10 key facts about SAFE Network

A lot of good progress is being made now as we move towards an MVP (minimum viable product).

There’s loads of great information about SAFE on the forums, on the MaidSafe site, in the documentation, on GitHub, on Medium, on podcasts, on YouTube, and in various blogs, but you have to know where to look. The other thing is, when things are moving fast it quickly goes out of date.

So I thought I’d pull together some key facts for three key groups: 1) new people who want to see what SAFE is and maybe create a website, 2) crypto-folks and 3) developers interested in creating apps for SAFE.

They are deliberately short and sweet and simple, because I plan to update them every couple of weeks as new and exciting developments roll in. They’re designed to be edited so please let me know if I’ve got anything wrong or missed anything vital. For a more in depth take please see the SAFE Network Primer. It is availabe online here and on SAFE at safe://safenetworkprimer2.

Last update: 01 August 2019

The website was updated in April with a new look and feel safenetwork.tech.

Engineers and devs - check out the revolutionary PARSEC consensus algorithm [GitHub] [intro video here] [technical overview video here]. Bye bye blockchain?

10 key facts for new users

  1. SAFE (Secure Access For Everyone) is a network like the Internet but created by connecting users’ devices together rather than relying on centralised servers [Watch this introductory video].

  2. This makes SAFE more private, more secure and more resistant to being censored or taken down by authorities, criminals or powerful corporations [Read why this matters].

  3. SAFE is being developed by Scottish company MaidSafe. It is currently in pre-release Alpha 2 mode [See the roadmap]. New developments are announced on the regular Thursday Dev Update.

  4. The Alpha 2 network runs on hosted machines. Watch this video and this one on how to get started with Alpha 2. Previous tests ran on users’ machines at home and this will be possible again soon. Eventually the data centre machines will be phased out altogether leaving a self-sustaining network running only on users’ computers and smartphones.

  5. The core app you need to get started is the SAFE Browser (Windows, Linux, OSX / Android, iOS) to connect to the network. Using the SAFE Browser you can view websites on the network even without creating an account. Those with an account (requires being a member of this forum and reading for an hour) can also create their own websites (see Your first SAFE website – start to finish in just 20 minutes). Once you have an account you can also create multiple personas (WebIDs) in a way designed to be compatible with Tim Berners-Lee’s Solid project.

  6. To publish a safe:// website design it offline then upload the files and folders using the Web Hosting Manager. Alternatively you can select the ‘template’ option to create a simple site. Once uploaded / created you can publish it using the Web Hosting Manager and view it using the SAFE Browser . There is a list of known Alpha 2 websites here.

  7. Once the network reaches MVP stage (see roadmap) users will be able to become part of the network by hosting data on their own devices in Vaults. This feature is not currently available.

  8. Eventually Vaults will also be used to manage an internal currency called Safecoin, which you will be able to earn and spend on the network, but this is not ready yet.

  9. If you run out of ‘PUT’ (upload) credits when experimenting with Alpha 2, let the moderators know and we should be able to issue you with a new invite.

  10. For more information about how SAFE works see the website safenetwork.tech, the SAFE Network Primer or ask someone on this forum.

10 key facts for crypto-heads

  1. MaidSafeCoin is a token that was created in a crowdsale in 2014 to support the project. It can be traded but not farmed (mined).

  2. When the SAFE Network launches, MaidSafeCoin will be converted to the network’s cryptocurrency Safecoin on a 1:1 basis.

  3. MaidSafeCoin is currently traded on Poloniex and HitBTC exchanges. You can buy it with Bitcoin and exchange it with other cryptocoins and tokens. Beware MAID coins on other exchanges - they may be scams. The SafeCoin name is also being used by another project - this is nothing to do with MaidSafe.

  4. MaidSafeCoin is based on the Omni protocol and can be stored online in an Omniwallet or offline in a hardware or paper wallet.

  5. When the SAFE Network goes live you will be able to ‘farm’ (mine) Safecoin by offering resources (CPU and storage) to the network. There is no blockchain and no proof-of-work. [10 key facts about SAFE Network farming]

  6. Not being based on a blockchain avoids many of the scalability and sustainability issues facing Bitcoin.

  7. There’s a detailed (but slightly dated) discussion on the differences between Bitcoin and Safecoin here.

  8. Safecoin will be used to buy storage and services on SAFE Network, and paid to people providing resources to the network by farming.

  9. App developers may also be paid for their work. [Not confirmed yet, see here and many other threads on this forum]

  10. Some issues remain to be resolved including divisibility. A Safecoin is data rather than a number stored on a blockchain making it harder to subdivide than Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies. [See here and other threads on this forum]

10 key facts for devs

  1. You can develop applications for the SAFE network right now. :slight_smile: In fact you may be interested in the Community Engagement Programme where succesful ideas may be paid for.

  2. A good place to start is the SAFE Network DevHub and the API category on the Safedev forum. There are some accompanying videos on the MaidSafe YouTube Channel and elsewhere on YouTube.

  3. The safeApp DOM API is the entry point with which users can interact with the SAFE network. The SAFE Network client side modules are here. Please note that the APIs and the libraries are liable to change.

  4. There is a very good backgrounder to the architecture of SAFE here and in the SAFE Network Primer, a collection of links to much of the relevant documentation at The Documentation Topic and a set of podcasts at Safecrossroads.net.

  5. SAFE Core is mostly written in Rust and apps written in Rust can access this layer directly [Read more here].

  6. Apps can theoretically be written in any language, although JavaScript / Node.js and C# are best supported at this stage. Work is ongoing to support Java for mobile apps.

  7. Web apps developed for Alpha 2 include safe://listy and safe://chaty website listings and chat applications. There is an email tutorial app to help devs understand the APIs. There is a prototype wallet at safe://wallet.wow and safe://faucet.wow, todo lists safe://todo & safe://checklist, social app safe://patter.dapp, XOR-URL tutorial safe://xorurl.tutorials, Web ID manager safe://webidmgr.dapp among many others. More here.

  8. There is a developer-specific SAFE Dev Forum where you can ask about the more technical stuff. The MaidSafe Asia forums are intended to bring together developers from that continent, while this forum has categories catering for languages including Spanish, Russian and German.

  9. Other places where you can discuss SAFE developments and MaidSafeCoin include the Riot channel, Reddit, Twitter @maidsafe and @safenetworktech, Telegram @safenetwork, Medium https://medium.com/safenetwork and Mastodon https://mastodon.social/@safenetwork.

  10. Finally, for an in-depth look at some of the thinking behind SAFE and its architecture you should check out MaidSafe founder @dirvine’s blog.


As a super long time lurker who has been very interested in the SAFE Network and still getting my head around some of the workings of it this is very valuable. Thank you for taking the time to write this up and share with us.


Absolutely super resource @JPL I shall tweet/fb it immediately, and again during the week. Thanks.


Great work. Thanks for this as it will help some of my friends to understand maidsafe better.


This is brilliant mate, thank you so much!


This is a really great post, I think it should be pinned on top of the forum as an entry for newcomers !

Maybe this could be turned into : a combination of data center hosted machines , as these are not actually servers.
The way you describe it could make people think it still uses a form of client/server architecture for now, and that it will disappear in the future. In fact the data center machines run by MaidSafe are exactly the same as everyone’s machines, excepted for their location in a data centre.


Yep good point. I’ve change that now. Thanks


Dont share this, im still collecting :stuck_out_tongue:

1 Like

Thanks for putting this together. Will definitely be citing your items/links to spread the world. Really appreciate it.



Another point related to this is that uses are free to run nodes on ‘data center hosted machines’, not just from home. In fact, some people have to at this point if they want to participate in the testnets because their home internet connection is too slow.


indeed, including me !


Yes I do that too. I want people to easily understand this post at a basic level, though. I don’t want to over-complicate things with too much detail. People will learn about their options soon enough if they want to run a vault.


@JPL I thought you’d be interested… I just received the Good Share badge for this post, which means that in four days, my sharing of it has alone brought over 300 visitors! :wave:

I think I’ll mention that on Twitter :wink:


Perhaps pin to top|right of /r/safenetwork and /r/maidsafe too…

This is very useful too: as above for crypto-heads#7: https://safe-network-explained.github.io/safe-for-bitcoiners


Great stuff! Thanks for putting it out there. I’m really gratified by the reception this post has got. I’ll revisit it on Thursday after the next update when hopefully there will be some new developments to tell people about.
Cheers :slight_smile:


Updated to explain why the network is currently inaccessible to new accounts


Updated to include Testnet 16 and the invites


This right here folks ^

1 Like

Updated to account for the fact that the network is currently down for external users and to point devs in the direction of mock routing. Can anyone point me towards some good documentation for mock-routing?


Try @hunterlester blah