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Network ID

  • 13 uphendule
  • 1 inale nkinga
  • Igcine ukuphendulwa ngu Mace2

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Entering in the url field "about:networking#networkid" gives a alpha numeric value how is this used ?

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Hi

It is mostly used for telemetry when DNS over HTTPS is active to ensure it's working correctly.

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When I turn D.O.H. off the Network ID remains. Why is this value needed at all for D.O.H. Couldn't this enumeration be used to identify a specific client?

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The networkID is computed ahead of time, on every network change, in case it is needed. If you are not using DoH, or if you have disabled telemetry, then it never leaves your machine. It is also useful for developers, to verify that our network-change detection is working properly on their own machines. Given that the networkID is a hash of multiple network properties, having it does not allow one to deduce the attributes of the network. The fact that it changes (or may change) often means it is impractical as an identifier for the user.

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Also note, DoH is not currently enabled for Android, nor is this telemetry. To enable DoH on Firefox for Android it requires manually changing a pref in about:config.

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Is the Network ID required for operation of DOH? If not how can telemetry be turned off.

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Hi

You can turn off telemetry from the Firefox for Android menu. Select Settings, followed by Data Collection to see the options to turn off telemetry data.

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Is the network ID required for DOH to function? Also what is the equivalent for a desktop?

Okulungisiwe ngu Mace2

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DoH is not enabled on Android. The networkID is only used and reported on the desktop at the moment.

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So what is the network ID (about:networking#networkid) and how is it used. Tor browser uses this value as well.

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As I previously stated, it is a hash string that represents the current network properties as defined here.

Here are all the instances where it's used in Firefox.

It's also present in Tor browser because it's built from the same codebase as Firefox.

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I still do not understand why firefox needs any network properties. Network ID clearly has nothing to do with D.O.H.

Why is it maintaining a network hash? Walk me through usage as I see no function in this other than to identify a users network.

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So, because DNS over HTTPS tries to be conservative and not break the users' connectivity if for some reason the DoH server is inaccessible, our implementation falls back to regular unencrypted DNS when a DoH failure occurs. Certain segments of the Firefox user base (currently US only) are automatically upgraded to use DNS over HTTPS, but we only do so after running some heuristics to see if that is likely to break any of their browsing habits (see link )

In order to evaluate if our code works properly we need to answer questions like: Are there any users who are always on networks where DoH doesn't work? Are there networks where the heuristics all pass but DoH still falls back all the time? How common is it for users to be on networks that block DoH?

In order to answer these questions we must record usage telemetry separately, which is why we need the networkID.

I hope this is helpful. If you have more questions I'd be happy to answer them. I'd appreciate it if you asked all of them in one post rather than going back and forth all the time :)

Cheers!

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If a DOH heuristic failure occurs is there notification for the user ? The reason I ask is I have been on a network which did not allow DOH to operate and the way I was able to determine the failure is that no internet communications occurred? I downloaded Mac OS, EN-US version of FF and would like to know if that qualifies for U.S.? I had a similar problem where "forms and autofill" option was not available even though I download the U.S. version. The current version I am using for DOH is sha256: e2c7fb0bde0f541d13fba01d452a2e3715351dc4940b9e3186ac8e72453430b2. The check of users on the network doesn't seem necessary as the heuristic should be able to determin opeeration for the user itself. An example cloudflares https://1.1.1.1/help, determines operational communications for the operating device and communications with other devices seems intrusive.

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