relay, referred to as a “service node,” plays a critical role in forwarding encrypted traffic through the network. These nodes contribute to the privacy and efficiency of Lokinet by relaying data between users and other nodes without routing any traffic to the internet. This makes them a fundamental part of maintaining the network’s infrastructure, enhancing both its performance and anonymity capabilities without the responsibilities associated with exit node operation.

Understanding Non-Exit Relays (Service Nodes) in Lokinet
    • Function: Non-exit relays (service nodes) handle internal traffic within Lokinet. They pass encrypted data packets from one node to another, ensuring that the network remains fast, reliable, and secure. Unlike exit nodes, they do not interact with the public internet, which significantly reduces legal exposure and simplifies operation.
    • Privacy and Anonymity: By participating in the multi-layered encryption process, service nodes help obscure the origin and destination of data, contributing to Lokinet’s overall goal of user anonymity.
    • Network Support: Service nodes are vital for the support of Lokinet’s exclusive services, known as Snapps. They provide the infrastructure necessary for these privacy-focused applications to function within the network.
Setting Up a Non-Exit Relay (Service Node)

Preparing Your Oxen Wallet

Before setting up your service node, ensure you have the Oxen Wallet installed and sufficiently funded with Oxen cryptocurrency. The wallet will be used to stake Oxen, which is necessary for service node registration.

    • Install the Oxen Wallet: Choose between the GUI or CLI version, available on the Oxen website. Follow the installation instructions specific to your operating system.
    • Acquire Oxen: If you haven’t already, purchase or exchange the required number of Oxen for staking. The exact amount needed can vary based on the network’s current requirements.
    • Generate a Wallet Address: Create a new wallet address within your Oxen Wallet for receiving Oxen. This address will also be used for the staking transaction.
Staking Oxen for Service Node Registration
    • Check Staking Requirements: Visit the official Lokinet or Oxen websites or consult the community to find out the current staking requirements for a service node.
    • Stake Your Oxen: Use your Oxen Wallet to stake the necessary amount of Oxen. This process involves creating a staking transaction that locks up your Oxen as collateral, effectively registering your node as a service node within the network.

The staking transaction will include your service node’s public key, which is generated during the Lokinet setup process on your server.

Configuring Your Service Node
    • Verify Lokinet Installation: Ensure that Lokinet is properly installed and running on your server. You can check this by running lokinet -v to verify the version and systemctl status lokinet to check the service status.
    • Service  Node Configuration: Typically, no additional configuration is needed specifically to operate as a non-exit relay. Lokinet nodes act as service nodes by default, without further adjustment.
    • Register Your Node: Once you’ve completed the staking transaction, your service node will automatically register with the network. This process might take some time as the network confirms your transaction and recognizes your node as a new service node.
Monitoring and Maintenance
    • Keep Your System Updated: Regularly update your server and Lokinet software to ensure optimal performance and security.
    • Monitor Node Health: Use Lokinet tools and commands to monitor your service node’s status, ensuring it remains connected and functional within the network.

By setting up a non-exit relay (service node) and participating in the Lokinet network, you contribute valuable resources that support privacy and data protection. This not only aids in maintaining the network’s infrastructure but also aligns with the broader goal of fostering a secure and private online environment.

Understanding an Exit Node

An exit node acts as a bridge between Lokinet’s private, encrypted network and the wider internet. When Lokinet users wish to access services on the internet outside of Lokinet, their encrypted traffic is routed through exit nodes. As the last hop in the Lokinet network, exit nodes decrypt this traffic and forward it to its final destination on the public internet. Due to the nature of this role, operating an exit node carries certain responsibilities and legal considerations, as the node relays traffic to and from the broader internet.

Oxen Service Node Requirements

To run an exit node, you must first be operating an Oxen Service Node. This involves staking Oxen, a privacy-focused cryptocurrency, which serves as a form of collateral or security deposit. The staking process helps ensure that node operators have a vested interest in the network’s health and integrity.

    • Staking Requirement: The number of Oxen required for staking can fluctuate based on network conditions and the total number of service nodes. It’s crucial to check the current staking requirements, which can be found on the official Oxen website or through community channels.
    • Collateral: Staking for a service node is done by locking a specified amount of Oxen in a transaction on the blockchain. This amount is not spent but remains as collateral that can be reclaimed once you decide to deregister your service node.
Installation and Configuration Steps

Prepare Your Environment: Ensure that your Ubuntu server is up to date and has a stable internet connection. A static IP address is recommended for reliable service node operation.

    • Stake Oxen: You’ll need to acquire the required amount of Oxen, either through an exchange or another source. 
    • Use the Oxen Wallet to stake your Oxen, specifying your service node’s public key in the staking transaction. This public key is generated as part of setting up your service node.
    • Configure Lokinet as an Exit Node: With Lokinet installed and your service node operational, you’ll need to modify the Lokinet configuration to enable exit node functionality.

Locate your Lokinet configuration file, typically found at these locations:

or ~/.lokinet/lokinet.ini.

Edit the configuration file to enable exit node functionality. This usually involves uncommenting or adding specific lines related to exit node operation, such as enabling exit traffic and specifying exit node settings. Refer to the Lokinet documentation for the exact configuration parameters.

Restart Lokinet to apply the changes: 

sudo systemctl restart lokinet
Costs and Considerations
    • Financial Costs: Beyond the Oxen staking requirement, running a service node may incur costs related to server hosting, bandwidth usage, and potential legal or administrative fees associated with operating an exit node.
    • Legal Responsibilities: As an exit node operator, you’re facilitating access to the public internet. It’s essential to understand the legal implications in your jurisdiction and take steps to mitigate potential risks, such as abuse of the service for illicit activities.
Monitoring and Maintenance

Regularly monitor your service node and exit node operation to ensure they are running correctly and efficiently. This includes keeping your server and Lokinet software up to date, monitoring bandwidth and server performance, and staying engaged with the Oxen community for support and updates.

Running an Oxen Service Node and configuring it as a Lokinet exit node is a significant contribution to the privacy focused Lokinet ecosystem. It requires a commitment to maintaining the node’s operation and a willingness to support the network’s goal of providing secure, private access to the internet.

Sybil Attack.

In decentralized peer-to-peer networks, nodes often rely on consensus or the collective agreement of other nodes to make decisions, validate transactions, or relay information. In a Sybil Attack, the attacker leverages multiple fake nodes to subvert this consensus process, potentially leading to network disruption, censorship of certain transactions or communications, or surveillance activities.

The purpose of such attacks can vary but often includes:

    • Eavesdropping on Network Traffic: By controlling a significant portion of exit nodes, an attacker can monitor or log sensitive information passing through these nodes.
    • Disrupting Network Operations: An attacker could refuse to relay certain transactions or data, effectively censoring or slowing down network operations.
    • Manipulating Consensus or Voting Mechanisms: In networks where decisions are made through a voting process among nodes, an attacker could skew the results in their favor.

Preventing Sybil Attacks in networks like Lokinet involves mechanisms like requiring a stake (as in staking Oxen for service nodes), which introduces a cost barrier that makes it expensive to control a significant portion of the network. This staking mechanism does not make Sybil Attacks impossible but raises the cost and effort required to conduct them to a level that is prohibitive for most attackers, thereby helping to protect the network’s integrity and privacy assurances.

The cost associated with setting up an exit node in Lokinet, as opposed to a Tor exit node, is primarily due to the requirement of staking Oxen cryptocurrency to run an Oxen Service Node, which is a prerequisite for operating an exit node on Lokinet. This cost serves several critical functions in the network’s ecosystem, notably enhancing security and privacy, and it addresses some of the challenges that free-to-operate networks like Tor face. Here’s a deeper look into why this cost is beneficial and its implications:

Economic Barrier to Malicious Actors

Minimizing Surveillance Risks:

The requirement to stake a significant amount of Oxen to run a service node (and by extension, an exit node) introduces an economic barrier to entry. This cost makes it financially prohibitive for adversaries to set up a large number of nodes for the purpose of surveillance or malicious activities. In contrast, networks like Tor, where anyone can run an exit node for free, might be more susceptible to such risks because the lack of financial commitment makes it easier for malicious actors to participate.

Stake-Based Trust System:

The staking mechanism also serves as a trust system. Operators who have staked significant amounts of Oxen are more likely to act in the network’s best interest to avoid penalties, such as losing their stake for malicious behavior or poor performance. This aligns the incentives of node operators with the health and security of the network.

Sustainability and Quality of Service
    • Incentivizing Reliable Operation: The investment required to run an exit node incentivizes operators to maintain their nodes reliably. This is in stark contrast to volunteer-operated networks, where nodes may come and go, potentially affecting the network’s stability and performance. In Lokinet, because operators have financial skin in the game, they are motivated to ensure their nodes are running efficiently and are less likely to abruptly exit the network.
    • Funding Network Development and Growth: The staking requirement indirectly funds the ongoing development and growth of the Lokinet ecosystem. The value locked in staking contributes to the overall market health of the Oxen cryptocurrency, which can be leveraged to fund projects, improvements, and marketing efforts to further enhance the network.
Reducing Spam and Abuse
    • Economic Disincentives for Abuse: Running services like exit nodes can attract spam and other forms of abuse. Requiring a financial commitment to operate these nodes helps deter such behavior, as the cost of abuse becomes tangibly higher for the perpetrator. In the case of Lokinet, potential attackers or spammers must weigh the cost of staking Oxen against the benefits of their malicious activities, which adds a layer of protection for the network.
Enhanced Privacy and Security
    • Selective Participation: The staking mechanism ensures that only those who are genuinely invested in the privacy and security ethos of Lokinet can operate exit nodes. This selective participation helps maintain a network of operators who are committed to upholding the network’s principles, potentially leading to a more secure and privacy-focused ecosystem.

While the cost to set up an exit node on Lokinet, as opposed to a free-to-operate system like Tor, may seem like a barrier, it serves multiple vital functions. It not only minimizes the risk of surveillance and malicious activities by introducing an economic barrier but also promotes network reliability, sustainability, and a community of committed operators. This innovative approach underscores Lokinet’s commitment to providing a secure, private, and resilient service in the face of evolving digital threats.

How to earn Oxen

Earning Oxen can be achieved by operating a service node within the Oxen network; however, it’s important to clarify that Oxen does not support traditional mining as seen in Bitcoin and some other cryptocurrencies. Instead, Oxen uses a Proof of Stake (PoS) consensus mechanism coupled with a network of service nodes that support its privacy features and infrastructure. Here’s how you can earn Oxen by running a service node:

Running a Service Node
    • Staking Oxen: To operate a service node on the Oxen network, you are required to stake a certain amount of Oxen tokens. Staking acts as a form of collateral or security deposit, ensuring that operators have a vested interest in the network’s health and performance. The required amount for staking is determined by the network and can vary over time.
    • Earning Rewards: Once your service node is active and meets the network’s service criteria, it begins to earn rewards in the form of Oxen tokens. These rewards are distributed at regular intervals and are shared among all active service nodes. The reward amount is dependent on various factors, including the total number of active service nodes and the network’s inflation rate.
    • Contribution to the Network: By running a service node, you’re contributing to the Oxen network’s infrastructure, supporting features such as private messaging, decentralized access to the LokiNet (a privacy-oriented internet overlay), and transaction validation. This contribution is essential for maintaining the network’s privacy, security, and efficiency.
Why There’s No Mining

Oxen utilizes the Proof of Stake (PoS) model rather than Proof of Work (PoW), which is where mining comes into play in other cryptocurrencies. Here are a few reasons for this approach:

    • Energy Efficiency: PoS is significantly more energy-efficient than PoW, as it does not require the vast amounts of computational power and electricity that mining (PoW) does.
    • Security: While both PoS and PoW aim to secure the network, PoS does so by aligning the interests of the token holders (stakers) with the network’s health. In PoS, the more you stake, the more you’re incentivized to act in the network’s best interest, as malicious behavior could lead to penalties, including the loss of staked tokens.
    • Decentralization: Although both systems can promote decentralization, PoS facilitates it through financial commitment rather than computational power, potentially lowering the barrier to entry for participants who do not have access to expensive mining hardware.

You can earn Oxen by running a service node and participating in the network’s maintenance and security through staking. This method aligns with the Oxen network’s goals of efficiency, security, and privacy, contrasting with the traditional mining approach used in some other cryptocurrencies.


Lokinet | Anonymous internet access
Oxen | Privacy made simple.
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