Skip to content
A javascript library for basic interaction with the Signal messaging service, adapted from Signal-Desktop.
JavaScript
Branch: master
Clone or download
Latest commit 9b0cb39 Oct 16, 2019
Permalink
Type Name Latest commit message Commit time
Failed to load latest commit information.
config Updated to v1.25.3 upstream, switched to using 'debug' module. Jun 29, 2019
examples Patch group storage back in without breaking API. Oct 16, 2019
protos Updated to v1.25.3 upstream, switched to using 'debug' module. Jun 29, 2019
src Patch group storage back in without breaking API. Oct 16, 2019
test Patch group storage back in without breaking API. Oct 16, 2019
.eslintrc.json Initial commit. Oct 26, 2018
.gitignore Initial commit. Oct 26, 2018
.nvmrc Initial commit. Oct 26, 2018
LICENSE Initial commit. Oct 26, 2018
README.md Completely overhaul frontend and backend API, and add documentation. Aug 30, 2019
package-lock.json Bump version to v1.1.0. Oct 16, 2019
package.json

README.md

libsignal-service-javascript

This is a third-party effort, and is NOT a part of the official Signal project or any other project of Open Whisper Systems.

A javascript library for basic interaction with the Signal messaging service. This library is a standalone port to Node.js of the backend components of Signal-Desktop. Not to be confused with libsignal-protocol-javascript, which only includes the Signal wire protocol, this library contains the logic for actually interacting with the Signal messaging servers as currently operated by OWS. As such, it is intended to be a Javascript equivalent of libsignal-service-java and provide a similar API.

Usage

To use this in your Node.js project, run the following from your project directory:

npm install --save @throneless/libsignal-service

The overall design of the library attempts to keep the overall feel of the upstream code in order to make it (somewhat) easier to keep up with upstream changes, while trying to be relatively ergonomic for developers using this is in their own projects. The library is split into three components that encompass particular functionality:

  • AccountManager for registering and confirming accounts.
  • MessageSender for sending messages.
  • MessageReceiver for receiving messages.

Those three components in turn share a fourth component, ProtocolStore, to track overall state. This includes key and session data as well as unprocessed messages. There are two additional top-level components that provide various helper functions:

  • KeyHelper for various cryptographic helper functions.
  • AttachmentHelper for file management helper functions.

Much of the Signal service relies on phone numbers, and when using this library you must use phone numbers in E.123 format (without spaces). So for instance a U.S. phone number (555) 555-5555 would be written +15555555.

Initializing the store

Usage of the library requires a ProtocolStore to save keys and other state. This storage is pluggable for different storage backends via a relatively straightforward API. An example that uses node-localstorage can be found in the examples directory, and an example that just stores the keys in-memory can be found in the tests directory. See below for an overview of creating your own storage backend.

const Signal = require('libsignal-service');
const myBackend = new MyStorageBackend(); // This is your storage backend implementation.
const protocolStore = new Signal.ProtocolStore(myBackend);
protocolStore.load(); // Load the data from the backend into the in-memory cache.

Registering accounts

Registering an account takes place in two phases. First, you'll request a confirmation code from the Signal server that you are authorized to use this number (when experimenting you probably want to get a temporary phone number via an online service like Google Voice or Twilio rather than clobbering the keys for your own phone! For safety, the library uses the Signal staging server by default. This means that it will only send and receive messages from other clients using the staging server! If utilized with NODE_ENV=production, it will use the live Signal server). The password below is an arbitrary string used for authentication against the Signal API, it will be registered with the Signal servers as part of the registration process.

const password = Signal.KeyHelper.generatePassword(); // A simple helper function to generate a random password.
const accountManager = new Signal.AccountManager(myPhoneNumber, password, protocolStore); // The protocolStore from above
accountManager.requestSMSVerification().then(result => {
  console.log("Sent verification code.");
});

You'll receive an SMS message with an authentication code at the number your specified (or a voice call, if you use requestVoiceVerification() instead). Use the code (without any hyphens or spaces) to register your account with the Signal service:

accountManager.registerSingleDevice("myCode").then(result => {
  console.log("Registered account.");
});

Sending messages

To send a message, connect a MessageSender instance to the Signal service:

const messageSender = new Signal.MessageSender(protocolStore);
messageSender.connect().then(() => {
  messageSender.sendMessageToNumber({
    number: destinationNumber,
    body: "Hello world!"
  })
  .then(result => {
    console.log(result);
  });
});

If the sendMessageToNumber() function also takes an array of attachments, if you wish to send one or more files. To help process files into a format Signal understands, we can use the AttachmentHelper:

const attachments = [];
messageSender.connect().then(() => {
  Signal.AttachmentHelper.loadFile(path)  // a path to the file to send, can also take a caption string
  .then(file => {
    attachments.push(file);
  })
  .then(() => {
    messageSender.sendMessageToNumber({
      number: destinationNumber,
      body: "Hello world!",
      attachments: attachments
    })
    .then(result => {
      console.log(result);
    });
  });
});

For more complex examples, including experimental support for managing and sending to groups, see client.js in the examples directory.

Receiving messages

To receive messages, you connect a MessageReceiver instance to the Signal service and then subscribe to its EventEmitter to listen for particular events. The message is returned as an attribute of the event object:

const messageReceiver = new Signal.MessageReceiver(protocolStore);
messageReceiver.connect().then(() => {
  // Subscribe to the "message" event
  messageReceiver.addEventListener("message", ev => {
    ev.data.message.attachments.map(attachment => {
      messageReceiver
        .handleAttachment(attachment)
        .then(attachmentPointer => {
	  // if there are attachments, save them to the current directory.
          Signal.AttachmentHelper.saveFile(attachmentPointer, "./").then(
            fileName => {
              console.log("Wrote file to: ", fileName);
            }
          );
        });
    });
    if (ev.data.message.group) {
      console.log(ev.data.message.group);
      console.log(
        "Received message in group " +
          ev.data.message.group.id +
          ": " +
          ev.data.message.body
      );
    } else {
      console.log("Received message: ", ev.data.message.body);
    }
    ev.confirm();
  });
});

For more events you can listen for, see client.js in the examples directory.

Implementing your own storage backend

So how do you store keys and other information in your application's database? Well, you can implement your own storage backend. Just create an object that implements the following methods. The storage backend stores arbitrary JSON objects that each have an 'id' property that holds a string. They're split into different types of data (identity keys, sessions, pre-keys, signed pre-keys, unprocessed messages, and configuration) so that these can easily be split into, for example, different database tables.

class myStorageBackend {
  async getAllIdentityKeys() {}
  async createOrUpdateIdentityKey(data) {}
  async removeIdentityKeyById(id) {}

  async getAllSessions() {}
  async createOrUpdateSession(data) {}
  async removeSessionById(id) {}
  async removeSessionsByNumber(number) {}
  async removeAllSessions() {}

  async getAllPreKeys() {}
  async createOrUpdatePreKey(data) {}
  async removePreKeyById(id) {}
  async removeAllPreKeys() {}

  async getAllSignedPreKeys() {}
  async createOrUpdateSignedPreKey(data) {}
  async removeSignedPreKeyById(id) {}
  async removeAllSignedPreKeys() {}

  async getAllUnprocessed() {}
  async getUnprocessedCount() {} // returns the number of unprocessed messages
  async getUnprocessedById(id) {}
  async saveUnprocessed(data) {}
  async updateUnprocessedAttempts(id, attempts) {} // updates the 'attempts' property of the unprocessed message
  async updateUnprocessedWithData(id, data) {}
  async removeUnprocessed(id) {}
  async removeAllUnprocessed() {}

  async getAllConfiguration() {}
  async createOrUpdateConfiguration(data) {}
  async removeConfigurationById(id) {}
  async removeAllConfiguration() {}

  async removeAll() {} // clears all storage
}

For more details, an example that uses node-localstorage can be found in the examples directory, and an example that just stores the keys in-memory can be found in the tests directory.

Todo

  • Additional documentation.
  • Simplify ProtocolStore API.
  • Cleanup frontend API.
  • Update wire-protocol dependency.
  • Additional unit test coverage.
  • Webpack integration for browser support.

License

GPLv3

Libsignal-service-javascript is a free software project licensed under the GNU General Public License v3.0 (GPLv3) by Throneless Tech.

It is derived in part from Signal-Desktop which is Copyright (c) 2014-2018 Open Whisper Systems, also under the GPLv3.

You can’t perform that action at this time.