Kronolab

Building your own cloud

If you are interested in a more technical and detailed list of available functions, please read these articles.

EMAIL IN A NUTSHELL

Have you ever thought about how email works?

It is a very simple and very easy process, nothing magical. Basically, you create a simple text in an application, which can be your email program or a browser. You add to whom you intend to send the message. When you click on send, the application submits this text to a mail service on a server. The server checks who is the recipient, which is easy to find, because the email address is very specific. For example the address "helpdesk@kronolab.com" says that the message has to be sent to user "helpdesk"  on the mail server "kronolab.com". Therefore your email service provider's server contacts kronolab.com server, tells it that there is a message for helpdesk. If there is such user, the mail service on kronolab.com accepts the message and puts it into helpdesk's mailbox. When helpdesk opens his program to read the messages, this message will be there. Pretty easy, it works like a normal postal service, big difference is that instead of one big company, there are many and they work together to deliver the messages.

However this system has a few problems.

When it was designed, nobody cared about security and privacy.  The system works in a way that all the messages are readable by the all the servers that have to handle them, any of them can make a copy of them, and initially, there was no protection during transfer. When you send a message through a postal service, you can use an envelope, that gives you some protection. Email doesn't have this basic protection at all. As your message is stored on your service provider's server, you can imagine this storage as a big post office building whit many shelves for the recipients where the messages are stored, and when you want to read one, the server shows you the content. Only problem is that all these messages are stored in a way that the necessary programs and system administrators can read them at any time they want. Because contrary to the postal service, the messages are often not "delivered" to your home, but only to an account on the server where you can access them. This means, you should not include any kind of sensitive information in your email, except if you are using a secured mail system.

The solution for the problem of email

Current technological situation actually makes it possible to solve the above problems very easily. You only need to have your own server with your own email service. As I said, the electronic postal service differs from the physical one in that there are many postal services. The other big difference is that everybody can have their own, because the system is very democratic. Why doesn't everybody have one yet? There are many reasons. One is that all the big service providers earn money on handling your email. They use it for advertising, they scan the content and create your profile from them, and sometimes, they even sell them to other companies. Other is that you need to know how to do it, and not everybody has this knowledge. Third is, that it i s not free. You can use public service providers' email for free, because in exchange, you sell your data to them. You give up your privacy and you trust your security in their hand. The fact how much these companies earn from it shows how precious is what you give up.

The necessary knowledge

As I said, one problem is, that you need to know how to create such server for yourself. Or, I'd say, you needed to know. Our solution includes a little software which makes it very easy to configure the whole system and do the maintenance.

Privacy

All the servers are configured with a temporary account. You need to log in with the given credentials, and the management software will ask you to provide all the information that is necessary: the encryption password, your administrator password and a new user account. Based on the input data, it creates unique encryption keys, and when you finish the configuration process, you have your own mail server that only you can access.

Security

During the initial configuration, unique keys are created, but this is not all. The system runs automatic scripts, and it sets up further keys  and configures all the services to be secure and protected. For example it automatically makes email delivery and webmail access encrypted by installing an SSL/TLS certificate based on your domain name.

Maintenance

There is basically no maintenance if nothing happens. The system automatically checks the running services, and if it finds something problematic, it tries to fix them. There are only basic functions you need to do if problem happens, but according to our tests, there are servers that haven't needed maintenance at all for more than two years.

Management

The management application has functions to easily change system parameters. For example POP/IMAP or webmail access is not enabled by default to have the most secure configuration. Enabling them is only a click. There are functions to add more users, email accounts or configure file sharing between users.

What services does the server have?

There are 3 main services.

Email

The server has a built-in mail server, which is configured based on the details you provide during the initial configuration. You can access this mail server by using a browser or an email program, like Outlook, Thunderbird or Apple Mail. The webmail has a mandatory secondary authentication, Google Authenticator, to provide maximum security. Unlimited number of users and email addresses can be added. A few domain is provided that can be used with subdomains for email, and you can also use your own domain. It is even possible to use your domain for mail on your server, while you can use it for your web site on an other server. There is an optional secondary mail server that you can use, it only keeps your messages for 14 days in case your server is not available, however this function should only be used if you use our server box, it is unnecessary if you use our virtual solution.

File storage

There is a file storage function which basically acts as a NAS on your home network in case you have the server box. If you have a virtual server, it works very similarly to a cloud service, only it is your private cloud. It also supports multiple users and file sharing between users.

Proxy

There is a built in Tor proxy in all the servers which makes it possible to browse the internet anonymously if you use your server as a proxy. It cannot be used as torrent proxy, it is only a web proxy.

What are the security features?

It has a number of security features:

Firewall

The most basic is a built-in firewall. It restricts the traffic towards your server. There are 4 configurations that you can choose based on what you need.

VPN

In its most secure configuration, all the services are available only inside a VPN network that is secured by your own unique keys. It is recommended to access everything only inside this VPN network, however to make using email easier, it is possible to allow POP/IMAP access or a built in webmail interface.

SSL/TLS

All the web and email traffics are encrypted using your own unique SSL keys which are made automatically.

Encrypted communication

VPN and SSL/TLS automatically make all your email and file transfer encrypted. If you send a message to an other user who uses our servers, the communication is automatically secured and private. Only you can access the data.

Spam filter

Your server has a built-in spam filter which marks all SPAM messages so your email program can put them into a Junk folder, and it automatically updates its spam database once a day.

Summary

Here is a simple list of all the features

  • Built-in email service
  • POP and IMAP support and built-in webmail
  • Usage of own domain for email
  • Unlimited email address
  • Built-in spam filter
  • Encrypted data partition for files, email, databases
  • File storage and remote file storage through mobile and PC/Mac clients
  • High-security VPN access
  • Multi user environment
  • Built in firewall
  • SSL/TLS for web and mail
  • TOR anonymous proxy service
If you are interested in a more technical and detailed list of available functions, please read these articles.

Try it now, all virtual servers come with a 21 days trial period.