New release of Coral ...

John Shott shott at snf.stanford.edu
Mon Sep 24 17:09:29 PDT 2001


SNF Lab Members:

We are pleased to announce that we have installed a new version of Coral that,
among other things, addresses some minor features that have been requested. 
Those features include:

1. The ability to enable a piece of equipment that is enabled by someone else.
This will allow you to terminate someone else's use of a piece of equipment
(and terminate their charges for a piece of equipment) and begin to charge it
under your name.  This will pop up a window that warns you "Machine x is
already enabled by y. Do you still want to enable?" ... in case, you didn't
actually want to enable that equipment.  Also, when doing this, it doesn't
physically disable the hardware interlock ... that stays on all of the time.
This, we hope, will eliminate the problems of changing from one person to
another.

2. A warning message if you are about to disable a piece of equipment that has
been enabled by someone else.  In this case you will receive a warning:
"Machine x is already enabled by y. Do you still want to disable?"  While you
can still disable it ... this warns you and allows you to say no in case you
were about to accidently disable a piece of equipment.

3. Default equipment history includes today.  Previously, equiment history
showed equipment usage through midnight of last night.  Today's equipment
history had to be shown using the "Forward" menu item.  We have changed this
so the default window now includes equipment usage for today.  Remember,
however, that equipment that is still enabled doesn't show up in history at
all ... even if it has been enabled for a long time.  Equipment usage doesn't
become history until the equipment has been disabled.

There are a variety of "under the covers" changes that, we believe, will
contribute to the overall performance and stability of the Coral system ...
but we won't bore you with those details.

One project, however, that is a work in progress and deserves an update is
Remote Coral access for people that are behind firewalls.  Previously, people
behind firewalls would get the message: "Unable to access equipment
information" ... and then never got a functional Coral window.  We have made a
number of changes to eliminate this problem ... but have not yet been able to
fully test them because we don't have an independent firewall from behind
which we can conduct our own testing.  Accordingly, we are looking for a
couple of volunteers to help us to test and debug Remote Coral from behind a
firewall.  If you think that you are in this group and would like to help,
please let us know. What we would like you to do is:

1. Check your Java Web Start installation to make sure that you are logging
errors to a file that you can find ... this is found under the "Advanced" tab
of the "Preferences" window.

2. Download and run the latest version of Remote Coral.

3. Tell us what happens on your screen.

4. Send us the log file that is generated.

Note: the version that is out there may not work ... we are trying to debug
those changes to make it work.  We are looking for a couple of folks who are
willing (and have the patience) to try this a two or three times as we try to
get this capability fully functional.  If you want to help to debug the
"behind a firewall" problem, please send e-mail to coral at snf.stanford.edu ... 
Final note: people not behind a firewall should not be affected by these
changes.

Thanks,

Your Coral Development Team



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