A Few Tips for Using Saros for Remote Pairing
Saros (pronounced “zar-ose”, btw) is a set of extensions to Eclipse to support real-time collaboration. It is a research prototype at the moment, and as such has some rough edges. In 15 or 20 years, most programs will be written through real-time collaboration, so for me it’s worth a bit of pain today to experience the future.
This post describes what I learned from the Saros team about what is required to get started successfully. Unfortunately all the lessons are in the form of arcane magic (that is, I can’t explain to you why they work), but fortunately they do work.
Initially David Saff and I tried to use gmail.com as our Jabber server. For mysterious reasons, that doesn’t work. Sign up for an account at Jabber.org instead.
When one person shares a project, the other people in the session theoretically don’t need to have the project. However, Saros is slow at transferring whole projects. Instead, make sure that you have both checked out and imported the same version of the project before you start. Then, when you accept the invitation to share, make sure you select “Share existing project” instead of “Create new project”.
HTTP Proxy Magic
If you are using Mac OS X, you need to trick Eclipse into not using HTTP proxies. Select Eclipse>>Preferences>>Network Connections. Change from “Active Provider>>Direct” to one of the other settings. Press “Apply”. Select “Active Provider>>Direct”. Press “OK”.
You only need to do this once per Eclipse installation. Don’t you just love computers?
…to Lutz Prechelt, Karl Beecher, and Björn Kahlert for their help.