Thursday, August 31, 2006

MobileServer preview

If you have been reading these posts lately you know that I am working on getting a peer to peer scenario to work with my remote data access tools. This will allow two PDAs to synchronize data just by getting close to one another within the 32 feet required by Bluetooth.

Right now this is working over Wi-Fi and Bluetooth serial COM ports (no support for sockets in the Widcomm stack, alas).

The thing that has been missing from the picture is the server code. I started by providing a standalone native application to serve a TCP / IP sockets connection. Later I split the server feature and put it in a separate DLL. The latest change was to move all that code to the device server DLL (RemSqlCe.dll) and to expose an API for the sockets server. After adding the serial port server I started writing a very simple managed code class library for users to integrate in their own applications.

This class library allows the consuming application to create a server, configure, start, stop, query its status and dispose of it. The above picture shows an instance of the sample MobileServer application running two servers on an HP iPAQ 2210 serving two different desktop PCs, one via Wi-Fi and the other via a Bluetooth COM port.

Now I have to add Bluetooth server abilities to this little beast and this means supporting both the Microsoft stack and the popular Widcomm stack (that's why I'm using the 2210). The server will be able to expose its services (either COM or sockets) via enumeration in order to make ad-hoc device pairing easier.

I expect to release the device client very soon with some P2P samples ready to run.

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