Urbit / Docs


Our networking protocol.

%ames is the name of both our network and the vane that communicates over it. When Unix receives a packet over the correct UDP port, it pipes it straight into %ames for handling. Also, all packets sent over the %ames network are sent by the %ames vane. Apps and vanes may use %ames to directly send messages to other ships. In general, apps use gall and clay to communicate with other ships rather than using %ames directly, but this isn't a requirement. Of course, gall and clay use %ames behind the scenes to communicate across the network. These are the only two vanes that use %ames.

%ames includes several significant components. Although the actual crypto algorithms are defined in zuse, they're used extensively in %ames for encrypting and decrypting packets. Congestion control and routing is handled entirely in %ames. Finally, the actual %ames protocol itself, including how to route incoming packets to the correct vane or app, is defined in %ames.


%ames is our networking protocol.

First we give commentary on the code, the algorithms involved, and the protocol. We trace through the code touched when a packet is sent, received, acknowledged, and that acknowledgment applied. This is fairly comprehensive, and contains many implementation details, but if you understand this, then you understand %ames.

If you've scrolled down this page, you may be intimidated by the amount of Hoon code, especially if you are new to the language. Don't be afraid of it, you don't have to read any of it if you don't want to -- every interesting action the code takes is explained in plain English. In fact, if you are new to the language, this may be a good learning opportunity. Even if you don't understand every line of Hoon code, you'll hopefully be able to follow most lines. By the time you've worked through this, you'll have seen many common patterns and best practices. Hoon, much more than other languages, is best learned by reading and understanding large quantities of existing code. In this way, it is similar to learning a natural language. All of this code is in arvo/ames.hoon.

After the commentary, we have reference documentation for all the data structures that are specific to %ames. If you see a data structure or a variable used that you don't recognize, search for it in the code, and it's very likely defined in one of these data structures. We recommend that another tab is kept open for easy access to the data structure reference documentation. The code for these is split between arvo/ames.hoon and arvo/zuse.hoon.

The Lifecycle of a Packet (or, How a Packet Becomes Law)

Here, we will trace a packet as it makes its way through ames. There are actually two pathways through ames: the legacy path through %want, and the modern way, entered through %wont, with full end-to-end acknowledgments. Here we will only trace the modern way, though much of the path is the same for both.

When an app (or a vane) wishes to send a packet to another ship, it must send a %wont card:

                  [%wont p=sock q=path r=*]                 ::  e2e send message

This card takes three arguments. The p is a sock, that is, a pair of two ships, the first of which is the sender and the second is the receiver. But wait, you ask, why do I get to decide who is the sender? Can I fake like I'm someone else? The reason is that there are potentially multiple ships on the same pier, and the kernel can send a message from any of them. If you attempt to send a message from a ship not on your pier, then ames will refuse to send it. If you hack around in your own copy of ames to go ahead and send it anyway, then the other ship will reject it because your key is bad. Only send messages from yourself.

The q is a path, representing the place on the other side that you want to receive your message. It is approximately equivalent to a port number. Messages on the same path are guaranteed to arrive in the same order as they were sent. No such guarantees are made across paths.

The r is the actual data that you are sending. As the type implies, this can be an arbitrary noun, and it will be transferred to the receiver exactly as-is, in a well-typed way. Of course, this is data that is sent over the wire, so be careful not to send anything too massive unless you're willing to wait.

But enough about the interface. Grepping in ames.hoon for %wont, we find that it appears in ++knob. We see that we go directly into ++wise:am.

        ++  wise                                            ::    wise:am
          |=  [soq=sock hen=duct cha=path val=* ete=?]      ::  send a statement
          ^-  [p=(list boon) q=fort]
          zork:zank:(wool:(ho:(um p.soq) q.soq) hen cha val ete)

The inputs to this gate are exactly the sort of thing you'd expect. In particular, everything in the %wont gate is here plus the calling duct so that we know where to send the acknowledgment and ete to determine if we're going to do the modern end-to-end acknowledgments.

The actual line of code looks intimidating, but it's really not all that bad. Working from the inside out, the call to ++um sets up our domestic server, and the call to ++ho sets up our knowledge about the neighbor we're sending to. From the outside, ++zork and ++zank just apply the changes made to our ++um and ++am cores, respectively. If you're familiar with the common idiom of ++abet, that's all this is. The code predates the widespread usage of that name.

The interesting part, then, is in ++wool:ho:um:am. Let's look at the code.

            ++  wool                                        ::    wool:ho:um:am
              |=  [hen=duct cha=path val=* ete=?]           ::  send a statement
              ^+  +>
              =+  ^=  rol  ^-  rill
                  =+  rol=(~(get by ryl.bah) cha)
                  ?~(rol *rill u.rol)
              =+  sex=sed.rol
              ::  ~&  [%tx [our her] cha sex]
              =.  ryl.bah
                  %+  ~(put by ryl.bah)  cha
                  rol(sed +(sed.rol), san (~(put by san.rol) sex hen))
              =+  cov=[p=p:sen:gus q=clon:diz]
              %+  wind  [cha sex]
              ?:  ete
                [%bund q.cov cha sex val]
              [%bond q.cov cha sex val]

This is slightly more complicated, but it's still not all that bad. Our inputs, at least, are fairly obvious.

If you glance at the code for a second, you'll see that ++wind:ho:um:am seems to be able to send a message, or ++meal:ames, given a ++soup. This gate, then, just sets up the things we need to for ++wind to do its job.

We first get rol, which is a ++rill:ames, that is, a particular outbound stream. This stream is specific to the path on which we're sending. If the path hasn't been used before, then we create it. We let sex be the number of messages we've already sent on this path.

Then, we update the outbound stream by incrementing the number of messages sent and placing an entry in san.rol that associates the message number with the duct that sent the message. This allows us to give the acknowledgment to the one who sent the message.

We let cov be the current life of our crypto and our neighbor's crypto. At the moment, we only need our neighbor's life, which we put into the meal.

Finally, we call ++wind:ho:um:am with the ++soup of the path and message number and the ++meal:ames of the payload itself. For end-to-end acknowledged messages, we use %bund.

                  [%bund p=life q=path [email protected] s=*]           ::  e2e message

Looking at how we create the %bund, we can easily see what each field is for.

Following the trail a little further, we go to ++wind:ho:um:am.

            ++  wind                                        ::    wind:ho:um:am
              |=  [gom=soup ham=meal]
              ::  ~&  [%wind her gom]
              ^+  +>
              =^  wyv  diz  (zuul:diz now ham)
              =^  feh  puz  (whap:puz now gom wyv)
              (busk xong:diz feh)

++wind does three things: it (1) encodes the message into a list of possibly-encrypted packets, (2) puts the message into the packet pump, and (3) sends any packets that are ready to be sent. Yes, our nice little linear run of each gate calling exactly one other interesting gate is over. We'll go in order here.

++zuul:lax:as:go is the what converts a ++meal:ames into a list of actual, 1KB packets.

            ++  zuul                                        ::    zuul:lax:as:go
              |=  [[email protected] ham=meal]                        ::  encode message
              ^-  [p=(list rock) q=_+>]
              =<  weft
              ++  wasp                                      ::  null security
              ++  weft                                      ::  fragment message
              ++  wisp                                      ::  generate message

For organizational purposes, ++zuul constructs an internal core with three arms. ++wasp encodes the meal into an atom with no encryption. ++wisp encodes a meal with possible encryption (else it simply calls ++wasp). ++weft takes the result of ++wisp and splits it into actual packets.

              ++  wasp                                      ::  null security
                ^-([p=skin [email protected]] [%none (jam ham)])

This simply jams the meal, wrapping it with the skin of %none, meaning no encryption.

Since ++wisp is a little long, we'll go through it line-by-line.

              ++  wisp                                      ::  generate message
                ^-  [[p=skin [email protected]] q=_..wisp]

++wisp produces a pair of a skin and an atom, which is the meal encoded as a single atom and possibly encrypted.

                ?:  =(%carp -.ham)
                  [wasp ..wisp]

If the meal that we're encoding is a %carp, then we don't encrypt it. A %carp meal is a partial meal, used when a message is more than 1KB. Since the entire message is already encrypted, we don't need to encrypt each packet individually again.

                ?:  !=(~ yed.caq.dur)
                  ?>  ?=(^ yed.caq.dur)
                  :_  ..wisp
                  :-  %fast
                  %^  cat  7
                  (en:r:cluy q.u.yed.caq.dur (jam ham))

If we have a symmetric key set up with this neighbor, then we simply use it. The skin %fast is used to indicate a symmetric key.

                ?:  &(=(~ lew.wod.dur) |(=(%back -.ham) =(%buck -.ham)))
                  [wasp ..wisp]

If we do not yet have our neighbor's will, then there is no way that we can seal the message so that only they may read it. If what we're sending is an acknowledgment, then we go ahead and just send it in the clear.

                =^  tuy  +>.$
                  ?:(=(~ lew.wod.dur) [*code +>.$] (griz now))

If we don't have our neighbor's will, then we “encrypt” with a key of 0. If we do have their will, then we generate a new symmetric key that we will propose.

                :_  ..wisp
                =+  yig=sen
                =+  bil=law.saf                             ::  XX send whole will
                =+  hom=(jam ham)

yig will be the life and engine for our current crypto. bil is our will. hom is the meal encoded as a single atom.

                ?:  =(~ lew.wod.dur)
                  :-  %open
                  %^    jam
                      [~ `life`p.yig]
                  (sign:as:q.yig tuy hom)

If we do not have our neighbor's will, then we send our current life along with our will and the message. The message itself is “signed” with a key of 0.

                :-  %full
                  =+  cay=cluy
                  %^    jam
                      [`life`p.cay `life`p.yig]
                  (seal:as:q.yig pub:ex:r.cay tuy hom)
              --                                            ::  --zuul:lax:as:go

If we do have our neighbor's will, then we send our perception of their current life, our current life, our will, and the message. The message is sealed with their public key so that only they can read our message.

Once we have the message encoded as an atom, ++weft goes to work.

              ++  weft                                      ::  fragment message
                ^-  [p=(list rock) q=_+>.$]
                =^  gim  ..weft  wisp
                :_  +>.$
                ^-  (list rock)

We're going to produce a list of the packets to send. First, we use the aforementioned ++wisp to get the message as an atom.

                =+  wit=(met 13 q.gim)
                ?<  =(0 wit)

wit is the number of 1KB (2^13 bit) blocks in the message. We assert that there is at least one block.

                ?:  =(1 wit)
                  =+  yup=(spit [our her] p.gim q.gim)
                  [yup ~]

If there is exactly one block, then we just call ++spit to turn the message into a packet. We'll explain what ++spit does momentarily.

                =+  ruv=(rip 13 q.gim)
                =+  gom=(shaf %thug q.gim)
                =+  inx=0

If there is more than one block, then we rip it into blocks in ruv. gom is a hash of the message, used as an id. inx is the number of packets we've already made.

                |-  ^-  (list rock)
                ?~  ruv  ~
                =+  ^=  vie
                    %+  spit
                      [our her]
                    wasp(ham [%carp (ksin p.gim) inx wit gom i.ruv])
                :-  vie
                $(ruv t.ruv, inx +(inx))

Here we package each block into a packet with ++spit and produce the list of packets.

      ++  spit                                              ::  cake to packet
        |=  kec=cake  ^-  @
        =+  wim=(met 3 p.p.kec)
        =+  dum=(met 3 q.p.kec)
        =+  yax=?:((lte wim 2) 0 ?:((lte wim 4) 1 ?:((lte wim 8) 2 3)))
        =+  qax=?:((lte dum 2) 0 ?:((lte dum 4) 1 ?:((lte dum 8) 2 3)))
        =+  wix=(bex +(yax))
        =+  vix=(bex +(qax))
        =+  bod=:(mix p.p.kec (lsh 3 wix q.p.kec) (lsh 3 (add wix vix) r.kec))
        =+  tay=(ksin q.kec)
        %+  mix
          %+  can  0
          :~  [3 1]
              [20 (mug bod)]
              [2 yax]
              [2 qax]
              [5 tay]
        (lsh 5 1 bod)

This is how we turn a message into a real packet. This has the definition of the packet format.

wim is the length of the sending ship, and dum is the length of the receiving ship. There are only five possibilities for each of those, corresponding to carriers, cruisers, destroyers, yachts, and submarines. These are encoded in yax and qax as 0, 0, 1, 2, and 3, respectively. Thus, wix and vix are the number of bytes that must be reserved for the ship names in a packet.

Next, we construct bod by simply concatenating the sending ship, the receiving ship, and the body of the message. Then, we get the encryption mechanism from ++skin:ames, which may be a 0, 1, 2, or 3, and put it in tay.

Next, we concatenate together, bit by bit, some final metadata. We use three bits for our protocol number, which is incremented modulo eight when there is a continuity breach or the protocol changes. We use the final twenty bits of a hash of the body (which, we suppose, makes it a twenty bit hash) for error-checking. We use two bits to tell how much room is used in the body for the sending ship, and another two bits for the receiving ship. Finally, we use five bits to store the encryption type. Note that since there are only two bits worth of encryption types, there are three unused bits here. This adds up to 32 bits of header data. Finally, we concatenate this onto the front of the packet. Thus, we can summarize the packet header format as follows.

     0                   1                   2                   3
     0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 0 1
    |Proto|             Hash of Body              |yax|qax| Crypto  |

After this, there are yax bits of the sender name, qax bits of the receiver name, and up to 8192 bits of data. Thus, the maximum size of a packet is achieved in a message between two submarines with 8192 bits of data. This will require 32+128+128+8192 = 8480 bits, or 1060 bytes.

This concludes our discussion of ++zuul:lax:as:go. If you recall from ++wind:ho:um:am, the list of packets from ++zuul is passed into ++whap:pu to update the packet pump and get any packets that can be sent immediately.

        ++  whap                                            ::    whap:pu
          |=  [[email protected] gom=soup wyv=(list rock)]            ::  send a message
          ^-  [(list rock) _+>]
          =.  pyz  (~(put by pyz) gom (lent wyv))
          =.  +>
            |-  ^+  +>.^$
            ?~  wyv  +>.^$
            %=  $
              wyv  t.wyv
              nus  +(nus)
              diq  (~(put by diq) (shaf %flap i.wyv) nus)
              puq  (~(put to puq) [nus `soul`[gom 0 | ~2000.1.1 i.wyv]])
          (harv now)

First, we put into pyz the id for this message and the number of its packets that have not yet been acknowledged, which is of course the total number of packets since we haven't even sent the packets.

For every packet, we change three things in the state (++shed:ames) of our packet pump: (1) we increment nus, the number of packets sent; (2) we put the packet number into diq keyed by a hash of the packet; and (3) we put the packet into the packet queue, with the basic metadata of its id gom, 0 transmissions, not live yet, last sent in the year 2000, and the packet itself.

Finally, we harvest the packet pump.

        ++  harv                                            ::    harv:pu
          |=  [email protected]                                       ::  harvest queue
          ^-  [(list rock) _+>]
          ?:  =(~ puq)  [~ +>(rtn ~)]
          ?.  (gth caw nif)  [~ +>]
          =+  wid=(sub caw nif)
          =|  rub=(list rock)
          =<  abet  =<  apse

++harv contains a core for most of its work. The meat is in ++apse. First, though, it sets itself up. If there aren't any packets in the queue, then we simply do nothing except set rtn, our next timeout, to nil because we don't have any packets that may need to be retransmitted. If we have more live (that is, sent and unacknowledged) packets than our window size, then we don't do anything.

Otherwise, we let wid be the width of our remaining packet window, and we initialize rub to nil. rub will be the list of packets that are ready to be sent. We then call ++apse and pass the result to ++abet. ++apse decides which packets are ready to be sent.

          ++  apse
            ^+  .
            ?~  puq  .
            ?:  =(0 wid)  .
            =>  rigt  =<  left
            ?>  ?=(^ puq)
            ?:  =(0 wid)  .
            ?.  =(| liv.q.n.puq)  .
            ::  ~&  [%harv nux.q.n.puq p.n.puq]
            %_    .
              wid          (dec wid)
              rub          [pac.q.n.puq rub]
              nif          +(nif)
              liv.q.n.puq  &
              nux.q.n.puq  +(nux.q.n.puq)
              lys.q.n.puq  now

If there are no remaining packets to send, or if we've filled the packet window, do nothing. We call ++rigt and ++left to process the left and right branches of the packet queue.

Now we assert that the queue is not empty, and we again check that we haven't filled the packet window. We will operate on the head of the queue. If the packet is live, then do nothing. Otherwise, we go ahead and send it.

To send, we (1) decrement wid, our packet window width; (2) cons the packet onto the rub, which will be returned as the list of packets to send; (3) increment nif, the number of live packets; (4) set the packet to be live; (5) increment the number of transmissions of the packet; and (6) set the last sent time of the packet to now.

          ++  left
            ?>  ?=(^ puq)
            ^+(. =+(lef=apse(puq l.puq) lef(puq [n.puq puq.lef r.puq])))
          ++  rigt
            ?>  ?=(^ puq)
            ^+(. =+(rig=apse(puq r.puq) rig(puq [n.puq l.puq puq.rig])))

These do exactly what you would expect: they traverse the packet queue so that ++apse gets called recursively through it.

Finally, ++abet gets called, which resolves the changes.

          ++  abet
            ?~  rub  [~ +>.$]
            [(flop rub) +>.$(rtn [~ (add rto now)])]

This returns the packets that we wish to send, and it updates the timeout so that we know when to try resending unacknowledged packets.

This concludes our discussion of ++whap:pu. To finish ++wind:ho:um:am, we just need to delve into ++busk:ho:um:am. But wait, in the call to ++busk, the first argument is xong:diz. What is this? This, my dear reader, is one more detour, this time into ++xong:lax:as:go.

            ++  xong                                        ::    xong:lax:as:go
              ^-  (list ship)                               ::  route unto
              =+  [fro=xen too=xeno]
              =+  ^=  oot  ^-  (list ship)
                  =|  oot=(list ship)
                  |-  ^+  oot
                  ?~  too  ~
                  ?:  (lien fro |=(a=ship =(a i.too)))  ~
                  [i.too $(too t.too)]
              ::  ~&  [%xong-to [our her] (weld oot ?>(?=(^ fro) t.fro))]
              (weld oot ?>(?=(^ fro) t.fro))

This gets the list of intermediate ships needed to get a packet from us to our neighbor. First, we get fro and too, the “canons” of ourself and our neighbor, respectively.

What is this “canon”, you ask? A canon is simply a ship plus its “ancestors”, as defined by ++sein:title. For example, the canon of ~hoclur-bicrel is:

    ~hoclur-bicrel/try=> (saxo:title ~hoclur-bicrel)
    ~[~hoclur-bicrel ~tasruc ~tug]

If we follow the algorithm in ++xong, we see that we are simply creating a list of ships that form a path from our neighbor to ourself. Essentially, we look through the canon of our neighbor until we find something in our own cannon -- a common ancestor. Or, if we are from different carriers, then there is no common ancestor. We then weld this onto the tail of our own canon. In the end, this is simply a list of possible ships to try to route via to get to our neighbor, ordered by preferability (that is, closeness to our neighbor). We will end up trying, in order, to find a lane to these.

Now, we can finally get to ++busk:ho:um:am.

            ++  busk                                        ::    busk:ho:um:am
              |=  [waz=(list ship) pax=(list rock)]         ::  send packets
              %_    +>
                |-  ^+  bin
                ?~  pax  bin
                $(pax t.pax, bin (weld (flop (wist:diz now waz ~ i.pax)) bin))

Thankfully, ++busk is fairly simple. We go through the list of packets and convert them to ++boon:amess with ++wist:lax:as:go. These boons are placed into bin, and they end up getting processed by ++clop (this happens in ++knob).

            ++  wist                                        ::    wist:lax:as:go
              |=  $:  [email protected]                               ::  route via
                      waz=(list ,@p)
                      ryn=(unit lane)
              ^-  (list boon)
              ?:  =(our her)  [[%ouzo *lane pac] ~]
              ?~  waz  ~
              =+  dyr=?:(=(her i.waz) dur (gur i.waz))
              ?.  ?&  !=(our i.waz)
                      ?=(^ lun.wod.dyr)
                $(waz t.waz)
              :_  ?:  ?=(%ix -.u.lun.wod.dyr)
                    $(waz t.waz)
              :+  %ouzo  u.lun.wod.dyr
              ?:  &(=(i.waz her) =(~ ryn))  pac
              =+  mal=(jam `meal`[%fore her ryn pac])
              %-  spit
              ^-  cake
              :*  [our i.waz]
                  ?~  yed.caq.dyr  [%none mal]
                  :-  %fast
                  %^  cat  7
                  (en:crub:crypto q.u.yed.caq.dyr mal)

This takes a sample of the current time, the list of ships that we just generated, a lane if we already know it, and the packet itself.

First, if we are sending a message to ourself, then we simply create a %ouzo boon with a bunted lane. Otherwise, if there are no routing candidates, there is nothing we can do, so we return nil.

Next, we get the ++dore:ames of the first routing candidate. If we're looking at the neighbor to whom we're trying to send the message, then we simply use the ++dore:ames that we already have. Otherwise, we get a default ++dore:ames.

If we're the first routing candidate, or if we have don't have a lane to this candidate, then we skip this candidate and move on to the next one.

If we have only a provisional ip address, then we try to send on it, but we also try to send on later routing candidates as well. Otherwise, we only send on this one candidate.

Finally, we create the actual %ouzo boon. The lane is the one from our ++dore:ames. If we're sending it directly to our intended recipient, and we haven't been told to use a specific lane, then we just send the packet directly. Otherwise, we wrap it in a little %fore meal, telling the intermediary to whom we wish it to be sent. If we have already set up a symmetric key with the intermediary, then we encrypt it with that. Otherwise, we send it in the clear.

Now, if you recall, we have traced all the way through from the beginning when, in ++knob, the %wont card was handled by a call to ++wise. There is only one more step before the packet is finally sent. Looking in ++knob, we see that the resultant list of boons is passed into ++clop, which will execute the correct actions and return a list of moves. In ++clop, we see the handling of each specific boon. The one we are interested in is %ouzo, since that is the only one we have sent thus far.

          ::  ~&  [%send now p.bon `@p`(mug (shaf %flap q.bon))]
          :_  fox
          [[gad.fox [%give %send p.bon q.bon]] ~]

Very simply, we give a %send gift along the special duct that goes straight into the bowels of unix. This is the last stop before we drop into vere, and later libuv. And then... the world.

The packet, after its creation, embarks on a journey across physical time and space into the great unknown. Hurtling through fiber-optic cables at hundreds of thousands of kilometers per second, it finally arrives at our neighbor's network adapter. The adapter tells unix, unix tells libuv, libuv tells vere, and vere sends a %hear kiss to ames. And now we reenter the kernel.

The %hear kiss goes straight to ++knob, just as did the %wont kiss earlier.

              (~(gnaw am [now fox]) %good p.kyz q.kyz)

Here, though, we call ++gnaw:am to process the packet. The arguments to ++gnaw are the same as those to the %hear kiss: the lane on which the packet was received and the packet itself. The other argument is just %good, which is a ++cape:ames saying that we expect the packet to succeed. If a formal error occurs, then since we have a transactional event system, the %hear event will never be considered to have actually happened, and unix will send a %hole kiss so that we may send a negative acknowledgment.

        ++  gnaw                                            ::    gnaw:am
          |=  [kay=cape ryn=lane pac=rock]                  ::  process packet
          ^-  [p=(list boon) q=fort]
          ?.  =(2 (end 0 3 pac))  [~ fox]
          =+  kec=(bite pac)
          ?:  (goop p.p.kec)  [~ fox]
          ?.  (~(has by urb.ton.fox) q.p.kec)
            [~ fox]
          =<  zork
          =<  zank
          %-  ~(chew la:(ho:(um q.p.kec) p.p.kec) kay ryn %none (shaf %flap pac))
          [q.kec r.kec]

First, we check the protocol number. If it is not correct, then we simply ignore the packet entirely. Otherwise, we parse the packet with ++bite, which converts a packet atom into a ++cake:ames, that is, a triple of the sock (pair of sender and receiver), the skin (encryption type), and the data.

      ++  bite                                              ::  packet to cake
        |=  pac=rock  ^-  cake
        =+  [mag=(end 5 1 pac) bod=(rsh 5 1 pac)]
        =+  :*  vez=(end 0 3 mag)                           ::  protocol version
                chk=(cut 0 [3 20] mag)                      ::  checksum
                wix=(bex +((cut 0 [23 2] mag)))             ::  width of receiver
                vix=(bex +((cut 0 [25 2] mag)))             ::  width of sender
                tay=(cut 0 [27 5] mag)                      ::  message type
        ?>  =(2 vez)
        ?>  =(chk (end 0 20 (mug bod)))
        :+  [(end 3 wix bod) (cut 3 [wix vix] bod)]
          (kins tay)
        (rsh 3 (add wix vix) bod)

This is exactly the inverse of ++spit. Note that here we check both the protocol number and the hash, crashing on error. Remember that a crash will result in a negative acknowledgment being sent.

Continuing in ++gnaw, we see that if the intended recipient is not on our pier, then we drop the packet.

If we've gotten this far, then we wish to process the packet. Recall that ++ho and ++um set up the domestic server and foreign client cores, respectively, and that ++zork and ++zank resolve any changes to these cores.

The new stuff here, then, is the ++la core and the ++chew arm. The ++la sets up a core for this particular packet, containing the current success/failure ++cape:ames, the lane it was sent on, the encryption type, and a hash of the packet, used as an id.

++chew is called with the encryption type and the message itself. It contains a little helper core inside of it, which starts immediately with ++apse.

                ++  apse
                  ^+  +>.$
                  =+  oub=bust:puz
                  =+  neg==(~ yed.caq.dur.diz)
                  =.  +>.$  east
                  =+  eng==(~ yed.caq.dur.diz)
                  =+  bou=bust:puz
                  =.  bin
                    ?.  &(oub !bou)  bin
                    :_(bin [%wine [our her] " is ok"])
                  =.  bin
                    ?.  &(neg !eng)  bin
                    :_(bin [%wine [our her] " is your neighbor"])

First, we let oub be true if our neighbor hasn't been responding to us for more than sixteen seconds. Let neg be true if we haven't yet proposed a symmetric key, meaning that we haven't yet corresponded with this ship, so they are not our neighbor. Next, we run ++east, which we'll go into in just a minute.

We now do the same two checks and store the results in eng and bou. If our neighbor has, like the prodigal son, returned after an extended absence, then we send a %wine boon as the proverbial fatted calf, which is simply printed out to the console. Likewise, if we are meeting one with whom we have never had the pleasure of acquainting ourselves, we send a message to the console to that effect.

We skipped over ++east, which contains the meat of the processing. It first decrypts the message, then calls ++chow:la:ho:um:am with the resultant meal. We'll go through each of the four cases in turn, but first since each one calls ++bilk:pu, we'll take a brief detour.

        ++  bilk                                            ::    bilk:pu
          |=  [email protected]                                       ::  inbound packet
          ^+  +>
          =+  trt=(mul 2 rtt)
          %=  +>.$
            rue  [~ now]
            rto  trt
            rtn  ?~(puq ~ [~ (add now trt)])

This updates the timing information in our packet pump. rue, the last time we have heard from this neighbor, is set to now. rto, the retransmit timeout is set to twice the current ping time, and if there is anything in the packet queue, then we reset the next timeout, since we've just heard a message.

Back to ++east.

                    =.  puz  (bilk:puz now)
                    (chow ((hard meal) (cue msg)))

The simplest case is when the encryption type is %none. We first call ++bilk to update the packet pump, then we cue (unjam) the message into a meal. We hard cast it into a meal -- if the cast fails, then we do want to crash since someone is sending us malformed data. Finally, we send the result to ++chow for interpretation and handling.

                    =+  [mag=`hand`(end 7 1 msg) bod=(rsh 7 1 msg)]
                    =+  dey=(kuch:diz mag)
                    ?~  dey
                      ~&  [%bad-key her mag]
                      +>.$                           ::  ignore unknown key
                    =.  puz  (bilk:puz now)
                    =^  key  diz  u.dey
                    (chow(aut sin) ((hard meal) (cue (dy:q:sen:gus key bod))))

For symmetric encryption, we first get the ++hand, which is the hash of the symmetric key. We pass it to ++kuch:lax:as:go, which returns the key if we either have used it before or we have proposed it. If we have proposed it, then we change its status from proposed to real. If ++kuch fails, then we drop the packet and print out a %bad-key message.

Otherwise, we call ++bilk as before to update the packet pump and pass into ++chow the decrypted data.

                    =+  mex=((hard ,[p=[p=life q=life] q=will [email protected]]) (cue msg))
                    =.  diz  (deng:diz q.mex)
                    =+  wug=cluy:diz
                    ?>  =(q.p.mex p.wug)
                    =+  gey=(sev:gus p.p.mex)
                    =+  mes=(need (tear:as:q.gey pub:ex:r.wug r.mex))
                    =.  diz  (wasc:diz p.mes)
                    =.  puz  (bilk:puz now)
                    (west(msg q.mes))

For sealed asymmetric encryption, we first take off the the layer of data that gives us the life and will of our neighbor, and we apply try to extend their former will with the new data. ++deng will fail if this is impossible.

Next, we get our most current understanding of our neighbor's crypto, and we verify that it's the same life as what they're sending. Then, we get our own crypto from ++sev and decrypt the message with the public key from our neighbor's crypto. We register the proposed symmetric key, update the packet pump, and call ++west, which simply casts the message to a meal and calls ++chow, reporting any error.

                    =+  mex=((hard ,[p=[~ q=life] q=will [email protected]]) (cue msg))
                    =.  diz  (deng:diz q.mex)
                    =+  wug=cluy:diz
                    ?>  =(q.p.mex p.wug)
                    =+  mes=(need (sure:as:r.wug *code r.mex))
                    =.  puz  (bilk:puz now)
                    (west(msg mes))

Finally, for signed asymmetric encryption, we, as before, take off the layer of data that gives us the life and will of our neighbor. This time, of course, we do not get our own crypto -- only that of our neighbor.

The rest you have seen. We call ++deng to extend the will, we verify that their crypto life is what we think it ought to be, we “decrypt” the data, we update the packet pump, and we call ++west to call ++chow.

              ++  chow                                      ::    chow:la:ho:um:am
                |=  fud=meal                                ::  interpret meal
                ^+  +>
                =.  diz  ?:(=(%none aut) diz (wast:diz ryn))
                (dine fud)

Here, if the message was encrypted at all, then we call ++wast:lax:as:go, which simply updates the lane (route) to our neighbor (unless we're given a provisional route). This ensures that we always have the most direct possible path to them.

We've been handling this meal for so long, we've almost forgotten what we want to do with it. The telos is of any meal to be dined on. We will choose out the cases here that are important to our current investigation.

                  =+  ^=  lyn  ^-  lane
                      ?~  q.fud  ryn
                      ?.  ?=(%if -.u.q.fud)  u.q.fud
                      [%ix +.u.q.fud]
                      ::  u.q.fud
                  ?:  =(our p.fud)
                    (emit %mead lyn r.fud)
                  =+  zid=(myx:gus p.fud)
                  (emir (wist:zid now xong:zid [~ lyn] r.fud))

Forwarding is the simplest case, since we've seen all the arms before, except perhaps ++emit and ++emir, which simply take a boon or list of boons respectively and queue them up to be handled when the core resolves. If we're told to forward a packet to ourselves, then we emit a %mead boon which simply sends another %hear kiss to ourselves with the data. Otherwise, we try to find a route to the recipient, as before.

                  =+  zol=(~(get by olz.weg) s.fud)
                  ?^  zol  cock(kay u.zol)
                  =^  neb  nys.weg
                      =+  neb=(~(get by nys.weg) s.fud)
                      ?^  neb  [u.neb nys.weg]
                      =+  neb=`bait`[(kins p.fud) 0 r.fud ~]
                      [neb (~(put by nys.weg) s.fud neb)]
                  ?>  (lth q.fud p.r.neb)
                  ?>  =((kins p.fud) p.neb)
                  ?>  =(r.fud p.r.neb)
                  =+  doy=`(unit ,@)`(~(get by q.r.neb) q.fud)
                  ?^  doy  cock
                  =>  ^+  .   %=  .
                        q.r.neb  (~(put by q.r.neb) q.fud t.fud)
                        q.neb    +(q.neb)
                  ::  ~&  [%carp q.fud s.fud q.neb p.r.neb]
                  ?:  =(q.neb p.r.neb)
                    =:  nys.weg  (~(del by nys.weg) s.fud)
                        olz.weg  (~(put by olz.weg) s.fud kay)
                    (golf p.neb r.neb)
                  =.  +>.$  cock
                  +>.$(nys.weg (~(put by nys.weg) s.fud neb))

Here, we have received a partial message, and we're just assembling the individual packets into a message. Most of this code is fairly algorithmic, so we'll just hit the high points. In the beginning, we check if we've already received this message, and if so, we resend the acknowledgment. Remember, “always ack a dupe, never ack an ack”.

In nys.weg we keep track of an incoming set of partial packets, indexed by the flap hash that comes with every packet. We check to see if we have already received this partial message, and if so we acknowledge it. Otherwise, we put it in nys.weg unless this is the last message, in which case we ack the last partial message, move the complete message into olz.weg, and call ++golf, which assembles the message and calls ++chew, to start the dance again with the complete message.

                  ::  ~&  [%bund q.fud r.fud]
                  ?>  =(p:sen:gus p.fud)
                  (deer q.fud r.fud ?-(kay %dead ~, %good [~ s.fud]))

What if we're just receiving a regular old, garden variety message? We call ++deer with the data from the message. If we already know that the message processing will fail (that is, if we got a %hole card from unix rather than a %hear card), then we don't even send the data at all. Remember, if a packet fails to process, it's as if it never even arrived, except that we send a negative acknowledgment.

              ++  deer                                      ::    deer:la:ho:um:am
                |=  [cha=path [email protected] dut=(unit)]           ::  interpret message
                ^+  +>
                =+  rum=(fall (~(get by raz.bah) cha) *race)
                %=    +>.$
                  ?.  (gte num did.rum)                     ::  always ack a dup
                    (cook (~(get by bum.rum) num) cha ~ ryn dam)
                  ?:  dod.rum
                    (coat cha rum(mis (~(put by mis.rum) num [kay ryn dam dut])))
                  %=    +>.+>.$
                    %+  ~(put by raz.bah)  cha
                    rum(mis (~(put by mis.rum) num [kay ryn dam dut]))

First, we get the race for this particular triple of sender, receiver, and path, creating it if it doesn't exist. If we've already acked the message, then we resend the ack. Note that did.rum is the number of packets we acknowledged, positively or negatively while bum.rum is a map of message numbers to negative acknowledgments. Thus, if a message number is less than did.rum, then if it's in bum.rum then it was negatively acknowledged, otherwise it's positively acknowledged. Thus, we are constant in space with the number of successful messages and linear in the number of failed messages. We'll document ++cook later on, but suffice it to say that it sends an acknowledgment. It is to end-to-end acknowledgments what ++cock is to packet-level acknowledgments.

If we are still processing a message (that is, dod.rum is false), then we simply put this message in the map of misordered packets to be processed when their time comes. “Processing a message” in this case means that we've received the message and notified the correct application, but we're still waiting for the application-level acknowledgment.

Otherwise, we're ready for a packet, so we process it.

            ++  coat                                        ::    coat:ho:um:am
              |=  [cha=path rum=race]                       ::  update input race
              ^+  +>
              =+  cun=(~(get by mis.rum) did.rum)
              ?~  cun
                +>.$(raz.bah (~(put by raz.bah) cha rum))
              ?.  =(%good p.u.cun)  +>.$
              ?>  ?=(^ s.u.cun)
              %=    +>.$
                  raz.bah  (~(put by raz.bah) cha rum(dod |))
                :_  bin
                :^    %mulk
                    [our her]
                  `soap:ames`[[p:sen:gus clon:diz] cha did.rum]

First, we grab the message we want to process and store it in cun. If it's a good packet, then we change dod.rum to false, meaning that we're in the middle of processing a packet and should not start processing another one. We also put a %mulk boon into the queue so that, when it all resolves, we send a mesage to the intended recipient application. The boon contains the sender, the receiver, the identity of the message, and the message itself.

This bubbles up all the way back to ++knob, where we were handling the %hear card. Following the logic in ++knob, we can see that the boons get sent into ++clop to be turned into actual arvo-level moves. We've been here before, if you recall, when we handled the %cake boon to send a message. Now, we're handling the %mulk boon, which is unfortunately slightly more complicated.

          ::  ~&  [%mulk p.bon q.bon]
          ?>  ?=([@ @ *] q.q.bon)
          ?>  ?=(%q i.q.q.bon)
          ?+  i.t.q.q.bon
            ~&  %mulk-bad
            :_  fox
            :~  :-  (claw p.p.bon)
                [%sick %wart p.bon i.t.q.q.bon t.t.q.q.bon r.bon]
              %ge                                         ::  %gall request
            ?>  ?=([@ ~] t.t.q.q.bon)
            =+  app=`term`(need ((sand %tas) i.t.t.q.q.bon))
            =+  ^=  pax
                :+  (scot %p p.p.bon)
                  (scot %p q.p.bon)
            :_  fox  [hen %pass pax %g %rote p.bon app r.bon]~
              %gh                                         ::  %gall response
            ?>  ?=([@ ~] t.t.q.q.bon)
            =+  app=`term`(need ((sand %tas) i.t.t.q.q.bon))
            =+  ^=  pax
                :+  (scot %p p.p.bon)
                  (scot %p q.p.bon)
            :_  fox  [hen %pass pax %g %roth p.bon app r.bon]~

We're dispatching messages based on the prefix of their path. Since only %gall apps use end-to-end acknowledgments at the moment, every path must have at least two elements, and the first one must be %q. Beyond that, we handle the /q/ge and /q/gh cases for gall requests and responses, respectively.

In both cases, we require the next term in the path to be the name of the intended recipient %gall app. Thus, a message to /q/ge/talk for example, will send a message to the talk app.

We then send a message to the app itself. The message is either a %rote or a %roth for a request and a response, respectively. The content is the rook or roon that was sent (stored in r.bon), but we don't actually handle that at all here. That's completely a %gall-level thing. We're just the messenger.

Notice the path we send this over. We encode the sender, the receiver, and the path over which it was sent. This fully specifies the race so that when the app gives us the acknowledgment we know where to send it.

We now have another interlude. We have entrusted our precious data, so carefully guarded and guided from the app on that far-away ship, to our local app. It has the ability to do whatever it pleases with it. It may take a significant amount of time to process. When the message has been handled by this app, though, it must produce an acknowledgment. Our final task is to deliver this acknowledgment to the sending app.

We should describe here what exactly these oft-mentioned acknowledgments actually consist of. There are two kinds of acknowledgments: positive and negative. A positive acknowledgment contains no data other than its existence. A negative acknowledgment may optionally include a reason for said negativity. Formally, a negative acknowledgment is an ares, which is a unit pair of a term and a list of tanks. If this is null, this is simply a failure with no associated information. If the pair exists, the term is a short error code that is usually both human and computer readable. For example, if you try to send a message to a valid %gall app that doesn't have any ++poke to handle it, then %gall will give a negative acknowledgment with error term %poke-find-fail. The list of tanks is a human-readable description of the error. This often contains a stack trace. At any rate, all this information is returned to the sending app on the other end of the wire.

After this brief interlude, our story resumes in ++knap, where we receive responses. In particular, a %mean indicates a negative acknowledgment while a %nice indicates a positive acknowledgment.

            ?(%mean %nice)
          ?>  ?=([@ @ @ *] tea)
          =+  soq=[(slav %p i.tea) (slav %p i.t.tea)]
          =+  pax=t.t.tea
          =+  ^=  fuy
              =<  zork  =<  zank
              %^  ~(rack am [now fox])  soq  pax
              ?-(+<.sih %mean `p.+.sih, %nice ~)
          =>  %_(. fox q.fuy)
          =|  out=(list move)
          |-  ^-  [p=(list move) q=_+>.^$]
          ?~  p.fuy
            [(flop out) +>.^$]
          =^  toe  fox  (clop now hen i.p.fuy)
          $(p.fuy t.p.fuy, out (weld (flop toe) out))

Recall the format of the path we sent the message on, and you'll understand why soq and pax are the sender/receiver pair and path on which the message was sent. The rest of this is structured much like ++knob, so we call ++rack:am and send the resulting boons to ++clop. Business as usual.

        ++  rack                                            ::    rack:am
          |=  [soq=sock cha=path cop=coop]                  ::  e2e ack
          =+  oh=(ho:(um p.soq) q.soq)
          =.  oh  (cook:oh cop cha ~)
          (cans:oh cha)

First, we set up ++um and ++ho, as we've done twice before, for our domestic and foreign servers, respectively. The other two things are new, though. Well, ++cook is not actually new, but we delayed the explanation saying only that it sends an acknowledgment. The time has come.

            ++  cook                                        ::    cook:ho:um:am
              |=  [cop=coop cha=path ram=(unit ,[ryn=lane dam=flap])]
              ^+  +>                                        ::  acknowledgment
              =+  rum=(need (~(get by raz.bah) cha))
              =+  lat=(~(get by mis.rum) did.rum)
              ?:  &(?=(~ lat) ?=(~ ram))  ~&(%ack-late-or-redundant +>.$)
              =+  ^-  [ryn=lane dam=flap]
                  ?^  ram  [ryn.u.ram dam.u.ram]
                  ?<  ?=(~ lat)
                  [q r]:u.lat
              =.  raz.bah
                ?^  ram  raz.bah
                %+  ~(put by raz.bah)  cha
                rum(dod &, bum ?~(cop bum.rum (~(put by bum.rum) did.rum u.cop)))
              =^  roc  diz  (zuul:diz now [%buck cop dam ~s0])
              (busk(diz (wast:diz ryn)) xong:diz roc)

If we are acknowledging a message that we have already acked, the ram will contain the new lane and flap to send the duplicate ack to. This happens if we call ++cook in ++deer, but it doesn't happen from ++rack. If there is no message waiting to be acknowledged and we're not given an explicit lane and flap (that is, we're not sending a duplicate ack), then the app must have sent us multiple acknowledgments. We do the only sensible thing we can do and drop all acknowledgments after the first, printing a message. This is, in fact, an error, so it could be argued that we ought to crash. Whatever you do, don't depend on this not crashing.

First, we grab the race specified by the given path, and we get the most recent in-order message, which must be the one which is being acknowledged.

Then, we decide which lane/flap to respond on/to. Basically, in the usual case we respond on the lane through which the initial message was sent, which is stored along with the other packet information in mis.rum, since it has to be remembered across calls to ames. However, if we receive a duplicate message, then we must respond to the new message. It's quite possible the reason the other acknowledgment didn't get returned was that the lane between the ships was broken.

At any rate, we update the race by saying that we've finished processing this packet (unless we're sending a duplicate ack) and, if we're sending a negative acknowledgment, putting the negative ack into bum.rum so that we can resend it if necessary.

We encode our new message, updating the packet pump, with ++zuul, as before, and we send it off with ++busk, routed via ++wast to one of the ships in ++xong. Of course, in practice, we don't even look at the ships in ++xong because we already have a lane directly to our neighbor (the one over which they sent their message to us).

We glossed over the actual message we're sending back. We're sending a %buck meal, which is an acknowledgment. The cop specifies whether this is a positive or a negative ack, dam specifies the message we're acknowledging, and the ~s0 is a placeholder for the processing time required. This time is neither calculated (though it is hopefully obvious how to do so) nor used at present, but this information may be used in the future for improved congestion control. Since the round-trip time for an end-to-end acknowledged packet includes the processing time on the other end, most common congestion control algorithms will stumble when some messages take much longer to process than others. As noted, though, this is simply an opportunity for improvement -- our congestion control algorithms are relatively naive at the moment.

Recall that ++busk calls ++wist to put the actual %ouzo boon in the queue, which gets handled by ++clop to actually send the message. This is the same pipeline as sending any other message, so we'll refer you to the explanation above if you've forgotten it.

The last thing we need to do on this ship is move on to the next packet in the queue if there is one. If you recall, in ++rack after the call to ++cook there was a call to ++cans:ho:um:am.

            ++  cans                                        ::    cans:ho:um:am
              |=  cha=path
              =+  rum=(need (~(get by raz.bah) cha))
              =.  rum
                %=  rum
                  did  +(did.rum)
                  mis  (~(del by mis.rum) did.rum)
              (coat cha rum)

This is very simple. We increment the number of packets that we've acknowledged on this race and we delete the packet that we just acknowledged from the set of misordered packets.

Then, we call ++coat again to process the next packet if we've already received it. And that's it for this.

The acknowledgment now travels the same path that its forebearer, the original message, once tread, but this time not into the great unknown. The weary traveler is seeking out its familial roots, finding the app from whom sprung forth the original message way back in paragraph three. When it arrives at the network adapter of its ancestors, the adapter tells unix, unix tells libuv, libuv tells vere, and vere sends a %hear kiss to ames. Once more into the kernel.

The %hear kiss is handled in ++knob as before, leading to ++gnaw, going over to ++chew, ++apse, ++chow, and eventualy to ++dine. We've seen most of the cases in ++dine, but we haven't yet looked at the handling of this %buck meal.

                  =.  +>  ?.(=(%full aut) +> cock)          ::  finish key exch
                  +>(..la (tock p.fud q.fud r.fud))

We send a packet level acknowledgment if we're finishing a key exchange, else we call ++tock to process the acknowledgment.

This will get a little involved, so if you don't much care about how exactly an acknowledgment happens, just know that the result gets gifted as a %woot card back to the app who sent it. For those brave souls who wish to see this thing through to the end, it's once more into the breach.

            ++  tock                                        ::    tock:ho:um:am
              |=  [cop=coop fap=flap [email protected]]               ::  e2e ack by hash
              ^+  +>
              =^  yoh  puz  (bick:puz now fap)
              =.  +>.$
                ?~  p.yoh  +>.$
                =^  hud  +>.$
                  (done p.u.p.yoh q.u.p.yoh)
                ?~  hud  +>.$
                %=    +>.$
                  :_  bin
                  `boon`[%cake [our her] [[p:sen:gus clon:diz] u.p.yoh] cop u.hud]
              (busk xong:diz q.yoh)

We're going to work through this one a little backwards since it's mostly fairly simple except the call to ++bick:pu. In fact, we'll just skip ++bick for the moment and finish the rest.

If ++bick succesfully acks the message, then we call ++done.

            ++  done                                        ::    done:ho:um:am
              |=  [cha=path [email protected]]                        ::  complete outgoing
              ^-  [(unit duct) _+>]
              =+  rol=(need (~(get by ryl.bah) cha))
              =+  rix=(~(get by san.rol) num)
              ?~  rix  [~ +>.$]
              :-  rix
              %_    +>.$
                (~(put by ryl.bah) cha rol(san (~(del by san.rol) num)))

This very simply gets the rill (the outgoing counterpart to a race, if you recall), pulls out of the map of outstanding messages the duct over which the original message was sent, and produces this duct while deleting that entry from the map of outstanding messages.

Going back to ++tock, we now have the duct we need to return the result over. We do the very sensible thing and put a %cake boon in the queue to be processed later by ++clop.

In q.yoh we have a list of messages that may need to be sent, which we pass to ++busk to send, as usual. When an acknowledgment arrives, that may trigger other messages immediately. This often happens when sending more messages than the width of the logical window since for congestion control reasons another message cannot be sent until some of the earlier ones have been acknowledged.

We'll look at the processing of the %cake boon in ++clop before we get back to talking about ++bick.

          :_  fox
          :~  [s.bon %give %woot q.p.bon r.bon]

We very simply give, along the duct we found above, a %woot card with the ship who sent us the ack and the ack itself. This allows the application to decide what to do about the result. In case of a failure, we usually either resend the message or display it to the user. Sometimes, we recognize the error term and handle it internally. In any case, the decision of how to handle the acknowledgment is entirely up to the application. Our job is done.

Well, except that we skipped ++bick:pu. Let's go back to that.

        ++  bick                                            ::    bick:pu
          |=  [[email protected] fap=flap]                            ::  ack by hash
          ^-  [[p=(unit soup) q=(list rock)] _+>]
          =+  sun=(~(get by diq) fap)
          ?~  sun
            [[~ ~] +>.$]
          =.  diq  (~(del by diq) fap)
          =^  gub  +>.$  (bock now u.sun)
          =^  yop  +>.$  (harv now)
          [[gub yop] +>.$]

If you recall, in ++whap:pu we created the packet pump's representation of the message, which included putting the message into diq, which maps from packet hashes to packet sequence numbers. Thus, u.sun is the sequence number of this particular message.

We delete this message from diq since we have now received an ack for it. We call ++bock to perform the ack by sequence number. We call ++harv to harvest the packet queue, sending any messages that are now able to be sent.

In ++bock, there are three arms we haven't seen before: ++bine, +wept, and ++beet. We'll describe each of these before we get to ++bock. ++bine looks scariest.

        ++  bine                                            ::    bine:pu
          |=  [[email protected] [email protected]]                             ::  apply ack
          ^-  [(unit soup) _+>]
          ?~  puq  !!
          ?.  =(num p.n.puq)
            ?:  (gth num p.n.puq)
              =+  lef=$(puq l.puq)
              [-.lef +.lef(puq [n.puq puq.lef r.puq])]
            =+  rig=$(puq r.puq)
            [-.rig +.rig(puq [n.puq l.puq puq.rig])]
          =:  rtt  ?.  &(liv.q.n.puq =(1 nux.q.n.puq))  rtt
                   =+  gap=(sub now lys.q.n.puq)
                   ::  ~&  [%bock-trip num (div gap (div ~s1 1.000))]
                   (div (add (mul 2 rtt) gap) 3)
              nif  (sub nif !liv.q.n.puq)
          =+  lez=(dec (need (~(get by pyz) gom.q.n.puq)))
          =^  gub  pyz
              ?:  =(0 lez)
                [[~ gom.q.n.puq] (~(del by pyz) gom.q.n.puq)]
              [~ (~(put by pyz) gom.q.n.puq lez)]
          :-  gub
          +>.$(puq ~(nap to puq))

The first few lines are simply looking through the packet queue until we find the correct packet to ack. This is basic queue manipulation that operates directly on the treap structure of the queue. If you understand treap queues, the logic is easy to follow. Otherwise, just trust us that by the time we get to the =:, the packet with sequence number num is on the top of the packet queue (that is, at n.puq).

We first update the round-trip time. If the packet is either not alive or had to be transmitted more than once, then we don't have any reliable way of calculating the round-trip time since we're unsure of exactly which transmission was acknowledged. Otherwise, the round-trip time is the difference between now and when the packet was last sent. We set rtt by a little weighted average where the previous smoothed RTT is weighted twice as much as the RTT of the current packet. Thus, (2*rtt+gap)/3. This gives us a nice smooth RTT that is somewhat resilient to outlier data while still being responsive to our ever-changing world.

If the packet wasn't already dead, then we decrement the number of live packets, which may allow more packets to be sent.

We decrement the number of unacknowledged packets in our pyz for this particular message. If you recall, this was set in ++whap to the number of packets required to send a message.

If that was the last packet in the messge that needed to be acked, then we delete the messgae reference from pyz and produce the id of the message. Otherwise, we simply update pyz with the new number of unacked messages. In either case, we remove the packet from the packet queue.

        ++  wept                                            ::    wept:pu
          |=  [[email protected] [email protected]]                             ::  fip thru lap-1
          =<  abet  =<  apse
          ++  abet  +>.$
          ++  apse
            ^+  .
            ?~  puq  .
            ?:  (lth p.n.puq fip)  ?~(l.puq . left)
            ?:  (gte p.n.puq lap)  ?~(r.puq . rigt)
            =>  rigt  =<  left
            ?>  ?=(^ puq)
            ?.(liv.q.n.puq . .(nif (dec nif), liv.q.n.puq |))
          ++  left
            ?>  ?=(^ puq)
            ^+(. =+(lef=apse(puq l.puq) lef(puq [n.puq puq.lef r.puq])))
          ++  rigt
            ?>  ?=(^ puq)
            ^+(. =+(rig=apse(puq r.puq) rig(puq [n.puq l.puq puq.rig])))

The algorithm is a simple case of traversing the packet queue. Essentialy, we mark as dead all packets in the queue between fip and (dec lap). We also update nif, the number of live packets. Lest you mourn too much the passing of these packets, know that they shall soon rise again. Recall that in ++bick after the call to ++bock we call ++harv. This will resend the packets that have just been labeled dead.

        ++  beet                                            ::    beet:pu
          ^+  .                                             ::  advance unacked
          =-  +(nep ?~(foh nus u.foh))
          ^=  foh
          |-  ^-  (unit ,@ud)
          ?~  puq  ~
          ?:  (lte p.n.puq nep)  $(puq l.puq)
          =+  rig=$(puq r.puq)
          ?^(rig rig [~ p.n.puq])

Here we search for the next expected packet number. Basically, we search the queue for the leftmost packet whose number is greater than the current nep. If we don't find any such packet, we just use the total number of packets sent.

We can now dive into ++bock, our last arm.

        ++  bock                                            ::    bock:pu
          |=  [[email protected] [email protected]]                             ::  ack by sequence
          ^-  [(unit soup) _+>]
          =^  gym  +>  (bine now num)
          :-  gym
          ?:  (gth num nep)
            =+  cam=(max 2 (div caw 2))
            ::  ~&  [%bock-hole num nep cam]
            beet:(wept(nep num, cag cam, caw cam) nep num)
          =.  caw  ?:  (lth caw cag)  +(caw)
                   (add caw !=(0 (mod (mug now) caw)))
          ?:  =(num nep)
            ::  ~&  [%bock-fine num nif caw cag]
          ::  ~&  [%bock-fill num nif caw cag]

First, we call ++bine to apply the ack to the packet pump information. We produce gym, which, if it exists, is the id of the packet that was acked. If we received an ack for a packet later than the one we expected, then we halve the logical packet window and kill all the earlier packets so that they may be resent.

Otherwise, we possibly increase the congestion window. If the window is less than the congestion threshold, then we increment the size of the window. Otherwise, we only increment one out of every caw times.

If we received an ack for the packet we expected, then we simply advance nep with ++beet. If we received an ack for a packet earlier than we expected, we do nothing.

It may be hard to believe, but we are, in fact, done. The message has been sent, received, acknowledged, and the acknowledgment has been returned to the original sender. We hope it's clear that, while the process has been somewhat involved, the algorithms are not all that complicated. If you've read this far, you know %ames. The only other code involves initialization, timeouts, and the like.

Below, we give detailed reference documentation for the data models involved.

Data Models

++sufi:ames, domestic host

    ++  sufi                                                ::  domestic host
              $:  hoy=(list ship)                           ::  hierarchy
                  val=wund                                  ::  private keys
                  law=will                                  ::  server will
                  seh=(map hand ,[p=ship [email protected]])            ::  key cache
                  hoc=(map ship dore)                       ::  neighborhood
              ==                                            ::

This is the security state of a domestic server.

hoy is a list of the ships directly above us in the hierarchy of ships. For example, for ~hoclur-bicrel, this would be ~tasruc and ~tug. See ++sein:title.

val is a list of our private keys.

law is our certificate, which is a list of the XXX


hoc is a map of ships to ++dore:ames. The stores all the security information about foreign ships. The keys to this map are the neighbors (ships we have been in contact with) of this domestic server.

++wund:ames, private keys

    ++  wund  (list ,[p=life q=ring r=acru])                ::  mace in action

This is a list of our own private keys, indexed by life. The key itself is the ++ring, and the ++acru:ames is the encryption engine. We generate the ++acru:ames from the private key by calling ++weur. Thus, we can at any time regenerate our ++wund:ames from a ++mace:ames. The current crypto is at the head of the list and can be accessed with ++sen:as:go.

++ring, private key

    ++  ring  ,@                                            ::  private key

This is a private key. The first byte is reserved to identify the type of cryptography. Lower-case means public key, upper-case means public key, and the letter identifies which ++acru:ames to use.

++pass, public key

    ++  pass  ,@                                            ::  public key

This is a public key. The first byte is reserved to identify the type of cryptography. Lower-case means public key, upper-case means public key, and the letter identifies which ++acru:ames to use.

++mace:ames, private secrets

    ++  mace  (list ,[p=life q=ring])                       ::  private secrets

This is a list of the our private keys, indexed by life. From this we can generate a ++wund:ames for actual use.

++skin:ames, encoding stem

    ++  skin  ?(%none %open %fast %full)                    ::  encoding stem

This defines the type of encryption used for each message. %none refers to messages sent in the clear, %open refers to signed messages, %full refers to sealed messages, and %fast refers to symmetrically encrypted messages. See ++acru:ames for details.

++acru:ames, asymmetric cryptosuite

    ++  acru                                                ::  asym cryptosuite
              $_  ^?  |%                                    ::  opaque object
              ++  as  ^?                                    ::  asym ops
                |%  ++  seal  |=([a=pass [email protected] [email protected]] [email protected])       ::  encrypt to a
                    ++  sign  |=([[email protected] [email protected]] [email protected])              ::  certify as us
                    ++  sure  |=([[email protected] [email protected]] *(unit ,@))      ::  authenticate from us
                    ++  tear  |=  [a=pass [email protected]]              ::  accept from a
                              *(unit ,[[email protected] [email protected]])            ::
                --                                          ::
              ++  de  |+([[email protected] [email protected]] *(unit ,@))              ::  symmetric de, soft
              ++  dy  |+([[email protected] [email protected]] [email protected])                      ::  symmetric de, hard
              ++  en  |+([[email protected] [email protected]] [email protected])                      ::  symmetric en
              ++  ex  ^?                                    ::  export
                |%  ++  fig  [email protected]                          ::  fingerprint
                    ++  pac  [email protected]                          ::  default passcode
                    ++  pub  *pass                          ::  public key
                    ++  sec  *ring                          ::  private key
              ++  nu  ^?                                    ::  reconstructors
                 |%  ++  pit  |=([[email protected] [email protected]] ^?(..nu))        ::  from [width seed]
                     ++  nol  |=([email protected] ^?(..nu))              ::  from naked ring
                     ++  com  |=([email protected] ^?(..nu))              ::  from naked pass

This is an opaque interface for a general asymmetric cryptosuite. Any form of asymmetric cryptography can be dropped in to be used instead of the default. Right now, there is one cryptosuite: ++crub:crypto:crypto, which is elliptic-curve cryptography.

++as:acru:ames, asymmetric operations

              ++  as  ^?                                    ::  asym ops
                |%  ++  seal  |=([a=pass [email protected] [email protected]] [email protected])       ::  encrypt to a
                    ++  sign  |=([[email protected] [email protected]] [email protected])              ::  certify as us
                    ++  sure  |=([[email protected] [email protected]] *(unit ,@))      ::  authenticate from us
                    ++  tear  |=  [a=pass [email protected]]              ::  accept from a
                              *(unit ,[[email protected] [email protected]])            ::
                --                                          ::

This is the core that defines the standard asymmetric cryptography operations.

++seal:as:acru:ames allows us to send a message encrypted with someone's public key so that only they may read it. If Alice seals a message with Bob's public key, then she can be sure that Bob is the only one who can read it. This is associated with the ++skin:ames %full.

++sign:as:acru:ames allows us to sign a message with our private key so that others can verify that we sent the message. If Alice signs a message with her private key, then Bob can verify with her public key that it was indeed Alice who sent it. This is associated with the ++skin:ames %open.

++sure:as:acru:ames is the dual to ++sign:as:acru:ames. It allows us to verify that a message we have received is indeed from the claimed sender. If Alice sends a message with her private key, then Bob can use this arm to verify that it was indeed Alice who sent it. This is associated with the ++skin:ames %open.

++tear:as:acru:ames is the dual to ++seal:as:acru:ames. It allows us to read a message that we can be sure is only read by us. If Alice seals a message with Bob's public key, then Bob can use this arm to read it. This is associated with the ++skin:ames %full.

++de:acru:ames, ++dy:acru:ames, and ++en:acru:ames, symmetric encryption/decryption

              ++  de  |+([[email protected] [email protected]] *(unit ,@))              ::  symmetric de, soft
              ++  dy  |+([[email protected] [email protected]] [email protected])                      ::  symmetric de, hard
              ++  en  |+([[email protected] [email protected]] [email protected])                      ::  symmetric en

Symmetric encryption is associated with the ++skin:ames %fast.

++de:acru:ames decrypts a message with a symmetric key, returning ~ on failure and [~ u=data] on success.

++dy:acru:ames decrypts a message with a symmetric key, crashing on failure. This should almost always be defined as, and should always be semantically equivalent to, (need (de a b)).

++en:acru:ames encrypts a message with a symmetric key.

++ex:acru:ames, exporting data

              ++  ex  ^?                                    ::  export
                |%  ++  fig  [email protected]                          ::  fingerprint
                    ++  pac  [email protected]                          ::  default passcode
                    ++  pub  *pass                          ::  public key
                    ++  sec  *ring                          ::  private key

++fig:ex:acru:ames is our fingerprint, usually a hash of our public key. This is used, for example, in ++zeno, where every carrier owner's fingerprint is stored so that we can ensure that carriers are indeed owned by their owners

++pac:ex:acru:ames is our default passcode, which is unused at present.

++pub:ex:acru:ames is the ++pass form of our public key.

++sec:ex:acru:ames is the ++ring form of our private key.

++nu:acru:ames, reconstructors

              ++  nu  ^?                                    ::  reconstructors
                 |%  ++  pit  |=([[email protected] [email protected]] ^?(..nu))        ::  from [width seed]
                     ++  nol  |=([email protected] ^?(..nu))              ::  from naked ring
                     ++  com  |=([email protected] ^?(..nu))              ::  from naked pass

These arms allow us to reconstruct a ++acru:ames from basic data.

++pit:nu:acru:ames constructs a ++acru:ames from the width of our intended key and seed entropy. This is usually used in the initial construction of the ++acru:ames.

++nol:nu:acru:ames constructs a ++acru:ames from a “naked ring”, meaning a ++ring without the initial byte identifying the type of crypto.

++com:nu:acru:ames constructs a ++acru:ames from a “naked pass”, meaning a ++ring without the initial byte identifying the type of crypto.

++will, certificate

    ++  will  (list deed)                                   ::  certificate

This is a list of deeds associated with the current ship. There should be an item in this list for every ship from this point up in the hierarchy times the number of lives that each ship has had. For example, ~hoclur-bicrel may have a will with three items: one for itself, one for ~tasruc (who issued ~hoclur-bicrel's deed) and one for ~tug (who issued ~tasruc's deed).

++deed, identity

    ++  deed  ,[[email protected] q=step r=?]                             ::  sig, stage, fake?

p is the signature of a particular deed, which is a signed copy of q.

q is the stage in the identity.

r is true if we're working on a fake network, where we don't check that the carrier fingerprints are correct. This allows us to create fake networks for development without interfering with the real network.

++step:ames, identity stage

    ++  step  ,[p=bray q=gens r=pass]                       ::  identity stage

This is a single stage in our identity. Thus, this is specific to a single life in a single ship. Everything in here may change between lives.



r is the public key for this stage in the identity.


    ++  bray  ,[p=life q=(unit life) r=ship [email protected]]          ::  our parent us now


++gens:ames, general identity

    ++  gens  ,[p=lang q=gcos]                              ::  general identity

p is the IETF language code for the preferred language of this identity. This is unused at the moment, but in the future text should be localized based on this.

q is the description of the ship.

++gcos:ames, identity description

    ++  gcos                                                ::  id description
              $%  [%czar ~]                                 ::  8-bit ship
                  [%duke p=what]                            ::  32-bit ship
                  [%earl [email protected]]                              ::  64-bit ship
                  [%king [email protected]]                              ::  16-bit ship
                  [%pawn p=(unit ,@t)]                      ::  128-bit ship
              ==                                            ::

This is the description of the identity of a ship. Most types of identity have a @t field, which is their human-readable name. The identity of a %duke is more involved.

A %czar, a carrier, is a ship with an 8-bit address. Thus, there are only 256 carriers. These are at the top of the namespace hierarchy, and the fingerprint of each carrier is stored in ++zeno. These are the “senators” of Urbit.

A %king, a cruiser, is a ship with a 16-bit address. Thus, there are 65,536 cruisers. Each carrier may issue 256 cruisers. These are the infrastructure of Urbit.

A %duke, a destroyer, is a ship with a 32-bit address. Thus, there are 4,294,967,296 destroyers. Each cruiser may issue 65,536 cruisers. These are the individuals of Urbit.

A %earl, a yacht, is a ship with a 64-bit address. Thus, there are 18,446,744,073,709,551,616 yachts. Each destroyer may issue 4,294,967,296 yachts. These are the devices of Urbit.

A %pawn, a submarine, is a ship with a 128-bit address. Thus, there are a lot of submarines. The chance of random name collision is negligible, so submarines are not issued by any ship. They must simply assert their presence, and they are all considered children of ~zod. This is the underworld of Urbit, where anonymity reigns supreme.

++what:ames, logical destroyer identity

    ++  what                                                ::  logical identity
              $%  [%anon ~]                                 ::  anonymous
                  [%lady p=whom]                            ::  female person ()
                  [%lord p=whom]                            ::  male person []
                  [%punk p=sect [email protected]]                       ::  opaque handle ""
              ==                                            ::

This is the logical identity of a destroyer.

A %anon is a completely anonymous destroyer. The difference between this and a submarine is that a submarine is ephemeral while a %anon destroyer is not. Thus, we may not know who ~hoclur-bicrel is, but we do know that it's always the same person.

A %lady is a female person. The name used here should be a real name.

A %lord is a male person. The name used here should be a real name.

A %punk is a person who is identified only by a handle.

++whom:ames, real person

    ++  whom  ,[[email protected] q=govt r=sect s=name]                 ::  year/govt/id

Ths is the information associated with a real person. It is mostly information that could be observed with the briefest of interactions.

p is the birth year.

q is the location of a user, usually of the form “country/zip”.

r is the sect of the user.

s is the real name of the person.


    ++  govt  path                                          ::  country/postcode

This is the location of the user, usually of the form “country/zip”.


    ++  sect  ?(%black %blue %red %orange %white)           ::  banner



    ++  name  ,[[email protected] q=(unit ,@t) r=(unit ,@t) [email protected]]        ::  first mid/nick last

This is the given name, possible middle name/initial, possible nickname, and surname of a user.