Google Summer of Code 2015 Ideas

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This page lists all project ideas for our Google Summer of Code 2015 application. Students should also visit our general GSoC 2015 page for more information including a Student Guide.

Enhancing web presence of ReactOS

Implement a REST API in testman

Useful for: Developers

For its development, ReactOS project has been using with success for years a complete tools set. Each time a commit is made to our trunk, our buildbot infrastructure (https://build.reactos.org) is in charge of rebuilding trunk and starting a bunch of tests (circa 10M tests) on it to make sure not regressions came in. When these tests are done, they are uploaded to testman (https://www.reactos.org/testman), which makes them properly readable and usable for developers. Over years, the question of being able to catch more or less automatically regressions patterns was raised. Also, regtests provide a good performance indicator for ReactOS and evaluating their performances over commits can be critical as well.

There is then a need to be able to directly query Testman via an API to gather the raw data (tests, time to perform then) so that more tools can make use of these results. The student would then have the responsibility to implement such an API into testman directly.

Skills needed
  • PHP/MySQL development
  • REST API development
Difficulty

The project in itself shouldn't be difficult. Testman is a well-known product develop in-house. But a deep attention will have to be set on security and the performances of the API.

Extras

If the student goes fast enough, we will be able to extend this project, by for instance looking at how to develop a skeleton application to make use of the API. Or to directly develop a complete application to evaluate the performances of the tests over time.


Develop a spam honeypot

Useful for: End users

In spite of the deployement of various anti-spam features (including captchas and backlists), ReactOS forum has been the target of repeated spam attacks. These attacks ruined the good shape of boards while requiring extensive time from our admins. The idea here is to attempt a third strategy against spam to allow to automate the fight against spam. The student would have to develop a simple honeypot where spambots could spam providing major information: IP address, email address and message. This done, we could then automatically feed our backlist database for Drupal and phpBB not on assumptions but on facts.

Skills needed
  • PHP/MySQL development
  • Basic knowledge of phpBB & Drupal
Difficulty

This project should be easily completed by a student. This should offer him a bit of time to go into deeper features, described below.

Extras

If the student goes fast enough, two options are available for him. He can either develop an admin database so that we can easily review spam data in case of user complain, or he can start thinking about integrating the honeypot with our Drupal & phpBB and evaluation early performances of it. Third option is also available if he has suggestions!


Usability enhancement

Applications Manager Rapps

Useful for: End-users

RAPPS is a lightweight GUI utility which downloads and installs various popular apps and redistributable packages in Windows and ReactOS. It can be significantly improved to become a really useful tool for not only for ReactOS but for Windows users also who want to manage their installed applications like Steam manages games installation/updating.

A list of features to be implemented:

  • Adding command line parameters support to RAPPS. For example: "rapps install chrome" (just like your favourite Linux distro package manager) or "rapps remove msvc2010_redist"
  • Separate download and install, so that a user could choose just to download the apps into a local cache and later install some or all of them (just like Steam does Download, then it asks to Install, or NVidia driver updaters for example)
  • Automatically "install" simple apps by unpacking the archive they come in and execute a script inside it (if any) which creates shortcuts on the desktop
Skills needed
  • WinAPI
  • C language
Difficulty

Medium

Extras

A chance to work on an app potentially used by many people throughout the world

Networking

SSH Service

Implement a native Windows service for accepting SSH connections and authenticating with Windows accounts to allow the user to interact with Windows through the command prompt should they not need access to the GUI shell. Once authenticated, any commands passed through SSH are executed using the user's credentials to prevent abuse of the service's privileges. And as the user is not technically logged in, there are no restrictions with respect to how many connections are permitted except as system resources allow.

Benefits
Besides cygwin, few options are available for users who wish to remote into a Windows machine for simple command line access. Cygwin is also horrendously intrusive on Windows systems. This implementation would provide a free SSH server implementation for Windows that was designed to integrate cleanly and present users with access to the Windows command shell, not try and lie to the user and pretend they are in a Unix environment. As a remote administration tool, this opens Windows systems to considerably more flexibility for connecting to and managing them. Administrators on Linux systems will also not need to relax security settings on Windows in order to use Linux RDP clients.
Skills Needed
  • Network development experience.
  • Knowledge/familiarity with SSH protocol.


Terminal Services

Implement support for terminal services, allowing inbound remote desktop connections to ReactOS. This encompasses implementation of input and video drivers to handle output over the network.

The terminal services system provides functionality for securely connecting remote clients and servers, for channeling communication between components of remote clients and servers, and for managing servers. It implements the Remote Desktop Protocol (RDP) which is a multi- channel protocol that allows users of a remote client to connect to a server over a network.

Benefits
Terminal services support would allow ReactOS to service as a terminal server/thin client server. Organizations that wish to provide a shared workstation with Windows would have a free alternative that does not have complex licensing terms covering multi-session usage. The display driver for terminal services can also be used to support fast user-switching and even possibly multi-monitor support.
References
Skills Needed
  • Network development experience.
  • Driver development experience.
  • Knowledge/familiarity with RDP protocol.