Main Lobby Server 3 features

roussell

Active Member
I copied this from the CQC thread and started a new topic to help keep things in order...

DavidL said:
Rousell,
Didn't know if you knew, Cinemar just released it's Insteon driver.
http://www.cinemaronline.com/mlserver.mllighting.html
DavidL,

I actually did know about the new Insteon driver, I wish it was native rather than relying on the SDM, but I understand the importance in getting some level of support out.

A couple of questions about MLserver 3:
1. Do you have a two-way generic serial port driver?
2. how about the same for the parallel port?
3. Send/receive custom messages through the ethernet interface with TCP/UDP. Kind of like "netcat"
3. Scripting. Can I write a custom script in VBscript/python/perl/whatever to interact with other stuff and feed that into MLS3 or use MLS3 to drive actions in those same scripts?

I have several "things" that hang off of the serial and parallel ports on my server that I control. Most are home-made digital and analog I/O boards that are basic-stamp driven and take/generate pretty generic commands/responses . I use the parallel port(s) for several low-level I/O tasks in conjunction with some custom c++ drivers. Granted, all of this is in Linux now so it would have to be ported to windows, not a huge deal but something to consider none-the-less.

I have to admit, the "eye-candyness" of ML alone is very tempting, now that the server product is coming around, it's almost too hard to resist. If the above is doable, then I just may come back to the Microsoft (yuck) world. :rolleyes: Is there a published roadmap for the ML suite, specifically MLServer?

Thanks,
Terry
 

DavidL

Senior Member
hi Terry,

1. Do you have a two-way generic serial port driver?
Yes, there is a 3rd party 2 way serial plugin available that many are using. It has it's limitations and that is whey Cinemar is internally developing our own that will be much more powerful and flexible. This will take us a few months.

2. how about the same for the parallel port?
This is the first time I have been asked about supporting parallel port. So, there may be a way, but don't have a easy answer off the top.

3. Send/receive custom messages through the ethernet interface with TCP/UDP. Kind of like "netcat"
There is a current TCPSend plugin, and we have just started asking our forum for details on what they would want for the TCP "Recieve" so we can add that functionality. This is much easier than the generic serial, so should be faster to develop, if we get some good requirements from our customer base. U got needs?


3. Scripting. Can I write a custom script in VBscript/python/perl/whatever to interact with other stuff and feed that into MLS3 or use MLS3 to drive actions in those same scripts?
There is a plugin SDK that is available once a NDA is signed. Scripting is easily supported now, but not the recommended route for performance , though several of our more advanced users have developed some neat stuff with scripts. If you can code (sounds like you can) then you will have no problem. We support C++ plugins now in MLServer 3. The MLHAI is the first example that will release.

Come on back to the Windows Dark Side!! It's really not bad at all :blink:
 

roussell

Active Member
Cool, thanks for the answers. I'm also reading along in the licensing thread and have just a few more questions.

What about web server functionality? I'm not looking for you to necessarily provide a webserver/interface, but do you expose MLS in such a fashion so that I could develop a web site for use when needed? How would that connectivity be licensed/controlled if at all? Does it use one of MLS3 available client licenses?

What about PDAs? I have a Cingular 8125 (Windows Mobile 5), Will ML run on that or would I need the web functionality mentioned above? How about PDA licensing (same questions as web licensing above)?

Is the ML Server multi-threaded or does it (and it’s plugins) run as a single process? What about scripts, do they run as a separate process?

How long will the $159 combo deal be offered? And does that deal include the “free†GuiGraphix Library0019 and the free update to MLCallerID3 as do the individual versions of ML3 and MLS3?

Lastly, will MLS run on windows 2003 Server or will I need XP? If it will run on 2K3 Server (I don't have a copy of XP), then I suppose I'll have to build a server this weekend, download the evals and give it a try. It's gonna be tough talking the wife out of the cash though. Maybe the ML eye-candy will help.

Thanks,
Terry
 

DavidL

Senior Member
hi Terry,

What about web server functionality? I'm not looking for you to necessarily provide a webserver/interface, but do you expose MLS in such a fashion so that I could develop a web site for use when needed?

There is a basic webserver built into MLServer for MainLobby client communications. It's not intended as a web page server, but if you had an html page in the MainLobby server folder, I think it would push to a IE browser calling it.


How would that connectivity be licensed/controlled if at all? Does it use one of MLS3 available client licenses?

No, today the webserver has no bearing on the license technology built into MLServer 3. A webpage should render, but I have not tested that. But, I wouldn't be planning on a robust webserver for building sophiticated web access...that's not what MainLobby was designed for and doesn't support today. You can use what's there, but no promises that it is "suppose to do more". that is not to say that you shouldn't post your ideas on how it might be improved, just no promise as it's not in central focus of cinemar (today, not necessarily tomorrow).


What about PDAs? I have a Cingular 8125 (Windows Mobile 5), Will ML run on that or would I need the web functionality mentioned above? How about PDA licensing (same questions as web licensing above)?

There are specific PDA applications that aren't as configurable as the full MainLobby client PC app. Some of them do require MLServer, and do take a client connection / license. I personally haven't kept up with the various PDA OSs so I don't want to say that the Cinemar PPC apps will work on the Cingular 8125. You might search Cinemar's forum to see if someone else has done this. I believe odds are good, but the PDA market is very dynamic.

Is the ML Server multi-threaded or does it (and it’s plugins) run as a single process? What about scripts, do they run as a separate process?

today the core MLServer is single threaded, but a couple of the newer plugins are multithreaded. I believe (not positive) that scripts run in same thread as MLServer.

How long will the $159 combo deal be offered? And does that deal include the “free†GuiGraphix Library0019 and the free update to MLCallerID3 as do the individual versions of ML3 and MLS3?

I believe that the combo offer was extended to end of August 2006 as we haven't been able to send an email to our existing customers with an upgrade offer yet. That's how busy we are with development and getting product ready for market...
Library 0019 and MLCallerID are included in MainLobby 3 combo.

Lastly, will MLS run on windows 2003 Server or will I need XP? If it will run on 2K3 Server (I don't have a copy of XP), then I suppose I'll have to build a server this weekend, download the evals and give it a try. It's gonna be tough talking the wife out of the cash though. Maybe the ML eye-candy will help.

MLServer 3 will run on Win2003 Server (and XP and MCE).
Some "proven" ML WAF hits are WeatherLobby 3 (highest), and the beta MLCalendar (displays outlook managed calendar in MainLobby). If you use Outlook for the family calendar, and want the beta, let me know and I will add you to the beta list to get that WAF.

thanx for the consideration
 

roussell

Active Member
Thanks again David, I'll work with the eval this weekend some (provided the honey-do list isn't too long) and may shoot back some more questions if any arise. I'll also get on Cinemar's forum if I'm not already on it. I will be interested in the beta program, but I should probably spend some time with the core components first.

Sure do wish there was a linux version though. :)

Terry

Edit: Already on Cinemar's forum, username "roussell"
 
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