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README.md

Vector/Web

Vector is a Matrix web client built using the Matrix React SDK (https://github.com/matrix-org/matrix-react-sdk).

Getting started

  1. Install or update node.js so that your npm is at least at version 2.0.0
  2. Clone the repo: git clone https://github.com/vector-im/vector-web.git
  3. Switch to the SDK directory: cd vector-web
  4. Install the prerequisites: npm install
  5. Start the development builder and a testing server: npm start
  6. Wait a few seconds for the initial build to finish.
  7. Open http://127.0.0.1:8080/ in your browser to see your newly built Vector.

With npm start, any changes you make to the source files will cause a rebuild so your changes will show up when you refresh.

For production use, run npm run build to build all the necessary files into the vector directory and run your own server.

Development

For simple tweaks, you can work on any of the source files within Vector with the setup above, and your changes will cause an instant rebuild.

However, all serious development on Vector happens on the develop branch. This typically depends on the develop snapshot versions of matrix-react-sdk and matrix-js-sdk too, which isn't handled by Vector's package.json. To get the right dependencies, check out the develop branches of these libraries and then use npm link to tell Vector about them:

  1. git clone git@github.com:matrix-org/matrix-react-sdk.git
  2. cd matrix-react-sdk
  3. git checkout develop
  4. npm install
  5. npm run build
  6. npm start (to start the dev rebuilder)
  7. cd ../vector-web
  8. Link the react sdk package into the example: npm link path/to/your/react/sdk

Similarly, you may need to npm link path/to/your/js/sdk in your matrix-react-sdk directory.

If you add or remove any components from the Vector skin, you will need to rebuild the skin's index by running, npm run reskindex.

You may need to run npm i source-map-loader in matrix-js-sdk if you get errors about "Cannot resolve module 'source-map-loader'" due to shortcomings in webpack.

Deployment

Just run npm run build and then mount the vector directory on your webserver to actually serve up the app, which is entirely static content.

Enabling encryption

End-to-end encryption in Vector and Matrix is not yet considered ready for day-to-day use; it is experimental and should be considered only as a proof-of-concept. See https://matrix.org/jira/browse/SPEC-162 for an overview of the current progress.

To build a version of vector with support for end-to-end encryption, install the olm module with npm i https://matrix.org/packages/npm/olm/olm-0.1.0.tgz before running npm start. The olm library will be detected and used if available.

To enable encryption for a room, type

/encrypt on

in the message bar in that room. Vector will then generate a set of keys, and encrypt all outgoing messages in that room. (Note that other people in that room will send messages in the clear unless they also /encrypt on.)

Note that historical encrypted messages cannot currently be decoded - history is therefore lost when the page is reloaded.

There is currently no visual indication of whether encryption is enabled for a room, or whether a particular message was encrypted.