New Release: Elektra 0.8.7

Hi Everybody!

I am very proud to inform you all that Elektra has just shipped a new release, version 0.8.7, with many great features and fixes!

First of all, I want to let you all know that a lot of work from my Google Summer of Code Project has made its way into this release. Elektra now includes support for a three way merge of KeySets! A special and sincere thanks goes out to Felix Berlakovich for helping me test this new merge feature and adding some great features to allow for different merge strategies and dealing with meta keys. You can try out the new merge features using the kdb merge command or by using the Elektra API. There is still work to be done with Merging and improving documentation (also look for some posts on this blog soon about the feature).

Additionally, thanks to Felix, we have technical previews for some new plug-ins. The new plug-ins are keytometa and ini. In short the keytometa plugin allows to convert normal keys to meta keys during the get operation and reverting this conversion during the set operation. The ini plugin is basically a rewrite of the simpleini plugin and makes use of the inih library.

Also there have been many improvements made to the glob plug-in. He even found some time to add a new script for bash tab completion which is located under scripts/kdb-bash-completion. To use it on debian just copy it to /etc/bash_completion.d/ and make sure it is executable.

Moreover, we fixed a lot of things with this newest release. Pino Toscano has been working on fixing up the Debian packages for Elektra but he has also fixed many other things along the way including fixing a lot of spelling errors, simplifying the RPATH setting, improvements to respecting $HOME and $TMPDIR, and improvements to some test cases. The kdb tool now does a better job of checking for subfolders that aren’t allow and it now makes sure to output warnings before errors so errors can more easily be seen. We have also improved some tests for kdb tool and some plugins as well as fixed compiler warnings on clang and gcc 4.9. We also made some fixes to kdb import and export for some storage plugins and fixed some bugs so that kdb run_all now works flawlessly.

There have also been a few tweaks to the API for this release, specifically in the C++ bindings.

There is now a delMeta() function for C++. The reason for this is that contrary to the C API, calling

key.setMeta("metaname", NULL)

does not delete the metadata, but stores the value “0″.

Additionally, we changed the arguments for isBelow, isDirectBelow, and isBelowSame for the C++ binding to be easier to understand and be more natural to use. Before this change, the C++ binding closely mirrored the C API which lead to an unintuitive behaviour.

Before the change the API did the following:

Key (“user/config/key/below”).isBelow (Key (“user/config”)) == false
Key (“user/config/key/below”).isBelow (Key (“user/config/key/below/deeper”)) == true

That is because the first argument in the C API is the object itself in the C++ API.
The attribute “of being below” the key in question (the object) refers to the second key in the C API.
While this makes some sense for the C API, it definitely does not for the C++ API.

Now the API behaves as follows (as intuitively expected):

Key (“user/config/key/below”).isBelow (Key (“user/config”)) == true
Key (“user/config/key/below”).isBelow (Key (“user/config/key/below/deeper”)) == false

We even had time for a bunch of documentation changes. We now have a tutorial for contextual values to GitHub so developers can start using contextual values with Elektra. We also included a specification for metadata and a better specification for contracts.

There is even a little bit of extra news to share. We now use GitHub for active development of Elektra. We have adopted its issue tracker for issues. Also, now pull requests automatically get built by the server to see if the merge would brake the build and whether it passes all the tests. We are also in the process of updating a lot of our documentation and READMEs to use Markdown so they can be viewed easily on GitHub. Also, Raffael Pancheri has been making really great progress on a qt-gui for Elektra. There is still work to be done but it looks great and is coming along nicely.

You can download the release now from Markus’ site:

http://www.markus-raab.org/ftp/elektra/releases/elektra-0.8.7.tar.gz

size: 1566800
md5sum: 4996df62942791373b192c793d912b4c
sha1: 00887cc8edb3dea1bc110f69ea64f6b700c29402
sha256: 698ebd41d540eb0c6427c17c13a6a0f03eef94655fbd40655c9b42d612ea1c9b

Also there are packages already ready for some distributions:

There is a lot of ongoing work to fix the Debian packages and I will post about it on this blog when they are good to go!

Enjoy the new release!
-Ian S. Donnelly

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