> and this also works fine - could this be the problem with 
> password/publish
> logic?  perhaps spcial handling of requests from localhost?  anyone 
> else out
> there gotten the password and read-only copy to work?

I'm not entirely sure I understand the problem as you describe it. When 
you enter a password on the Edit Web screen, you'll be prompted for a 
password on all pages relating to that web. Now, if you check "Publish 
this web", then all requests to /published/ will be let through even 
though the password-protection is on.

Recap:

No password protection, no publish
- Everyone can access /wiki/show/HomePage and all other functions
- Nobody can access /wiki/published/HomePage

Password-protection, no publish:
- Only people with the password can access /wiki/show/HomePage etc
- Nobody can access /wiki/published/HomePage

Password-protection, publish:
- Only people with the password can access /wiki/show/HomePage etc
- Everyone can access /wiki/published/HomePage

So what you'd normally do is point to "/wiki/published/" from a proxy, 
such as mod_proxy in Apache. I use this method with my corporate site 
so that "http://www.nextangle.com/" is translated into 
"http://www.nextangle.com/nextangle/published/" behind the scenes.


On a related Instiki note, I have a native OS X-version running locally 
(that comes with Ruby 1.8.1, so nothing needs to be installedd) and 
have also successfully used the PDFLatex integration to finish a 
100-paged Bachelor's Project. I'm currently playing around with 
integrating SubEthaEdit, so Mac-users get thrown into the same document 
if two or more people attempt to edit the same page. Lots of activity. 
Once I'm done with my final exams, I'll be sure to shoot out a release.
--
David Heinemeier Hansson,
http://www.instiki.org/      -- A No-Step-Three Wiki in Ruby
http://www.basecamphq.com/   -- Web-based Project Management
http://www.loudthinking.com/ -- Broadcasting Brain
http://www.nextangle.com/    -- Development & Consulting Services