Daniel Rench

programming, etc.

del.icio.us "Private" Links Hack

This is a quick hack to post private links to del.icio.us. If it works on anything other than recent Mozilla-based browsers I would be very (though pleasantly) surprised (just did a quick test on Safari and the encrypt one works but decrypt doesn’t). It assumes you used the same passphrase on all private links. Even though the link itself is now private, the description, extended and tags fields are not (though it would be an interesting excercise to crypt some of those too). And this isn’t going to help you decrypt private links in RSS feeds. The decrypt script makes the assumption that these private links will begin with http://del.icio.us/doc/dangerous# which I suppose is subject to change.

  • Bookmark these two links:
  • Browse to a URL that you want to post "privately"
  • Use the "make private" bookmark
  • Type a passphrase when prompted
  • Wait (your browser is now doing blowfish encryption in pure javascript so gimme a break)
  • When it’s done, a “URL” beginning with my made-up private:// scheme will pop up; copy this to your clipboard (ctrl-C, command-C, whatever)
  • Go to http://del.icio.us/post/, paste this private:// URL into the url field and add as usual (ok, we all use the bookmarklets so this isn’t “usual” I know but bear with me here)
  • The automatic redirect will attempt to take you to this fake private:// URL. Ignore it.
  • Go to your del.icio.us page
  • Use the “decrypt links” bookmarklet
  • Enter your passphrase when prompted
  • Wait as your browser does blowfish decryption on all private:// links on the page
  • Click on your now-decrypted “secret” link

You can see the unobfuscated source code for the bookmarklets here and here. The first 595(!) lines of both scripts are the encryption code which I got from http://aam.ugpl.de/node/1060 because I don’t know how to pull in external scripts from bookmarklets (well it seemed to pull in the script but the functions didn’t work so read the first sentence of this post again).

Update: In March 2006, del.icio.us added its own private saving feature.