[NTLK] A long journey to the land of NPDS-Watcher!

Sylvain Pilet pilets at mac.com
Wed Jun 1 10:52:29 EDT 2016

Hi everybody,

I between 6 or 9 Newton (depending on the day) which operate with NPDS (2 or 3 on Internet, the rest on Intranet)
This allows me to do my numerous tests.

One of the most annoying problems NPDS is the lack of stability.
Many Newton-Fan have given up NPDS because of it.

In principle NPDS-Watcher module is here to solve this problem. 
Following my many tests (6 months), I got hold of a problem in Watcher.
NPDS-Watcher works well when only restart NPDS (nHTTPd). 
By cons if he fails to restart NPDS then NPDS-Watcher Reboot the Newton, This is where there is a problem!

He reboot although Newton.
And if NPDS (nHTTPd) was online before the crash, then Watcher relaunch NPDS after Newton Reboot. Except it is at this point that there is a problem…

Let me explain :
I tested twenty LAN Cards (wired & wireless) They all have the same problem. Because the problem is not the cards!
I detail;
- Upon reboot, the Newton load all active packages. It takes a few seconds (2-4).
- At the same time  (I assume) there is a hardware verification. This send a power signal to all PCMCIA cards, including network adapters. 
On all LAN-cards that I tested, it happens between 7 to 9 seconds before the card is really available.
- Or Watcher is already loaded and re-launched NPDS before this time. The problem had to be already known, since the source code of Watcher, there is a delay of 5 seconds, but this is not enough.
I change this value to 10 seconds, and the result:
Verily it works much better!

Here are the results of my tests:
7 active Newton, mean that I get on together:
<UPTIME> is about 18 days non stop!
With a record of 46 days for one of them!
Yet UPTIME is only the time since Newton Reboot!
In addition, when NPDS is blocked, Watcher reboot the Newton and relaunch NPDS correctly now! :-)
I have some Newton-NPDS online without any human action for over two months!

So yes, there are still other problems in NPDS, sometimes NPDS FRIZZ Newton, and there only a manual reset can restart Newton.
In addition NPDS FRIZZ (which are still rare) there are also problems in the Tracker Client module… …But that's another story…

Here eg Newton (for test, do not pay attention to content) that works with this version of Watcher…
…the Uptime to date is over 15 days!

(Yes I know my English is not good, but I try to make an effort!)

Sylvain Pilet

- A P P L E  N E W T O N  N P D S -
- Apple Newton NPDS Server: http://message-pad.no-ip.org
- Apple Newton NPDS Tracker: http://message-pad.no-ip.org:3680

- A P P L E  N E W T O N  &  M O R E -
- http://message-pad.net

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