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For a few months now I've been running a Sandstorm server, which effectively produces a website with an app store. Invited users can install apps and create instances of them ("grains") in a couple clicks, including dropboxes, chatrooms, concurrently-editable documents (Etherpad), and photo galleries. There are some pretty cool sharing features, with granular permissions.

I'd like to offer this as a service to my community -- friends, housemates, neighbors, maybe a couple degrees out. I still have some work to do in making the service "safe to use" (automated backups, own TLS cert, etc. -- there's a checklist.) Beyond backups, I don't think I'll be able to promise any particular level of Availability, running it on a residential internet connection, but I do want to put some work into the other two main infosec categories: Confidentiality and Integrity.

But there's also one big step remaining: Picking a domain name! Right now I'm using the free sandcats.io service because it offers wildcard DNS and TLS certs (Let's Encrypt won't work, here). I don't want to change the domain *after* offering the service around, because Sandstorm doesn't have a way to automatically redirect if called with the wrong domain name, and I don't want to set up the necessary nginx or haproxy redirect, with the concomitant cert wrangling. Gotta do it now.

I'm thinking something like https://apps.timmc.org. Sandstorm is an unusual product, so I want to communicate "this is a lot like phone apps". (Actually, a lot more secure than phone apps, since all the apps are sandboxed away from each other.) Or maybe https://community.timmc.org since it's a community offering. AT suggested https://sandstorm.timmc.org -- make it really specific. Anything else I should be thinking of?

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timmc

June 2017

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