My GSOC19 Experience

Last modified by Vincent Massol on 2020/01/28

Aug 26 2019

Hello there! My name is Divyansh Jain. I am a student at Mahatma Jyoti Rao Phoole University. I have been selected as an Android developer for the XWiki organization and I've finished working on their XWiki Android Authenticator application in GSOC19.

Preparations before applying for the GSOC19

I've been contributing to the open-source project throughout the year, and once the GSOC announced the organization's name I started searching for the organization and then I found the XWiki. I started understanding how the app works, it's known issues at Jira, what the organization expects from a developer during the GSOC. I started by cloning the project, ran the app into the device, understood the project and then fixed some bugs. I opened two PR's and started talking to the listed mentors. They accepted my PR. And then I started working on the proposal.

I wrote all the things that I understood about this organization, how the app works, it's data flow diagram, and describe how I will cover all the open issues.

The day when I got selected

I wasn't expecting to get selected. But the day my name was announced, I immediately thanked my mentors for selecting me. And to this day I'm truly thankful to them for selecting me.

During my first evaluation period, I started by fixing some known bugs and begin migrating the app code from Java to Kotlin. All my previous open-source experience helped me to quickly find the bug, what's causing it and how to fix it. As I was migrating the code, I started to understand more about the app flow which really helped in the coming tasks. Before the first evaluation, I released v0.6.

Second Evaluation, Adding multiple account support and fixed some more bugs, I thought I'll finish this task soon but then I realized there's a whole lot of work to do. In this task after discussing with my mentor, I've implemented the room DB to save user sync info and added support for multiple account sync and some minor improvements in the app, implementing DB increased the app performance. And hence successfully releasing v.0.7,

Third Evaluation, Adding support for OpenID Connect & pagination in users list. XWiki already has support for OIDC login what's left was to add support for it. This particular task was a head-scratcher. But thanks to my mentors to, they helped me when I got stuck and now finally XWiki Authenticator supports OIDC login. Now the apps requesting XWiki user info can access info when the user logs in and give the consent to share the info with the requesting app. Also while adding the new XWiki account, now the users have the choice to either login using old login pass or the new OIDC login. Here while implementing the OIDC login, I changed the authorization method so now for old/login pass I've implemented preemptive login and for OIDC  I've implemented uses bearer_token for authentication when making API call. And recently successfully released v1.0

Here's what I've done so far.

  1. Rewritten the whole app code from Java to Kotlin.
  2. Fixed: Contacts synchronizing improperly 
  3. Fixed: Forcing a synchronization does not work 
  4. Fixed: Wrong synchronization status
  5. Added support for adding multiple XWiki accounts.
  6. Once the preferences screen is opened you can choose to edit the preferences of other XWiki accounts too.
  7. After users and groups, the list is loaded it's stored in DB so it will load instantaneously next time you open the app. 
  8. Fixed: Clicking on the save button does not close the activity. 
  9. Fixed: SocketTimeoutException crash.
  10. OIDC support: Now other apps can request to access the XWiki user info and secondly new OIDC login method where the app first checks if OIDC is supported in your instance and if it's supported the app will launch a webview displaying the login and after login in the browser and giving the consent, the user is logged in.
  11. As the "all users list" consists of many users, I've added pagination support. So now when the user scrolls the list halfway down, it'll automatically load the rest of the users.
  12. Fixed: SSLHandshakeException crash
  13. Reduced the app size, through following Google's recommendation to reduce the app size.

How to use the result of my work

You have several ways to get application "XWiki Android authenticator":

Google play .

My commits .

XWiki CI (Jenkins) .

Github Release .

Also, you can get sources of application and compile it by yourself. For this:

Open the link, . And click on "Clone" and copy the link (usually, it is command git clone ...). After this action, you will have a project on the master branch.
Open the folder and create  file with content SDK.dir=%ANDROID_HOME% (here %ANDROID_HOME% is the path to SDK location)
You can import project in Android Studio or build the app by command ./gradlew clean cleanBuildCache build

What was not done

  1. Edit Contact Activity Improvement.
  2. Publish the app on F-Droid.
  3. Provide a library for easy implementation of dedicated XWiki authenticator

Apart from these three tasks, all the issues are done and with some major improvement in the app.

Links to issues which I've completed and resolved



I'm truly thankful to my mentor Thomas  and Aleksei Ovsiannikov . Both my mentors were always available and helped when I needed and gave me valuable advice and suggestions.

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