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Gate One Will Support X11: Fast Enough To Run VLC In Your Browser

Riskable Re:In the browser? (164 comments)

Whoah there! Don't confuse "in the browser" with "in Internet Explorer."

2012 was the first year that Chrome was successfully exploited and Firefox has done fairly well every year. At the 2013 event the Chrome exploit only worked in Windows!

about a year ago
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Gate One Will Support X11: Fast Enough To Run VLC In Your Browser

Riskable Re:RDP - Win8 client to a Win2012 backend - very f (164 comments)

Oh that's unaccelerated, man! For whatever reason my laptop's Intel video doesn't get 2d accelerated canvas (probably a driver bug). On my wife'x iMac the CPU utilization hovers around 10% playing the same video.

Just wait until I get it working with a 3d WebGL context. Then it will be using hardly any CPU at all!

about a year ago
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Gate One Will Support X11: Fast Enough To Run VLC In Your Browser

Riskable Re:NoMachine (164 comments)

Gate One's X11 app already supports sharing of individual windows or whole desktops. I haven't implemented a GUI for it yet but that's just one of many TODO items I'm working through before the beta.

about a year ago
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Gate One Will Support X11: Fast Enough To Run VLC In Your Browser

Riskable Re:VLC ? (164 comments)

Actually the demo uses smplayer.

But whatever, details. Who cares, right? ;D

about a year ago
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Gate One Will Support X11: Fast Enough To Run VLC In Your Browser

Riskable Re:The network says no (164 comments)

You'll love Gate One's X11 app then. With WebP encoding the bandwidth utilization playing back that Big Buck Bunny video hovers around ~700kbits/sec. With the default JPEG encoding it hovers around 1Mbits/sec (that's what you see in the Youtube video).

Even full-screen video playback never goes above 1.5Mbits/sec in my testing. That's with a 1366x768 display. Testing with JPEG encoding has it averaging out around 1.2Mbits/sec most of the time with peaks at 1.5MBits/sec here and there.

about a year ago
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Gate One Will Support X11: Fast Enough To Run VLC In Your Browser

Riskable Re:smart desktop says yes (164 comments)

That's exactly how Gate One's X11 app works. Well, it can't buffer video in any significant way without adding non-trivial delays to interactivity but it does keep independent caches for each window on the screen and each gets their own encoding/quality strategy based on how often updates occur (bandwidth utilization isn't taken into account yet).

So that terminal running in the background will have nice and crisp, PNG-rendered text while the video playing in the forground will utilize JPEG (or WebP) encoding to reduce bandwidth (and CPU consumption on the server). If you look closely you can see this in the video.

about a year ago
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Gate One Will Support X11: Fast Enough To Run VLC In Your Browser

Riskable Re:The network says no (164 comments)

Real-time encoding of desktop apps using h.264 is a bad idea. Text will look awful.

Gate One defaults to PNG encoding of screen/window/region captures and switches automatically to JPEG if updates start happening fast enough (because JPEG is much less CPU overhead than PNG). Its a threshold thing.

The quality can be adjusted on-the-fly as well. WebP support is there too but I'm torn as to whether to use it by default or not (if the browser supports it) because the CPU utilization is on par with PNG yet it is lossy (lossless works too but is too slow to encode to be realistic). The only benefit with WebP is reduced bandwidth... Admittedly it is a non-trivial amount (probably about half as much as JPEG at equivalent quality levels).

Once the beta is out I'll probably have more data to make a better decision about WebP.

about a year ago
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Gate One Will Support X11: Fast Enough To Run VLC In Your Browser

Riskable Re:I despair - xpra? (164 comments)

How many submissions have you made? I didn't pay anything to get this posted. I just typed it up into the submission form earlier today and about an hour and a half later it appeared on the front page. I've done that 5 times now (not just for Gate One) with 6 attempts (I ended up having to re-submit something once =). So an accept/submit ratio of 5/6--not bad.

I personally think xpra is awesome. When searching for examples of XCB use in Python it came up in a number of results. My only issue with it is that it requires a client be installed.

Clients have to be deployed to every desktop and you have to re-deploy every time there's an update. I've been in IT long enough that I am absolutely sick of that. Web apps are the way to go. Deploy once to the web server(s) and you're done. No need to push out updates to clients.

about a year ago
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Gate One Will Support X11: Fast Enough To Run VLC In Your Browser

Riskable Re:X11? What? We need Wayland! (164 comments)

You know, if Wayland has Python bindings and an API akin to XCB (or Xlib) I can make it work with that too. Wouldn't even take much effort!

about a year ago
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Gate One Will Support X11: Fast Enough To Run VLC In Your Browser

Riskable Re:Everything in the browser? (164 comments)

Great: So now the computer manufacturers are going to point the finger to ME and say, "You're the reason why millenials aren't buying computers anymore!"

I really like the idea of using a fresnel lens over a smartphone to turn it into a larger desktop! I'm going to try that (I happen to have a big collection of fresnel lenses--don't ask =).

about a year ago
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Gate One Will Support X11: Fast Enough To Run VLC In Your Browser

Riskable Re:The network says no (164 comments)

I'm going to do everything in my power to make sure your use case works because I want to be able to do that too! I also want to be able to pick up where I left off if I have to work on something while I'm out & about. Just whip out my Chromebook and I'm coding using the desktop (or just the app) I left behind.

So yeah, I just gave away an interesting feature: If you're using a Linux desktop (like I do) and you fire up Gate One it can connect to the existing X11 display and forward just the app you want it to. It doesn't have to be the entire desktop.

about a year ago
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Gate One Will Support X11: Fast Enough To Run VLC In Your Browser

Riskable Re:The network says no (164 comments)

Reading your comment makes me think you'll love Gate One's ability to resume your session--even after restarting the process. I'll give you a hypothetical example:

1) I connect to https://gateone.mycompany.com/ and open up LibreOffice Calc.
2) I connect to the server running Gate One via SSH and run "/etc/init.d/gateone stop"
3) The web page reports it has been disconnected but it will retry connecting every five seconds.
4) I run "/etc/init.d/gateone start"
5) The web page reconnects to the Gate One server and my spreadsheet is back in front of me--right where i left it.

That works with terminals too if you install the dtach command. Everything will resume right where you left off even after killing and restarting the gateone.py process. This makes upgrading Gate One about as easy as can be; users will experience ~5 seconds of down time while the upgrade takes place and the process is restarted.

about a year ago
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Gate One Will Support X11: Fast Enough To Run VLC In Your Browser

Riskable Re:buffers (164 comments)

Because it's not a video player. It's a remote desktop/X11 tool. The video is merely an acid test demonstrating how fast/efficient it is. If it is fast enough to play back a video surely it's fast enough to use a spreadsheet or a text editor, right?

about a year ago
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Gate One Will Support X11: Fast Enough To Run VLC In Your Browser

Riskable Re:Chromecasting VLC (164 comments)

That won't work so well since this doesn't currently support audio. It's in the TODO list though :)

Also, if you're playing back a video you're much better off just playing it directly in the browser. You can even re-encode videos in real-time to be played back with whatever codecs Chromecast supports (if necessary).

about a year ago
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Gate One Will Support X11: Fast Enough To Run VLC In Your Browser

Riskable Re:In the browser? (164 comments)

I don't know about that. When I think to myself, "What has an imperial fucktonne of exploits?" here's what comes to mind:

* Windows (and Microsoft software in general)
* Java (and especially the use of Java inside browsers)
* Flash
* PDFs
* Loads of other proprietary software/solutions

Exploiting the browser these days is very difficult and browser vendors are doing a really good job with competitions/incentives to uncover vulnerabilities before they become a problem. Using the browser has the distinct advantage of *not* having the same problems of the proprietary products I enumerated above. You get whole new ones! But at least they're manageable and (mostly) predictable.

The more apps that are available in browsers the better. They're as cross-platform as you can get right now and if you host them yourself you can avoid the spying problem.

about a year ago
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Gate One Will Support X11: Fast Enough To Run VLC In Your Browser

Riskable Re:Completely MORONIC (164 comments)

You're completely missing the point: Video playback over a remote desktop connection is merely an acid test. If it can play back a video that means the rate at which it can capture screenshots and send them to you is reasonably high. It's also an indication of how efficient it is.

Gate One's X11 feature isn't made for video it is merely efficient/fast enough to handle it. If I can open VLC and play back a video in my browser surely I can get reasonable responsiveness from something like a spreadsheet or IDE.

about a year ago
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Gate One Will Support X11: Fast Enough To Run VLC In Your Browser

Riskable Re:RDP - Win8 client to a Win2012 backend - very f (164 comments)

What is the CPU load while watching a video over RDP? I'm genuinely curious.

For reference, the gateone.py process(es) hover around 5% utilization when playing back a video @30fps (~720p resolution). Here's what it's doing while a video is playing back:

1) Capture the screenshot of the changed region on the X11 display. It can do this every 33ms (a capped equivalent to 30fps). It only needs to take screenshots when there's a change but in the case of a video it happens very fast, hence the 33ms cap.
2) Convert the raw captured image to selected format (JPEG for this example). It also makes a hash of the image that's used by both the server and client JS for caching purposes.
3) Transmit the image to the browser. If the image has recently been sent to the client it will be aware of this and will only send the hash. This transmission occurs in binary mode over the WebSocket (it's complicated).

From that point it's up to the client-side JavaScript to handle displaying the raw JPEG data. It is quite CPU-intensive if your hardware doesn't accelerate 2d canvas elements but not too bad (Chrome will hog around 50-80% of a single core while the video plays). Everything will remain responsive regardless.

For reference, I've done extensive benchmarking of the browser-side CPU utilization and Chrome's developer tools will report 81% idle even when the actual CPU consumption of the process is nearing 80%. That means that all the overhead is inside the code that renders canvas elements; which is good because it means my JavaScript is not a bottleneck.

about a year ago
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Gate One Will Support X11: Fast Enough To Run VLC In Your Browser

Riskable Re:what is Gate One? (164 comments)

That's what it is right now. Soon it will be so much more.

X11 is just the start. I also have File Transfer and other apps in the works. The File Transfer app will be interesting... It will be more than just an, "SFTP client." It will allow you to fetch a file from just about any URL (back-end is already written and supports ftp:// sftp://, ftps://, magnet://, and even dns://, dict:// and other obscure things which I think makes it all that more interesting/useful) and deliver it to any number of destinations you like. Even if the destination uses a different protocol.

So for example, if you wanted to download a magnet/bittorrent URL and have it automatically delivered to your home theater PC, your phone, and your brother's computer when complete you could do that.

about a year ago
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Gate One Will Support X11: Fast Enough To Run VLC In Your Browser

Riskable Re:The network says no (164 comments)

I hear what you're saying and I agree that network latency is one of the biggest problems. Having said that, I have performed testing with my home Comcast Internet connection with Gate One running on a Rackspace cloud instance (512MB). The latency is negligible. My ping time to that server was a pretty steady ~50ms and apps like Chrome (yes, Chrome inside Chrome), LibreOffice (Calc/Writer), Sublime Text 2, kate, etc worked very well.

about a year ago
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Gate One Will Support X11: Fast Enough To Run VLC In Your Browser

Riskable Re:The network says no (164 comments)

You're right: It doesn't need any proprietary software or proprietary protocols. It "just works" (in your browser).

I honestly have no idea if it's the fastest protocol. I do know that it's an order of magnitude less bandwidth than noVNC and similar web-based remote desktop products.

about a year ago

Submissions

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Gate One Will Support X11: Fast Enough To Run VLC In Your Browser

Riskable Riskable writes  |  about a year ago

Riskable (19437) writes "Ever seen a remote desktop tool that's fast/efficient enough to play back video? Gate One will soon have that capability via the forthcoming X11 support (as demonstrated in the video). I am posting this to Slashdot looking for suggestions and feedback as to how I should move forward with it before I solidify the architecture, API, and even the business end of it (making money). I'll be watching the thread and replying to comments (as I have time). Also, if you're interested you can sign up to be notified when it's available."
Link to Original Source
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Gate One 1.1 Released: Run vim In Your Browser

Riskable Riskable writes  |  more than 2 years ago

Riskable writes "Version 1.1 of Gate One (HTML5 terminal emulator/SSH client) was just released (download). New features include security enhancements, major performance improvements, mobile browser support, improved terminal emulation, automatic syntax highlighting of syslog messages, PDFs can now be captured/displayed just like images, Python 3 support, Internet Explorer (10) support, and quite a lot more (full release notes). There's also a new demo where you can try out vim in your browser, play terminal games (nethack, vitetris, adventure, zangband, battlestar, greed, robotfindskitten, and hangman), surf the web in lynx, and a use full suite of IPv6-enabled network tools (ping, traceroute, nmap, dig, and a domain name checker)."
Link to Original Source
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Gate One 1.1 Released: Demo Now With More Nethack

Riskable Riskable writes  |  more than 2 years ago

Riskable writes "Version 1.1 of Gate One (HTML5 terminal emulator/SSH client) is now available (download). New features include major performance improvements (both client and server-side), security enhancements, mobile browser support, improved terminal emulation, automatic syntax highlighting of syslog messages, PDFs can now be captured/displayed just like images, Python 3 support, Internet Explorer (10) support, a new tutorial on how to embed Gate One into other apps, a new theme (Solarized), an Example plugin, and a whole heck of a lot more (full release notes). There's also a new demo up at liftoffsoftware.com where you can play terminal games (nethack, zangband, greed, vitetris, and more), surf the web in lynx, and a use full suite of IPv6-enabled network tools (ping, traceroute, nmap, dig, and a wicked fast domain name checker)."
Link to Original Source
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Gate One Brings Text-mode Surfing to the Web, Quake-Style

Riskable Riskable writes  |  more than 2 years ago

Riskable writes "As a follow-up to my previous Slashdot story, Gate One is now out of beta. Packages can be downloaded here. There's also a live demo: Press the ESC key on this page to have a terminal running lynx drop into view, Quake-style! I've also posted a video overview and the documentation can be found here. Some pertinent changes since the beta: Added the ability display images inline within terminals (screenshot), key-based SSH authentication, a WebSockets authentication API (for secure embedding), dramatically improved terminal emulation, an overhauled bookmark manager, support for international keyboard layouts, and a web-based log viewer that lets you export logs to self-contained HTML playback files (example)."
Link to Original Source
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Gate One 1.0 Released, Displays Images in Terminals, Quake-Style Demo

Riskable Riskable writes  |  more than 2 years ago

Riskable writes "Liftoff Software (my company) just released Gate One 1.0, an HTML5-powered web-based terminal emulator and SSH client that requires no browser plugins. New features since the beta announcement on Slashdot in October: The ability to display images inline within terminals (screenshot), key-based SSH authentication, a new WebSockets authentication API (making it easier to embed), dramatically improved terminal emulation (including 256-color modes), an overhauled bookmark manager, added support for international keyboard layouts, a web-based log viewer, and a lot more. We've also posted a video overview, put the documentation online, and created a special live demo: Press the ESC key on any page at liftoffsoftware.com to have Gate One drop into view (Quake-style!) allowing you to to surf the web via lynx. With this release Liftoff Software is now officially open for business, providing Commercial Licensing and Support Packages for Gate One. Download Gate One or check out the code."
Link to Original Source
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Gate One 0.9 Released, Brings SSH to the Web

Riskable Riskable writes  |  more than 3 years ago

Riskable writes "Dan McDougall (full disclosure: That's me) just publicly released the source code to Gate One which is an HTML5-powered terminal emulator and SSH client. It is unique in that it doesn't require any browser plugins (it uses WebSockets) and supports multiple simultaneous terminals/SSH sessions in a single browser tab. It can resume user's sessions after being disconnected and supports both client and server-side session recording/playback (view as a log or like a video). Gate One can also be embedded into other web-based applications such as administration interfaces, serial port concentrators, virtual appliances, or whatever. Enjoy!"
Link to Original Source
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Ubiquiti RouterStation Challenge Winners

Riskable Riskable writes  |  more than 5 years ago

Riskable writes "Remember that $200,000 Contest For a Better Open-WRT Wireless Router GUI? Today Ubiquiti posted the winning entries to their support wiki. The grand prize was a tie between PyCI (written by yours truly) and NETSHe with OpenNET as the runner up. Source code and firmware images for each entry are available for download on their respective wiki pages.

I'll be setting up a project page for PyCI (and l2sh) soon to make it a participatory open source product. Even if you don't have a RouterStation or don't care about OpenWRT there are numerous Python modules and tools inside of PyCI that could prove useful to other open source projects (e.g. iptables.py can read/interpret over 400 permutations of the iptables command). I'll also be checking the comments if anyone has any questions for me about PyCI or the contest in general.

BTW: I'd like to thank all the commenters in the original article that insinuated that the technical requirements were impossible and/or that making a GUI to configure such complex things is a waste of time. I read every one and I wouldn't have made it such an obsession otherwise! Also, thank you Slashdot for introducing me to the contest!"

Link to Original Source

Journals

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Hmm... Today I decided to utilize my journal

Riskable Riskable writes  |  more than 11 years ago

Hmm... It's free and it's on Slashdot. Why not?

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