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[wmlprogramming] Re: mod_wap

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  • Maurice Szmurlo
    hello, I also have been thinking about such a solution. having a wap_mode would be very interesting but , as far as I know, and if I m mistaken, please notice
    Message 1 of 13 , Jan 4, 2000
      hello,

      I also have been thinking about such a solution. having a
      wap_mode would be very interesting but , as far as I know,
      and if I'm mistaken, please notice it to me, a gateway integrates
      a little bit more functionnality that might not be easy
      to integrate into a httd daemon: session and transaction layers.
      ok, security is based on SSL, but I thing it is not exactly SSL
      so it might need a rewrite as well.

      however, the idea is interesting. does any one exactly know which
      funcionality is required, which is optionnal for a gateway?

      maurice

      Gus wrote:

      > Hi all,
      >
      > After twiddling with the WAPit gateway, the Nokia WAP gateway etc, and my
      > Apache servers, PHP, Perl etc etc etc, it seems to me that probably the
      > easiest way to create a WAP server system would be to write an Apache
      > (www.apache.org) module for WAP.
      >
      > The advantages of such an approach are manifold; a small list being.
      >
      > Cost (zero)
      >
      > Cross-platform
      >
      > Excellent support
      >
      > Reverse-proxy implementation exists, since the WAP handset takes an IP
      > rather than a hostname for the WAP gateway, standard round-robin DNS
      > techniques for load balancing will not apply. (mod_backhand)
      >
      > Module support for all popular scripting and extension languages (Java,
      > Perl, PHP, ASP etc) (modules.apache.org)
      >
      > XML support by IBM (xml.apache.org), Java support by Sun Microsystems
      > (jakarta.apache.org, java.apache.org)
      >
      > SSL implemenentation freely available.
      >
      > Rewriting rules at request level, for supporting different languages/browsers
      > based on HTTP request headers. (mod_rewrite)
      >
      > Use things like "Add-Handler" to hook in a WML->WMLC auto-converter.
      >
      > And, of course, all the features you'd expect in the worlds most popular
      > web server.
      >
      > Looking through the Nokia NAMP server docs, I'm finding it hard to
      > mentally justify spending 410,000->500,000 UKP for a Hewlett-Packard K380
      > server with the NAMP software on it, when so much of what the WAP gateway
      > does is already available as Free software. Having the choice of getting a
      > rack of Alpha servers running Linux, for example, would be a cheaper and
      > (to my mind) more robust solution for serving 100K->1M users.
      >
      > Thoughts?
      >
      > PS: Small peeve: Would ppl mind following Usenet conventions about quoting
      > replied-to text, that is, trim it to just the part you are replying to,
      > interspersing your reply with the relevant parts of the original message,
      > rather than having "---original message---" or somesuch with the entirety
      > of the previous person's message, signature, advertising and all below it.
      >
      > Bandwidth, Bulk and Clarity.
      >
      > Happy new year,
      > _Gus
      >
      > --
      > angus.wood@...

      --
      --------------------------------------------------------------
      Maurice Szmurlo --- Ingénieur R&D --- Sté. T-SIT
      Technologies des Systèmes d'Information et des Télécoms
      (adresse temporaire: Maurice.Szmurlo@...)
    • Espen Lyngaas
      ... That can be explained by the need for a gateway. Exactly like the a proxy scenario where a workstation with a HTML browser does not need DNS capabilities
      Message 2 of 13 , Jan 4, 2000
        >> Does it? Take an IP address rather than a hostname, I mean
        >As far as I know, yes. It makes sense, in as much that the WAP device then
        >does not need to know anything about DNS issues etc.

        That can be explained by the need for a gateway. Exactly like the a proxy
        scenario where a workstation with a HTML browser does not need DNS
        capabilities even though it wants to "GET www.somedomain.com/index.html".
        It just instructs the proxy to do it, and it's the proxy which performs the
        lookup.

        >> Since the WAP device does not have any sort of IP stack...
        >Umm, AFAIK, it does. Well, I'm basing that on the assumption that the way
        >we do some of our testing is dialling the office 7110 in to FreeServe (a
        >UK local-rate non-subscription ISP) with the WAP gateway IP set to Nokia
        >or Ericsson's WAP gateway. If the WAP device did /not/ have an IP stack, I
        >can't see how it would know to route the WTP calls to the WAP gateway.

        If a WAP device has an IP stack, it also need an IP address. It must be a
        private address because there are so few public addresses left. Then there
        must be some sort of IP capable protocol between the WAP device and the
        internet, something like PPP.

        If what you say above works, assuming FreeServe does not have any special
        services dedicated to WAP, then it would be possible to dial in to
        virtually any ISP and use their IP network to gain access to the internet.

        If FreeServer does not have any special WAP services, it's most likely PPP.
        If it is, it would be possible to access a HTTP server directly, without
        going through a gateway.

        Is it?

        What I'm trying to say is that I though it worked this way:

        WAP device <----- Protocol X ----> Gateway <---- IP ----> HTTP

        Where Protocol X is some sort of IP-less protocol for WAP devices.


        --
        Espen Lyngaas, IT Consultant, Color Group ASA
        http://home.c2i.net/elyngaas/
        Phone: +47-95063143 +47-22944315 ICQ: 43241796
        Visit the WAP/WML FAQ at
        http://home.c2i.net/elyngaas/wap-faq
      • Gus
        Watch your attributation, please. YOYOW. ... Uhhm, nope. It does not need an IP address for the scenario to work, just the ability to accept a dynamically
        Message 3 of 13 , Jan 4, 2000
          Watch your attributation, please. YOYOW.


          On Tue, 4 Jan 2000, Espen Lyngaas wrote:

          > If a WAP device has an IP stack, it also need an IP address. It must be a
          > private address because there are so few public addresses left.

          Uhhm, nope. It does not need an IP address for the scenario to work, just
          the ability to accept a dynamically assigned IP address, just as most
          dial-up internet users do.

          > Then there must be some sort of IP capable protocol between the WAP
          > device and the internet, something like PPP.

          Indeed, this would make the most sense, since the nearest logical
          competitor (SLIP) does not support dynamic IP address assignment.




          > If what you say above works,

          It does.

          > assuming FreeServe does not have any special services dedicated to WAP,

          They do not.

          > then it would be possible to dial in to virtually any ISP and use
          > their IP network to gain access to the internet.

          It is.



          WAP is considerably easier that most people appear to think.




          > If FreeServer does not have any special WAP services, it's most likely PPP.
          > If it is, it would be possible to access a HTTP server directly, without
          > going through a gateway.
          >
          > Is it?

          Whoops, a jump too far. Remeber, the gateway does more than just proxying
          HTTP requests, it also does the session protocol, transcoding etc.


          > What I'm trying to say is that I though it worked this way:
          >
          > WAP device <----- Protocol X ----> Gateway <---- IP ----> HTTP
          >
          > Where Protocol X is some sort of IP-less protocol for WAP devices.

          *shrug* Occam's Razor. You appear to be needlessly multiplying entities.
          Why have "Protocol X" when you could use PPP, with all the advantages that
          confers.

          Having said all that, this only applies to one subset of WAP, where a GSM
          data call takes place, but it's pretty unlikely that any of us are going
          to get GPRS handsets and networks, or do WAP 1.0 over SMS where there
          /would/ be some more esoteric protocol at the "X" stage.


          Regards,
          _Gus




          --
          angus.wood@...
        • Espen Lyngaas
          ... My what? :) ... ..but most dial-up internet users *do* have an ip address. They get one for instance via DHCP which is just a way of assigning an IP
          Message 4 of 13 , Jan 4, 2000
            At 10:32 01/04/2000 +0000, you wrote:
            >Watch your attributation, please. YOYOW.

            My what? :)

            >Uhhm, nope. It does not need an IP address for the scenario to work, just
            >the ability to accept a dynamically assigned IP address, just as most
            >dial-up internet users do.

            ..but most dial-up internet users *do* have an ip address. They get one for
            instance via DHCP which is just a way of assigning an IP address to an
            ethernet (MAC) address, or they can get one from PPP itself. 'Virtual'
            ethernet interfaces such as dialup adapters do of course not have a real
            ethernet address, but one is generated.

            > WAP is considerably easier that most people appear to think.

            I'm hoping that this will make me understand how it works.

            >*shrug* Occam's Razor. You appear to be needlessly multiplying entities.
            >Why have "Protocol X" when you could use PPP, with all the advantages that
            >confers.

            If it is PPP then it would be possible to do what you said regarding
            dialing up via another ISP. How did you choose which telephone number to
            dial? On my 7110 I can't find any settings for this number. Nor can I find
            any settings which control the IP address of the WAP gateway.

            --
            Espen Lyngaas, IT Consultant, Color Group ASA
            http://home.c2i.net/elyngaas/
            Phone: +47-95063143 +47-22944315 ICQ: 43241796
            Visit the WAP/WML FAQ at
            http://home.c2i.net/elyngaas/wap-faq
          • Tom Hume
            ... Under Services - Settings - Connection Settings you get a number of profiles you can set up for different ISPs... ... GT Unwired, Good Technology
            Message 5 of 13 , Jan 4, 2000
              At 12:47 PM 1/4/00 +0100, Espen Lyngaas wrote:

              >If it is PPP then it would be possible to do what you said regarding
              >dialing up via another ISP. How did you choose which telephone number to
              >dial? On my 7110 I can't find any settings for this number.

              Under "Services" - "Settings" - "Connection Settings" you get a number of
              profiles you can set up for different ISPs...

              ---
              GT Unwired, Good Technology Ltd.

              http://www.gtunwired.com/
            • Gus
              ... You Own Your Own Words , and therefore the On , wrote: line is, by convention, preserved. :) ... Well, all of them do, once the
              Message 6 of 13 , Jan 4, 2000
                On Tue, 4 Jan 2000, Espen Lyngaas wrote:

                > At 10:32 01/04/2000 +0000, you wrote:
                > >Watch your attributation, please. YOYOW.
                >
                > My what? :)

                "You Own Your Own Words", and therefore the "On <date>, <person> wrote:"
                line is, by convention, preserved. :)

                > >Uhhm, nope. It does not need an IP address for the scenario to work, just
                > >the ability to accept a dynamically assigned IP address, just as most
                > >dial-up internet users do.
                >
                > ..but most dial-up internet users *do* have an ip address.

                Well, all of them do, once the connection is established.


                > They get one for instance via DHCP which is just a way of assigning an
                > IP address to an ethernet (MAC) address, or they can get one from PPP
                > itself.

                Indeed. And it is here that the 7110 gets its IP address from. In the PPP
                handshaking during the IPCP stage the server may say "use this IP" to the
                client, if the client is OK with that, it responds that is will use that
                IP and the conversation moves to the next stage, authentication scheme
                for instance. The IP address assigned at dial-in is taken from the ISP's
                pool of dynamically assignable addresses, part of the ISPs network block.

                Assuming you're on a Unix-like system "man pppd" should give some more
                technical information, and RFC2050 some background info.

                A side note: The dial-in settings can be configured via a Nokia "smart"
                SMS. Ten tons of toys to the person who posts working code to do it.


                > 'Virtual' ethernet interfaces such as dialup adapters do of
                > course not have a real ethernet address, but one is generated.

                <pedant>Actually, no MAC address is used in PPP/SLIP/PLIP connections</pedant>


                > > WAP is considerably easier that most people appear to think.
                >
                > I'm hoping that this will make me understand how it works.

                Heh, I know what you mean. It took is a while, and in the end it was
                twiddling with the phone trying different things out that caused
                light-bulbs to go on over our heads. ;)


                > >*shrug* Occam's Razor. You appear to be needlessly multiplying entities.
                > >Why have "Protocol X" when you could use PPP, with all the advantages that
                > >confers.
                >
                > If it is PPP then it would be possible to do what you said regarding
                > dialing up via another ISP. How did you choose which telephone number to
                > dial? On my 7110 I can't find any settings for this number.

                Unfortunately, a colleague is away with our only 7110 at the moment, but
                you'll surely find it under the "settings" menu.


                Regards,
                _Gus



                --
                angus.wood@...
              • Maurice Szmurlo
                hello Espen, your schema is almost right: proto X UDP (IP) HTTP WAP device CSD Router GW
                Message 7 of 13 , Jan 4, 2000
                  hello Espen,

                  your schema is "almost" right:

                  proto X UDP (IP) HTTP
                  WAP device <-------------> CSD Router <--------------> GW <-------------> HTTP
                  (security)
                  transaction/session
                  binary WAP

                  CSP: Cicuit Switched Data

                  maurice



                  Espen Lyngaas wrote:
                  [...]
                  What I'm trying to say is that I though it worked this way:

                  >
                  > WAP device <----- Protocol X ----> Gateway <---- IP ----> HTTP
                  >
                  > Where Protocol X is some sort of IP-less protocol for WAP devices.
                  >
                  > --
                  > Espen Lyngaas, IT Consultant, Color Group ASA

                  --
                  --------------------------------------------------------------
                  Maurice Szmurlo --- Ingénieur R&D --- Sté. T-SIT
                  Technologies des Systèmes d'Information et des Télécoms
                  (adresse temporaire: Maurice.Szmurlo@...)
                • Espen Lyngaas
                  ... So it s plain PPP. But that s just splendid. Thanks for your patience while I got that cleared in my head :) ... Hmmm. Toys. By the way, who s adding the
                  Message 8 of 13 , Jan 4, 2000
                    > > They get one for instance via DHCP which is just a way of assigning an
                    > > IP address to an ethernet (MAC) address, or they can get one from PPP
                    > > itself.
                    >
                    >Indeed. And it is here that the 7110 gets its IP address from.

                    So it's plain PPP. But that's just splendid. Thanks for your patience while
                    I got that cleared in my head :)

                    >A side note: The dial-in settings can be configured via a Nokia "smart"
                    >SMS. Ten tons of toys to the person who posts working code to do it.

                    Hmmm. Toys.

                    By the way, who's adding the formatting in the body of our messages? My
                    Eudora is set to plain text only, but it keeps screwing with the quote chars...

                    --
                    Espen Lyngaas, IT Consultant, Color Group ASA
                    http://home.c2i.net/elyngaas/
                    Phone: +47-95063143 +47-22944315 ICQ: 43241796
                    Visit the WAP/WML FAQ at
                    http://home.c2i.net/elyngaas/wap-faq
                  • hoz
                    gus... I would like to help out writing a mod_wap apache module, I am just starting a wap.pm perl module. What are you referring to here... ... What is NAMP?
                    Message 9 of 13 , Jan 31, 2000
                      gus...

                      I would like to help out writing a mod_wap apache module, I am just
                      starting a wap.pm perl module.

                      What are you referring to here...
                      > Looking through the Nokia NAMP server docs,

                      What is NAMP? and is it only on hp? because I have access to some hp
                      servers :-)

                      let me know what you are talking about
                      -hoz
                    • Gus
                      ... Cool. Are you subclassing CGI.pm ? That is generally a good way to go, since it implements order-independant arguments, persistent variables and all the
                      Message 10 of 13 , Feb 4, 2000
                        On Mon, 31 Jan 2000, hoz wrote:

                        > gus...
                        >
                        > I would like to help out writing a mod_wap apache module, I am just
                        > starting a wap.pm perl module.

                        Cool. Are you subclassing CGI.pm ? That is generally a good way to go,
                        since it implements order-independant arguments, persistent variables and
                        all the general CGI bits that are not really WAP specific, such as
                        variable escaping, argument parsing, URI methods etc etc.

                        On the "mod_wap" front, it would probably be better to wait until the Open
                        Source WAP gateway "Kannel" (www.wapgateway.org) is complete before
                        starting the migration of the code in to Apache.

                        I've also been speaking to someone at ALDigital, where Ben Laurie, the
                        maker/maintainer of Apache's SSL subsystem works, about WTLS issues,
                        I'll keep ppl informed if anything interesting turns up. BTW, Verisign are
                        issuing free WTLS certificates up to the end of this month for free
                        (www.verisign.com)

                        Side note: Why do people on the list still use "&" as a variable
                        separator in URLs? You only need ";". AFAIK, all the handsets support it,
                        and if they don't, they certainly should.

                        > What are you referring to here...
                        > > Looking through the Nokia NAMP server docs,
                        >
                        > What is NAMP? and is it only on hp? because I have access to some hp
                        > servers :-)

                        NAMP == Nokia "Artus" Messaging Platform, a group of products for WAP, SMS
                        etc.

                        Just back from GSM2000. Pretty damn amazing toys on show. Looks like the
                        Mobile Internet is here to stay, although many people seem to be saying
                        that they will hold off for GPRS, and that WAP will not be very commercial
                        this year. *shrug*

                        UK ppl: Vodafone's Cell Broadcast network was turned on at 11pm last
                        night, the only messages it's transmitting that I can see are empty topic
                        indexes ATM, but We Shall See. I donut know what this means for WAP, but
                        it should get people used to mobile data services pretty quickly.

                        Oh, and finally,
                        <rant>
                        All this "---- Original Message ----" crap is really starting to get
                        on my goat. Is it soooo much hassle to trim the text of your reply to the
                        portion that is pertinent to what you are replying to ? Think of the
                        people on the digest version of the list, they have to wade through the
                        same shit over and over again because list members do not take 2 seconds
                        to delete the irrelevant text. It does not take long, it aids clarity
                        immensely, and saves the recievers bandwidth, not to mention the fact that
                        it is The Right Way Of Doing Things.
                        </rant>


                        Regards,
                        _Gus


                        --
                        - angus@... -
                        = Zygo Communications, London UK =
                        -= 82 AA 4D 7F D8 45 58 05 6D 1B 1A 72 1E DB 31 B5 =-
                        The gods have gone. Now is the time of men.
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