Daniel Zucchetto <email@example.com> said:
I'd like to comment and propose something about these things.
THanks for the response.
> I just installed jitsi 1.0.1 on LinuxMint 12 (somilar to ubuntu). Here's
> what I hit.
> I use twm(1) as window manager. This window manager does not have
> close button or "balloon messages". I have chosen twm as
> my window manager due to its simplicity and barebones design.
> 1. There is no way to close jitsi dialog boxes, such as "Options".
> This is very annoying because once the dialog box is open, it
> stays open until I kill jitsi process. Every dialog box should
> have a close button in the application itself (it should not
> rely on windowmanager for this function). Alternately, perhaps
> even preferrably, every jitsi window, including dialog boxes
> should be closeable by typing Ctrl-W.
It's the first time I note this, and I used Jitsi a lot. But I think a
close button (like in Firefox preferences) could be useful.
There was a time when Mozilla did not have close button, but over the
years enough people like me complained and it got added. Adding
the Ctrl-W to every window and dialog would be my priority, though.
> 2. The fact that dialog boxes can not be closed leads user to wonder
> if his settings were saved. It would appear that they are not
> saved. There should be Save settings button.
Since it isn't necessary to "save" anything, it could be added a "Save"
button that does nothing. It sounds a bit silly to me, but I don't mean
it shouldn't be added.
Ok, so if settings changes are supposed to be instantaneous (not require
save or close of the Options dialog), then I think some of the settings
are not properly saved. I was not keeping good track, but at least
I recall turning off notification sound and having the sound back on
> 3. There seems to be no way to turn off popups or balloon messages.
> I find them very distracting and would rather not have them (I also
> always turn off the notification sound). In Options/General/Popup
> notification type menu there should be an option to turn them
> off entirely.
Have you tried tweaking the Options/Events tab?
Thanks. The whole purpose of Events tab was not clear to me so I did not
touch it. Perhaps a phrase on top of the table to expain what
it does would help thousands of users. I will now use it to
disable any and all balloons and sounds.
> 4. During initial installation process there is no easy process to get
> a SIP or Jabber account. One must
> a. already know that you need one,
> b. go to the web (outside jitsi install process) and engage in
> confusing SIP provider selection exercise (confusing because
> if you do not know what SIP is, how the hell are you supposed
> to make an informed choice between the myriard providers - and
> why do the need email to register? I want instant
> messages so my email should be irrelevant.)
> c. Or you could be a guru and at this point install your own jabber
> server or whatever.
> All this account creation confusion creates steep learning curve.
> Skype has solved these issues in a much more elegant way (albeit
> evil as they are happy to be the single place where acconts are
Maybe at the first start, before the new account wizard, it should
appear a window informing the user that they need a free account which
can be chosen in the next windows. After that the new account wizard
should appear. There you can register to a provider without going to the
web (sometimes, it depends the provider you choose). Let me say that
there are no so much differences between sip providers, so a lot of
times the "informed decision" is really a "random choice". The only
Well, if the message is that Skype is evil, then it stands to
reason to suspect that at least some of the SIP providers are
evil, too, and you would not want to accidentally choose one
of those, would you?
thing that could help the user in the choice is picking a provider and
presenting it as the default. But which to pick? And why? I think that
this choice could be very hard.
Indeed it is. What you need is short list of providers that do not
have known technical problems and after that summary of who owns them,
profit or other motive, summary of their privacy policies, and where are
Or do what skype does: blatantly advocate one SIP provider (your own)
as the default, but allow those who care or know better to change this
For the email thing: in the ippi account creation window in Jitsi it's
described why ippi needs an email address, and to register to an xmpp
server you don't even need it.
Understood. I also found ways to bypass the email requirement by supplying
works-only-once email, but it is a hassle that users do not like.
> 5. Half of my friends that try jitsi try to bypass the account creation
> hell by choosing SIP with noserver (lan version). The next thing I
> see is them trying to chat with me but their accounts are of
> the form firstname.lastname@example.org. When I try to reply them on the chat
> I get confusing "408 Message Timed Out" error. I figured that
> its not working because I can't talk to their private IP SIP server.
> But how is a normal user supposed to figure this out?
> a. One improvement would be to have the 408 error message explain
> what is going on. I think the pattern is easy to identify: if there
> is @192.168 in the other party's SIP address, then there is trouble.
> b. Better improvement would be to alert the initiator of the chat session
> that it is hopeless due to @192.168 address on one side or another.
Chat with registrarless sip accounts should work in LANs, so you can't
simply tell the user that "you can't chat", because in various
situations they can. And the 408 error could mean various things. Maybe
a router in the LAN just failed or a mouse cut the LAN wire.
I grant that registrarless SIP can be useful on LAN, but the way it is
percived by at least 50% of my trial population was that it is the easy
way out so you do not have to worry about choosing a SIP provider.
The fact that proper SIP registration is a hassle and that this option
appers so temptingly simple, creates a usability problem for the first
time users. And once they are disappointed, they may abandon further
interest with Jitsi and just advocate perpetuation of Skype. You can't
win them over if it does not work for them, even if it was their own
fault for not reading the fine print.
The 408 error message may happen for other reasons, agreed, but the
pattern where it happens in conjunction with @192.168 address is
so easy to detect that the error message code should be written
explicitly to produce a good explanation in this special case.
> c. The best solution would be for the chat protocol to actually carry
> full detail how to contact the other end even without SIP server
> being contactable. If a message gets through in one direction or
> the other, then communication should be possible irrespective of
> other misconfigurations or network inavailability of SIP.
This is a proposal for the IETF, not for the Jitsi team, isn't it?
I do not know. I have not studied what protocols Jitsi uses. But even if
you think IETF should solve it, it continues to hurt Jitsi, and therfore
us Jitsi advocates, as potential new users are hit by it and they
argue for going back to Skype.
I think the best thing to do is to alert the user of possible
malfunctioning when they choose to use a registrarless sip account, and
offer them the possibility to register an account using a public sip
That is a good start. But misguided or ignorant users (the ones that
will ignore any warning in order to avoid establishing a relationship
with a SIP provider - in their opinion a difficult choice) that hit
the 408 message should also be guided back to the right track.
> 6. Overall jitsi's chat connectivity does not seem as robust
> as Skype's. I do not know what blackmagic skype does that jitsi
> does not, but the net-net end result for user is that skype is
> more reliable.
> 7. No matter how much I try to deactivate Spell Checker (it is very
> annoying) the deactivation is not remembered across Quit and
> start again. I have not tried deleting the spell checker yet.
> 8. There is no simple sound test, like Skype Test Call.
You can try email@example.com, but it is a thing that need to be provided
by a (sip) provider, not by the application.
Yes, that works. All that is needed is for it to be on the new user
contact list by default, like Skype Test Call is. Experienced users
can easily remove it afterwards.
The Skype Test Call is better than echo in that it provides audio
to test your sound output prior to the sound input testing section.
The echo just echoes what you produce and you can't tell whether
it is the sound input or output side that is screwed when you
> 9. I have turned on "Require Private Messaging", but it seems
> chat windows still appear where this is not on. I think
> it is a serious security threat that the settings give you
> an impression that you are protected when in fact you
> are not.
> 10. Selecting "Start private conversation" or clicking the padlock
> on the toolbar does not appear to turn the private conversation
> 11. Encryption on (does "private" mean same thing as encrypted?)
> indicator should be available even if I have hidden the toolbar,
> which I ofetn do because I do not want to waste screen realestate
> on toolbars.
> 12. What the hell is OTR? Off The Record? That does not sound any
> crypto at all. I get a feeling that jitsi has a big snakeoil
> factor to it because it is all too easy for users to think they
> are protected when they actually are not.
I'm not an expert in cryptography but, as far as I know, OTR does
provide a strong message encryption.
I do not take you as an authority on cryptosystems, much less on
algorithms, so I need something more substantial. More importantly,
the people I try to convince need something easily available
on the Jitsi web site.
Jitsi documentation fails to explain this adequately. For example
the FAQ page https://jitsi.org/Documentation/FAQ does not discuss
it (FAQ mentions someone's cool pet project called ZRTP, but fails
to address OTR). Overall with acronyms, it would be better to
spell them open. Cryptic acronyms just cause the snakeoil assumption.
> 13. In the chat window, it would save vertical screen realestate if
> the author tag and the message were on the same linr (like they
> are at least in older skype clients).
> P.S. I found out about jitsi in FOSDEM'13
14. In Options/Security/Chat my fingerprint display is truncated with
threedots so there is no way to know the entire fingerprint (may
be this is triggered by my fontsize or something, but it is dysfunctional
never the less). Furthermore, I can't cut and paste the fingerprint.
In Generate key dialog I remembered there was a button to copy the
finger print to clipboard, but I did not have the foresight to
do that then. Clearly it should be possible to do it in this
screen as well.
15. In Options/Security/Chat: I have two contacts visible, but they
are marked as Verified=No and without Fingerprint. The buttons
Verify Fingerprint and Forget Fingerprint are disabled despite
me selecting one of the contacts. How are these supposed to work?
I know that at least one of my contacts had generated a key before
becoming my contact. Thus I would expect to see his key fingerprint,
but this is not available. For the other contact that generated his
key after becoming my contact, how do I get his key and fingerprint
visible? IMHO this should be automatic (but not the verify part).
I would expect the "Forget Fingerprint" button to be always available
even if the contact does not have a fingerprint. In that case the
button would simply dlete the contact from the known fingerprints list.
16. In the buddylist the fully qualified SIP address should be shown. Now
I have one friend twice in the list as firstname.lastname@example.org and as
email@example.com, but I can not easily see in the buddlylist which
17. I tried voice call. The sound quality was near unusable with
cracking and frequent drop-outs. I assume the voice traffic
is peer2peer. How can I determine why the quality is so bad?
What tools does jitsi provide to pinpoint the reason for poor
18. The multiple providers megascreen (where registrarless SIP is
a prominent option) is available on first run, but not
afterwards - at least not through Options where I would have
expected it to be. I think there should be a way to access
it afterwards as it is a useful screen that many users may
bypass too lightly on first run and then regret that they
can't ever access it again (uness they uninstall and reinstall
Jitsi - which is too much to ask).
On 16/02/2013 16:38, firstname.lastname@example.org wrote: