Older blog entries for kevinvv (starting at number 2)

10 Dec 2001 (updated 10 Dec 2001 at 16:45 UTC) »

Woohoo! Well less than 24 hours ago I decided to bite the bullet and make a real ssh-agent solution for Mac OS X. I'm pleased to announce its completion.</ p>


I probably should make up a little project page on here... anyway, the problem was that ssh-agents could be started in individual terminal windows, but when a new window is created, the information wouldn't carry over. There have been a few scripts to deal with this, I invented my own and used it for a while, but this is what's really been needed all along.

The problem is detailed in Radar 2575100

So it took a lot longer to make than it should have, mostly from silly mistakes on my part. For example calling kill() with the arguments transposed, and figuring out to call kill() in the first place... but luckily I had iPod to keep me company...and a chorus of crickets...

Pretty soon I'll see if i can get a GUIfied ssh-add going. Perhaps one that reads passphrases out of the keychain which is unlocked right after login.

Now that I've reverse-engineered the loginPlugin API, I've got some other ideas that I'm going to work on... mostly to do with setting environment variables; probably I'll read them out of a plist that can be modified via the SystemPreferences...and I think there are some new docs out on that API, so I'm all set.

10 Dec 2001 (updated 16 Dec 2002 at 22:27 UTC) »

For a while now I've been working with Fred Sánchez on Darwin's SystemStarter project.

The initial version of SystemStarter was basically a replacement of the /etc/rc mechanism, with some neat forward-looking design decisions on Fred's part. I've found this area of operating systems to be traditionally weak. The infancy (and malleability) of Darwin, combined with the neat work Fred started, got me interested in the project. Since then, Fred and I have been working on more advanced features, some of which are unique to Darwin.

Overall I think it's pretty exciting stuff. SystemStarter is breaking away from an entrenched part of UNIX, and providing something more robust.

The SystemStarter work is discussed in the paper "SystemStarter and the Mac OS X Startup Process" which I had the opportunity to co- author along with Fred, and will be presented at BSDCon 2002. I'm really excited about BSDCon; it's the first time I've been published, and it helps to fuel that typical Apple- related delusion of working on software that makes a difference :-)

The ultimate goal is to allow services to be started, stopped, and restarted dynamically; and to have them communicate with SystemStarter enough that SystemStarter can make informed decisions.

10 Dec 2001 (updated 10 Dec 2001 at 07:45 UTC) »

Well, here's my first entry on advogato. I ran across the site during a google search, and noticed a few people I know, so I thought I'd give it a try. Looks like everyone else has been at this a while, sometimes I'm really out of the loop.

I wanted to step to the plate swinging, so I also created a project for my PerlService which is a useful little hack I put together but haven't publicly released yet. Everyone I've showed it to has liked it though, (provided they don't turn a deaf ear when the word "Macintosh" is uttered), so now it's out for all to enjoy.

Currently I'm battling an infestation of crickets, thanks to a prank that someone pulled on the guy living upstairs. Unfortunately crickets know no political boundaries, and I've been atrributed to collateral damage.

I'm also battling a wretched latency to the outside world thanks to some Windows machine in the network I'm on. At first I thought it was a chatty NIC, but I've been able to rule that out, it's just the wonderful world of Win32.

If my entry seems a little frantic, it's probably because I'm dealing with 3000ms latency between ethernet packets, and 50ms latency between cricket packets. Unfortunatley the underwhelming and overwhelming performances don't interefere destructively.

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