A secure FOSS stack

“There are 2 types of people in this world, some who know they are hacked and others who don’t know that they’re hacked.” - John Chambers.

Funny as the above quote may seem to many, it is much more ugly than funny with respect to the effects it has on the world, majority of which are not visible to a majority. This casts a deceptive veil of beauty behind which the power lies.

Below, I have listed a series of tools, or stack as I call it which you can use to fight spying companies and take your privacy back in your hands. These companies supposedly “protect” you from hackers at the cost of completely placing you in their control of which they never mention anything ever.

By adopting the stack below, you will be undergoing a major change initially but your life will be in your control and things will become easier with time:

Laptop
Phone
Mini Server


OS(Laptop)
Destop Environment (Laptop)
KDE Plasma
Window Manager (Caution: For advanced users only)
dwm / xmonad
OS(Pinephone)
Archlinux + Plasma


Hosting Code on your hardware
Hosting Code on other’s hardware


Storing and creating strong passwords
KeePassX
Encryption and Digital Signature checks
GPA
Sandboxing (helps with security to a certain extent)
Firejail
Web Browser
Netsurf, TorBrowser
Video Editing
Shotcut / Kdenlive
Vector Art or Printing
Inkscape
Office Utilities
LibreOffice
PDF Viewer
Okular / Mupdf
Partition Manager
GParted


Web Search
SearX (Choose your favorite instance)
Chat
XMPP - Conversations(FDroid [recommended] ) or Quicksy(Google Play Store) or Dino, Tox - aTox, qTox
Video Chat
qTox
Sharing Images
Sharing Videos
Mail
Tutanota / Protonmail (Remember: All mail providers can read your mail.)
Editor
Featherpad / Mousepad (graphical), nano(console or virtual terminal)


Games
MegaGlest, xonotic, Battle For Wesnoth, Minetest, chess : lichess.org
Always use sandboxing (firejail) to open any untrusted file.
Always own your storage and don’t use hardware controlled by other people, a.k.a. “cloud”.
Always host your own server for few things(mail, chat, site). It's super cheap if you already have internet with a single external IP(in other words, if your internet service provider has not placed you behind a NAT). Setting it up is challenging but you can hire someone to do it for you.

We recommend not using services below at all but if you must use some services (Note : You motivate companies which work against your privacy by using apps below)

Browsing YouTube videos
NewPipe or using invidious sites
Using Instagram
Barinsta (Not anymore, Facebook has threatened the dev with a legal threat. More here. Use Pixelfed above)


-Sagar Acharya

Note: As of 11th September 2020, above recommended tools are more or less good. Always question events in the projects above. If one of the hero tool above turns to a villain (say by some acquisition), shift to another tool. Don’t be addicted to them.

Note++ : We don’t intend to demotivate free software creators who make softwares similar to above recommendations in the same field. It is just by chance that we have come across these tools and use them.