Octopus 1.2.2 is Released

By Justus | March 24, 2022

We are pleased to announce a new release of the Octopus, an alternative OpenPGP backend for Thunderbird. This release brings compatibility with newer versions of Thunderbird (Thunderbird 99 and up), a few bug fixes, and some documentation improvements.

The Octopus is an alternative OpenPGP backend for Thunderbird. By default, Thunderbird uses rnp. The Octopus is a drop-in replacement for rnp. It implements the same interface as rnp, but includes a number of enhancements.

Installing the Octopus

The easiest and most secure way is to install the Octopus from your distribution. Currently, the Octopus is only available for Fedora 34 and up. If you want the Octopus to be available from your distribution of choice, please create packages or ask your distribution to do so.

Fedora 34 and up

The Octopus is available from the standard Fedora repositories since Fedora 34. The official Thunderbird package has also been adapted to allow users to choose which of the available PGP backends is used. If the thunderbird package is already installed (and at least at version 78.11.0), then swapping the RNP backend with the Octopus can be done by running the following command:

sudo dnf swap thunderbird-librnp-rnp sequoia-octopus-librnp

Switching back to the default backend works the same way, only with reversed arguments for the dnf swap command:

sudo dnf swap sequoia-octopus-librnp thunderbird-librnp-rnp

If Thunderbird is not yet installed, then the preferred OpenPGP backend can be specified at install time, as well:

sudo dnf install thunderbird sequoia-octopus-librnp

Financial Support

Since the start of the project four and a half years ago, the p≡p foundation financially supports the six people who work on Sequoia. In 2021, the NLnet foundation awarded us six grants as part of the NGI Assure program.

We are actively looking for additional financial support to diversify our funding.

You don’t need to directly use Sequoia to be positively impacted by it. We’re focused on creating tools for activists, lawyers, and journalists who can’t rely on centralized authentication solutions. So, consider donating. Of course, if your company is using Sequoia, consider sponsoring a developer (or two). Note: if you want to use Sequoia under a license other than the LGPLv2+, please contact the foundation.