Delays in Disabling Matrix Portalling

by kline

Update: We no longer have an official Matrix bridge. Please see our FAQ about Matrix for more information about using Matrix on Libera.Chat.

Good afternoon, all

At the start of this month my colleague Allie wrote a blog post detailing the reasons and process leading up to the Matrix bridge having one mode of operation, portalling, disabled. In this post we set out a timeline, agreed with our colleagues at Matrix, stating that this would happen by the 31st of July.

Yesterday evening our partners at Matrix contacted us stating that a number of security vulnerabilities had been identified in the bridge that have pre-empted work on the deportalling process. Combined with lingering issues with Plumbing (the alternate bridge mode that will be maintained going forward), and an under-resourced team working on the bridge, they have requested an extension to the deadline we have previously agreed.

Given the nature of the issues, we have agreed to extend the deadline to the 11th of August, 2023, providing an additional 2 weeks to address these high priority issues and improve the plumbing situation. New portal creation will be disabled on the 31st, with all portals being turned off on the 11th.

We understand that this means breaking the promise we have made to our users, and we’re sorry for any users who have rushed ahead of their preferred schedule to move to plumbed rooms, but on balance we decided it was better to provide an extension than it would be to demand Matrix decide between running an insecure bridge or face being shut off entirely.

Moving forward

While delays and surprises have been a common theme of our working relationship with Matrix, our colleagues have been honest and upfront with this issue, and have posted a blog you can read here. This post acknowledges the issues that have lead to missing the deadline we agreed, and confirms their desire to do the right thing for users and communities on Libera and Matrix.

With that in mind, and with Matrix having identified their limiting factors, we do not see any reason to delay beyond the 11th. If resourcing is an issue, it is Matrix’s responsibility to provide adequate attention to the task or else risk major disruption to our mutual communities.

Questions? Comments?

As always, Libera.Chat staff will be available in #libera and #libera-matrix to offer assistance and discussion.

Yours aye,