Mullvad Leta is a search engine from Mullvad VPN

Short description

Mullvad VPN is a popular VPN service that recommends using search engines focused on privacy, including DuckDuckGo and Mullvad Leta. Mullvad Leta is a proxy server that anonymizes Google searches through a Frontend for Google Search API. It is run on STBooted RAM only servers and has a limit of 50 requests per day. The service requires a paid Mullvad VPN account and accepts payments only through cryptocurrency. While Mullvad collects some metrics, the search engine provides valuable results with a minimalist design. The source code is not yet available.

Mullvad Leta is a search engine from Mullvad VPN

While looking through the code of Mullvad VPN’s browser extension for interesting solutions in the product, I noticed that Mullvad recommends using search engines focused on privacy and privacy, namely DuckDuckGo and Mullvad Leta. I immediately had a thought: What? Mullvad Leta? What is it?”, with this thought, I went to study this search engine.

Today I’ll talk about what I was able to learn about it using their FAQ and other sources.

About Mullvad VPN

Mullvad VPN website home page

Mullvad VPN is a VPN service that started its existence in 2009 and has established itself as one of the best VPN services during its time. Why this is so and what are its features – we will not analyze in detail, I will only mention a few points that, in my opinion, make it so:

  • absence of any link to a person (when registering, the service does not require anything from you, your login is 16 digits);

  • Open source code (absolutely all applications that Mullvad has are open and you can study them under a microscope at any moment);

  • The country of registration is Sweden (everyone draws their own conclusions here – it is a plus or a minus);

  • Continuous improvement of the product (regular updates, introduction of new functions, development of new products).

Here we have dealt with the developer company (if you were not already familiar with it), and now we will start studying Mullvad Leta.

Disclaimer: Next will be the information from the FAQ section on the Mullvad Leta website, which I translated, as well as other information I found on the Internet.

Mullvad Leta

Let’s start by understanding the meaning of the word Leta. What does that mean anyway?
According to the FAQ, the meaning of this word is:

Leta is a Swedish word meaning “to seek”, “to hunt”, “to be in search” or “to scout”. It is pronounced “Lea – tah”.

Also, for those who are not familiar with Mullvad VPN, I will say that Mullvad means “Mole” in Swedish (as you can see, it is depicted on the service logo).

Is Leta a search engine built from scratch?

Main Mullvad Leta

I’m sorry to disappoint you, but no, this system is a proxy server between you and the Google Search API (yes, that’s it).

Mullvad Leta is a Frontend for Google Search API. The request you make first goes to the Mullvad Leta server, which then makes that request to the Google Search API, thereby anonymizing the user.

The search engine itself has the following stack:

Front end:

Back end:

And on the servers, this is the situation:

Leta servers are run on STBooted RAM only servers, like VPN servers. These servers are running the latest Ubuntu LTS version with Mullvad’s own VPN kernel, which is configured to remove junk.

Mullvad Leta has 2 search options – Normal and Cached.

Cached search works like this – each search is stored in a Redis RAM-based cache, which is deleted for storage over 30 days.

Cached queries are pulled from this store, which means that if no user has searched for what you’re looking for, you’ll get stale results.

What do you need to start using?

This is where some may get upset because you need to have a paid Mullvad VPN account to use this search engine. But why might some be upset? It’s simple, the service does not accept bank cards of the Russian Federation for payment, and in this case, payment can only be made with cryptocurrency (by the way, you can get a 10% discount when paying).

If you just try to go to the site, you will see the following picture:

You are asked to connect to Mullvad VPN

Also, the service has a limit on the number of requests. If you request from the cache, then you have only 50 requests per day, and when you go to the next page in the search results, you also lose 1 request. And if you select the option “Search only in the cache”, which is the default, then the number of requests will remain the same as before.

Why is the number of requests limited?

Mullvad writes that every search requires them to make an API call to Google, which costs money and they want to provide customers with a valuable service without the possibility of abuse.

Result for the query “habr”

Everything is anonymous … almost!

I think it’s important to mention that Mullvad collects some information, namely:

We collect metrics that refer to the number of cached searches compared to direct searches, solely to understand the value of our service. In addition, we collect information about the use of the processor, RAM and other similar information to ensure the uninterrupted operation of the service.

Results

I was personally very satisfied after testing this search engine for a short time.
The service has a minimalist design, there is no visual garbage, and the search results are such that you can find what you are looking for the first time.

Unfortunately, the source code for this product is not yet available (if it will be available at all, which one would hope).

That’s all!

If you look events in Mykolaiv – https://city-afisha.com/afisha/

Related posts