PassLok Chat for All

For quite a while now PassLok Chat has been one of the ways you can set up a real-secure real-time online meeting. This was done through the Chat option in PassLok, which generated an encrypted link to PassLok Chat. But now you can also enjoy PassLok Chat without the encryption step. This little app will generate a new chat link every time you click its “Make Chat” button, without asking you for any  passwords or accounts of any kind. Share the link to enjoy free, unlimited, direct peer-to-peer conferencing without any accounts or servers in-between.

Here’s the link again:

Users have commented that PassLok Chat is more responsive than Zoom, Google Meet, and the rest, with hardly any noticeable latency. The reason is its direct-connection WebRTC technology. Data travels directly from each participant to all the other participants, rather than to a central server that then sends it to everyone. There is also no conversion involved (servers convert the incoming video to save bandwidth), which keeps the quality high and the latency low.

Provided your system can handle it, though. Since there’s no server doing any processing, this means your computer is processing all the streams coming from each of the other participants. You’ll need a good processor if you want a video chat with several people at once. In my tests, an Intel i5 machine worked great, as well as an iPad pro 1st gen.

PassLok Chat is also more secure than the rest of them because of the lack of a server that could be compromised. The link also contains a 256-bit password that must be correct or the connections won’t happen. But this means you need to distribute the link securely. You can do it like all the competitors do it, by email or texting app, but if you are as paranoid as I am, you’d want to encrypt it first. And here’s the good news, PassLok Chat with encrypted links is integrated with all the flavors of PassLok, plus URSA, SeeOnce, and FusionKey.

PassLok Chat contains a unified text chat, screen sharing for all participants, and even file exchange (not common with other services), but does not include recording because there is no server. If you are security-minded, though, you may think of this as a feature. If the initial mode becomes too constraining, participants can reload the page at any time and switch to another mode (the first three are mutually compatible) without having to make a new link. Incidentally, you can reuse the link as many times as you want.

If you like Jitsi, you may want to run it through PassLok Chat (it’s the 4th option) so the meeting is password-protected. Otherwise you’ll have to figure out how to send the password as you send the Jitsi link. Or do without a password altogether, which means that anyone guessing the room name, which is a lot easier than the password, and this is why zoombombing is a problem, can get in.

PassLok Chat runs on computers, Android, and iOS, without any special apps. A browser is all you need (except Internet Explorer, assuming anyone still uses it).

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