initial thoughts on ltsp kiosk plugin

Gavin McCullagh gmccullagh at
Thu May 17 08:32:15 UTC 2007


On Wed, 16 May 2007, Jonathan Carter wrote:

> I *think* the bug is actually that .xsession calls metacity. From what I 
> vaguely remember from an IRC discussion with ogra, Firefox is supposed 
> to run windowless and full-screen. I may be wrong though, either way, 
> there's a bug.

Perhaps that's it.  I think if possible it'd be preferable to have a very
restrictive window manager running.  If you have a bunch of tabs open in
firefox and you click a link that loads in a new window, the new window
goes above the previous one and the only way to get back to the other
window is to close the top one.

A lot of window managers provide ways to directly run applications though,
which is possibly not so desirable.  We also find students are great at
obfuscating interface settings so as to "book" a machine, ie they change
things so nobody else can figure out how to use it so we'd want it to be
quite restrictive.

> I think once Java is free, it will be nice to include it as an option 
> for the build client script. Including GNU Gnash by default would also 
> be great, imho.

Agreed, though GNASH would want to be a lot more stable than it is now.

> Flash sucks. :)

The non-free plugin does anyway.

> Hmmm.. perhaps it is supposed to use metacity after all. I just assumed 
> it used the Firefox kiosk plugin to get to full-screen.

xsession launches 
	firefox -fullscreen
but it doesn't actually go into full screen mode for some reason.

> Firefox LOVES RAM! And on top of that, it has some nasty unfixed memory 
> leak bugs :(

Well, there's still to be about 60MB free/cached out of 128MB which is not
so bad.  I guess 64MB RAM might be a bit low for this though.

> What seems best for most people is to just restart Firefox at least once 
> a day.

I was thinking that alright.

> All of those are great ideas. The USB home one is the most important in 
> my opinion. IIRC, Scott Balneaves had some ideas for persistent homes 
> with LTSP. Perhaps now is a good time to get that implemented.

I'm not clear how best to do it, but it sounds like a nice possibility.
Some guys at UES talked about an OS on a bootable USB stick, this might be
a more space efficient way to do something like that.


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