VIO - Visual IO Agents

Donald Straney burntfuse at
Wed Jan 24 07:58:21 PST 2007

> I think a GUI for handlers would definitely help the user. For instance
> i do a lot of PHP programming directly on the webserver. For editing i
> use JEdit (because it works transparently over FTP). For copying files i
> use Nautilus. The problem is that it's intransparent when my desktop is
> connected to the FTP server. So i get annoying connection errors,
> because the FTP-server only allowes a certain number of concurrent
> connections. If the protocol handler had a GUI i could monitor
> connections and disconnect with a mouseclick.

My main complaint with using VFS handlers built into programs is that
they just don't belong at the application level.  It seems sort of
strange and un-intuitive to have to have a compatible FTP program
running, even if you're not using it, for your other programs to
access an FTP site.  If the system is able to access an FTP site or an
archiver or whatever, it should be able to do it no matter what
applications are running or not in my opinion.  Your point about being
able to manage the different connections and change the protocol
details is a very good one, though.  Maybe the network protocol
handlers (like FTP or SCP) could show a system tray icon when they're
loaded for managing connections?  Also, each handler could have a
standard API call to show a config dialog (for changing the user-agent
string for the HTTP handler, for example), since I completely agree
with what you said about each one having its own details that have to
be tweaked, something that seems to be missing from the GNOME VFS and
KDE k_ioslaves now.  That way, in the desktop's control center, there
could be a "remote connection properties" section which would show a
list of the available handlers and allow you to separately configure
each one.

That's an annoying problem you have with your FTP access, so maybe the
network handlers could all have an option to merge all requests for
the same host into one connection?  For example, first your FTP
program opens a connection to the server.  Next, you use it to open a
text file on the server, and the text editor tries to create a new
connection to the server and request the file.  The FTP handler,
keeping track of the connections, sees that there's already one to
that server, and sends the request on that connection instead of
opening a new one.  That could be a bad idea though, what do you

Donald Straney

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