[Fireside Chat #2] Onward and Upward

Announcements, news and other important information about mRemoteNG.

[Fireside Chat #2] Onward and Upward

Postby dmsparer » Tue Jun 21, 2016 10:12 am

Hey mRemoteNG users!

I'm waaay overdue for a community post, and there's plenty of updates to share.


What has happened:
  • I'm happy to announce that in early May, Sean Kaim (owner of the mRemote3G fork) joined the development team! Sean has a background in C/Java/C# development. Sean did great work with mRemote3G, and continues to do so with us. Welcome Sean to the team! (Note: The bug fixes that Sean implemented in mRemote3G have been ported over to mRemoteNG. Active work on mRemote3G has been discontinued.)
  • New releases
    • A few weeks ago, we released version 1.74 Release Candidate 2, the first new version of mRemoteNG in over two years. It was a large milestone in reviving the project, and a bit of a scary one at that. Thank you to everyone who has tried the new version and provided feedback to us!
    • We just released 1.74 RC3 today! (I was writing this post as we were prepping the build for release). RC3 fixes a few issues from RC2, such as:
      • Setting LargeAddressAware (this was actually fixed earlier, but for some reason the postbuild action wasn't working correctly)
      • Replace XULrunner with GeckoFX (html renderer for Firefox)
      • Fixed a few resource-not-found issues in the Help window
    • We will give 1.74 RC3 about a week to ensure it is stable. If no major issues are found, we will publish v1.74 as a stable release.
  • Here are some of the highlights of v1.74 as a whole:
    • The code base was migrated from VB.Net to C#. This has made the code easier to work with for those of us on the dev team. We are hoping that this also helps us attract more development help.
    • Due to some serious bugs, some custom keyboard hooks that were introduced in v1.73 beta have been removed. This removed the ability to Alt+Tab between connections tabs. We would like to re-add this functionality once we have a stable way to implement it.
    • The installer has been completely redone in WiX (Windows Installer XML). The previous installer was built with NSIS. This gives us a great deal of freedom with the installer. The most prominent change you will notice is that the installer is now a .MSI file, rather than .exe. If there is a desire for it, we can also provide a .exe version of the new installer.
    • The RDP protocol has been updated from RDP 6 to RDP 8. This provided some new features and fixes for RDP connections. With this change, we no longer support installation on Windows XP. Windows 7 is supported with update KB2592687. Windows 8/10 are supported out-of-the-box.
    • XULrunner (the old browser plugin used by mRemoteNG) has been discontinued. Because of this, we have removed support for XULrunner and replaced it with GeckoFX (an implementation of the Firefox redering engine in .Net).
    • We now set the LargeAddressAware flag on the binary. This allows mRemoteNG to use more than 2GB of addressable space. The primary effect of this modification will allow users to open more concurrent connections. This also helps reduce 3334 errors when using RDP in certain situations.
  • We now have a code signing certificate! This was not available for the RC2 release, but going forward all exe/dll/msi files that are officially provided by the mRemoteNG dev team will be signed. If you receive an executable file that is not signed, please be very careful and only use the file if you trust its source.
    • Executables provided by the mRemoteNG dev team will be signed by David Sparer, with a root CA of StartCom. We may get a class 3 (organization) certificate at some point in the future, but for now the code is signed by myself directly.
    • Users with SmartScreen enabled may still receive a notification that the MSI installer is unrecognized. We did not pay for the extended validation (EV) certificate so it will take a bit for our reputation to improve with the Microsoft security engine. I regret not getting the EV now - but hey, what are ya gonna do... Eventually we will become a trusted publisher.
    • As always, we will be uploading our official builds to VirusTotal. Feel free to check your own copy before installation/use.

What we are planning
  • The next update (v1.75) will be focused on security improvements. If you have experience with security code review, we'd love to hear from you! The more eyes we have on the code, the more secure it will be.
    • We want to improve the file encryption used when securing your conConfs.xml file with a password.
    • Just as data and presentation should be separate, so too should secure and insecure data be separate. The best way to handle this is to implement a credential manager and save credentials separately from the connections/host data.
    • Don't reinvent the wheel. We can implement a built-in way to save credentials, but there are numerous great solutions out there for credential management that do it better than we ever could. As long as implementation of the credential manager doesn't run into any serious issues, I'd also like to include support for loading credentials from KeePass. Other credential providers will probably be supported in the future. (And once the code is set up for it, everyone will be free to add support for their favorite credential manager)
    • There are also some very serious security concerns around the integration between mRemoteNG and PuTTY. We want to handle this in 2 ways:
      • Fix the integration if possible
      • Provide a different option for SSH connection management (SSH.Net is our most likely candidate. They just released a beta and hopefully a stable release is coming in the near future.) We would still support PuTTY, but it would not be the default for new installations.
  • Other features/improvements will be targeted if time permits.
dmsparer
 
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[Fireside Chat #2] Onward and Upward

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Re: [Fireside Chat #2] Onward and Upward

Postby l4nc3r » Tue Jun 21, 2016 10:42 am

Thank All of you for restarting this beautiful application and bringing it back to glory. Had to move on like most due to compatibility issues. I'm ready to get off RDCMan and back to my favorite program! Thank you!
l4nc3r
 
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Re: [Fireside Chat #2] Onward and Upward

Postby pencoe » Tue Jun 21, 2016 11:39 pm

Wow! These are great news, and you did a lot(!) of work in short time! :!: Thank you very much! Will download and test this buil immediatly :D
pencoe
 
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Re: [Fireside Chat #2] Onward and Upward

Postby Markb » Wed Jun 22, 2016 12:15 am

Thank you for the great work!
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Re: [Fireside Chat #2] Onward and Upward

Postby Neville » Wed Jun 22, 2016 11:14 am

Thanks for the excellent work you're doing. I'm so glad that this project has been brought back to life, and that it appears to be in such capable hands. Looking forward to the first stable release by the new developers!
Neville
 
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Re: [Fireside Chat #2] Onward and Upward

Postby mrem » Thu Jun 23, 2016 4:09 am

Excellent news. I have downloaded RC3 file "mRemoteNG-Portable-1.74.6016.20062.zip" from: https://github.com/mRemoteNG/mRemoteNG/releases

1. I have set:
Tools | Options | Appearance | Language = English
Tools | Options | Advanced | checked "Automatically try to reconnect when disconnected from server (RDP & ICA only).

2. Connect to some Windows server.

3. From inside of Windows server use logout.

4. mRemoteNG re-logon window opens. Everything is fine, except in 1.74 RC3 (I haven't tested any earlier 1.74.x version) some German language appears. I don't have German settings anywhere in my system and also I have English setting in mRemoteNG. It looks like a bug. See attachment.
Attachments
german.png
mrem
 
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Re: [Fireside Chat #2] Onward and Upward

Postby mrem » Thu Jun 23, 2016 4:25 am

... another problem I have connection to Linux boxes. To all of the Linux connections "SSH version 2" I get "Connection failed! The system cannot find the file specified." It looks like v1.74-RC3 (portable) does not redistribute Putty.exe file. From within zip extracted folder I searched with command:
Code: Select all
dir putty* /s

and only got PuTTY.ico file returned no exe.

Then I did in Tools | Options | "Advanced | Use custom PuTTY path" and point to my mRemoteNG v1.73-beta putty.exe file and then connection in mRemoteNG v1.74-RC3 works fine.
Attachments
linux.png
linux.png (9.05 KiB) Viewed 3744 times
mrem
 
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Re: [Fireside Chat #2] Onward and Upward

Postby dmsparer » Thu Jun 23, 2016 6:26 am

Created https://mremoteng.atlassian.net/browse/MR-879 for the German/English mixup

Created https://mremoteng.atlassian.net/browse/MR-880 for the PuTTYNG missing
dmsparer
 
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Re: [Fireside Chat #2] Onward and Upward

Postby dr34m » Fri Jul 08, 2016 4:41 am

Thanks you guys and welcome Sean Kaim 8-)
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