Set up infinote server for collaborative use

Jack Wallen
May 3, 2010
Updated • Nov 30, 2012

If you've followed my recent text editor series you will have noticed I included a text editor that is also a collaborative tool (see my article "Kobby: KDE collaborative text editor"). In that article I mentioned that Kobby can work with the GNOME equivalent Gobby. But to do so they need a server running. The best server for that service - Infinote. Infinote is the new protocol used in Gobby (replacing the out of date obby) and is put in place with the libinfnity package. Without this package you would have a difficult (if not impossible) time getting Kobby and Gobby to communicate with one another.

In this article I am going to show you how to install and run an infinote server so that Kobby and Gobby can communicate with one another.


There are two packages you must install for this to work. One of those packages will have been installed when you install Gobby. That package is libinfinity. If you did not install Gobby on the machine that will act as your infinote server you will need to install the libinfinity package as well as the package listed below. Follow these steps for installation:

  1. Fire up your package management system (Synaptic, Ubuntu Software Center, gnome-packagekit, etc).
  2. Search for "infinoted" (no quotes).
  3. Mark infinoted for installation.
  4. Click Apply to install.

That's it! You are now ready to begin.


There are two ways to use infinoted: with or without encryption. If you want to offer password-protected sessions you will have to run with encryption. No passwords = no encryption. Let's start off with the non-encrypted session first.

To launch an encryption-less session open up a terminal window and issue the following command:

infinoted --security-policy=no-tls

NOTE: When launching this session you will not be returned your prompt. Even if you add the "&" to the end of your prompt (which usually places the command in the background) you still won't get your prompt back. When you issue this command the command will instruct you which port the server is listening on. By default infinoted will listen to port 6523 (in case you do not issue the command from the terminal window - more on that in a bit).

Now let's take a look at starting the server with encryption. To do this you will issue two commands, the first command creates the necessary keys, the second launches the daemon. Let's take a look at the commands. The first command:

infinoted --create-key --create-certificate -k KEY_NAME.pem  -c CERT_NAME.pem

Where KEY_NAME is the name of the key and CERT_NAME is the name of the certificate. When you issue that command infinoted will generate the necessary key/cert pair and then you are ready to start the server with the command:

infinoted -k key.pem  -c cert.pem

Now when you start up your Gobby and/or Kobby instances, you can host your server with password protection.

Starting your server

If you are like me, you don't want to have a terminal window open in order to run the server. No matter which type of server you run (with or without encryption), you can add the startup line to your /etc/rc.local file so the server will start up at boot. If you don't want to go that route you can always just hit <Alt>F2 and then enter the run line in the command dialog box.

Final thoughts

If you are looking for a very simple way to host a collaborative server for Gobby or Kobby, the Infinoted server is all you need for simplicity and reliability. Once the server is up and running all you will have to do is point your clients to the server (and the correct port) and your clients will be collaborating immediately.


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