Synapse 1.5.0 released

2019-10-29 — General — Neil Johnson

That's right folks Synapse 1.5.0 is here and ready to make your life just a little bit better.

First things first, this release includes a security fix (#6262, below). Administrators are encouraged to upgrade as soon as possible.

Aside from that, the main thing you'll notice in 1.5.0 is a massive performance improvement to the room directory, which means that servers with large directories to scan will return much more quickly. This is especially true for matrix.org but all servers will benefit.

Another key win is finally fixing some bugs in the sqlite -> postgres migrator script. Sqlite mode is there strictly for testing purposes and should never be used in a production setting let alone a federating homeserver. So if you are currently using Sqlite now is the time to migrate. What's more the script is now in CI so it can't easily break in the future (with apologies to anyone bitten by the old script...).

A final final point, we have some preparatory work for e2ee cross signing, the overall feature is not ready for release just yet but we are getting really close. Watch this space.

As ever, you can get the new update here or any of the sources mentioned at https://github.com/matrix-org/synapse. Also, check out our Synapse installation guide page

The changelog since 1.4.1 follows:

Synapse 1.5.0 (2019-10-29)

Security updates

This release includes a security fix (#6262, below). Administrators are encouraged to upgrade as soon as possible.

Bugfixes

  • Fix bug where room directory search was case sensitive. (#6268)

Synapse 1.5.0rc2 (2019-10-28)

Bugfixes

  • Update list of boolean columns in synapse_port_db. (#6247)
  • Fix /keys/query API on workers. (#6256)
  • Improve signature checking on some federation APIs. (#6262)

Internal Changes

  • Move schema delta files to the correct data store. (#6248)
  • Small performance improvement by removing repeated config lookups in room stats calculation. (#6255)

Synapse 1.5.0rc1 (2019-10-24)

Features

  • Improve quality of thumbnails for 1-bit/8-bit color palette images. (#2142)
  • Add ability to upload cross-signing signatures. (#5726)
  • Allow uploading of cross-signing keys. (#5769)
  • CAS login now provides a default display name for users if a displayname_attribute is set in the configuration file. (#6114)
  • Reject all pending invites for a user during deactivation. (#6125)
  • Add config option to suppress client side resource limit alerting. (#6173)

Bugfixes

  • Return an HTTP 404 instead of 400 when requesting a filter by ID that is unknown to the server. Thanks to @krombel for contributing this! (#2380)
  • Fix a bug where users could be invited twice to the same group. (#3436)
  • Fix /createRoom failing with badly-formatted MXIDs in the invitee list. Thanks to @wener291! (#4088)
  • Make the synapse_port_db script create the right indexes on a new PostgreSQL database. (#6102, #6178, #6243)
  • Fix bug when uploading a large file: Synapse responds with M_UNKNOWN while it should be M_TOO_LARGE according to spec. Contributed by Anshul Angaria. (#6109)
  • Fix user push rules being deleted from a room when it is upgraded. (#6144)
  • Don't 500 when trying to exchange a revoked 3PID invite. (#6147)
  • Fix transferring notifications and tags when joining an upgraded room that is new to your server. (#6155)
  • Fix bug where guest account registration can wedge after restart. (#6161)
  • Fix monthly active user reaping when reserved users are specified. (#6168)
  • Fix /federation/v1/state endpoint not supporting newer room versions. (#6170)
  • Fix bug where we were updating censored events as bytes rather than text, occaisonally causing invalid JSON being inserted breaking APIs that attempted to fetch such events. (#6186)
  • Fix occasional missed updates in the room and user directories. (#6187)
  • Fix tracing of non-JSON APIs, /media, /key etc. (#6195)
  • Fix bug where presence would not get timed out correctly if a synchrotron worker is used and restarted. (#6212)
  • synapse_port_db: Add 2 additional BOOLEAN_COLUMNS to be able to convert from database schema v56. (#6216)
  • Fix a bug where the Synapse demo script blacklisted ::1 (ipv6 localhost) from receiving federation traffic. (#6229)

Updates to the Docker image

  • Fix logging getting lost for the docker image. (#6197)

Internal Changes

  • Update user_filters table to have a unique index, and non-null columns. Thanks to @pik for contributing this. (#1172, #6175, #6184)
  • Allow devices to be marked as hidden, for use by features such as cross-signing. This adds a new field with a default value to the devices field in the database, and so the database upgrade may take a long time depending on how many devices are in the database. (#5759)
  • Move lookup-related functions from RoomMemberHandler to IdentityHandler. (#5978)
  • Improve performance of the public room list directory. (#6019, #6152, #6153, #6154)
  • Edit header dicts docstrings in SimpleHttpClient to note that str or bytes can be passed as header keys. (#6077)
  • Add snapcraft packaging information. Contributed by @devec0. (#6084, #6191)
  • Kill off half-implemented password-reset via sms. (#6101)
  • Remove get_user_by_req opentracing span and add some tags. (#6108)
  • Drop some unused database tables. (#6115)
  • Add env var to turn on tracking of log context changes. (#6127)
  • Refactor configuration loading to allow better typechecking. (#6137)
  • Log responder when responding to media request. (#6139)
  • Improve performance of find_next_generated_user_id DB query. (#6148)
  • Expand type-checking on modules imported by synapse.config. (#6150)
  • Use Postgres ANY for selecting many values. (#6156)
  • Add more caching to _get_joined_users_from_context DB query. (#6159)
  • Add some metrics on the federation sender. (#6160)
  • Add some logging to the rooms stats updates, to try to track down a flaky test. (#6167)
  • Remove unused timeout parameter from _get_public_room_list. (#6179)
  • Reject (accidental) attempts to insert bytes into postgres tables. (#6186)
  • Make version optional in body of PUT /room_keys/version/{version}, since it's redundant. (#6189)
  • Make storage layer responsible for adding device names to key, rather than the handler. (#6193)
  • Port synapse.rest.admin module to use async/await. (#6196)
  • Enforce that all boolean configuration values are lowercase in CI. (#6203)
  • Remove some unused event-auth code. (#6214)
  • Remove Auth.check method. (#6217)
  • Remove format_tap.py script in favour of a perl reimplementation in Sytest's repo. (#6219)
  • Refactor storage layer in preparation to support having multiple databases. (#6231)
  • Remove some extra quotation marks across the codebase. (#6236)

This Week in Matrix 2019-10-26

2019-10-26 — This Week in Matrix — Ben Parsons

Dept of Status of Matrix 🌡

Matrix.org

Public service notice from vdh:

It won't have escaped many peoples' notice that the matrix.org homeserver has been struggling over the last few weeks. The main problem is poor disk I/O performance on our database server: for various reasons, it seems that the server can no longer keep up with the demands we're putting on it.

The good news is that we have a plan to sort it out, and we're working on setting up alternative hosting which will be able to handle our traffic for the forseeable future! Please bear with us over the next couple of weeks while we get new servers set up.

Matrix Notepad

@kb1rd:kb1rd.net told us:

Just released the first version of the Matrix Notepad, a small webapp designed to allow people to collaborate on text files over Matrix. There are a bunch of bugs that I'm still working on fixing, but if you'd like to check it out it's here! I will be adding incremental fixes for various issues, but feel free to add to the issues. :) If you'd like to chat, I'll be checking #matrix-collaboration:kb1rd.net.

Dept of Servers 🏢

Synapse

@richvdh:sw1v.org told us:

This week much of the team's focus has been on performance, both in terms of dealing with matrix.org's immediate woes and some more strategic work on helping Synapse to scale. On the latter front, Erik has been making great progress in supporting multiple Postgres databases.

We've also put out a release candidate for Synapse 1.5.0 with lots of bugfixes and changes under the hood. As ever, help with testing the RC is much appreciated!

Dept of Bridges 🌉

matrix-appservice-discord v0.5.2 released

Half-Shot reported:

matrix-appservice-discord has had a new release (v0.5.2) to fix some out of date packages.

matrix-appservice-bridge v0.11.0

Half-Shot announced:

matrix-appservice-bridge has had a new release (v0.11.0) which allows developers to disable usage of the stores entirely. This should solve problems facing some bridges which no longer use them.

mautrix-hangouts image bridging

Tulir offered:

Cadair's pull request to add Hangouts->Matrix image bridging to mautrix-hangouts was merged.

Dept of Clients 📱

miitrix

From sorunome, this crazy 3DS project!

Miitrix is a client for the Nintendo 3DS, using the matrix-3ds-sdk! Here is an early demonstration video. The current featureset includes:

  • Sorting room list by last messages
  • Room name fallbacks (canonical alias, joined members)
  • sending messages
  • receiving messages
  • receiving edits & redactions
  • receiving join, leave, ban events
  • lazy-loading extra information in the background

Support room: #miitrix:sorunome.de Donate: https://liberapay.com/Sorunome

miitrix client running on 3DS

Riot web

Tulir announced:

Two of the Riot pull requests that I twimmed last week, the reaction emoji picker and edit html parser improvements, have been merged into develop. The remaining one (reply rendering improvements) still needs some code and design work.

Ruby Matrix SDK version 1.5.0 released

Ananace said:

The Ruby SDK is out with another new version, 1.5.0 this time. Adding an event and a check to let applications track and handle errors that occur in the background listener thread of the client abstraction. This version also exposes a setter for the open_timeout value on the lower-level API client (and the client abstraction through it), for users that are plagued by slow-to-open TCP connections to their relevant HSes.

As always, feel free to drop by #ruby-matrix-sdk:kittenface.studio if you have questions, comments, corrections, or just want to discuss the project - or use cases - in general.

Fractal

Alexandre Franke reported:

Since the 4.2.1 release a month ago, there’s been a slow but steady stream of commits including code cleanups, translation updates and minor bugfixes. The highlights are issues solved around settings not being reloaded after verification dialog was closed, account settings not loading, connections to http only servers failing, and a regression that prevented users from sending messages to newly created rooms.

Riot iOS

Manu reported:

We are still working on 2 fronts:

  • fixing most important issues in our stabilisation sprint
  • privacy project: Adding an email or phone number is now protected by a password (if your homeserver requests this authentication)

Riot Android

Manu offered:

  • privacy project: Adding an email or phone number is now protected by a password (if your homeserver requires it)

RiotX Android

Manu offered:

  • We released 0.7.0 this week. You now have read markers and can share content to Riot. You should also find the app even faster.

Dept of SDKs and Frameworks 🧰

matrix-3ds-sdk

sorunome offered:

A lot has happened on the side of matrix-3ds-sdk. So much so, that it is possible now to write clients out of it! The changelog includes:

  • fetching member info
  • fetching room info
  • proper sync loop
  • agressive filters to reduce data (initial sync would crash on large accs otherwise)
  • room leave and invite callbacks
  • room info callback

Support room: #matrix-3ds-sdk:sorunome.de

Dept of Ops 🛠

Helm charts for mautrix-telegram, mautrix-twilio and maubot

Tulir offered:

mautrix-telegram and mautrix-twilio now have experimental Helm charts: https://github.com/tulir/mautrix-telegram/tree/helm/helm/mautrix-telegram. There's no replication/horizontal scaling stuff, but they should be useful if you're already using Helm for other stuff.

To make managing maubot plugins possible with Helm, I added a simple standalone plugin executor to maubot. It's basically just a simple script that sets up all the things plugins want (matrix client, config, database, webserver) and passes them to the plugin.

The standalone executor can be used to run any maubot plugin without any changes to the plugin itself, but building good docker images needs to be done separately for each plugin. The supportportal plugin has a standalone docker image and a helm chart using that image.

Dept of Ping 🏓

RankHostnameMedian MS
1matrix.tetraodon.nl298
2linuxgl.ch319.5
3flip.earth402
4matrix.allmende.io546
5midov.pl601
6tout.im622
7matrix.kimani.dev648.5
8matrix.vgorcum.com660
9uraziel.de675
10kif.rocks711

That's all I know 🏁

See you next week, and be sure to stop by #twim:matrix.org with your updates!

This Week in Matrix 2019-10-18

2019-10-18 — This Week in Matrix — Ben Parsons

Matrix Live 🎙

Dept of Status of Matrix 🌡

Last week Matrix had a presence at UbuCon Europe and PyCon Ireland. We gave workshops on using Matrix to create bots, and also a session on installing Synapse (see also: Brendan's entry below!)

Tomorrow I'm off to sunny Manchester with Michael from the Ops team. We'll visit OggCamp, where we'll show off Matrix with a fun demo I previewed on Matrix Live a few weeks ago.

Matrix will ALSO be at:

Dept of Spec 📜

anoa:

Last week we set MSC1219 (key backups), MSC2241 (verification over DMs), and MSC2313 (ban lists) for the spec core team to focus on. Those 3 are rolling on into this week as we didn't get a lot of work done last week :)

In other Spec news, Matthew uncovered a stone tablet describing what would in future be known as "MSC2324":

msc2324

Dept of Servers 🏢

install-party, nice result from UbuCon Europe

Brendan said:

For a workshop anoa and I did at Ubucon Europe last Sunday on how to install Synapse, I worked on a side project that creates a server, attaches a domain name to it and installs Riot and Caddy on it. Attendees can then SSH into it, follow the instructions to install a Matrix homeserver, and use Riot to register an account on it, log in, and join a federated room with all of the other attendees' homeservers in it. We tried it out last week-end for the actual workshop and it worked quite well 🙂 The project is called Install Party, and lives at https://github.com/babolivier/install-party, and if you want to chat about it I've just created #install-party:abolivier.bzh 😉

Synapse

Neil reported:

This week we've been thinking about the future and brainstorming on ideas to improve perf for small instances and sparing some cycles for MSC1228. Next week we'll return to improving IO usage on matrix.org.

Synapse 1.4.1 was released, which fixes a small regression in 1.4.0.

Dept of Bridges 🌉

Matrix-Slack Bridge on NixOS

@christian:kampka.net said:

Just FYI, the matrix slack bridge is now available via NixOS: https://github.com/NixOS/nixpkgs/pull/70753

Dept of Clients 📱

riots.im available via IPFS

Remember https://riots.im from last week? Now available on IPFS!

@swedneck:permaweb.io said:

toml's riots.im is also available via IPFS: ipfs get riots.im or visit localhost:8080/ipns/riots.im with ipfs installed and running.

Riot-iOS 0.10.0

Manu offered:

On Riot-iOS land, Riot-iOS 0.10.0 has been released on the App Store. We have started a stabilisation sprint. In parallel, we are still polishing the privacy work

RiotX release next week

benoit announced:

RiotX: we are merging waiting PRs and have postponed the release to ensure a maximum of stability and polishing. The release will be done at the beginning of next week and will contains: read marker, camera picker and improved file picker, share to RiotX capability and many bugfixes.

Dept of SDKs and Frameworks 🧰

matrix-3ds-sdk

sorunome said:

Heya, matrix-3ds-sdk is a new matrix sdk - for the Nintendo 3DS! It is still deep in development, so expect bugs, some things not working properly etc. Current features include:

  • logging in
  • sending text messages to rooms
  • redacting events from rooms
  • resolving aliases to room ids
  • basic framework to get a /sync loop working

If you are into 3DS homebrew development or are interested in helping out making a full client based on this, please contact soru (@sorunome:sorunome.de)! 3ds homebrew dev is pretty new to her, so there are plenty of open questions / debugging help would be great!

Support room: #matrix-3ds-sdk:sorunome.de Donate: https://liberapay.com/Sorunome

This is really impressive, I'm looking forward to playing with it. (I'm sure someone at the office must own a 3DS!)

koma

yuforia offered:

koma, Kotlin library for building clients: Added API for retrieving notifications.

Dept of Ops 🛠

mvgorcum/docker-matrix

Mathijs announced:

I uploaded the synapse 1.4.1 image to mvgorcum/docker-matrix:v1.4.1 within about half an hour after the release

docker image of synapse-develop

Mathijs announced:

I've made a docker image of the develop branch of synapse, and automated it to build daily. It's on my docker hub as mvgorcum/docker-matrix:develop, based on the avhost dockerfile. Note that there are no checks, the image is simply built from the develop branch of the synapse git repo every night.

Matrix Synapse for Kubernetes

Ananace offered:

just pushed Version 1.4.1 of the Matrix Synapse for Kubernetes packaging. A bit fiddly to do on a phone 🙂

Synapse 1.4.1 multi-arch docker image

Black Hat told us:

I'm building the Synapse 1.4.1 multi-arch docker image. It will be pushed to Docker Hub in a couple of hours.

Dept of Tulir 🇫🇮

A special section this week from the guy with one editor open for everything, tulir:

I haven't done anything on my own projects this week, but I did contribute to a bunch of other projects:

The first two are already merged (and SmsMatrix even got a new release on f-droid), the html parsing is waiting for code review and the emoji picker and reply rendering are waiting for design review.

Also, I made a read-only status.matrix.org rss feed room since some people wanted one: #matrix.org-status:maunium.net. I don't remember if I TWIMed these before, but #xkcd:maunium.net and #commitstrip:maunium.net are similar read-only rooms, new xkcds and commitstrips are posted there whenever they come out.

Dept of Ping 🏓

RankHostnameMedian MS
1matrix.tetraodon.nl340
2flip.earth353.5
3matrix.bn4t.me397.5
4midov.pl435
5aragon.sh443
6finallycoffee.eu493
7dodsorf.as564
8matrix.vgorcum.com575.5
9maunium.net595
10room409.xyz598

That's all I know 🏁

See you next week, and be sure to stop by #twim:matrix.org with your updates!

Synapse 1.4.1 released

2019-10-18 — General — Matthew Hodgson

Hi all,

We've released Synapse 1.4.1 as a small but important bugfix to 1.4.0.

This fixes a regression which crept in with our newly implemented "erase redacted data after N days" feature where some APIs would fail when hitting erased redactions - anyone on Synapse 1.4.0 will want to upgrade asap.

As always, you can get the new update here or any of the sources mentioned at https://github.com/matrix-org/synapse. Also, check out our Synapse installation guide page

The changelog since 1.4.0 follows:

Synapse 1.4.1 (2019-10-18)

No changes since 1.4.1rc1.

Synapse 1.4.1rc1 (2019-10-17)

Bugfixes

  • Fix bug where redacted events were sometimes incorrectly censored in the database, breaking APIs that attempted to fetch such events. (#6185, 5b0e9948)

This Week in Matrix 2019-10-11

2019-10-11 — This Week in Matrix — Ben Parsons

Dept of Status of Matrix 🌡

As you may have heard, New Vector, a major entity in the Matrix world, recently completed a series A funding round.

Further reading:

Mozilla IM trial ended

Mozilla have been trialing different IM solutions to replace IRC, including Matrix. This trial ended this week, and we hope to hear the results this month. (C'mon, Matrix!)

Dept of Servers 🏢

Synapse

Neil told us:

Matrix.org hit some IO problems earlier this week, while largely a problem with our hosting provider, we’re spending a bit of time to make Synapse more resilient if the same thing were to happen again. This will mean the ability to shard the DB (by table) and spread the load so we are not so dependent on high performance from a given db box. Outside of that we’ve been working on the final polishing of the room directory and getting the sqlite -> Postgres port script into better shape.

multi-arch docker image of Synapse

Black Hat said:

My multi-arch docker image of Synapse has been updated to v1.4.0.

Dendrite

anoa offered:

Not much for Dendrite this week as anoa is off at Ubucon 2019. But we had a few valuable bugs reported by the community, and a pressing reminder to get Dendrite's Monolith mode in as part of its CI.

Dept of Bridges 🌉

slack bridge 1.0.1

Half-Shot told us:

Hey folks, The slack bridge 1.0.1 release is out https://github.com/matrix-org/matrix-appservice-slack/releases/tag/1.0.1 containing a few bug fixes found since the original release.

IRC bridge

Half-Shot offered:

I've not got much for this week, but the IRC bridge has been undergoing some serious refactors and changes for a larger release. Should be quite a big one when it lands :)

Dept of Encryption 🔐

Search inside E2EE rooms

Update from poljar:

A PR for riot-web has emerged that adds support for search in E2E encrypted rooms. The PR is utilizing Seshat to perform event indexing and search on riot-desktop. While the PR is missing any sort of UI, it is in a usable state.

Dept of Clients 📱

Riot iOS

Manu told us:

phase:1 of privacy work is done. Riot -iOS 0.10.0 will be available soon

every version of Riot Web released on GitHub

toml offered:

Take a trip down memory lane with the Riots of yesteryear at https://riots.im (note the 's'). Hosting every version of Riot Web released on GitHub 😁

Comes with free Wikipedia hole.

Riot Android

benoit announced:

Valere has done a release and is doing some maintenance. He has started to work on integration manager

RiotX

benoit offered:

RiotX: We have fixed quite a lot of issues during the stabilization sprint. We are now working on Sprint 4: read marker, report content, mark all room read, etc. François is changing the media/file picker and we will also be able to share elements from other apps to RiotX. We will schedule a release soon (tm) (should have happen this week, but has been delayed due to stabilization)

Dept of SDKs and Frameworks 🧰

Elixir projects from uhoreg, Polyjuice and Igor

uhoreg told us:

Polyjuice Client, a Matrix client library for Elixir, has a new release. There is now a short tutorial that will teach you how to make a simple echo bot with it.

Then:

Igor, a bot framework for Elixir, has had its first release.

Dept of Ping 🏓

RankHostnameMedian MS
1matrix.tetraodon.nl323
2aime.lesmatric.es361
3nerdsin.space370
4ru-matrix.org371.5
5c-base.org377
6fachschaften.org430
7linuxgl.ch435
8secureim.de479
9kif.rocks484
10aragon.sh511.5

That's all I know 🏁

See you next week, and be sure to stop by #twim:matrix.org with your updates!

New Vector raises $8.5M to accelerate Matrix/Riot/Modular

2019-10-10 — General — Matthew Hodgson

Hi all,

Massive news for the Matrix ecosystem today: New Vector (the startup which the Matrix core team formed to fund development in 2017) has raised an additional $8.5M of funding in order to speed up Riot/Matrix development and expand Matrix hosting via Modular.im!

The new funding comes in the form of a Series-A equity investment in New Vector from three of the top venture capital funds in London. The round is led by Notion - a fund set up by the founders of MessageLabs, who many will know as one of the leaders in secure hosted email services. Notion's long history with email means they immediately clocked the potential of Matrix's mission to build a new open global communication network - after all, Matrix aims to provide a worthy replacement to email (and the phone network, for that matter!). Joining Notion in the round is First Minute - a fund set up by the founders of Lastminute.com (arguably the UK's most famous original dotcom), and Dawn - one of the largest SaaS tech specialist funds in Europe (famous for backing iZettle, Mimecast, Neo4J and many more).

The last funding round in Jan 2017 from Status was instrumental in stabilising the big 1.0 release of Matrix and exiting beta in June; creating the Matrix.org Foundation as a neutral custodian for the standard; stabilising and optimising Synapse; redesigning Riot’s user interface; bringing in a full-time professional UI/UX designer to the team; supporting the huge amount of encryption work required to turn on E2EE by default (cross-signing, key backups, device verification, e2e search, the pantalaimon e2e daemon etc); creating RiotX/Android; and launching the Modular.im hosting platform.

With today’s new funding, the priorities for Matrix will be:

  • Turning on end-to-end encryption by default for DMs

  • Much better support for grouping rooms into Communities

  • More anti-abuse/anti-spam mechanisms

  • Shrinking Synapse (and/or finishing Dendrite)

  • Canonical DMs (having one DM per user, and have them feel clearly distinct from ‘rooms’)

  • Extensible Profiles

  • Decentralised accounts

  • Threading

  • ...and furthering development on P2P Matrix, so users can have full control of their communications without having to run or trust a server.

On the New Vector side, this funding will support:

  • A whole new wave of UX improvements to Riot (particularly around onboarding and first time user experience).

  • Making Modular hosting as polished and powerful as possible.

  • Creating a whole new set of next-generation Modular integrations.

While New Vector’s contributions to the Matrix ecosystem can’t be ignored, it’s important to remember that the Matrix protocol and specification itself is governed and controlled by the independent and neutral Matrix.org Foundation and its extensive governance processes. We set up the Foundation very deliberately to enforce the protocol's neutrality, formalise the project's mission, goals and values and hold true to them no matter what - specifically to protect the project from conflicts of interest with commercial Matrix endeavours, including New Vector.

That said, New Vector would not be taking money from any investors if they did not believe their goals are aligned with Matrix's. To clarify:

  • Matrix exists to create an open secure decentralised communication network and protocol for the benefit of all.
  • New Vector exists to help grow Matrix and be one of many successful companies in the Matrix ecosystem.
  • Tech VCs exist to invest their money in growing companies in order to get a return when the company IPOs or gets bought.

It turns out that these goals are not incompatible if one understands that the potential of the Matrix ecosystem is directly linked to its openness and size (hint: funding sources who didn’t understand this self-selected out ;). By funding Matrix development and helping the open ecosystem and public network grow, New Vector can go provide more Matrix hosting via Modular.im and more Government & Enterprise deployments via Vector.im. Critically, other companies can and do build on top of Matrix too - and frankly the more players there are, the more valuable the network, and the more value to be shared for everyone (including New Vector). This model worked relatively well for the Web, and we believe it'll work for Matrix too.

Update: the best way to gauge the investment in New Vector is to hear it first hand from the investors. Jos from Notion is leading the round, and has a fascinating blog post (written with zero input from Matrix or New Vector folks) to explain where the investors are coming from.

Update 2: More excellend first-hand analysis from Dan at Dawn Capital, who does a really deep dive into how they see Matrix and New Vector. Another must read.

In this case, all of New Vector's new investors have a background as respected tech entrepreneurs, and everyone involved categorically understands that Matrix itself is a neutral open source project, and the mission is to help build up the whole network to be as successful as possible rather than sabotage it by constraining it in any way.

All in all, it’s great news for the ecosystem: Matrix is 5 years old now, and while the project is growing faster than ever (over 300% more active users in the last year!) - it's fair to say that we haven't moved as fast as our mainstream competition - for instance, Slack is only a year older, and Discord is a year younger(!) Obviously much of this is due to Matrix being a completely different proposition: we've been creating an open spec; multiple client codebases; multiple server codebases; the bridges; a fault tolerant decentralised network - not to mention the complexities of decentralised E2E encryption. Based on comparing with our endeavours prior to Matrix, we estimate building this stuff in an open and decentralised manner takes roughly 6 times longer.

But the project is now in a position where the foundations are solid: the protocol is out of beta, reference servers and clients are production ready, and it’s more than time to make all of this mainstream. We have to redouble our focus on user experience and ensure that we compare favourably to today’s established alternatives while staying true to Matrix’s principles. Making sure there are Matrix apps out there which provide a credible alternative to with the likes of Slack and WhatsApp (until they eventually join Matrix, of course) is what will make the difference between Matrix being a cliquey FOSS curiosity versus really being the natural successor to today’s instant messaging, email and phone networks.

In the end; Matrix needs full-time contributors in order to continue to grow, and keeping New Vector funded is a very good way to achieve that (New Vector is hiring!). (That said, if any philanthropic billionaires are reading this, the Matrix.org Foundation is actively soliciting donations to improve Matrix independently of New Vector's efforts - particularly around the areas of countering online abuse and disinformation).

In the meantime, huge thanks to Jos at Notion for believing in Matrix and leading this funding round in New Vector - and huge thanks to the other investors who saw the potential! And most of all, thank you to all those supporting Matrix, whether by donating to the Foundation, promoting and using the protocol, or contributing code to the ecosystem. You are the ones keeping the dream alive :)

You can read things from the NV angle over at https://blog.vector.im/8-5m-to-accelerate-matrix/. We hope you’re as excited as we are to open a whole new chapter as Matrix picks up yet more momentum :D

-- Matthew, Amandine, and the whole Matrix team

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