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What is the Locat Local Server?
Installing Java
Installing the Locat Local Server (LLS)
Running the LLS
What is the Locat Local Server?

The Locat Local Server (LLS) is a Java Application that runs on the user's computer. It is designed to be used alongside the locat web site and acts as an auxiliary data source, a processing powerhouse, a way to link to physical devices, and more. It is currently in an experimental phase, developed with the following benefits and features in mind:

Portability

The LLS lives and stores data inside it's installation directory, and is in this sense self-contained. Normally installed on a desktop PC, but when installed onto a USB stick, the LLS will run on any PC or laptop that has Java installed.

Off-line Data Storage and Provision

GPS data generated by the GPS trackers linked to a user's account accumulate in data stores maintained by locat. To access this data for it to be displayed on a map, the user makes use of the map page on the locat web site, which collects the data for the user's GPS trackers from the locat data stores via the internet.

The LLS will collect this same data, and store it locally on the user's hard drive. The LLS collects this data while it is being accessed through the web site, but also automatically in the background. In time, the LLS will have made a complete local (off-line) copy of all of the data generated by the user's GPS trackers from locat's on-line data stores. The benefits of having a local copy of the data should be self-evident.

Custom Data Hosting

Custom user-generated data is also stored on the LLS, which may be integrated into the locat web site map, but is only accessible to the user and is never transmitted over the internet. In so doing, the power of the locat web site is applied to the user's personal, local data.

Auxiliary Processing and Analysis

With the data easily accessed from local storage, and using the computer's CPU and memory, the LLS is capable of far more advanced data processing and analysis than the web site alone. The LLS makes the results of these local processes available very quickly, whereas similar capabilities would have been impractical, or even impossible, over an internet connection.

Increased Security

Despite that the chances of you personally becoming a victim are rather slim, hacking and hijacking are Internet realities. Any data, no matter the level of encryption or protection, is vulnerable to interception and/or modification while in transit over the Internet. Repeatedly accessing the same sensitive data remotely over the Internet increases its exposure to risk. Conversely, the risk to locally-stored data is minimal in comparison.

Advanced Reporting

Many of the more sophisticated analysis of GPS tracker data require considerable computing power. Due to the prohibitive costs involved in maintaining the infrastructure necessary to perform these advanced methods on behalf of all of locat's clients using locat's resources, the LLS offers an opportunity to offset the workload to the user's computer, thus enabling the user to make free and uninhibited use of these services.

Among the more advances features is Reporting, which makes it possible for the user to generate neat, customized, SARS-compliant reports (PDF, XLS, CSV, etc) for each and all of their GPS trackers.

USB/Serial Device Communication

Many of the currently-supported (some unpublished) devices are capable of being interrogated, configured and programmed via USB or Serial RS232 connection. The LLS provides an interface to many of these devices.

Open Source, Custom Plug-ins

Once we're satisfied that everything works, the LLS source code will be made public. This will be done for two main reasons, namely, to establish a basis of trust by opening up the source, and to encourage and stimulate external, third-party, custom plug-in development.

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Installing Java
1. Check if Java is installed

Method 1: Visit java.com and use the site's tools to determine the version installed on you computer. You can also download and install Java from the site.

Method 2: Open a terminal or console, and at the command prompt type java -version and press enter. If Java is installed, information about the installation will be displayed, otherwise an error message will appear.

2. Install Java

To download and install Java, click here, and follow the instructions for your Operating System.

3. Test and verify Java Installation (Optional)

Once downloaded and installed, head back to the Java website, and follow the instructions to test your installation. Do this only if you suspect something went wrong during the installation process.

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Installing the Locat Local Server (LLS)
1. Download the LLS

You are not registered as a participant in the testing phase. Please contact us if you want to take part.

2. Create a working folder

Use your file system browser to create a new folder called "locat" on your hard drive. On Windows, it would typically be something like C:\locat, and on Linux/iOS it would look like /home/username/locat or simply /locat if you have root priviledges. It doesn't really matter, as long as it is an easily accessible directory. Check that the current user will have sufficient read/write/execute permissions/privileges.

3. Copy the lls-v0.1.1.jar to the working folder

Simply save the downloaded lls-v0.1.1.jar into the newly-created working folder. This folder should now only contain one file, namely lls-v0.1.1.jar

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Running the LLS
READ ME FIRST

The LLS is a 'headless' application, which means that it does not have its own built-in user interface. It is intended to run as a background service, and to do its own thing without the user's intervention or exposing the user to its workings. It does, however, require some user-generated input to operate properly, and some functions also require direct user control.

The only way to communicate with the running LLS application is via HTTP on port 60080. The LLS will only respond to valid HTTP requests from localhost (i.e., the local computer it is running on), and only reacts to a fixed, predetermined set of requests and parameters. Unblock port 60080 if you are running a firewall.

The LLS only runs in a console (or 'terminal' - the nomenclature differs). Whether the user runs the application from the graphical user interface by double-clicking on the icon, or invoking it directly from command line, the application will always run in a console window, and closing this window will also shut down the LLS. Don't close the console window. The LLS will shut down too.

Once the LLS is up and running, it can be accessed from within the (recently upgraded) locat website. The website will also look for a running instance of the server on the local machine, and if found, automatically start communicating with it. For best results, start the LLS prior to visiting the locat website, and to close it after leaving. Or just leave it running.

Note: The first time the LLS is run in an empty install directory, it will establish a working environment and unpack a few necessary files and directories into the install directory. Although the install directory may be moved around (on a USB stick, for instance), no files or directories inside the install directory should be modified or removed by the user.

The LLS is under development and can only reach maturity after rigorous testing, so expect a few bugs and frequent patches in the beginning.

Manual Start

Method 1: Using your file system browser, open the working folder or install directory and double-click on the lls-v0.1.1.jar icon. Your operating system should automatically detect that it is a Java executable, and open the LLS as a Java program. If your computer asks if it should run the program in a Terminal, Command Line or Console window, answer Yes. Information from the LLS should appear in the console.

Method 2: Open a terminal or console, go to the install directory, and at the command prompt type java -jar lls-v0.1.1.jar and press enter. If Java is installed, the LLS will run in that console. Information from the LLS should appear in the console.

Automatic Start

Coming soon...

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