Foil Notes

Your rating: None Average: 5 (13 votes)

Foil Notes allows you to encrypt notes with a password stronger than the lock code. Strictly speaking, each note is encrypted with a unique random 256-bit AES key which in turn is encrypted with an RSA key which in turn is encrypted with your password. If the bad guys get your encrypted notes, they would have to crack the AES key (different for each note) or the RSA key (shared by all notes but harder to crack) in order to extract the content. If they get the encrypted RSA key as well, then they can brute force your password. So in the end, the encryption is as strong as your password.

The format of the encrypted file is described here - it's the same format as used by Foil Pics. Open (unencrypted) notes are stored in the format understood by Jolla Notes. Encrypted files are stored in ~/Documents/FoilNotes.

The RSA key is shared with Foil Pics. It's stored in ~/.local/share/foil/foil.key - you can copy it from one device to another. Using the same RSA key on different devices, protected with different passwords, is actually not such a bad idea. If you forget the password, you can use the backup key to decrypt your notes, assuming that it's protected with a password that you still remember.

Source code:

Application versions: 
File harbour-foilnotes-1.0.10-12.1.armv7hl.rpm180.88 KB03/05/2019 - 00:55
File harbour-foilnotes-1.0.10-12.1.i486.rpm220.64 KB03/05/2019 - 00:55
File harbour-foilnotes-1.0.9-11.1.armv7hl.rpm180.7 KB30/04/2019 - 02:06
File harbour-foilnotes-1.0.9-11.1.i486.rpm219.99 KB30/04/2019 - 02:06
File harbour-foilnotes-1.0.8-10.1.armv7hl.rpm165.16 KB11/03/2019 - 03:26
File harbour-foilnotes-1.0.8-10.1.i486.rpm200.13 KB11/03/2019 - 03:26
File harbour-foilnotes-1.0.6-8.1.armv7hl.rpm160.36 KB19/02/2019 - 02:47
File harbour-foilnotes-1.0.6-8.1.i486.rpm195.22 KB19/02/2019 - 02:47
File harbour-foilnotes-1.0.5-7.1.armv7hl.rpm160.8 KB17/02/2019 - 16:58
File harbour-foilnotes-1.0.5-7.1.i486.rpm194.72 KB17/02/2019 - 16:58
File harbour-foilnotes-1.0.4-6.1.armv7hl.rpm160.81 KB17/02/2019 - 12:52
File harbour-foilnotes-1.0.4-6.1.i486.rpm195.11 KB17/02/2019 - 12:52
File harbour-foilnotes-1.0.3-5.1.armv7hl.rpm160.06 KB17/02/2019 - 02:24
File harbour-foilnotes-1.0.3-5.1.i486.rpm194.65 KB17/02/2019 - 02:24
File harbour-foilnotes-1.0.2-4.1.armv7hl.rpm157.45 KB12/01/2019 - 22:55
File harbour-foilnotes-1.0.2-4.1.i486.rpm192.28 KB12/01/2019 - 22:55
File harbour-foilnotes-1.0.1-3.1.armv7hl.rpm156.22 KB07/01/2019 - 12:44
File harbour-foilnotes-1.0.1-3.1.i486.rpm190.96 KB07/01/2019 - 12:44
File harbour-foilnotes-1.0.0-2.1.armv7hl.rpm151.85 KB06/01/2019 - 12:42
File harbour-foilnotes-1.0.0-2.1.i486.rpm186.77 KB06/01/2019 - 12:42
  • 1.0.10 (May 3 2019)
    - Fixed QR code rendering defect
    - Updated Chinese translations
  • 1.0.9 (Apr 30 2019)
    - Added QR code generation
    - Tweaked translations
  • 1.0.8 (Mar 10 2019)
    - Fixed password change functionality
    - Redesigned shared key warning
  • 1.0.6 (Feb 19 2019)
    - Updated French translations
  • 1.0.5 (Feb 17 2019)
    - Updated Chinese translations
  • 1.0.4 (Feb 17 2019)
    - Updated Polish and Swedish translations
  • 1.0.3 (Feb 17 2019)
    - Undo and redo
    - French translations
  • 1.0.2 (Jan 12 2019)
    - Fixed German translations
    - Chinese translations
    - Fixed deletion of a new note
  • 1.0.1 (Jan 7 2019)
    - Polish translations
    - Swedish translations
    - German translations
  • 1.0.0 (Jan 6 2019)
    - Initial version


vista_narvas's picture

is there a easy way to decode Notes on a other device ?

eson's picture


Great app! I'm using it all the time. Would it be possible to add Timestamped sections to Foil Notes?

TheJullus's picture

My Foil Notes doesn't open anymode. Do you have any suggestions what to do?

slava's picture

The app doesn't start? Which device/SFOS version?

TheJullus's picture

Xperia XA2 Dual sim/ Sailfish X

slava's picture

Hmm.... I'm using XA2 as a daily device and never experienced any problem with Foil Notes on any released version of Sailfish OS including Is there any way you could produce a core file, a backtrace or something that would give a clue on what's going on?

As a user, I would try reinstalling the package.

TheJullus's picture

What way on reinstalling would you recommend? I don't want to lose my notes. I tried to just install the .rpm file again without uninstalling the app. Didn't solve the problem

slava's picture

FWIW, uninstalling the app doesn't delete the notes (perhaps it should but currently it doesn't). I would be very curious to know what's going on, but like I said, I can't reproduce it. If you reinstal the app but the problem persists, it most likely means one of two things - a problem with dependencies (the app doesn't have any unusual dependencies, so that's unlikely unless you replaced or something) or damaged data (notes).

You can check how the storage for unencrypted notes is doing by running Jolla Notes app. As for the encrypted notes, I suggest that you tar and send me the entire contents of your ~/Documents/FoilNotes directory and I'll see if I can reproduce the crash with those files. I won't be able to actually read your notes because they are encrypted and I don't have your key and don't know the password for it, but since the crash seems to happen before you even have a chance to enter your password, that shouldn't matter.

TheJullus's picture

Ok, reinstalling didn't seem to work. Where should I send my files and in what kind of package? (Ps. Other Foil apps for example Foil Auth work)

slava's picture

Sent you a message via contact page, let's see if that works.

TheJullus's picture

Access denied. To my own personal contact form

slava's picture

Hehe. Then use e-mail from the LICENSE file :)

TheJullus's picture

Oh, I feel so stupid. Anyways, I sent the files

TheJullus's picture

I managed to get back my encrypted note on a reflashed device! I just moved note files and old foil.key to right directories (as I described in the Foil Auth comment section)

direc85's picture

Just what I need to keep my notes safe. Thanks!

maier's picture

Hi may I can give my opinion in the round too)
Locking is a security feature which is located on different levels. In this case it is on the second level. (1st is the device ) So it makes sense to have in the settings an on/ off option so that the customer can decide what he wants and needs.

objectifnul's picture

Okay. After all the current locking logic is fine for me.

objectifnul's picture

Did you remove the autolock feature?

slava's picture

What do you mean by "autolock feature"?

objectifnul's picture

Maybe I'm wrong, but it seems to me that previous versions were locked atomatically after a while when minimized.

slava's picture

No it never did that, it locked (and lockes) when the screen gets locked. But locking after certain inactivity period does make sense, I'll consider that.

Pemek's picture

Just such a thought: wonder if there are two sets of passwords: main one for secure storage, and second with fake notes, easy to break. Revealing fake data would satisfy inquisitive person. Real important data still remain safe. What do you think about it?
btw, great app:)

slava's picture

That's a bit of an overkill IMO :)

minitreintje's picture

Great to see a 2nd Foil app!

Historyscholar's picture

Can you  add a transifex  page ?Thus ,I can translate  it. 

slava's picture

github pull requests are accepted but no transifex, sorry (see for details)

nthn's picture

There is also Weblate instead of Transifex, it's free for free software projects. It can take a bit of time to get accepted but it all works well once it's set up.