MeowBit – Now with Update Alerts Over the Blockchain – a new feature for software

As of the latest version of MeowBit (v 0.4.5186.41847, get the latest version HERE), version update notifications are delivered over the blockchain.

(Initial suggestion for this function was posted by Derrick on Namecoin Wiki, here.)

Delivering update notifications over the blockchain is more secure than conventional methods, and as far as we know, it is a first. (Gavin Andresen of the Bitcoin Foundation, Satoshi Nakamoto and theymos each have an alert key to deliver emergency notifications over the blockchain, but it’s only for emergencies and rarely, if ever, used.)

The next version will have an alert balloon, and an MD5 hash. This version, as a proof of concept, has red light/green light indicators. To access these, click the kitty cat icon on the desktop to open the MeowBit Monitor, and click on Settings in the lower left corner of the Monitor window.

clickKittyAndSettings

If you don’t have the Namecoin wallet open or updated (or if you’re not online), you’ll get “Unknown” under “Newest Version”:

latest version unknown

If your wallet is up to date, but your version of MeowBit is not, you’ll get one or two red lights under “Newest Version”:

green red

If your wallet is up to date, and your version of MeowBit the latest, you’ll get two green lights under “Newest Version”:

green green

You may have to close and open the window in this version if an update happens while you have the window open.

Derrick explains:

The p/ spec is here: https://wiki.namecoin.info/index.php?title=Product

There’re some other too on this page: https://wiki.namecoin.info/index.php?title=Category:NEP
The p/ spec probably needs a little work to be more generic, but I whipped it together kind of quickly for publishing version information of MeowBit. In MeowBit on the Version tab of the settings window, it lets you know what the latest version is via the blockchain, and it your version is older it presents a download link. Future work includes automatic downloads of new versions from publishes sources, and verifying the MD5 hash of the files.

=-=-=-=-=-

Source code on GitHub, here.

Other changes in latest version of MeowBit, and version history:

## Version History:
* v0.4.5186.41847 : March 14, 2014
* Settings window with logging (dis/en)ablement, available from tool tray context menu
* Open Log Folder, Latest Log File, or Copy Log contents buttons
* Sounds to verify log copy
* Bug Fix: Resolution fail on unexpected domain info format.
* Internal structural improvements of domain resolution
* Fixed repeating Logging dis/enabled messages
* Added README.md (this file)
* Typo in log output “Determining”… Thanks MWD.
* Query product info from blockchain using query api.
* Setting page displays current version, and latest version from blockchain
* Version info on Settings page offers link to download page if out of date.
* Extended default timeout for Namecoin client API calls to 5 seconds
* System status interval extended to 6 seconds (RpcConnectorTimeout * 1.2)

* v0.3.5179.694 : March 7, 2014
* Better windows management via tray icon
* Add help sub menu with website links
* Fix crashed caused by duplicate config keys
* Unmapped sub-domains default to their parent.

* v0.2.0.0 : March 4, 2014
* Initial Release

–Michael W. Dean and Derrick Slopey, THE BEASTLICK INTERNET POLICY COMMISSION outreach team.

 

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