vat: Change History

v4.0b2 Thu May 16 00:25:19 PDT 1996

v4.0b1 Fri May 3 06:29:01 PDT 1996

v4.0a8 Mon Mar 18 02:55:47 PST 1996

v4.0a7 Thu Feb 22 23:00:26 PST 1996

v4.0a6 Wed Feb 15 14:39:06 PST 1996

v4.0a5 Wed Feb 7 14:39:06 PST 1996

v4.0a4 Tue Feb 6 14:41:34 PST 1996

v4.0a3 Tue Feb 6 02:48:49 PST 1996

v4.0a2 Mon Oct 23 21:47:44 PDT 1995

v4.0a1 Sat Oct 14 22:55:37 PDT 1995

First public source-code release.

v3.5 Thu Oct 5 18:23:16 PDT 1995

v3.4 Tue Jun 21 23:45:37 PDT 1994

v3.3 Wed Jun 1 13:46:55 PDT 1994

v3.2 Sun Jan 16 23:18:49 PST 1994

v3.0-3.1 Tue Jan 11 16:02:50 PST 1994

v2.18-20beta Thu Dec 9 18:45:17 PST 1993

v2.17beta Tue Oct 19 16:10:32 PDT 1993

v2.1[56]beta Tue Jul 27 19:32:25 PDT 1993

v2.14beta Wed Jun 30 18:48:50 PDT 1993

v1.56beta Thu Dec 17 13:48:17 PST 1992

v1.54beta Tue Nov 24 06:20:23 PST 1992

v1.51/52/53beta Fri Nov 20 04:45:06 PST 1992

v1.49/50beta Wed Nov 18 02:50:55 PST 1992

v1.47/8beta Mon Nov 16 03:05:28 PST 1992 (pre-IETF release)

v1.46beta Mon Nov 2 21:46:48 PST 1992

v1.41/2/3/4beta Sat Sep 19 20:35:04 PDT 1992

v1.40beta Thu Jul 30 19:28:23 PDT 1992

v1.39beta Tue Jul 28 22:00:25 PDT 1992

v1.38beta Sat Jul 25 01:39:19 PDT 1992

A "push to talk" button has been added: If the X resource vat.PushToTalk is set to true (it defaults to false) the right mouse button will toggle the mute state of the mike if pushed or released in a white part of the site box. (It should work anywhere in the vat window but InterViews 2.6 makes that hard to do). Also, if the vat window where you push the right button doesn't currently have the audio, it will grab the audio. [Adding a push-to-talk was first suggested by Dave Bachmann, .]

Vat can now completely give up the audio (as opposed to passing it to another vat): Just click on the title bar until it turns white. If audio data arrives from the network, vat will automatically try to grab the audio back. (You can prevent this automatic grabbing by muting the speaker in this vat window.) If you set the X resource IdleDropTime to some number, vat will automatically drop the audio if there has been no in or out net activity for that many seconds. (You can prevent this automatic dropping by clicking on the title bar until it turns black -- this `pins' the audio to a particular vat window.)

Giving up the audio on inactivity & grabbing it back on activity is half of the additions we've made to support semi-automatic passing of audio between multiple vat windows. The other half is intended to control which window gets the audio when multiple windows request it: Windows have a priority (typically set by the X resource vat.DefaultPriority [defaults to 100] but this can be overridden by a `-P pri' flag). If a window requests the audio (because new network data arrived or the mike has been unmuted) and the window currently holding the audio is either lower priority or hasn't used audio for IdleHoldTime seconds, the audio holder immediately gives it up. Otherwise the new window's request is ignored. (IdleHoldTime provides hysteresis to prevent `thrashing' when two conferences go active at about the same time; the priority provides a way to distiguish `background' windows, say a radio station broadcast or a `directory' window of people reachable via vat, from `foreground' activity like a particular audio conference so vat can make better decisions on what should get the audio.)

If all of the above sounds complicated, ignore it & don't worry. Just start up as many vat windows in different conferences as you want. If there's activity in some conference, it will grab the audio and you'll hear what's being said. If you want to talk in some conference, just unmute the mike in that window and start talking. If vat makes the wrong decision about the audio (e.g., there are two conferences active and it flips between them) click on the title bar of the one you want.

[The changes to support passing & releasing the audio derived from a series of suggestions & a very interesting conversation between Jon Crowcroft, Ian Wakeman & Mark Handley of University College, London.]

Note that the title bar now indicates the audio state of a window: White No audio Gray Unpinned audio Black Pinned audio And that there are five new X resoures associated with this stuff: vat.PushToTalk: false ! if true, right mouse button does ! mike unmute/mute. vat.AutoRaise: true ! raise window when audio is acquired vat.IdleDropTime: 0 ! seconds we have to be idle before we'll ! release the audio (0 => never). vat.IdleHoldTime: 10 ! seconds we have to be idle before we'll ! honor a request to give up audio. vat.DefaultPriority: 100 ! default priority if no -P flag Also note that INPCB.patch has been updated -- we'd made another change to in_pcb.c that my last diff didn't pick up.

v1.37beta Thu Jul 23 23:35:56 PDT 1992

Many, many errors showed up in 1.34 when other sites tried to run it. Some were just stupid coding on my part but several have to do with differences between the network code we run and the stuff that Sun ships. 1.37 tries to deal with the differences by not letting you do things that won't work under stock SunOS+Deering IP multicast. In particular, only one `side conversation' window per conference can be open at a time. Any attempt to open others will result in a "bind: Address already in use" error & no new vat window will be created. (You can still have multiple vat windows, but each one has to have a unique local address and port which is where the above restriction comes from.)

If you have source for the kernel network code (including the multicast mods) you can apply the patch file INPCB.patch to /sys/netinet/in_pcb.c. This will allow you to open as many side conversation windows as you want and will make multiple active conferences to different multicast addresses work *much* better (the patch is upwards compatible with the earlier system, it just removes some stupidity that prevents using the entire address to identify a 'connection'). When Steve Deering gets back from vacation, I'll talk to him about folding this change into the multicast distribution on Gregorio so it will be available to sites without source.

v1.32beta Thu Jul 23 10:45:58 PDT 1992

Vat now supports multiple vat windows, each participating in a different conference. You control which vat window gets access to the audio hardware (speaker & mike) by clicking on the title bar. (The other windows will continue to highlight sites to show that data is arriving, they just won't be able to make any noise.)

There is some support for dynamically establishing `side conversations' with other participants in a conference: If you middle click on some participant's name in the site box, you'll get a new vat window that unicasts to only that participant. If they do the same on your site name, you can have a private conversation in the new windows.

To help sort out the multiple windows, there's now a -C flag that sets the 'conference name' (the name displayed in the window title bar). If you don't specify -C, the destination address and port is used.

The way you specify the destination for -m (address/port/format/ttl) can also be used for the main conference destination. E.g., "vat foo/3456" rather than "vat -p 3456 foo". The -p, -f and -t flags still work if you want to use the old form.

A major bug in `mixing' (the -m flag) was fixed: A site mixing for some other wasn't able to hear the audio generated by that site (anyone else could -- only the site doing the mixing was excluded). A mixing site can now hear and talk to every one, including the site it's mixing for.

In the rush to get a version of vat that could display more site names for IETF, we broke the auxillary controls window. Many people have noted that it wouldn't appear unless you resized the vat window. We've fixed that. The fix required making the aux controls window a completely separate window, rather than having it part of the main vat window. This is good & bad: The vat window no longer changes size when you open or close the aux controls but you now have to move & iconify the two windows separately if the aux controls window is open. Unfortuanately, the current scheme seems to be the best we can do with the 2.6 version of InterViews we're using.

The mike and speaker AGC both seem to be working fairly well now. They both still default to "off" since we'd like to get a bit more experience with using them in large conferences but they will probably default to "on" in the next version of vat. We encourage you to turn them on and let us know if there are any problems.

You can now type 'p' in the vat window to get the current mike and speaker gain settings printed to standard out. They are printed in a form suitable for inclusion in your .Xdefaults file. I.e., once you get the speaker & mike set to your taste, just type "p" and paste the result into .Xdefaults so you won't have to ever set them again.

Henning Schulzrinne has been testing a new version of Nevot that turned out to be a vat killer: Six different people reported vat core dumps yesterday, all due to a bug triggered by Nevot continuously sending a site id message immediately followed by a site done message. This bug has been fixed.