[Server-devel] Setting up a USB drive for the XSCE Activity Update service

Anna aschoolf at gmail.com
Fri Nov 8 03:20:27 EST 2013

How to do an "activity bundle" came up on #schoolserver today.  I knew I
had written it up, but forgot that I only sent it to xsce-devel at the
time.  This is something that should be on server-devel.  And probably
needs a wiki entry.

---------- Forwarded message ----------
Date: Thu, Jul 11, 2013 at 2:32 AM
Subject: Setting up a USB drive for the XSCE Activity Update service

I have never tested or even looked at this before, but today on the call,
George made sure I saw this link which has all the details regarding the
Activity Update service for the XSCE:

But if you're sitting there with a USB drive, some activities you'd like to
include, you've got an XSCE, and you want some simple instructions, here's
a digest.

Unfortunately I'm going to assume you're on a Linux box, apologies to the
Windows people.

First, insert your USB drive into your computer (I used my regular FAT32
formatted drive that I also use for flashing XOs) and create a directory
named xs-activity-server

Navigate into the xs-activity-server dir and download some activities.

This isn't necessary, but it's quite nice.  Write a "blurb" for the
activity that will show up on the entry for the activity in

First, get the bundle_id for the Activity.  In Linux, it's simply:

zipgrep bundle_id activityname.xo

It should return something like:

JAMediaTube.activity/activity/activity.info:bundle_id =

You want the bit at the end.

Now, create an .info file in the xs-activity-server dir.  It doesn't matter
what it's named, just do activities.info or something.

For every activity you would like to write a "blurb" for, put an entry for
that in the activities.info file.  For example:

description = Watch YouTube! It's really fun!

description = This is a placeholder for documentation purposes

Notice the bundle_id value we grepped for earlier?  That's in brackets in
the .info file with the description directly underneath.

You've got your .xo files, set up your activities.info file, it's all on a
USB drive in a dir named xs-activity-server, and now that you've got all
the ingredients, the last order of business is to create a manifest for the
XSCE to read.

While in the xs-activity-server dir on your USB drive, run this command:

sha1sum *.xo *.info > manifest.sha1

Eject the USB drive and plug it into the XSCE.  And then magic happens!
The activities you put on the USB drive in the xs-activity-server dir will
just "automagically" show up on http://schoolserver/activities with the
"blurbs" you wrote in the activities.info file.

I don't know how the USB drive gets ejected by novice users from the XSCE.
Which could be a concern?

At any rate, this probably needs a wiki entry.

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