Re: [gnome-love] Gnome2 ppp application

it is already ported to gtk2, in gnome-network HEAD. Although, it still
sucks. The plan we have is to remove it in favor of GNOME System Tools
network interfaces configuration, which already works. So I would advise
not to work at all on a PPP dialer, but help on GST's one.

Just installed the latest GSTs (gnome-system-tools in cvs) and I agree.
The infrastructure for creating and maintaining accounts and network
interfaces is there and it works really well. It's totally compatible
with the redhat equivelent.

After looking at it I totally agree with Rodrigo that we should
definately not reproduce this functionality. I'm not sure of the GST's
future but personally I think that they should become part of the core
desktop. I know that I'll keep using then on redhat, and support is
there for debian some other distros. We should push for more widespread

My only issues[1] with the gst network stuff as it stands are:

1. No way to configure if a user can activate the selected device.
   ie. the file permissions on the device. I haven't tried
2. No way to activate/deactivate devices. It's a configuration tool
   so this makes sense this way, you don't want to go to a config
   dialog every time you want to go on the internet.
3. For a user who just wants to create a modem connection and doesn't
   have a network connection, all the talk of interfaces and DNS etc..
   is a bit overwhelming. Some people would not even think to configure
   dial up internet in a networking config tool.
4. When you go to create a new modem connection, there is no fancy     
   wizard :)
5. It didn't automagically detect my modem - this would have really 
   stumped a newbie. '/dev/ttyS1' is not something you guess
6. PPP options are broken by default. I had to tick the two boxes
   even though I can see no reason for them to be unticked by default.

So what I think could be done to improve this:

1. Create an Internet connection wizard as part of the GST that can be 
   called from the networking dialog or from the command line or from
   the 'System Tools' menu. Connections should user-dialable by default,
   and ppp options and modem device names should be hidden from the   
   user. Should really only need to ask for username, password and phone
   number. Not sure if this is possible though. Could at least have a  
   list of possible modems and a way to query them like kppp, This way
   one can find out by trial and error which device is the modem. Would
   be even better if if worked like wvdialconf with a fallback to a list
   If that did not work.

2. Create a simple internet dialer tool to be run as the normal user.
   The "Setup" or "Configure" option links in with the GST network 
   applet. Apart from that it just has a drop down with avaliable
   connections and a "Connect" button. Avaliable connections are 
   listed by their description(if avaliable) instead of by their
   device numbers. Then when a connection is made it tells you
   the connection speed and time and has an option to hide in the tray.

Number 2 would take a good coder no more than an day ;) All it needs to
do is read the list of devices(borrow code from GST) and activate the 
selected one. Then find out which modem was used and monitor it.

Pitty I'm not a good coder ;)

As for number 1, it might not actually be that hard. Use the nice new
gnome2 druid widgit, make it avaliable independent of the network
applet, add a launcher to the system tools, and you're almost there.
Making modem detection fool proof is definately the hardest part.


[1] Which I will of course file in bugzilla if appropriate, and once
I've looked into these issues further

                 .--= [ MArk Finlay - sisob ] =--.

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