CloudforkSSO on Pharo with stunnel

Posted February 23, 2011 by Jan van de Sandt
Categories: Cloudfork

Tags: , , , ,

The latest version of CloudforkSSO (version 1.1.0) on Pharo uses the Zinc-HTTP library. This library contains a good http client. Actually it contains multiple http clients, depending on your requirements you can pick one of them.

One feature Zinc-HTTP doesn’t support (yet?) is secure http. Most of the OAuth and OpenID providers require https connections so this is a problem. There is a good workaround for this: you can use stunnel to handle the https protocol.

I used the following stunnel.conf on OS X:

; protocol version (all, SSLv2, SSLv3, TLSv1)
sslVersion = SSLv3

; security enhancements for UNIX systems
; for chroot a copy of some devices and files is needed within the jail
chroot = /opt/local/var/lib/stunnel/
setuid = nobody
setgid = nogroup
; PID is created inside the chroot jail
pid = /

; performance tunings
socket = l:TCP_NODELAY=1
socket = r:TCP_NODELAY=1
;compression = zlib

CAfile = /opt/local/etc/stunnel/cacert.pem

; SSL client mode
client = yes

accept =
connect =

accept =
connect =

accept =
connect =

The cacert.pem file is required to validate the server certificates. I downloaded a version from

Now the Smalltalk side of things:

Load the latest CloudforkSSO version:

Gofer new
	squeaksource: 'Cloudfork'; 
	package: 'ConfigurationOfCloudforkSSO';
(Smalltalk at: #ConfigurationOfCloudforkSSO) project latestVersion load: 'Tests'

Instruct CloudforkSSO to use the tunnels for the secure hosts:

	self default httpClient: ((CFHttpClientTunnelAccess new)
		client: CFHttpClientZincAccess new ;
		tunnel: '' through: 'localhost:20011' ;
		tunnel: '' through: 'localhost:20012' ;
		tunnel: '' through: 'localhost:20013' ;
		tunnel: '' through: 'localhost:20014' ;
		tunnel: '' through: 'localhost:20015' ;
		yourself )

Also see the example CFServicePharoUtils class>>setupHttpsTunnels. You can test the connection:

CFPlatformServiceUtils default httpClient httpGet: ''

The demo application at is also using stunnel.

Note that there are alternatives for stunnel. One of them is described here.

CloudforkSSO – OpenID and OAuth support for Smalltalk

Posted February 15, 2011 by Jan van de Sandt
Categories: Cloudfork

Tags: , ,

With the CloudforkSSO library you can let the users of your Seaside web application login using their Google or Yahoo accounts. This works using the OpenID2 protocol. CloudforkSSO also contains OAuth support. With this protocol you can ask users for permission to access their data on other websites.

Some providers that you can integrate with:

Google – Google supports OpenID2 and OAuth1. You can use them separately or together. With OpenID2 users can identify themselves using their Google accounts. It is also possible to get some information about the user. For example the user’s name and email address.

Google’s OAuth1 support is really powerful. With it you can access and modify (if the user agrees!) a users calendar, contact, documents and a lot more.

Twitter – Twitter supports OAuth1. You can ask a user for read-only or full permission.

Facebook – Facebook supports OAuth2. You can access the social graph of a user.

A demo of this library runs at

OpenID2 and OAuth1 are pretty complex protocols. CloudforkSSO implements part of the protocol, enough to support the major providers like Google, Yahoo and Twitter. OAuth2 is a simple protocol. If OAuth2 is all you need CloudforkSSO is probably overkill. A HTTP Client with ssl support is enough.

I developed CloudforkSSO in Pharo Smalltalk. Most providers require secure communication via https. As far as I know, the only HTTP Client for Squeak and Pharo that supports https is WebClient with SqueakSSL. This works fine on Windows but on Ubuntu Linux the SqueakSSL plugin doesn’t work with some providers, for example Twitter and Yahoo. Hopefully this will be fixed soon.

There is also a VA Smalltalk port on which does work on Windows and Linux.

The package Cloudfork-SSO-Seaside contains a demo component that shows how you can use the functionality. Note that for OAuth you need an API key and secret for the provider you want to use. For OpenID it is important to set the correct realm. This is the host and port where your app is running. You can set these configuration properties using the Seaside configuration app:

EC2 AMI with Smalltalk and Seaside: Update 3

Posted October 10, 2010 by Jan van de Sandt
Categories: Cloudfork

Tags: , , ,

Today I published a new version of the Amazon EC2 image with Smalltalk and Seaside. The third version contains the following software:

  • Ubuntu Server 32bit 10.04 LTS (release 2010-09-23)
  • Apache HTTP Server 2.2
  • SqueakVM Unix VM
  • PharoCore 1.1.1
  • Seaside 3.0

The AMI identification: ami-c2fe0aab

The update to the Ubuntu server makes it easier to run the AMI as a Micro (t1.micro) instance type. This is currently the smallest and cheapest EC2 image type. The image type is very well suited for running Seaside web applications. When your application becomes more popular you can scale by using a bigger instance type or by running multiple instances.

Creating a Seaside runtime image with Pharo

Posted September 8, 2010 by Jan van de Sandt
Categories: Uncategorized

Tags: ,

For the ec2 machine image with Seaside I prepared an image with only the runtime packages of Seaside. The image was based on PharoCore 1.1. This is the core Pharo image without development tools and extra libraries. The Seaside development tools can be very convenient during development but in a production environment they can be a serious security risk. You can disable them but the easiest and safest option is to not load these packages into your runtime image.

This is the recipe I used to setup the image:

1. Download the latest (stable) PharoCore

2. Load the Seaside 3.0 metacello configuration:

Gofer new
	squeaksource: 'MetacelloRepository';
	package: 'ConfigurationOfSeaside30';

3. Load the Seaside runtime packages we need

((Smalltalk at: #ConfigurationOfSeaside30 ) project latestVersion) 
	load: #( 'Base' 'Seaside-Adaptors-Comanche' 'JQuery-UI' 'Seaside-Examples').

4. Start the Komanche http server on port 8080

(WAComancheAdaptor port: 8080) start

5. Load the VNC Server (for remote image “management”)

Gofer new
	renggli: 'unsorted';
	package: 'RFB';

And finally I loaded my Seaside app and configured this app as the default app in Seaside.

"Load small demo Seaside app"
Gofer new
	squeaksource: 'Cloudfork';
	package: 'Cloudfork-EC2Demo';
"Make ec2demo the default Seaside app"
WAAdmin defaultDispatcher defaultName: 'ec2demo'.

This “lean-and-mean” Smalltalk image worked fine for me. I also exported the FileLibrary to the Linux file system so the static resources can be served by Apache directly. This is documented in the Deployment chapter of the Seaside book.

Update: Tip from Mariano Martinez Peck
You may want to evaluate a “ScriptLoader new cleanUpForProduction” after downloading PharoCore.
This will clean a lot of stuff and remove a lot of code (like tests) that may not be needed in production environments.

A new public EC2 AMI with Smalltalk and Seaside

Posted August 29, 2010 by Jan van de Sandt
Categories: Cloudfork

Tags: , , ,

This weekend I created a public Amazon Machine Image (AMI) setup as a Smalltalk web server with a Linux SqueakVM, a Pharo 1.1 Smalltalk image and the Apache2 web server. Anyone can use this AMI as a robust and scalable runtime platform for their Seaside applications.

In this article I will try to explain how you can you can use and customize this image. First their are some prerequisites:

Using EC2 is not free, you have to pay for each hour the server runs and you have to pay for storage and bandwidth. Seaside runs fine on the smallest 32bit AMI that costs $0,085 cents per hour. Bandwidth is $0,15 per GB (the first GB is free). You can get a discount on the costs per hour if you reserve you AMI’s beforehand.

The AMI is based on a 32bit Ubuntu 10.04 server AMI. The Ubuntu server is a very minimal install, I have added Apache2 and the SqueakVM. I have also setup a Pharo image with the Seaside runtime packages and Apache2 is configured in such a way that all requests are forwarded to Seaside.

How can you start using this AMI?

Start an EC2 instance using the public AMI ami-0800ea61 (ubuntu-10.04-i386-smalltalk-server-v01). The AMI is available in the US East region. This is the cheapest region :-) When you start the image you have to select a security group. This defines the firewall rules for the AMI. You can select the default group or some other group that allows TCP connections for the ports 22 and 80.

When the image is started it should have a generated a public DNS name. When you enter this name in the address bar of your browser, you should see something similar to If the web page is shown it means that everything is running OK.

You can connect to the running AMI instance using ssh. You should login with the userid ubuntu. No password is required because a private key is used for authentication. The Pharo image that runs on the AMI includes RFB, a VNC server implementation. With a VNC client we can remotely control the Smalltalk image. The best way to do this is to tunnel the VNC connection (port 5900) through ssh:

ssh -i id_rsa-gsg-keypair -L 5900:localhost:5900

Now you can connect to the image using a VNC client use display number 0 and the password is seaside. Note that you have to keep port 5900 closed for direct access otherwise this would be very unsecure.

Through the VNC client you have access to the Smalltalk image. You should see a workspace. I used the code in this workspace to build the image from a standard PharoCore 1.1 image. Note that I only loaded the runtime parts of Seaside and some small examples. This image is used for hosting an application and not for development so it is probably safer and more efficient to leave out the development packages.

If the image suits your needs you can just load your packages through Monticello. There is no config web application to configure your Seaside components. You can do this via the workspace or better, make a class side initialize method that does this automatically when the package is loaded. I used the the Apache2 configuration described in the Seaside book (the non-clustered setup for now). You can read the Deployment chapter for more details. You should have you app running within a few minutes.

If the Smalltalk image does not suit your needs you can replace it with another Squeak or Pharo image. The image is stored in the directory /srv/seaside If your new image has a different name you need to update the run script in the same directory.

Of course you can also install more Ubuntu packages. You could install a local database system like MySQL or PostgreSQL. But if you are really into cloud computing you probably don’t want to maintain a database yourself. Instead you can use RDS, an AWS managed MySQL service or SimpleDB. SimpleDB is a key-value store with a simple API and great scalability. You can use the Cloudfork ActiveItem Smalltalk library to persist your Smalltalk objects to SimpleDB.

To setup a nice domain name for your app (like you should reserve a static IP using the AWS Console. You can then go to your domain name registrar and update the name servers to point to this IP number.

Ok, this is about it. If you have questions or ideas on how to improve the Smalltalk AMI please let me now. I think the current AMI can be used as a production environment for Seaside apps.

Amazon AWS Region Endpoints in Europe

Posted June 1, 2010 by Ernest Micklei
Categories: Cloudfork

Tags: , , ,

To use the Cloudfork classes for services located in Europe (Ireland), you need to change the serviceUrl property such as:

sdb := CFSimpleDB new.
sdb serviceUrl: ''
Service URL
S3 Set Bucket location constraint to EU

A comprehensive list can be found over at Elastician

Testing Cloudfork AWS SimpleDB based classes

Posted September 20, 2009 by Ernest Micklei
Categories: Cloudfork

Tags: , , , , ,

The Cloudfork framework includes an alternate implementation of CFSimpleBase that stores all items in memory. The CFSimpleDBEmulator was initially created to support the unit testing of the ActiveItem framework. With the exception of some query constructs, it implements the complete api and therefore is suitable for unit testing your own applications as well.

| emulator domain item |
emulator := CFSimpleDBEmulator new.
domain := (emulator createDomain: 'myapp.development') result. 
item := CFSimpleDBItem newNamed: 'user.dennis'.
item valueAt: 'birthday' put: '20060916'  ;valueAt: 'hobby' put: 'soccer'.
domain putItem: item.

After running the tests, you can inspect the emulator to see what items have been stored in which domains and what attributes they have. If you store the emulator in some class var then you can keep the data around for development too.

Because the ActiveItem framework is build on top of SimpleDB, the same emulator class can be used to unit test those applications. ActiveItem uses a globally shared CFSimpleDB instance so you only need to replace that with an emulated instance.

CFActiveItem activateWithSimpleDB: CFSimpleDBEmulator new.

Using the CFActiveItemSerializer you can even dump the items to a local Filesystem for development convenience.


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