Re: [Rhythmbox-devel] Music sharing

On Tue, 2005-09-06 at 21:19 +0200, Johan Lund wrote:

> If this is implemented than it will be possible to open that given
> port through a firewall on the local host or at any firewalls in
> between music browsers.

The problem here is that the user experience is terrible in the case
where the port is already bound.  We'd be basically asking our users to
pick a magic number, and sometimes the magic number they pick doesn't
work, and they have to try another magic number.

Let's look at the cases here:

1) Firewall on local host
  You mention that it would be possible with a fixed port it would be
  possible to open that port for the local firewall.  But why can't
  you do that with a dynamic port too?  If the policy is that Rhythmbox
  should be able to share music through the firewall, then the right
  technical way to implement this in my opinion is to have a system
  where the user session can request open ports on the firewall.  Maybe
  this could be D-BUS talking to a system daemon, whatever.  A fixed
  port is worse not just in that the user experience is terrible when
  another app happens to be bound; you could also get apps other than
  Rhythmbox which are suddenly exposed outside the firewall even though
  you don't want them to be, just because they happened to pick that
  magic number!

  Another solution here is to simply not have a firewall on the laptop.
  I've never seen it as providing much value; if you don't want
  applications listening on the network, then fix the apps.
2) Firewall on hosts in between
  In what situations does this happen?  The primary use case for
  Rendezvous services (or whatever they're called now) is between hosts
  on the same LAN. There's generally no firewalls between LAN segments.
  Now, if you want to use the music sharing between say two hosts on the
  Internet in general, the design has to change significantly.  You
  aren't able to do service discovery since the Rendezvous broadcasts
  don't cross LAN segments.  If you wanted Rhythmbox to be a client
  here, the minimal approach is to have a UI for entering an IP address
  and port etc, which clearly sucks.  If we wanted to do Internet music
  sharing, the right way probably is to leverage RaphaÃl Slinckx's work 
  to allow buddies to browse each others' libraries, etc.  The point 
  here really is that a static port is only a minimal part of the
  technical issues involved

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