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Thread: Private search engine comparison

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  1. #1
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    Private search engine comparison

    I rarely use Google these days. I use Startpage.
    I was curious about the differences among the privacy respecting search engines so I did some research & found this >>> https://www.startpage.com/privacy-pl...ine-comparison

    IP Address Protection: When you visit Startpage, their servers change your IP address to 0.0.0.0 rather than logging any amount of your IP address.
    Now that's ^^ awesome.

    If you are looking for search engines that respect your privacy read that article.
    Lubuntu 20.04

  2. #2
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    Re: Private search engine comparison

    @linuxyogi

    You are taking to this privacy stuff like a fish takes to water!

    SearX is also excellent. Here's a link to a SearX gateway: https://search.disroot.org/

    You will have to make your own determination as to how trustworthy you feel disroot to be.

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    Re: Private search engine comparison

    Quote Originally Posted by DuckHook View Post
    @linuxyogi

    You are taking to this privacy stuff like a fish takes to water!

    SearX is also excellent. Here's a link to a SearX gateway: https://search.disroot.org/

    You will have to make your own determination as to how trustworthy you feel disroot to be.
    Didn't know about SearX. From the same article I linked they say :

    I won’t dive into SearX because it is best served as a self-hosted search option that can be programmed to scrape results from any search engine you please. Usually, SearX is used by more advanced users or people with a more serious threat model.
    I don't why they say its for "advanced users". I will just use it & try to find that myself.

    Edit : The site is down
    error.png
    (Click to enlarge)
    Last edited by linuxyogi; March 23rd, 2021 at 06:40 AM.
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    Re: Private search engine comparison

    SearX is designed to allow self‑hosting. This is probably what the author meant by "more serious threat model": when in doubt, it doesn't get any safer than hosting your own search engine. However, it is not necessary to host your own. Since SearX is a widely distributed and federated meta search engine, a number of entities already run such engines that are open for community use. I linked you to one of them.

    The site you tried is not the official SearX site. Try the following link instead: https://searx.github.io/searx/

    This site contains a further link setting out a list of providers who run SearX instances: https://searx.space/

    Note that you are entering the world of small providers. That carries its own form of risk. Some run such instances because they are idealists who believe in privacy and anonymity. Others do so for brownie points because they already run SearX for their own organization and see no problem extending this service to the public as part of their existing infrastructure. But I wouldn't be surprised to find the usual assortment of scumbags sprinkled among them who are phishing for unsuspecting marks.

    I'm reasonably sure of Disroot's idealism, but that's very much my own opinion. Proceed cautiously all the same. Be doubly careful with referrals gleaned from some list posted online.

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    Re: Private search engine comparison

    Quote Originally Posted by DuckHook View Post
    But I wouldn't be surprised to find the usual assortment of scumbags sprinkled among them who are phishing for unsuspecting marks.
    In that case I will just keep using Startpage. Which search engine do you use yourself ? Do you use SearX ?
    Lubuntu 20.04

  6. #6
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    Re: Private search engine comparison

    i've used Startpage previously but found it too slow to load,although i like that they give google search results .

    I use duckduckgo now . Cant complain
    xubuntu 20.04.2 LTS (focal fossa)

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    Re: Private search engine comparison

    Quote Originally Posted by 3nd View Post
    i've used Startpage previously but found it too slow to load
    Interesting. I just tried it on my Brave instance and it loads quite quickly. No difference that I can sense between it and Google to be honest.
    I use duckduckgo now . Cant complain
    Agree. 95% of the time, the results are more than satisfactory. When they aren't, there are plenty of one‑off alternatives. I don't understand why so many are willing to sacrifice privacy for the sake of that remaining smidgen of search accuracy. I've also noticed that DDG will sometimes give better results than Google. I suspect this is because of Google's vested interest in promoting favoured sites versus DDG's fairer algorithms.

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    Re: Private search engine comparison

    I also use DDG but it uses Bing search which does not give good search results.

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    Re: Private search engine comparison

    I started seeing unknown search providers showing up in startpage results thinking they were links regarding my query. When selected I found that it was another search engine with whole new set of links. Trying ecosia this week. https://info.ecosia.org/privacy
    "Our intention creates our reality. "

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  10. #10
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    Re: Private search engine comparison

    Quote Originally Posted by makitso View Post
    I also use DDG but it uses Bing search which does not give good search results.
    You may wish to try SearX. I use it when DDG doesn't quite do the job. I've already referenced it in post #7 above.

    1. You will first need to identify a gateway that you trust. This is probably the hardest part, as gateway providers tend to be little guys whose provenance is hard to research. An initial listing of such gateways is in the link in post #7.
    2. Once you've navigated to the gateway you want, it's easy to add it as a new search option to either FF or Brave.
    3. In FF, while in the search page of the chosen SearX site, you just click on the three dots in the URL bar and select the option: "Add Search Engine". It should now show up as one of your search engine options in Preferences → Search. There you can make it your default if you wish.
    4. In Brave, once you've used the search page at least once, it will show up within Settings → Search Engine → Manage search engines. On my install, I had to mark it as "default" before it would shift from the accumulated selections at the bottom to one of the searchable ones at top. Even if you would prefer another engine as your default, you will need to declare the SearX gateway as the default to get it "registered" You can then change the default search engine to whatever you prefer afterward.

    I use the SearX gateway offered by Disroot, but only because I have satisfied myself via XMPP chat and getting to know them that these guys are legit and won't log my searches. I would not recommend them to anyone else on the basis of my own judgment. I firmly believe that we all need to do our own research on such matters.

    It's always possible to run your own SearX gateway: it's a FOSS package available from the repos:
    Code:
    duckhook@Zeus:~$  apt show searx
    Package: searx
    Version: 0.16.0+dfsg1-2
    Priority: optional
    Section: universe/web
    Origin: Ubuntu
    Maintainer: Ubuntu Developers <ubuntu-devel-discuss@lists.ubuntu.com>
    Original-Maintainer: Johannes 'josch' Schauer <josch@debian.org>
    Bugs: https://bugs.launchpad.net/ubuntu/+filebug
    Installed-Size: 104 kB
    Depends: python3-searx (= 0.16.0+dfsg1-2), python3:any
    Suggests: nginx, uwsgi, uwsgi-plugin-python3
    Homepage: https://asciimoo.github.io/searx/
    Download-Size: 26.5 kB
    APT-Sources: http://ca.archive.ubuntu.com/ubuntu focal/universe amd64 Packages
    Description: Privacy-respecting metasearch engine
     Searx is an internet metasearch engine which aggregates results from more than
     70 search services. Searx runs as a web service and provides a web interface
     that allows the user to do a general search (aggregating results from google,
     bing, yahoo) or search for files (piratebay, kickass, torrentz), images (bing,
     deviantart, google images, flickr), IT (github, stackoverflow, Arch Linux
     wiki), maps (OpenStreetMap, photon), music (youtube, spotify, soundcloud),
     news (bing news, google news, reddit), science (arxiv, wolframalpha) social
     media (digg, twitter) and videos (youtube, dailymotion, vimeo).
    I've found that, as a metasearch engine, the results are excellent, since it agglomerates the results from many search engines (including Google, DDG and many others) thus providing the best of all of them. I might just switch from DDG to Disroot/SearX as my default.

    One thing to be careful about: because it forwards your search query to other engines with the referrer tag, you may end up losing a certain amount of anonymity in the forwarding process.
    Quote Originally Posted by Frogs Hair View Post
    I started seeing unknown search providers showing up in startpage results thinking they were links regarding my query. When selected I found that it was another search engine with whole new set of links. Trying ecosia this week. https://info.ecosia.org/privacy
    I'm curious about Ecosia too. Will compare notes with you in a week!

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