Showcase Conference Sessions
Thursday October 14, 1999 -- 3pm-4pm -- Ballroom CD
Phone Based Email
As electronic mail is becoming a standard way of communication,
the ability to send e-mail even when you do not have physical access to
a machine hooked to the Internet is of tremendous convenience. Using a
touch-tone phone to dial-in to a machine that will carry on your e-mail
delivery seems to be a good solution for many situations. Today in
the industry we find products that exploit this idea, yet requiring
an additional piece of hardware to seize the text and dialing in to a
remote e-mail server. Our approach is to use regular phone handsets to
dial to your home machine -supposedly up, and your voice modem monitoring
incoming phone calls, will allow you to send an e-mail, and forward each
other calls to an answering machine.
Presentations at the University regarding Electronic Commerce protocols.
Friday October 15, 1999 -- 11am-12pm -- Ballroom AB
This document gives an overview of Advanced Configuration
and Power interface (ACPI), often referred to as successor of APM. The
issues of power management are described. This includes Global States,
Sleeping States, Device States and CPU states. Sleeping, suspending,
hibernation and shutdown is explained, also thermal management, especially
the difference between active cooling and passive cooling, performance
mode and silence mode. The Plug'n'Play model of ACPI is introduced. An
overview of ACPI control method Machine Language (AML) and ACPI control
method Source Language (ASL) is given. The ACPI implementations of Linux
are described: The User-Kernel interface, the new memory management with
memory holes, APM compatibility, the AML virtual machine, and a short
report about ACPI4Linux status.
My Name is Max Berger. I was born and raised in Munich. I've spent one
year of school in Odessa, Texas as a foreign exchange. After finishing
school I started studying at the "Technische Universitaet Muenchen" in
Munich, where I still am.
Sponsored by Metrowerks/Motorola
Porting CodeWarrior to Linux
Saturday October 16, 1999 -- 11am-12pm -- Ballroom AB
This paper describes how the CodeWarrior x86 compiler system
was retargeted from Win32 to Linux. This included handling different
object and debugging formats, supporting and discovering the Linux ABI,
interfacing the CodeWarrior runtime library and the Metrowerks Standard
C++ Library with glibc 2.1, and ensuring compatibility at the C code
level with GCC, the Linux standard compiler.
Ben Combee graduated from Georgia Tech in 1995 with a B.S. in
Computer Science. He worked for two and a half years on embedded
microcontrollers for Motorola's Messaging Systems Products Group and
currently is the lead x86 compiler engineer for Metrowerks in Austin,
Texas. He can be reached at email@example.com.
Elizabeth O. Coolbaugh
Thursday October 14, 1999 -- 11am-12pm -- Ballroom AB
Linux Distributions Well-known through Unknown
The Linux operating system, spoken of so much recently, is
composed of the Linux kernel, licensed under the GNU General Public
License, and a great deal of additional software, licensed under a
variety of "free/open source" licenses. Because it is freely available
and redistributable, there is no one vendor from which the operating
system is purchased. Instead, any person, organization or company can
choose to develop and maintain a Linux "distribution", a specific set
of software packages, bundled with the Linux kernel. Some people are
unaware of just how numerous and diverse Linux distributions are. Others
fear that the availability of multiple varieties of Linux will fracture
the Linux market and keep vendors from choosing to support it. In this
talk, we'll examine the breadth and diversity of Linux distributions,
through well-known ones such as Red Hat, Slackware, Debian, etc., to
over a hundred lesser known ones. We'll look at the reasons numerous
distributions have come into being and how to choose between them. Then
we'll finish up with a look at the advantages and disadvantages that the
diversity of Linux distributions brings and what the Linux community is
doing to control the disadvantages while enjoying the advantages.
Elizabeth O. Coolbaugh is Managing Editor for the Linux Weekly News,
an on-line magazine that has been reporting on the Linux Community since
January, 1998, and one of the Managing Editors of the SANS Institute
Monthly Security newsletters. She is also Vice President of Eklektix,
Inc., a Colorado-based engineering firm which provides "Linux for
Professionals" training courses, for which she is one of the instructors.
Ms. Coolbaugh has worked in computer systems administrations since 1981,
with Unix since 1985 and with Linux since 1997.
Sponsored by Productive Data Solutions
Java, Linux, and Open Source Integration
Saturday October 16, 1999 -- 10am-11am Ballroom AB
Integrating Java with Open Source on Linux offers another
technique to build highly portable applications. Java already offers a
Write Once Run Anywhere model to developers but there are limitations. If
it lacks some feature you need or contains something you don't like, you
may have to give up the portability that made Java unique. By using Open
Source with the Java Native Interface there is an opportunity to enjoy the
portability of Java with the flexibility of Open Source. This approach to
portability also puts control of future Java feature extensions into the
hands of developers. The Open Source community can influence the direction
that Java features will take in the future. Features that are popular
with developers will get used and corporate players will take notice.
Consultant by day and Instructor by night. I work with Java and
usually Unix based systems for internet application development. I
teach a variety of classes related to Java, Unix, and networking.
Thursday October 14, 1999 -- 12pm-1pm -- Ballroom CD
Funding the Perfect Beast - Venture Capitalism, IP
This talk describes the relationship between Digital Creations,
the company behind the Python-based Zope Web application server, and
Verticality Investment Group, its first-round investor. Within a month of
the investment, Verticality convinced the Digital Creations principals
to release their Web application server as open-source. What business
strategies supported this? What replaces intellectual property as the
strategic asset? How did Digital Creations recast its business model
Paul Everitt is CEO and co-founder of Digital Creations, a software
consulting company that focuses on dynamic business solutions using
its free, Open Source Zope web application server. In 1992 as a United
States Naval officer Paul created the Navy's first public web server
at www.navy.mil. He has been published in WebReview, has authored a W3
Technical Report, and served on the program committee for the W3C-OMG
Joint Conference on objects and the Web. His company is an original member
of the Python Software Activity and a member of the Python Consortium.
Sponsored by Compaq
Using Iprobe to optimize Apache on Alpha/Linux
Thursday October 14, 1999 -- 2pm-3pm -- Ballroom CD
This Paper describes how Iprobe, an Alpha/Linux performance
tool, was used to find system performance bottlenecks while running the
Apache web server on Alpha/Linux. It describes the kernel bottlenecks
uncovered, and possible solutions.
Presented a talk to Duke University as well
as at a Work In Progress at the Linux Expo in May. Presented several
white papers internally to Compaq engineers. Worked as Unix skills
instruction at Carnegie Mellon from 1996-1997.
Friday October 15, 1999 -- 2pm-3pm -- Ballroom F
The Bonobo Component and Document Model
The Bonobo component model provides an infrastructure
for building large-scale applications out of self-contained software
components. Bonobo handles in-place live document embedding, compound
document storage, and supports a powerful idiom for component-based
application design. In this session, Nat will give an in-depth
presentation of the Bonobo component model, its design and implementation
in Gnome, and an introductory tutorial on how to write Bonobo-based
MIT graduate. Co-founder of International Gnome Support.
Michael J. Hammel
Friday October 15, 1999 -- 10am-11am -- Ballroom F
There is more to learning about the Gimp than just where
the menus are and what the buttons do. To master the Gimp, you have to
learn the technical reasons why things work as well as understand design
project planning and work with an openness to experiment. This paper
intends to show how all of these can be accomplished.
Author of "The Artists' Guide to the Gimp", it's companion web
site at TheGimp.com, the Graphics Muse column in the Linux Gazette and
numerous articles and covers for the Linux Journal.
Sponsored by VA Linux Systems
Enlightenment and the Linux Desktop
Friday October 15, 1999 -- 3:30pm-4:30pm -- Ballroom F
Sponsored by SUSE
XFree86 - Past Present, Future
Thursday October 14, 1999 -- 11am-12pm -- Ballroom F
This talk will give a quick tour of the history of XFree86,
of the current state of things, and will focus on where we are headed
Dirk Hohndel is CEO of SuSE Rhein/Main AG, a professional services
subsidiary of SuSE Linux AG. Additionally, he serves as Vice President
of The XFree86 Project, Inc. and is a member of the XFree86 Core Team.
Sponsored by SSC
Publishing a Magazine with Linux
Saturday October 16, 1999 -- 2pm-3pm -- Ballroom E
Since 1994, Linux Journal has been published using primarily
Linux-based tools. In this presentation, I will look at how we have
developed this Linux-based solution to a real business problem. The
presentation will include design tradeoffs, what we have learned from our
mistakes, what Linux does for us and where Linux falls short. Specific
topics to be covered include: editorial preparation using Linux, Linux
(and non-Linux) in layout, producing ancillary products, Linux and the
web and general office use of Linux. I will also explore what needs
to be added to the Linux tool chest in order for it to be a complete
solution. This talk will not be extremely technical. It is intended to
look at how to address problems with Linux tools rather than look at
the code that solves the problem. It will also help someone understand
the production process of a print and web magazine.
Phil Hughes has been working in computing as a programmer and design
specialist since 1968. He has worked with Unix since 1980 as a systems
programmer, consultant, trainer and writer. He is currently publisher
of Linux Journal magazine.
Miguel de Icaza
Friday October 15, 1999 -- 1pm-2pm -- Ballroom F
The GNOME Future
Miguel will be talking about the new technologies being
developed as part of the GNOME system and where the system is headed.
The Bonobo component system, the GNOME printing architecture, the visual
tools for creating user interfaces and the internationalization efforts.
Miguel de Icaza codes. He has contributed code to a number of
free software project including Linux/SPARC, Linux/RAID and launched
the GNOME project 2 years ago.
Sponsored by Stradis, Inc
Will Code for Hardware
Thursday October 14, 1999 -- 3pm-4pm -- Ballroom F
Linux is gaining a lot more press these days and causing many
companies that once ignored requests for Linux drivers to start hunting
down people to write drivers for them. There are a lot of developers that
are happy not to get paid money, but to get free hardware in exchange
for writing drivers. This is also true for other developers who like to
port to new platforms. Manufacturers love it. For a small investment in
hardware, they can have free Linux drivers to gain access to the growing
millions who run Linux, and those people are in growing numbers emailing
manufacturers asking for support. Those with support win big. There are
countless people who bought bt848-based tv cards after seeing support
for them in their kernels, and back in the earliest days, there's no
doubt that Linux spurred some sales of WD80x3 NICs and Adaptec 1542 scsi
controllers. Stradis decided they needed drivers for Linux because people
asked for them. Then, once Linux was supported, they discovered companies
willing to commit to orders of 6000 and 10000 units. The development cycle
was very short. This talk will discuss the saga behind the development
of this MPEG2 decoder driver and what made it so short, the extensions to
the Video4Linux API, and many of the problems involved even with complete
technical support from the company that designed the hardware. Panasonic
also decided they wanted in on Linux, but the contact did not know the
first thing about Linux, yet all the same, full specifications for their
DVD-RAM drive were sent and a free drive, and in short order, the drive
was functional in Linux. This project will be briefly covered as well.
Nathan Laredo has been coding for Linux since first being exposed
to it at Georgia Tech in 1991. He is the author of playmidi, tvset,
two irc clients, and several other multimedia applications. Nathan is
currently working for Stradis, Inc, an Atlanta-based company that makes
professional MPEG2 video products.
Sponsored by University of Maryland, Baltimore County
Bastille: Securing Linux at a University
Friday October 15, 1999 -- 1pm-2pm -- Ballroom CD
This paper presents a case study of a university attempting
to reduce Linux-related security incidents through customizing a
localized, security-aware Linux distribution based on Red Hat Linux.
After describing the university environment and the parameters of the
UMBC Linux project, an overview of technical and social aspects of the
project is given. Following this, extensive analysis dissects the UMBC
Linux 5.2 project's successes and failures, especially the failure
to harness the power of the Linux community to improve the project.
Finally, future development plans, including the Bastille Linux project,
are briefly described.
Jon Lasser is a Unix systems administrator at the University
of Maryland, Baltimore County, where he manages Linux, SGI, and Sun
machines. He lives in Baltimore, Maryland with his wife Kathleen and
their cats, Mallet, Dashigara, and Spike.
Sponsored by World Wide Digital Security, Inc.
An Introduction to SAINT
Friday October 15, 1999 -- 11am-12pm -- Ballroom CD
Vulnerability analysis is an important part of a good security
program. While there are many commercial tools available for performing
vulnerability analysis, for enterprises with a large number of hosts
these tools can be cost prohibitive. There are some free tools that are
available, such as SATAN (Security Administrator's Tool for Analyzing
Networks), but many are out-of-date. While conducting a vulnerability
analysis for a customer with several thousand hosts, we decided to
update SATAN and create a new, up-to-date, vulnerability analysis tool
called SAINT (Security Administrator's Integrated Network Tool). SAINT
includes all the tests performed by SATAN, plus many additional tests
for new vulnerabilities, including Back Orifice, NetBus, statd, open
SMB shares, and ToolTalk. This presentation will include the origins
of SAINT, how SAINT works, what SAINT tests for, and the future of SAINT.
Jane Lemmer is an Information Security Specialist at World
Wide Digital Security, Inc. (a wholly owned subsidiary of Richard S.
Carson and Associates, Inc., where she is a Director). Jane has a
B.S. in Computer Science from the University of Delaware and a Masters
of Information Systems from Virginia Tech. She has been working in the
computer industry for over 13 years and has been working in the computer
security field for the past three years. She specializes in conducting
vulnerability assessments, risk assessments, and developing security
plans. She recently presented a briefing "Vulnerability Assessment
using SAINT" at the 11th Annual FIRST (Forum of Incident Response and
Security Teams) Conference on Computer Security and Incident Handling,
held June 1999 in Brisbane, Australia.
Jo-Ellen and Mark Mathews
Sponsored by AbsoluteValue Software
Developing Linux Software for Fun Turns Into Profit
Thursday October 14, 1999 -- 5:30pm-6:30pm -- Ballroom F
For the small, software company or individual consultant,
there is an overpowering concern with regard to Linux development:
investment pay off?". In the case of AbsoluteValue Software, the answer
to that question is a resounding YES!
Presented a paper at Linux Expo 1998 for an attendance of at least
200, a technical paper on our wireless LAN driver development work
under Linux at ALS in 1998 and at LinuxWorld Conference and Expo in
March 1999. The attendance of each talk was over 200, and we received
many enthusiastic, kind comments about our development efforts and our
Sponsored by Compaq
Xinerama Extension to the X Window System
Thursday October 14, 1999 -- 12:00pm-1:00pm -- Ballroom F
The Xinerama extension is one of the newest extensions to
the X Window System. Xinerama allows a system configured with multiple
graphics devices to configure all of the physical screen into a single
logical screen. This extensions allows windows to be moved from screen
to screen or even to span screens. Xinerama is implemented at the device
independent layer of the X server. This means that no work is required to
support the extension on a new graphics device. The extension supports
any homogeneous graphics configuration. Any number of screens (up to
the maximum that the server supports) can be combined as long as they
support similar visual classes, resolution and depths. This paper will
discuss the implementation details of the Xinerama extension. It will
also look at some of the restrictions involved with this extension.
Irene McCartney is a principal software engineer who has worked with
the X Window System for the past 12 years. She is currently working on
the X Server and has also been an X application developer. Irene is also
Compaq's representative to X.Org, the non-profit organization dedicated
to maintaining the existing X Window System code base and engineering
appropriate enhancements to it. Irene has worked for Compaq (through
its acquisition of Digital Equipment) for 15 years. During that time,
she has held technical marketing, supervisory, and engineering positions
to develop and support Compaq's workstation and graphics products.
Sponsored by VA Linux Systems
Thursday October 14, 1999 -- 5:30pm-6:30pm -- Ballroom AB
In this talk, San will discuss hardware level cluster management
options under Linux. He will introduce the VACM program. VACM is a GUI
based open source cluster controller with allows certain intel motherboard
based machines to have serial bios, console redirection, all while
monitoring power, cooling, and other sensors on the motherboard.
San Mehat is a Senior Engineer with VA Linux Systems in their Advanced
Research Labs, where he works on a variety of projects including VACM, the
VA Cluster Manager and a variety of Low Level kernel work. Previously an
engineer with Corel Computer, Mr. Mehat spends his free time as a DJ at
local clubs in and around the San Jose area.
Thursday October 14, 1999 -- 5:30pm-6:30pm -- Ballroom CD
Enabling GTK+ and Gnome for the Blind
Graphical user interfaces are a challenge for blind people to
use because a bit-mapped display is not easily and effectively mapped
to non-visual interfaces. However working at the toolkit level it's
possible to have access to the application internals and to provide
a satisfactory auditory and braille interface. The flexibility of the
object model of the Gtk+ graphical library allows the development of
an (application independent) module (GSpeech) that enables the blind
to use most of the Gtk+ and Gnome applications. Programmability and
application-specific support can further expand the usability of such
applications. Additionally, with the use of auditory icons we try
to give the visually-impaired some of the benefits that GUIs give to
System administrator at the University of Padua (Italy). Previous
talks given: October 1998: Linux Meeting (Rome, Italy) about Gtk/Perl
June 1999: Sesto.com (Milan, Italy) about disabled access to computers
Note that this will be my first talk in English.
Sponsored by HP
The Linux/ia64 Project
Thursday October 14, 1999 -- 12pm-1pm -- Ballroom AB
This talk gives an overview of the Linux/ia64 project that was
started at HP Labs in early 1998 and has now become part of a broader
industry effort. The first implementation of the IA-64 architecture is
the Merced chip which, on August 31, was for the first time demonstrated
in public to run Linux. With the delivery date of Merced-based systems
coming closer, this is a good time to learn more what Linux/ia64 is
all about. This talk will start with a brief overview of the IA-64
architecture and is followed by a description of the goals of the project,
its current status, and outlook for the future.
David is a member of the technical staff at HP Labs where he is
working on Internet and Linux related projects. His research
interests are in high-performance Internet systems, operating
systems, and computer architecture. He holds a professional
degree as an Electronics Engineer, an HTL Diploma (BSc degree)
in Computer Science from HTL Brugg-Windisch, Switzerland and
M.Sc. and Ph.D. degrees in Computer Science from University of
Arizona. He is a member of ACM, IEEE Computer Society, and USENIX.
Sponsored by NASA
Porting Commercial file systems to Linux
Friday October 15, 1999 -- 10am-11am -- Ballroom AB
Recently, SGI and Veritas have announced that they intend
to port their advanced file system technologies to Linux. Veritas'
VxFS and SGI's XFS file system both employ journaling and scalable
internal data structures that allow very large files and directories to
be supported. VxFS and XFS both use the vnode/vfs interface structure
popularized in System V UNIX. The vnode interface differs from Linux's
virtual file system in several respects, and these differences must be
overcome in porting vnode-based file systems to Linux. In this paper
and talk, the authors will describe their efforts in porting SGI's XFS
file system to Linux. This port is an on-going joint effort between SGI,
the GFS Group at the University of Minnesota, and Sistina Software, a
firm developing storage management software for Linux. Issues addressed
will include integrating vnode-like features into Linux's vfs interface,
buffer and page cache integration, journaling, volume management, and
Jim Mostek is the technical lead of the XFS Linux port at SGI.
Jim has a Math and Computer Science degree from the University of
Illinois. He has over 18 years of extensive experience in file systems
and networking including: key CXFS developer, extensive internals
experience with XFS, DFS, threads, File System Switch (FSS), VFS, UNIX
streams, and sockets. Jim's primary experience has been with UNIX based
systems of various flavors including BSD, PWB, SystemV, IRIX, and UNICOS.
Sponsored by NASA
A Universal Access Smart-Card-Based Secure File System
Saturday October 16, 1999 -- 2pm-3pm Ballroom E
The Secure File System is a joint project between the
University of Minnesota and StorageTek which aims to provide an
easy-to-use cryptographic file system. It allows you to store your
files securely on remote sites using normal networking protocols worry
of unauthorized access. SFS does this through the use of a group server
which is responsible for all file access controls and smartcards (through
MUSCLE software), for verification purposes.
Matthew O'Keefe and his associates perform research in the areas of
parallel software for simulation and in file systems at the University of
Minnesota. His most recent projects are the Global File System, a shared
disk file system for Linux, and the Secure File System, an infrastructure
for universal access to cryptographically-sealed information. He lives
in Plymouth, Minnesota with his wife and two children.
Saturday October 16, 1999 -- 10am-11am -- Ballroom E
Management of Open Source tools in a heterogeneous environment
There are many open source software tools that are useful in the
standard UNIX environment. Many times you will find that the local user
community is willing to support these tools. Management and configuration
of these tools can be a major problem. The system administrator must
take care of such as issues as: The packaging of tools, Distribution of
tool sets, Build procedures, Handling of multiple tool versions. This
paper discusses how the system administrator might handle these and
Senior level UNIX and C++ expert. Expert UNIX system administrator
Software manager and project leader. Experienced in all aspects
of programming including design, software control, coding and
production. This includes: Over fifteen years experience as a UNIX Systems
Engineer, Manager of several high quality software engineering teams,
Eight years System administration experience, Expert UNIX programmer for
applications, networks and device drivers, Eight years UNIX programming
both applications, networks and drivers, Expert X-Windows, Openlook and
Motif programmer, Six books on C, C++, and Linux published.
Thursday October 14, 1999 -- 4:30pm-5:30pm -- Ballroom AB
A Distributed Programming Environment from the Ground Up: pvmsync
My talk will cover my reasons for developing pvmsync, what it
is, what it does (and doesn't do), and how I designed it. Essentially,
I will cover how I created this package from the ground up, including
protocols used (and designed) and the design of the client library.
I'm currently a senior Computer Science major at Rowan University,
and I'm expected to graduate this May. I'm a Linux admin with the
university data center and this summer I did an internship with CESDIS
(Center of Excellence in Space Data and Information Sciences) at NASA's
Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, MD. During my employment there,
I developed pvmsync, a distributed programming environment. My hobbies
are Linux programming and collecting older Sun SPARCstations to run
Linux on. I'm engaged to be married in Nov 2000 to my fiancee, Kati.
Sponsored by VMware, Inc.
VMware: Not your Granddaddy's Virtual Machine
Friday October 15, 1999 -- 2:00pm-3:00pm -- Ballroom AB
VMware (www.vmware.com) is a virtual machine monitor for
PCs. VMware provides isolated environments in which multiple x86 operating
systems and applications can run concurrently on a standard PC. VMware
has a lot of capabilities hidden under the covers, besides just running
multiple operating systems. This talk will cover some of the architecture
of VMware and discuss some of the more interesting capabilities and
technical tricks for advanced users -- including virtual disks, undoable
and non-persistent disk modes, virtual networking and advanced networking
and security applications.
Darryl Ramm is director of technical marketing at VMware,
Inc. His responsibilities include helping plan and define VMware
products and working with leading edge customers and partners. Darryl
has a unusual blend of business, marketing and technical knowledge.
Prior to joining VMware Darryl worked at Adobe Systems, both in the
United States and Europe on the planning and rollout of new high-end
graphics products. Prior to Adobe Systems Darryl held marketing and
engineering positions at Silicon Graphics, Inc. and Pyramid Technology
Corporation (now Fujitsu Siemens Computers). For most of his career in
the computer industry Darryl has worked on the development and marketing
of high-performance commercial and database servers. Including a lot of
work on mission critical systems and applications in telecommunications,
and financial services. Darryl has held positions as technical board
member and consultant to high-technology start ups. He holds a degree
in Physics from the University of Western Australia.
Eric S. Raymond
Thursday October 14, 1999 -- 4:30pm-5:30pm -- Ballroom F
The Magic Cauldron
This paper analyzes the economics of open-source software.
It includes some explosion of common myths about software production
economics, a game-theoretical account of why open-source cooperation is
stable, and a taxonomy of open-source business models.
Eric S. Raymond is a wandering anthropologist and troublemaking
philosopher who happened to be in the right place at the right time,
and has been wondering whether he should regret it ever since.
Thursday October 14, 1999 -- 11am-12pm -- Ballroom CD
Linux at the Chasm
Linux is moving through the Technology Adoption Cycle
and gathering strength for a leap across the Chasm to Phase III, the
Early Majority; a sign that Linux is already in Phase II is that large
companies are implementing internal Linux projects. The Chasm must be
crossed by a niche strategy, because Linux and the general user are not
yet ready for each other. Hardware is one stage: Internet appliances,
multi-processor servers, and embedded systems devices, will gain the OS
more widespread use, but only when software applications begin to spread
across companies in a niche, instead of being internal projects, will
we see an application niche strategy begin to form and succeed. Software
connected with POS systems is one likely candidate for this transition.
Unfortunately, Linux cannot plan and marshal this Chasm crossing, nor
can it manage public perception of itself. Furthermore, it will probably
be 18-24 months before the software infrastructure (e.g., GUI tools for
developers; file filters) is in place to support a widespread software
movement. Likewise, support is not just setting up telephone help desks,
but also providing enough integrators to help medium-sized businesses
implement Linux as it passes through the niche stage; integrators and
UNIX/Linux experts are scarcely overlapping groups. World Domination
will take a while, and there is a danger that constant hyping of Linux
by the media will create unrealistic expectations.
I have spoken at First and Second Atlanta Linux Showcases At USENIX
97 and USENIX 99 and UniForum (May 1998), also at Fourth Linux Expo,
and at Spring and Fall Comdex, all on Linux or Open Source topics.
I am speaking on 1 July in Austin at the Open Source Forum. Some of
my work is available among the resources of The Open Source Software
Licensing page, which I maintain at www.stromian.com.
Saturday October 16, 1999 -- 11am-12pm -- Ballroom E
MirrorDir began as a program to mirror directories recursively
with a minimal set of changes as an alternative to RAID devices. It later
evolved to support the VFS layer of the Midnight Commander and can hence
mirror to and from ftp sites. A further encrypted socket layer was added
to transparently facilitate the same mirroring and general file transfer
capabilities. The socket layer has the interesting feature that all
encryption code exists only within 4kB of interpreted scripts. Since
these can be distributed separately from the application, MirrorDir
can be exported from countries that would otherwise restrict export of
cryptographic software. MirrorDir also features secure socket forwarding
and a secure login program using the same socket layer, somewhat belying
the name of the package.
I work for Obsidian Systems, a company that does Linux consulting,
deployment and development. I have a B.Sc. in Aeronautical Engineering
and an M.Sc. in digital image processing. I was born in Johannesburg,
South Africa and have lived there most of my life. I now live in Cape Town.
Saturday October 16, 1999 -- 1pm-2pm -- Ballroom AB
CoolEdit is a full featured text editor for the X Window System.
It is built around its own widget library written directly in XLib. It has
a builtin Python interpretor for macro programming, syntax highlighting
for many programming languages, a comprehensive interface to gdb, and
generic interfaces to compilers and text processing utilities. It has
an elegant 3D multiple window interface, and is light and fast.
I work for Obsidian Systems, a company that does Linux consulting,
deployment and development. I have a B.Sc. in Aeronautical Engineering
and an M.Sc. in digital image processing. I was born in Johannesburg,
South Africa and have lived there most of my life. I now live in Cape Town.
Friday October 15, 1999 -- 1pm-2pm -- Ballroom AB
Optimizing Linux Device Drivers for SMP
Linux is now perceived as being suitable for use as a large
server and as a high-end computing platform. To meet the needs of these
environments, a lot of work is being put into making Linux scale better
on SMP systems. Allowing device drivers to run multithreaded is an
important part of this work. This talk will look at the aspects of
making device drivers SMP aware and how to optimize them for speed. It
will show how the use of atomic types can reduce or even eliminate
the need for spinlocks, resulting in a faster, lock-free driver. Other
aspects covered will include the use of memory mapped I/O rather than
I/O mapped and the reduction of cache effects by keeping code and data
structures local to the CPU. The specific example used in the talk will
be the driver for the Alteon AceNIC Gigabit Ethernet card, however the
techniques are applicable to most of the drivers in the kernel.
Jes has been working on the Linux kernel for more than five
years, the last three as the maintainer of Linux/m68k. Jes works for
the European Laboratory for Particle Physics (http://www.cern.ch/)
where he works on very high performance networking, Linux clusters and
the Linux/ia64 project. This has included writing Linux device drivers
for Gigabit Ethernet and HIPPI (High Performance Parallel Interface,
an 800 Mbit/sec supercomputer network).
Thursday October 14, 1999 -- 4:30pm-5:30pm -- Ballroom CD
Designing Linux for Wearable and Ubiquitous Computing
According to DARPA, we are approaching the production
of 8 billion microprocessors a year. Only 2% of these processors
are used in devices commonly considered a "computer" by the public,
and the most common operating systems address only a fraction of this
market. As computers shrink, integrating into the user's clothing or
disappearing into the environment, the desktop will be replaced as the
dominate software platform for users. However, current desktop operating
systems and the prevaling paradigms are ill-prepared for this change as
evidenced by the billion dollars invested in pen computing in the early
1990's without a successful product (remedied with the relatively recent
release of the Palm Pilot and its "rule-breaking" approach). Linux is a
clear contender for the future operating system of choice across a wide
range of devices and user interfaces due to its scalability, real-time
capabilities, reliability, design, pricing, development cost, and
immunity to obsolescence. However, the Linux community must be aware of
upcoming computing trends and direct the operating system appropriately.
This talk will examine how Linux and other open source projects are being
used in the wearable computing community and will discuss the difficult
issues foreseen by the wearable and ubiquitous computing communities.
Thad Starner graduated from MIT in 1991 with Bachelor of Science
degrees in Computer Science and Brain and Cognitive Science. He joined
the Speech Systems Group at BBN as an Associate Scientist where he
developed one of the world's most accurate on-line cursive handwriting
recognizers. Starner was named a United States Air Force Laboratory
Graduate Fellow and returned to the MIT Media Laboratory where he
earned his Masters and Doctorate in 1995 and 1999, respectively. In
1999, Thad joined Georgia Tech's College of Computing as an Assistant
Professor. The author of over 30 peer-reviewed scientific publications
and book chapters in computer vision, mobile computing, augmented
environments, and pattern recognition, Starner is known internationally
as one of the founders of the field of wearable computing. He is a
founding member of the MIT Wearable Computing Project, the IEEE Wearable
Information Systems Task Force, and the IEEE Wearable Information Systems
Technical Committee. Starner co-founded the IEEE International Symposium
on Wearable Computers (ISWC) and served as the local arrangements chair,
the publicity co-chair, and on the program committee. Thad's current work
researches the use of computational agents for everyday-use wearable
computers as a segue to artificial intelligence.
Thursday October 14, 1999 -- 2pm-3pm -- Ballroom F
Making Money in the Bazaar
Analysis and ideas for creating innovation and making a living in the
Open Source market. Companion to 1999 Linux Journal articles.
Bernie Thompson is one of the founders of cosource.com. He lives
just down the hill from Microsoft, and believes that a great and
healthy rivalry has begun the re the big winner will be end users.
Send comments and ideas to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Friday October 15, 1999 -- 11am-12pm -- Ballroom F
Pyrite: A Framework for Palmtop Data Interchange
The Palm Computing platform was designed with tight desktop
integration in mind. Pyrite is an Open Source toolkit which allows
desktop applications to interact with Palm handhelds and their data.
It is implemented in the Python programming language, and is deliberately
quite different than the standard Palm Desktop software. It is designed
for maximum flexibility; Python's loose, dynamic object structure is
exploited to allow applications to easily extend Pyrite's capabilities.
In this paper, I will explain the most significant aspects of Pyrite's
design, and describe some of the issues encountered during implementation.
Rob Tillotson is an independent free software author (and Debian
GNU/Linux developer) from Alabama, USA, specializing in Python programming
and Palm Computing Platform related applications.
Friday October 15, 1999 -- 3:30pm-4:30pm -- Ballroom AB
Open Sourcing Internally Funded Projects
Many organizations use internally funded projects to fulfill a
business need. These projects may give no direct competitive benefit to
the organization. Since an organization develops the core architecture
as well as the portions directly related to their business needs, they
are penalized financially by the effort to build both components. By
making the core components available and accessible through Open Source
mechanisms, an organization should be able to capitalize on the consistent
recreation of similar systems by other similar organizations. If multiple
organizations can have access to a consistent framework they can implement
their business requirements while enhancing the core components as well.
Since April 1996, I have been managing and presenting at LinuxSA,
a local South Australian Linux Users Group. Typically we have between 40
and 70 members attending each meeting. Also various presentations have
been made to other, non affiliated user groups around South Australia.
Thursday October 14, 1999 -- 2pm-3pm -- Ballroom AB
The Design and Evolution of Communication of PODOS
Distributed Operating Systems have always attracted a plethora
of researchers for decades that wish to make many computers appear to be
one. In spite of this goal, improvement in aggregate system performance
has always been secondary to resource sharing or reliability. With
performance as our goal, we are designing a Performance Oriented
Distributed Operating System (PODOS). PODOS is the interaction of two
or more monolithic Linux machines. The PODOS design has a number of key
Mr. Sudharshan Vazhkudai is a Ph.D. candidate in the Department of
Computer Science at the University of Mississippi. His research interests
include Distributed Operating systems and Networking. Mr. Vazhkudai was
the Instructor at the Department of Computer Science. Publications:
1. Sudharshan Vazhkudai, Tobin Maginnis. Transmission-Group based
communication mechanism for a clustered Linux, Proceedings of the
LinuxWorldExpo Conference, San Jose, August 99.
Vazhkudai, Tobin Maginnis. Distributed Linux: Evolutionary Steps,
Technical Report, Computer Science Department, University of Mississippi,
Michael H. Warfield
Friday October 15, 1999 -- 10am-11am -- Ballroom CD
Security and the Open Source Model
We've heard it all before. "How can something be secure when
all the source is in the open for hackers to read?" or, "Open source
means hackers can find all the bugs." Even though conventional wisdom
or "common sense" may lead some to the conclusion that "open source
equals not secure," reality tells a different story. Some of the most
secure systems available are based on the open source model. But that
security is not inherent or automatic with open source software either.
Attempts to trojan open source packages reminds us that diligence is in
order for all of us.
Mike is a security researcher and applications developer who has been
involved with Unix for over 15 years and using Linux both professionally
and personally for over 5 years. He's one of the founders of the Atlanta
Linux Enthusiasts and a contributor to several open source development
Andrew J. Weber
Thursday October 14, 1999 -- 3pm-4pm -- Ballroom AB
A Library-Based Distributed Shared Memory System
Distributed computing systems made up of a collection of
computers require effective communication between the participating
computers. The two fundamental models of communication are the
message passing model and the shared memory model. The shared memory
model can be further broken down into hardware-based, page-based, and
library-based implementations. The Network Chunk System implements a
library-based shared memory model of communication using IP multicast
as the underlying transport. NCS provides for several dynamically
configurable data replication behaviors. Each named data element, or
chunk, may be configured to be replicated in any one of the supported ways
at any given time. Beowulf and Network of Workstations clusters currently
have several message passing model implementations to choose from such
as PVM and MPI/LAM. Beowulf clusters also have page-based shared memory
models such as the ZOUNDS based implementation from Sarnoff and a package
being implemented by Jason Crawford. NCS provides a library-based shared
memory model implementation which provides a different approach to the
already available message passing and page-based shared memory options.
This paper presents the overall design of NCS and introductory guide to
About a dozen technical presentations to various sized groups.
All except two of the presentations were dealing with Harness or
DSS which were also library-based distributed shared memory
systems. The other two dealt with fraud detection software.
Sponsored by LinuxToday
Running "Linux Today"
Saturday October 16, 1999 -- 1pm-2pm -- Ballroom E
Linux Today is a website whose function is to provide news and
editorials to the Linux community in a timely fashion. The necessity
to update the website hundreds of times per day, as well as handle
the load of hundreds of thousands of hits per day, has introduced
some interesting challenges to be overcome. This presentation will
detail exactly how we've overcome these problems. The member of the
audience should walk away with a clear understanding of one of the
ways that one may run a highly trafficked and dynamic website.
Dave handles just about everything technical at Linux Today.
In addition to posting stories, he handles all the web development,
perl and PHP3 programming, system and network administration, and any
technical challenges that come along. He lives with his wife and daughter
in the mountains of East Tennessee.
Saturday October 16, 1999 -- 2pm-3pm -- Ballroom AB
The web is growing at a tremendous pace, and the demands for
content beyond simple static pages keep increasing. There is a critical
shortage of people capable of producing pages with dynamic content. PHP
(http://www.php.net/) is an HTML-embedded scripting language that attempts
to lower the technical hurdles and make building dynamic pages faster
and easier for developers of all skill levels.
Jim Winstead Jr. is one of the core developers of PHP, and a senior
software engineer at HomePage.com, an idealab! company.
Sponsored by LinuxCare
Building a community-based Linux certification program: An update on the progress of the Linux Professional Institute
Friday October 15, 1999 -- 3:30pm-4:40pm -- Ballroom CD
A report to the community on the progress of the LPI
certification program (which will be well underway at the time of
presentation), explaining future directions, outlining how people can
become more involved in the process, and soliciting feedback from people
there at the session.
Dan York has been teaching in the corporate training world
for nine years and has presented sessions at numerous conferences
within the training industry, including: 1999 Information Technology
Training Association (ITTA) Strategies for Success- Europe, Amsterdam,
The Netherlands (to be held in September 1999) 1999 ITTA Strategies for
Success-North America, San Antonio, TX 1997 Software Association of New
Hampshire, Manchester, NH 1996 Training Director's Forum, Tempe, AZ 1995
Computer Training and Support, Orlando, FL Additionally, Dan has made
numerous presentations to local user groups on a wide variety of topics.