Re: The ecosystem is moving

Dave Cridland <dave@cridland.net> Sat, 14 May 2016 23:43 UTC

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Date: Sun, 15 May 2016 00:43:39 +0100
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Subject: Re: The ecosystem is moving
From: Dave Cridland <dave@cridland.net>
To: Ned Freed <ned.freed@mrochek.com>
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Cc: Phillip Hallam-Baker <phill@hallambaker.com>, Paul Wouters <paul@nohats.ca>, Dave Crocker <dcrocker@bbiw.net>, "ietf@ietf.org Discussion" <ietf@ietf.org>
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On 14 May 2016 18:24, "Ned Freed" <ned.freed@mrochek.com> wrote:
>
> > XMPP does not have ongoing problems with interop. Quite the opposite -
the
> > community is extremely positively engaged with the standards process at
the
> > XSF, and interoperability issues are detected fast, treated seriously,
and
> > fixed quickly. If they occur due to specifications being unclear, the
spec
> > is fixed.
>
> > Every server I'm aware of, with the exception of Google's XMPP S2S
service
> > (still operating but fundamentally broken) has supported at least the
> > baseline of "XMPP" for years.
>
> Dave, all due respect, but this doesn't match my IETF experience, which
lines
> up with Martin's and Ted's pretty closely. Every time a meeting rolls
around I
> have to fight to get jabber chat working.
>
> The BA meeting was better than usual. I fired up Psi, which despite being
> crappy I am forced to use for work because Adium won't talk to the
corporate
> jabber server for some reason. Finding the two accounts I had set up
previously
> were both dead, I started the hunt for a functioning public server. (I
tried a
> private server once, but never succeeded in getting it going.)
>

I'm intrigued as to what you're using as your corporate server, and what
prevents you using that to join IETF chatrooms.

> After trying various server names from a list that obviously hadn't been
> updated in years, I found one that responded but wouldn't configure
properly in
> Psi. So I switched to Adium, where it worked.
>

Again, please let me know off list which server this is. The only thing I
can think of is if Psi is failing to use TLS, or cannot speak the available
sasl mechanisms. Possible, since XMPP had to move off digest md5 when that
became historic, and switched to scram, but maybe psi has been left behind
there. Possible that your corporate server has the same problems in
reverse, in which case it's probably also got major security holes running
throughout.

This probably does count as an interop issue in a sense, but I think is a
necessary one.

> But the real test is whether or not you can join one of the IETF group
chats. I
> tried, and it worked. (My past experience has been that this has about a
50-50
> shot of working, and when it doesn't work there's absolutely no
indication of
> what's wrong.)
>

The IETF server, as I've mentioned, ran a self signed certificate for
years, after many services stopped peering with anything without a CA
signed certificate. It's fixed now, so should be considerably more reliable.

> So after maybe an hour of fiddling I once again had a working setup,
albeit one
> where I have to have use two different clients to connect to different
servers.
> As these things go, this counts as s significant success.
>
> Now, I have no doubt that I'm missing some sooper seecret sauce, have bad
> google-fu, should not be using a Mac because reasons, or whatever. But
that's
> beside the point. As abjectly incompetent as I undoubtedly am with
jabber, I
> doubt very very much that I rise to the level of incompetence of the
average
> user setting up IM for the first time.
>

Fair comment. On a Mac, you might try swift.im, too.

> And perhaps all these problems are not "interoperability issues", by your
> definition of that term. But the bottom line is that the reasons why
something
> is a PITA don't change the fact that it's a PITA.
>

Oh, I don't dispute that is a pain to find a server. Google doesn't help
here, since their server is at best crippled, and at worst breaks things
entirely. But XMPP does work for millions of people who use it, federated,
on a routine basis.

>                                 Ned