[Cryptography] Qubes

Peter Schwabe peter at cryptojedi.org
Wed Nov 16 03:27:09 EST 2016

John Denker <jsd at av8n.com> wrote:
> Hi --

Hi John, hi all,

> Is there anybody here who would care to comment on Qubes?
>   "A reasonably secure operating system"
>   https://www.qubes-os.org/
> It's kinda new, and I have zero first-hand experience with it,
> but people seem to be saying nice things about it.

I'm using Qubes for about one year now and I'm very happy with it. It's
great how well the separation of different security domains in virtual
machines is integrated into a work flow that does not significantly
impact my productivity.

However, when switching to Qubes, learning about how this integration
works, and slightly adapting how you use a computer, you should expect
some weeks of reduced productivity.

> The downside is that it demands a lot of the hardware.

Qubes works quite ok on my Thinkpad X240 with 8GB of RAM, but I
occasionally run into the problem that I cannot start a VM. On my X260
with 16GB of RAM I have never experienced this problem and everything
runs very smoothly. In other words: yes, it is quite demanding, in
particular in terms of RAM.

If you're planning to transition to Qubes, it probably makes sense to
first organize data in your home directory in different subdirectories,
one for each of the VMs you're planning to use and observe how data
flows between those subdirectories. I did not do this, and later wished
I had.

I hope this helps.

Best regards,

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