Maybe you have already read about the new features and improvements coming with Veyon 4.1 in previous articles. You might have noticed that most of the described changes “only” affect internal implementation details, administrative tasks or technical details regarding the operating system integration. While this is basically true we also have goodies for the end user (i.e. teachers). We’d like to present the most notable one in this article.
If you use Veyon without LDAP/AD integration you always have to configure rooms and computers (in general also referred as network objects) manually. In Veyon 4.0 rooms and computers could only be added one by one using the graphical interface provided by Veyon Configurator. Starting with Veyon 4.1 there are additional possibilities which allow scripted and automated management of network objects.
As you might have already read Veyon 4.1 will come with full systemd support. This means on Linux the Veyon Service can now be managed the same way as it has been possible on Windows for many years. Unlike typical Linux daemons/services such as SSH, HTTP or database servers the Veyon Service requires full access to graphical user sessions. Moreover it’s recommended to run the process as a different user (usually root) in order to prevent users from killing the process to avoid control by the instructor. These requirements made things a bit complicated and required some fundamental changes in the implementation.
A recent change in our source code repository looks small and trivial but marks the beginning of a new era for Veyon. We no longer have any platform-specific code in neither the Veyon Core library nor any of the application components. All existing platform-specific code has been refactored into the respective platform plugins for Windows and Linux. This basically means we can add support for more platforms and operating systems such as macOS, Android etc. in the future by only developing an appropriate platform plugin (and preferably also a VNC server integration plugin).
In this blog post I want to introduce the authkeys plugin which will be part of Veyon 4.1. This plugin implements new mechanisms for managing authentication keys and replaces the assistant found in Veyon 4.0 and previous products. The authkeys plugin provides both a graphical configuration page for the Veyon Configurator as well as a command line interface implementation for
veyon-ctl. Both interfaces aim for full feature parity which means you can perform the same tasks via Veyon Configurator as well as the command line.