[Twisted-Python] TWN #6, Text version!

Chris Armstrong carmstro at twistedmatrix.com
Wed Aug 15 13:31:50 EDT 2001

(Someone pointed out that lynx -dump produces nice text output with
references. So here's the text version of TWN #6!)

                            The Twisted Weekly News
   6th Issue. Wednesday, August 15, 2001
<Inhibitor> this is commercial software - there are no security holes
<Inhibitor> not like your crappy open source - written by students - stuff
<glyph> right, I had forgotten

   Welcome to the 6th issue of the Twisted Weekly News! Last week I
   mentioned how much Twisted had grown in developers and users -- well,
   obviously I'm not a psychic. This week has seen a much larger
   growth-spurt. Rock on, Twisted!
   Here's what's been happening this week in the code base.
     * Twisted 0.9.5: We made another [1]release. This one was mainly bug
       fixes, code cleanup, and documentation. The cool thing about this
       release is that we put [2]publicly available Twisted Words and
       Twisted Reality servers up on twistedmatrix.com. Get ready for a
       new release, though, Twisted 0.9.6 is planned to be out soon!
     * Twisted Manhole: Chris Armstrong got sick and tired of the telnet
       interface to Twisted, so he wrote a nice PB service as a
       replacement for it, with cooler features. The GTK+ interface
       supports coloured output, command history, and editing of full
       blocks of code before executing them. Glyph also helped out a lot
       when he cleaned up Chris' mess of code, and made the GUI much
       prettier. ;-)
     * Docs: Well, people have been responding to repeated requests for
       documentation. Acapnotic has been on a rampage through docstrings,
       and moshez wrote a [3]page on writing low-level protocol
       implementations for Twisted.
     * Mail: Moshez is still working hard on twisted.mail - the latest
       checkin comments show that he has implemented relaying
       successfully! (So when is twistedmatrix.com going to switch to
       twisted.mail? ;-))
     * Twisted.Words: There's a lot of interest in this little package
       lately: the IRC interface is becoming more robust, and the
       InstanceMessenger client has been getting a lot better (there is
       now a Tk version, too).
     * utilities: Moshez hacked a little on the utility scripts included
       with Twisted -- he made a neato utility for generating
       policy-conformant Debian packages, added a --python parameter to
       twistd for reading from plain python files instead of .taps, and
       added --append to mktap, which adds another server to an existing
       twisted application. from tap files.
     * Twisted TOC: z3p's been hacking more on Twisted TOC. He made a
       client for it, but unfortunately had to pull it due to a nasty
       copyright on some widget library he was using. Instead of creating
       a separate client, z3p now plans on adding TOC support to Instance
       Messenger (right, z3p? ;-))
     * Twisted SSL: Itamar implemented a really cool SSL layer for
       Twisted. All that is required to use it is to basically change one
       line of code in the typical Twisted server. This will be really
       cool for manhole, so passwords and code will be able to be
       encrypted. Thanks a lot Itamar, we've had lots of requests for SSL
       support. :-)
  Other Stuff
   Here are summaries of some of the more significant mailing list
   Moshe [4]suggested refactoring the daemonize() function into a
   separate module, only to start somewhat of a holy war with glyph which
   later moved to IRC. I can't really explain why glyph was against it
   myself, but I know it had something to do with philosophy. ;-)
   Kevin Turner made a very confusing [5]attempt at proposing a new
   "Multiplexing" feature for Perspective Broker. The gist of it was that
   there can be an object shared between many hosts, and whenever the
   object is updated by anyone, the changes propagate to everyone else.
   The discussion must've been half on IRC, though, because I couldn't
   really make out what the conclusion was. It seems that what Acapnotic
   wants is in the Cached class..
   Itamar had [6]Some suggestions for Twisted after he read a lot of the
   source while he was on a plane trip. He thought that 0) Twisted was
   cool, 1) Pickling on server shutdown should be optional (he has
   servers which aren't pickleable), 2) number of clients which
   socket.listen() queues shouldn't be hard-coded to 5, 3) threadable
   servers should be faster, and 4) more docstrings should be put in.
   Moshe Zadka replied that Most of these things had been solved or are
   being worked on. The thread quickly changed topic to one about
   [7]threading, and Itamar [8]implementing some more threading
   capabilities for Twisted.
  Cool Thing Of the Week:
  Twisted Enterprise
   Twisted Enterprise is the new database interface for Twisted, written
   by Sean Riley. This was an especially interesting problem, because
   most (all?) database servers are blocking beasts, so servers talking
   to it must be multi-threaded. The Twisted solution was to have a
   separate multi-threaded Twisted process which talks to the database in
   the background and listens and answers for requests from other (thread
   or not) Twisted processes. This way you do not have to deal with
   threads in your own application if you don't want to, even if you want
   it to talk to a database.
   Enterprise is going to be a big thing in Twisted -- Glyph is working
   on a great authentication system that uses this new package. Get ready
   for enterprise b2b internet solution!!
  Plea for help from the pathetic editor
   I've been very busy lately, and I haven't even started school yet. So,
   I'll probably be even more busy very soon -- If anyone is willing to
   help me out with TWN on a weekly basis (maybe only half an hour every
   week) It would be *incredibly* helpful. The two areas where I need it
   the most are the mailing list summaries and the conversion to text
   format for the mailing list (if you know of some software that will do
   this and nicely generate references for links at the bottom, that'd
   help *tons*). But even if you can just summarise a new feature in
   Twisted, it'd still help. Thanks!
   Ok, that's it for this week. Thanks for reading!
   [9]Chris Armstrong


   1. http://www.twistedmatrix.com/downloads/
   2. http://www.twistedmatrix.com/users/pb.twistd
   3. http://www.twistedmatrix.com/page.epy/docs/writing-serves.html
   4. http://www.twistedmatrix.com/pipermail/twisted-python/2001-August/000199.html
   5. http://www.twistedmatrix.com/pipermail/twisted-python/2001-August/000203.html
   6. http://www.twistedmatrix.com/pipermail/twisted-python/2001-August/000228.html
   7. http://www.twistedmatrix.com/pipermail/twisted-python/2001-August/000240.html
   8. http://www.twistedmatrix.com/pipermail/twisted-python/2001-August/000231.html
   9. mailto:carmstro at twistedmatrix.com

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