Admin tools like screen

Robert Michel openmoko at
Wed Dec 13 16:59:23 CET 2006


What would admins to love to have on their smartphones?

I have used the J2ME SSH (1) client flydssh for a while,
together with screen quite nice - but some things did
I missed. So some ideas to use a secure connection to 
the servers more efficent. This should be just a start
hear your ideas as well ;)

bell - would be nice to have vibra/beeb as bell from
  a screen terminal - selectable for each terminal.
  E.g. get an alarm when a new email is in your folder,
  or someone continous the chat.

  Screen was written in a time where it was more likly that
  the time of your connections count and not each single
  Byte. Looking on the high GPRS traiffs 

When you have only one SSH client on your mobile and use
screen on your server, everytime you switch with screen 
your terminal you will retransmitt this terminal to your
mobil = unefficient and expensive.

When you use screen on your mobile you need to have multiple
SSH connections to your server - everytime you open a new
terminal you need a new login - key based login would help,
but would not be so secure
- ideas?

When you scroll back it will be retransmitted?

Wouldn't it be fine to have local proxy shell that remembers
what to scroll back and which history is on the server?

Editing files are not so smart doing this over a slow network
- it would be nice to have files, that you often modify, 
on your Neo1973 as well - e.g. Webpages, extensions.conf(asterisk).
On your server and on your mobil would be a cvs system so when
you would work on your server and would use
asterisk at server22#ls /etc/asterisk/
the proxy shell would show you that /etc/asterisk/extensions.conf
is in the proxy of your smartphone and it could inform you how much
lines of the versions a different.

When you work inside your proxy shell you could work with some programs
localy, e.g. vim (or any other editor - maybe vim will be not the best
choise on a touchscreen device *g*):
asterisk at server22#vim /etc/asterisk/extentions.conf
and when you save it, the proxy shell would ask you

[ ] replicate with the server immediately
[ ] replicate with the next cheap internet connection - or in [2] hours
    or when the file on the server is read next time and you are online.

When having a CVS it could blow up, so it could be integrated in a way
that you could load every stepp back from the server, but save on the
mobile only the stepp backs until the last replication (plus 10 more
stepps back...) 
So when you have worked hard (a lot of changes) on the server without
the Neo1973 you will get only the diff or just the stepp backs that
you want. 

Sleeping terminal
when having multiple proxy shells open in the screen style
on your OpenMoko, it would be nice to have a sleep modus
where they get updates from the server only on demand.
Starting the sleeping modus could be on demand and
automaticaly when the device lost a cheap internet connection.
E.g. the asterisk shell it doesn't hurt to have it running
with a free internetconnection for the Neo (beside battery...)

snooze mode
to save battery power it could be nice to have 5 minutes snooze mode
do a short update and then snooze again

sleep mode
this could sleep for longer, even with disconnections but waking up
with an incomming call with a special number or directly with a
data-call in case that something urgent happend
- firefall brake in alarm
- server got a long expected email 
- someone goes on with chatting

The alarms of the admin tools should be respect general telephone 
"user mode" policy. I'm shure we will have a general system when,
who will can call you, when the sound is of, (or just the vibra
for the first minutes) in dependancy of
- personal selection
- time
- locacion
- maybe light
- last use of the phone
- ... others

Of couse the OpenMoko/Neo1973 device could have some extended security
for the server logins - e.g. an own vserer-guest, encrypted filesystem
to store your proxy-shell files, login with keys, external crypto token,
self deleting when
- a non authorised SIM is inserted
- admin didn't log in for [2] days
- server says to do so (when your Neo1973 is lost/stolen)
and others ... :)

Of course things like a proxy shell mustn't be started
at the beginning, but I'm shure several software solution
would reduce online cost and would make admin tasks with
OpenMoko/Neo1973 more efficient.

Some more ideas what admins would like to have?
What you would like to have?


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