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From Marcel Offermans <>
Subject Re: Using the management interface to deploy distros to targets
Date Tue, 09 Apr 2013 12:23:34 GMT
Hello Dan,

On Apr 9, 2013, at 13:50 , Dan Gravell <> wrote:

> Hi all. I just built and ran up the latest version of the server from SVN
> trunk. I've got some questions... mainly about the UI.
> What do "retrieve", "store" and "revert" do? Is there some notion of local,
> uncommitted data?

Yes. The idea is similar to a version control system:

1. First you retrieve the latest state from the server into your "workspace".

2. Then you edit that data until you are happy with the changes.

3. Finally you store your changes to make them take effect (or revert if not).

> How do I uninstall a distro from an agent? "-" buttons do nothing. "x"
> removes a target but then it re-appears, disassociated. Even though it
> appears disassociated to the distro the bundles are still installed on the
> target.

You make associations by drag and drop.

Removing them is a bit less intuitive. You select one hand of the association, then move your
mouse to the other hand (which should be highlighted at this point) and press the "-" to just
remove the association.

The "x" is to remove something. For targets that still won't work 100% because of [1] and

> Similarly, I want to remove a distro and add a new distro, to simulate a
> new release of my product. I expect this is related to how to uninstall...
> but how do I do this?

See above, remove one association, create a new one.

> The "identification" of an agent - how is this normally populated? I assume
> people don't leave it as "target-1". Any ideas on how to make this work for
> thousands of targets?

You have to somehow generate a unique ID. The management agent uses an "Identification" service
for that. The current one simply reads a system property, but you could provide an implementation
that, for example, uses the MAC address of your network card or some other unique property.

> I have a set of beta users. I want to be able to offer the latest beta
> distro to the beta users, and the latest GA release to everyone else.
> What's the best way of doing this... different servers or a way of
> parameterising?

You could create two distributions ("beta" and "GA") and associate targets (users) with either.
In your case, if you have many users, I would programmatically create one association between
"GA" and all targets that don't have a beta flag, and one association between "beta" and all
targets that do have a beta flag.

I think I briefly mentioned how to do that with the REST API, but feel free to follow up...

> After a while I can't use the UI anymore, I get "Session Expired". Even
> when I log back in I get the same message and this redirects me back to
> login page. I can log in via incognito mode instead.

Hmm, I did recently fix a bug which now expires sessions a bit more aggressively. However,
you should still be able to log out and back in if this happens.

I would have to investigate. It could be that something is left in the Vaadin session. As
a work-around you could try appending this to the URL:


That should restart the Vaadin application. Let me know if that helps, as that would be a
hint that something in Vaadin is not correctly reset when the session times out now.

Greetings, Marcel

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