Sorry if this starts a bit off-topic, but later it is very much on topic!
I know from recent(ish) discussions on here about the Solaris 10 bug
which is screwing up Mathematica (any fix yet?), that quite a few run
Mathematica on Solaris, so perhaps the start is not too bad either.
I've developed an open-source (written in PHP) web based front end
called WITM for Mathematica. It allows Mathematica to be used with a web
browser, rather than the standard Notebook interface.
WITM needs Mathematica and a web server running on a UNIX/Linux
platform, but allows access from anything with a browser. I've tested it
with browsers running on an hp iPAQ PDA - screen shots at:
a Sun running Solaris 10, a Windows XP PC.
WITM should work with just about any browser. I'd like to try a Smart
phone, but don't have one myself. It is probable you could use it on
that too, as there are some optimisations for handhold devices.
I've only tested the computational end on an Apache & Solaris server. It
will *not* work with a Windows copy of Mathematica - it will need a UNIX
or Linux one.
There's sort of an online demo at
but due to licensing and security issues, it does not call a Mathematica
kernel, so only shows the interface. It therefore does not allow
computations to be performed.
The homepage is
NOW IT GETS ON TOPIC !!!
I'm interested in comments on how safe this would be if run in a Solaris
10 zone. The issue is that anyone accessing WITM has the rights of the
web server owner ('nobody' in most cases). Mathematica allows people to
run arbitrary commands, so arbitrary commands can be run as user nobody.
You don't need any sort of hacking to do that - it would provide it
immediately. Protecting against it would be difficult.
Typing the contents of /etc/passed, making huge files in /tmp, writing a
C program to exhaust memory would all be possible.
Would a Solaris 10 zone offer any protection to the zone in this case?
Could one bring down an entire system, even in the global zone? My guess
is one could.
I believe there are licenses that allow Mathematica to be used
open-access, but these would I suspect cost a fortune. So I can only see
WITM being used where the users are known and password protection used.
As such, the security issues are perhaphs not quite as bad. The obvious
solution would be to run it on its own web server.
Dave K MCSE.
MCSE = Minefield Consultant and Solitaire Expert.
Please note my email address changes periodically to avoid spam.
It is always of the form: month-year@domain. Hitting reply will work
for a couple of months only. Later set it manually.
http://witm.sourceforge.net/ (Web based Mathematica front end)
||6/7/2006 2:13:07 PM