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Author Topic: need an online server.... for running a program
californiarockr
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Icon 1 posted March 19, 2005 10:07      Profile for californiarockr     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
We just finished networking in Java class, and now I want to create an IRC bot. I dont however, want to run my computer as a server for it. Are there any hosts that will let me run a simple, interfaceless java program 24/7 from their server? Id basically just be sending, recieving, and occasionally logging text. I dont need much space or bandwidth. Thanks.

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magefile
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Icon 1 posted March 19, 2005 12:21      Profile for magefile     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
I run such a bot from a home computer. It really doesn't take all that much bandwidth, although if you don't have an always-on connection, or don't leave your computer on, that's understandable.

My advice would be to find a local LUG or maybe school computer club and ask them for some space. Offering to let them fiddle with the source to make their own copy of the bot couldn't hurt, either.

#disclaimer.h
Worst-case scenario, you could always investigate one of those zombie nets that /. always has articles about ;-)

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quantumfluff
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Icon 1 posted March 20, 2005 07:18      Profile for quantumfluff     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
You should be able to do this from almost any web hosting service. 1+1 has some very low rates. As long as you're not listening on a port < 1024 you won't need root, so it should be easy.

Why can't you run it from home? If you have an old junkyard PC around you can put it on that, then have your firewall direct the needed port to it.

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drunkennewfiemidget
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Icon 1 posted March 21, 2005 06:27      Profile for drunkennewfiemidget     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
I would give you some space on one of my linux boxen, but none of them run java -- and none of them ever will. [Big Grin]
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magefile
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Icon 1 posted March 21, 2005 08:42      Profile for magefile     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
DNM: what've you got against java? I can see some people having a dislike for Sun's closed-source java, but there's always gcj!

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Let them be stupid - the market will sort it out.

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drunkennewfiemidget
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Icon 1 posted March 21, 2005 09:47      Profile for drunkennewfiemidget     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by magefile:
DNM: what've you got against java? I can see some people having a dislike for Sun's closed-source java, but there's always gcj!

java is java is java. crap.
[Big Grin]

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quantumfluff
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Icon 1 posted March 21, 2005 12:21      Profile for quantumfluff     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
Can you explain why it's crap? It's not the best of all possible languages, but nothing is. It's certainly a better general purpose language than C or C++.
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drunkennewfiemidget
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Icon 1 posted March 21, 2005 12:58      Profile for drunkennewfiemidget     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
Other than its multi-platformness, I can't understand why you'd use it. And even good ansi C code can compile on most platforms.

Java is slow, bloated, and I've never seen a job that wouldn't be better suited by another language.

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n4dmx
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Icon 1 posted March 21, 2005 13:45      Profile for n4dmx     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by drunkennewfiemidget:
Other than its multi-platformness, I can't understand why you'd use it. And even good ansi C code can compile on most platforms.

Java is slow, bloated, and I've never seen a job that wouldn't be better suited by another language.

Another programming language holy war... [shake head]

Well, I am not a very good programmer, I just tinker around with it in my spare time. I did like java when I first played around with it a few years ago, but it was indeed the sluggishness that turned me away. I have recently started to attempt a go at perl, and I like it so far. I also like c# for simple windows gui apps (/me scurries into flame retardant bunker), and on linux I enjoy python, although I haven't fooled with it in quite some time. I do not like visual basic or RPG, although the latter does a great job for what it is designed to do. But reports are not very interesting projects IMHO. [Smile]

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Groggle
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Icon 1 posted March 21, 2005 17:10      Profile for Groggle     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
Actually, there's a few things to consider with platforms like Java and Microsoft's C#:

1. Between hardware improvements and significant improvement in the runtime environments (Java VM and Microsoft's CLR), both produce pretty respectable performance. (Yes, C can be a lot faster, but compile speed isn't the only issue here)

2. Richness of the application environment. Both Java J2EE and Microsoft's .Net platforms are very rich for application developers. In both cases, huge amounts of money have been spent making class libraries that allow the developer to concentrate on the problem space, not the bits and bolts. (A good comparison is database connectivity - JDBC or ADO.net are much less application code to work with than the comparable APIs in C/C++ land - say the C++ STL or Microsoft's less than desirable MFC environment)

3. Hardware independance is a huge issue. With server gear moving at warp 10 on a half-dozen different fronts, having to perpetually recompile and deploy apps is a very expensive notion, and one that IT shops are becoming more and more averse to. Case in point - 32 Bit Pentium, 32/64 bit AMD, and Itanium chips are all in the server world (not to mention Apple and IBM peddling 32 and 64 bit versions of the PowerPC chip) - if I don't have to recompile an app, I save on deployment of the application or the server upgrade.

4. $COST. I've written code professionally for the last fifteen years. Believe me, it's a heck of a lot cheaper to build in environments like Java J2EE than pure C/C++ on UNIX. (C/C++ are great for those occasions where you need direct hardware interface access, but for 90% of all applications I've encountered, I'll pay the performance price and save the $ on development.

Developers are expensive - very expensive. Anything that reduces the number of hours of developer time I have to budget for is an improvement.

Anyhow - the arguments in favour of Java or C# have little to do with the technical merits of either compared to C/C++ compilers, and everything to do with moving above the O/S interface code, and focus on application domains, and if it is a lower cost solution, all the better.

It's got a lot to do with a business decision that is deeply cost focused.

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csk

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Icon 1 posted March 21, 2005 18:49      Profile for csk     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
Yeah, I'm pretty much agreeing with what Groggle said. Java's main strengths are platfrom independence including the GUI side, a lot of functionality either built in to the language or in libraries, and taking the memory allocation/deallocation stuff out of the programmer's hands.

On the weakness side, it's slow and resource intensive (particularly memory wise). Also, it's not as open as other languages(well, the source code for the SDK isn't generally available, for example).

Comparatively, it's not so bad. I tend to choose Python for similar jobs myself, since it occupies a similar space in the language scheme of things. It's also more likely to be part of a standard Unix-like distribution than Java. Of course, if blinding speed were a requirement, I'd choose a different language yet again. But for most applications, fast enough is good enough.

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magefile
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Icon 1 posted March 21, 2005 19:08      Profile for magefile     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
I also like python, though I'm currently working on a java project to increase my skills (they're minimal, so as of now I haven't done much - I'll probably be working mostly on help messages and the like). It uses a modified version of the jEdit framework as a host VM for plugins; the idea is that you can install programs written for this framework without needing administrator access. Actually, that's just a side effect; it's more for grid computing than anything else.

It is essentially a frontend to the Globus Toolkit, in case anyone cares.

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csk

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Icon 1 posted March 21, 2005 19:13      Profile for csk     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
Oh, and that's the other strength of Java. It seems to be popular with employers at the moment, so it's good to learn if you're job seeking. Well, at least that's the impression I get.

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Rhonwyyn

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Icon 1 posted March 21, 2005 19:24      Profile for Rhonwyyn   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
My favorite Java page shows a bunch of the cool things you can do with Java. Definitely one to bookmark. [Smile]

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californiarockr
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Icon 1 posted March 21, 2005 21:45      Profile for californiarockr     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
Disclaimer: None of this is personal. not basing people, bashing opinions.


I absolutely hate it beyond reason when people say they dont like java because its "slow". Java is not slow. It is not a speedy language, but it runs at a reasonable rate, and unless youre sorting bank accounts or aiming nuclear missles, you usually do not need the speed of C. Considering the fact that its so safe (no one has to worry about a Java program destroying a computer), runs on anything from a bank card to the servers at NASA, people should be more open to it. Not everything is about speed.

EDIT:

Before anyone asks if I know what I am talking about, I also use PHP, Python, C++, and objective-c., and am fairly experienced. Dont flame me please. To each his own I guess

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csk

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Icon 1 posted March 21, 2005 21:48      Profile for csk     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
Well, when I said slow, I meant slow compared to C/C++/assembler, that was probably less precise than it could have been. But yes, there are very few apps that couldn't perform adequately(if implemented properly) in a higher level language than C/C++/assembler.

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californiarockr
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Icon 1 posted March 21, 2005 22:09      Profile for californiarockr     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by drunkennewfiemidget:
Other than its multi-platformness, I can't understand why you'd use it. And even good ansi C code can compile on most platforms.

Java is slow, bloated, and I've never seen a job that wouldn't be better suited by another language.

  • online applets. (ok I am cheating here)
  • online servelets.
  • a local network server/client program for multi platform (and even single platform) networks. ever try doing sockets in C? ever try it in java?
  • a learning language. look at the code from someone who started with java vs. someone who started with C
  • graphical representation of math concepts
  • simple graphical/artistic applications
  • any piece of serious server/enterprise software that you want to live through various system changes
  • any enterprise software you want to be secure without needing excessive coding to prevent unwanted use of functions/altering of data

i can think of more, but I have my C++ homework to do [crazy]

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GameMaster
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Icon 1 posted March 21, 2005 23:00      Profile for GameMaster   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
C ad C++ allow a lot of things that are HUGE security risks, and when run on an OS that isn't as secure allows all sorts of problems to occur. Anything that Segfaults in a unix environment could be an exploit in other OSes (Read: Stack over flow, casting an int as pointer). Granted that the Garbage collection scheme is messy, but not as messy as amature C/C++ programmers new-ing and alloc()ing all over the place w/o delete or free().

Each language has it's place. Java runs about the speed of a native application on my machine (although, the initial load time is longer and it's footprint is larger). Java, however, has a larger api for networking that is a lot easier to use. Also the pattern used in the I/O classes which allow you to very easily create a compressed and encrypted object reader and writer for writing to files or over the internet is a lot simpler than any standard I/O functions in C/C++. Templates in C++ are messy, and I'm sad to see them in Java 1.5.0 Beta. C++ also allows for operator overloading which is prime for abuse.

On the other hand, Java is interpreted at a higher level, so it does add extra over head. The garbage collection is messy, but getting better. It's hard to prove uniqueness of an object (a subject that a professor of mine has a grant for his research for (from NASA) and is working on tools for verifying uniqueness of objects), that is it's hard to tell if the object that was just passed to this function is a NEW instance that only this function is working on, and not one that is/has been changed elsewhere. Because "everything is a pointer" or "there are no pointers", there is also extra overhead for all the pointers for callbacks and lists of "who is pointing at me".

All in all, it's a language that I love... But, it also has pitfalls of it's own. This is a case for the right tool for the right project. If I'm writing an AI program I'll use Lisp (ick) or Prolog (ick); if I'm writing an app that a lot of scientists are going to use, I'll use fortran; if I'm writing a system utility or other program for local use on Unix/Linux box, I'll use asm, C or C++; if I'm writing a cross platform app that interacts with the web, I'll use JAVA; if I'm writing for windows, I'll shoot myself (or *GASP* *SHUDDER* *CRY* use VB or VC++).

edit(add):
Also, if I'm coding for the cluster, it'll be a shell script or fortran. Not so much because they are the best tools for the job, but because that is what the users of the clusters know -- so if something needs to be changed after I leave...

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drunkennewfiemidget
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Icon 1 posted March 22, 2005 07:08      Profile for drunkennewfiemidget     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
Somehow I knew I'd start a flamewar. *cough*

Most of the situations people have mentioned, however, can still be performed by other languages.

Server applets? Perl.
Socket-based software? Perl with SOAP. [Smile]

... we could all argue all of this until we're blue in the face. The point still remains that my servers don't and won't run java, as I have absolutely no use for it.

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californiarockr
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Icon 1 posted March 22, 2005 10:56      Profile for californiarockr     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
Yeah, sorry, it was late and I was frustraded with homework, I got a little hotheaded. I get so defensive about Java because when people bash it, it reminds me of M$ and their rediculous games about supporting it.
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GameMaster
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Icon 1 posted March 22, 2005 12:03      Profile for GameMaster   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by drunkennewfiemidget:
Somehow I knew I'd start a flamewar. *cough*

Most of the situations people have mentioned, however, can still be performed by other languages.

Server applets? Perl.
Socket-based software? Perl with SOAP. [Smile]

... we could all argue all of this until we're blue in the face. The point still remains that my servers don't and won't run java, as I have absolutely no use for it.

It can be done yes... But you don't use a pair of siscors to drive a nail because you CAN... You use a hammer because it's the best tool for the job.

Perl is great for server side network scripts. Not applets. When you want to do a load of work client side, which doesn't do as many round trip form submissions... costing bandwidth to both user and server. For form submission Perl is great, not as good as PHP, but that's another can of worms.

Socket-based programing with SOAP is SLOW, no matter what language you use. I'd rather open a socket than need to pack everything into XML schema send it over to the server, parse the XML back into primatives, do the work, pack the result in XML, send it back, client decodes the XML... ect.... It'd be easier and a lot simpler to just pass the original types of data.

We could argue this till we're blue in the face, or we could just realize there is time for every language, dispite how much we may dislike it.

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spungo
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Icon 1 posted March 22, 2005 14:02      Profile for spungo     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
My wee problem with Java: I'm afraid it is slow on slow machines. You cannot dispute that. Also - it is a hungry beast, and needs a threshold of resources on the target machine just to get off the ground. You do not get anything like this problem with a similar module coded C/C++. ...and if you are trying to compile it on a slow machine - forget it! The reason why I'm focusing on crap equipment is that a lot of my clients in the past were running crap machines, and I spent a great deal of time trying to persuade them that our software does run on their box - you just have to go for a cup of coffee while it starts up.

Try to run your software on a P166 before you tell me I'm wrong.

...but other than that, it's great. [Smile]

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dragonman97

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Icon 1 posted March 22, 2005 21:26      Profile for dragonman97   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by drunkennewfiemidget:
Somehow I knew I'd start a flamewar. *cough*

Most of the situations people have mentioned, however, can still be performed by other languages.

Server applets? Perl.
Socket-based software? Perl with SOAP. [Smile]

... we could all argue all of this until we're blue in the face. The point still remains that my servers don't and won't run java, as I have absolutely no use for it.

Hear hear!!

Yes, I am a Perl junkie - but seriously, it's a great language that *really performs* when it comes to text processing. If you want nice applets, "AJAX"* seems to be the hot thing today, and could be done very nicely with a Perl backend. That's probably going to make it's way into some pet project down the road -- or possible even a production one. [Smile]

I know Java relatively well, and I can (and _WILL_) say that it is *SLOW.* Java is a bloated memory hog, with a painfully slow compiler at times. This has become a little less true of late for some things, but I've just sat and twiddled my thumbs while waiting for simple stuff to compile in Java. Right now I'm using a 'web based admin tool' to configure [something /], and oh how I wish it either used plain boring CGI, or better yet, AJAX. The Java applets it uses are a royal PITA to get working, and require added permissions on the client machine (eliminating the 'security advantage') - and the networking involved is revolting, requiring very special tricks, such as holding a rabbit's foot from the edge of your pinky, extended at 15 degress from a parallel state, whilst tapping the Cat-5 at a rate of 12.5 beats per second with the other hand's index finger, and one foot squarely behind the other. Needless to say, I grew tired of this quickly, and developed my own solution, which the company is talking about documenting and publishing. [Razz]

Oh, and FWIW, I have written my own Exception class, just for the fun of it, so I really have fiddled with the language (even taught it to some people) - I try not to blast things that I don't know about. [Big Grin] I think I've only touched Java once this year, and am much happier about that -- on further reflection, I realize that I've been doing Java stuff in one form or another for nearly 5 years...*shrug*. Bleh.

$ perl -e "G'night, world\n"

*Google: ajax javascript xml

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There are three things you can be sure of in life: Death, taxes, and reading about fake illnesses online...

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drunkennewfiemidget
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Icon 1 posted March 23, 2005 05:03      Profile for drunkennewfiemidget     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by dragonman97:
Hear hear!!

I know Java relatively well, and I can (and _WILL_) say that it is *SLOW.* Java is a bloated memory hog, with a painfully slow compiler at times. This has become a little less true of late for some things, but I've just sat and twiddled my thumbs while waiting for simple stuff to compile in Java. Right now I'm using a 'web based admin tool' to configure [something /], and oh how I wish it either used plain boring CGI, or better yet, AJAX. The Java applets it uses are a royal PITA to get working, and require added permissions on the client machine (eliminating the 'security advantage') - and the networking involved is revolting, requiring very special tricks, such as holding a rabbit's foot from the edge of your pinky, extended at 15 degress from a parallel state, whilst tapping the Cat-5 at a rate of 12.5 beats per second with the other hand's index finger, and one foot squarely behind the other. Needless to say, I grew tired of this quickly, and developed my own solution, which the company is talking about documenting and publishing. [Razz]

You forgot hopping on one foot while chanting, "ooga booga".
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csk

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Icon 1 posted March 23, 2005 21:30      Profile for csk     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
On a related note, there was an interesting article I found from slashdot on the state of scripting languages at present. The article can be found here

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