Plazes is starting to work for me

by Volker Weber


The network effect has not yet kicked in for many users of Plazes. But it is starting to work for me. A little hint: Don't name your places "Work". Name them with your company name. The next user on your local network will inherit the place you discovered.


Wrote to Plazes tech support about my unexpected move to California and they fixed it. Here's my real plaze (named correctly of course).

Chris Linfoot, 2005-07-29

Just joined... the announcement in the welcome email is quite blatant: "Accepting your invitation to join Plazes makes you a better person." :-)

Ragnar Schierholz, 2005-07-29

As triggered in the previous post: The PlazesID wiki page (I hope this is ok with you, Volker)

Ragnar Schierholz, 2005-07-29

"This page is read-only"? And I do have a Userid :)

And a plazes id called Nicole ;)

Nicole Simon, 2005-07-29

Thanks Ragnar, you did my job :-)

But: For me its read-only, and I have an UserID?

Alexander Kluge, 2005-07-29

Not quite fully baked, from my viewpoint. My workstation stays running regardless of my location. The laptop travels with me but then has to argue with the workstation about my location.

When I use firefox, I can't type in the boxes because it goes right to "search mode" (this site used to do that as well).

Andrew Pollack, 2005-07-29

Set the admin password to "breitinger".

Volker Weber, 2005-07-29


looks like Plazes doesn't like VPN Tunnels for Wifi Security

the really good question:

From whom did you hear about plazes?

Nothing major on,, heise oder golem


Pierre Kerchner, 2005-07-29

With all due respect, I still think that it is a terrible idea to connect people to the internet via VPN tunnels. People want to connect to their business with VPN tunnels, which they can't over another tunnel, or can they? Having said that, of couse Plazes has trouble with these tunnels, since they can't see the local router anymore.

I think I heard about Plazes a year ago, but it wasn't taking off. I decided this week to make it take off. :-)

Volker Weber, 2005-07-29

I think Ed Brill helped spur a lot of this on too.

Simon Barratt, 2005-07-29

as far as I know and as far as I tried:

it is no problem to do tunnel over tunnel
at least with pptp

ISO/OSI model is also fine with that

Ethernet is just another header
IP is just another header
GRE (general routing encapsulation) is just another header
GRE over GRE is just another header

and many universities (DFN) use tunnels for Wifi security and authentication

so it won't be a really stupid way to secure Wifi


Pierre Kerchner, 2005-07-29

All the companies I worked for use IPsec.

Wifi-zones, as they are today, are complicated enough. Even NAT routers can make life difficult for certain flavors of iPsec. Adding "just another layer" breaks even more things.

"Just another layer" breaks things. In this case Plazes.

Volker Weber, 2005-07-29

Well, I got it working. I had to dissable the web developer toolbar on firefox. I'm not sure what good the software will do, but I'm running it.

Andrew Pollack, 2005-07-30

After having discovered "plazes" last year while I was in Japan, I gave it another try today after your "decision to make it take off" :).

What bothers me, is not being able to deactivate the so called "launcher" after installing. Maybe I didn't find the appropriate way to do so, except deleting the .plist and the .menu file, but I don't like applications, that don't give me the freedom to decide when they should be running and when they don't.

My fault or does anybody know how to disable the Plazes launcher for OS X without deleting the named files?

Henning Störk, 2005-07-30

Henning, I agree, the launcher needs some improvement.

On OSX I am not really sure what's doing and, yes, it would be nice if the launcher were just an .app instead of hiding in /Library/Menu extras

But it shouldn't take much to change that.... Martin are you reading this? ;-)

Pieterjan Lansbergen, 2005-07-30

Actually, for me Martin's launcher works exactly like I want it to. There is also a launcher available as an app, but that sucks. Care to write a better one? It does not always have to be Martin who writes the good stuff. :-)

Volker Weber, 2005-07-30

Like Volker said, there is a standalone application available if you prefer. For me running a separate application is annoying, because I forget to start it up, it clutters my desktop, etc. That's why I wrote this thing basically for my own use.

Just to make it clear, this is community service. I'm not gaining anything by doing the extra work to make sure it runs on anything but my machine, making it (at least somehow) usable for other users than me and giving away the application and its source for free. I'm not asking for anything, but I don't appreciate being told that it would not be much work to do xyz.

Let's pretend I'm your mum and made you a strawberry cake. "Here's a strawberry cake, enjoy.", I say. "That's fine.", you say, "But I'd rather like a chocolate cake. It should not take much to make one, you can even reuse some ingrediences." Please don't take offense, I know its a bad analogy, just wanted to illustrate my point.

Just yesterday I fixed a bug in the launcher, after someone pointed my nose to it by instant message, so it's not like I'm saying take it or fix it yourself, I don't care anymore. I however refuse to start a second give-away project, where I don't even have a personal itch to scratch. Sorry to disappoint.

PS: Uninstalling a menu extra is as easy as cmd-dragging it out of the menubar, as I have written in the blog post where you can download the launcher.

Martin Pittenauer, 2005-07-30

Martin, I fully understand your position but, as I didn't know your degree of involvement into this project, I just thought that user's suggestions were welcome for further development.

The launcher is great as it is, and works just fine, please accept my apologies. ;-)

Having said that, thank you also for pointing out the possibility of using a separate program as a launcher, I just overlooked that there was indeed an option and will give it a try to check if it suits me better.

Pieterjan Lansbergen, 2005-07-30

Thanks for your understanding. User feedback is of course welcome, as long as it does not involve a complete redesign of whole thing... ;)

Martin Pittenauer, 2005-07-30

Of course you're totally right when you say you'd do that as community service. I got the launcher from the plazes website and for me this wasn't clear enough (although it's written there), so: my fault.
Second thing I didn't realize is the possibility to cmd-drag it out of the menu bar, because as I said, I didn't download it from your page. My fault either.
Third is, I didn't scroll down the dowload page and therefore didn't realize that there's still a standalone launcher for OS X available. My fault again.

So, sorry for ranting. Was not ment to be offense, but I can totally understand it sounded like offense. And I'd love to eat more strawberry cakes in the future...

Henning Störk, 2005-07-30

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