[avahi] Service type - using an existing one or registering our own? - pls advice

jeetu.golani at gmail.com jeetu.golani at gmail.com
Wed Nov 9 10:35:48 PST 2011

Hi guys,

Thank you so much for the work you have put in towards Avahi - truly
appreciate it :)

A few of us have been working on our open source (GPL) project called
eBrainPool (http://ebrain.in). eBrainPool aims at allowing software to
be discovered and used from any device around you. The eBrainPool
client allows users can discover software on other devices in the
local area network or create an ad-hoc mesh network (we currently use
Olsr) of devices and use software off each other. X Windows (via ssh X
forwarding) allows for using software remotely and mitigating
architectural differences between the devices. One of the design goals
is also that a user should be able to use remote software from this
resource pool of devices but still work with his local data (via

Currently we are using the Olsr routing protocol to create a mesh and
we have a custom olsr plugin that aids in discovery. This ties us too
strongly to olsr though and as has been pointed out by many in the
community that this is bad architecture. It would make much more sense
to use Avahi for local network discovery and maybe DHT/Telehash etc
for discovery over the Internet.

I am very new to Avahi / Zeroconf and currently am a little uncertain
as to which service type I should be using ideally. Should I be using
one of the pre-registered service types - such as presence? or would
it be better to have our own service type registered with IANA (not
sure of the process or how difficult or easy it is or even if is
possible and how long this takes) ?

The problem as I see with using a service type such as presence is
that other clients such as Jabber may not realize that our client is
not a messaging client and that may possibly cause some weird
behaviour in a network with jabber clients etc.

I'd sincerely appreciate hearing from people more well versed in this
than I am as to what is considered the correct approach here.

Thank you so much for taking the time and sincerely appreciate the help.

Bye for now
ebrain.in | Beehive Computing
Discover and run software from any device around you - an open source
(GPL) project

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