New ZeroConf Spec

Micah J. Cowan micah at
Wed Jul 5 21:23:08 BST 2006

On Tue, Jul 04, 2006 at 03:28:55PM -0400, Lukas Sabota wrote:
> On Mon, 2006-07-03 at 23:03 -0400, Rob J. Caskey wrote:
> > is now drafting.
> > 
> > This differs from previous specs in that it advocates a change in our
> > one-ports policy.
> > 
> > Please discuss.
> > 
> > --Rob Caskey
> > 
> 	I feel that ZeroConf is a really cool technology, and should be
> embraced by Ubuntu.  However, I don't feel ZeroConf services should be
> started by default; all ZeroConf services should be off by default, so
> that no ports are open.

I agree with those who've said that we should continue to retain this
policy, without exception. This fact takes a little getting used to (at
least for me wrt, say, cupsys), but it's a very comforting feeling when
you realize that this policy is in place. AFAIK, Ubuntu is unique in
this respect, and it is a distinction well worth retaining.

> 	However, these technologies should be fairly easy to start, if the user
> recognizes the risk but would like the functionality.  In MacOSX, iChat
> asks in a first-run wizard if Bonjour should be enabled.  Perhaps a
> preference could be added to Gaim, Rhythmbox, and other ZeroConf
> applications that would start the ZeroConf services and notify the user
> that a port is being opened.   When all ZeroConf applications are
> closed, the ZeroConf daemon could be stopped, closing the port.
> 	What do others feel about the above plan of action?  Please respond
> with criticism.

I do like this. Although as has been pointed out, "port is being opened"
is probably not quite the message we want to convey (at least, without
explaining it).

Micah J. Cowan
Programmer, musician, typesetting enthusiast, gamer...

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