Richard Hughes Developing New "Passim" Local Caching Server

Written by Michael Larabel in Free Software on 28 July 2023 at 06:17 AM EDT. 11 Comments
Richard Hughes is the Red Hat developer who is most prominently known for leading the Linux Vendor Firmware Service (LVFS) and Fwupd development as well as formerly being behind the ColorHug monitor color calibration hardware effort and PackageKit, among other open-source software. He's recently been developing a new software project called Passim that today he announced to the world.

Passim is a local caching server that leverages mDNS and advertises files by their SHA256 hash. The intent of this is to help share files on the local area network between computers. Passim allows limits on how long a file is kept cached or a limit for how many times it can be shared.

The Passim local caching server ultimately ties back into the LVFS: this could help organizations with many PCs by allowing much of the LVFS metadata to be cached on the LAN rather than each system repeatedly downloading the same metadata from the remote server.


For now Passim is quite simple and is serving the cached files over a single-threaded HTTP 1.0 server. Besides LVFS firmware update metadata, Passim could be used for easily sharing other software metadata such as for OS package managers.

While somewhat similar in nature to IPFS, Passim is focused only on sharing files with computers on your LAN and to do so very efficiently.

Those wishing to learn more about the Passim caching server can do so via Richard's blog. This GPLv2-licensed caching server can be downloaded on GitHub.
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Michael Larabel is the principal author of and founded the site in 2004 with a focus on enriching the Linux hardware experience. Michael has written more than 20,000 articles covering the state of Linux hardware support, Linux performance, graphics drivers, and other topics. Michael is also the lead developer of the Phoronix Test Suite, Phoromatic, and automated benchmarking software. He can be followed via Twitter, LinkedIn, or contacted via

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