Release Notes for JMRI 1.9.3 release

Date: December 26, 2007

From: Bob Jacobsen

Subject: Test version 1.9.3 of JMRI/DecoderPro is available for download.

Notes:

This is the next in a series of test versions. It contains many new features, including:

  • several decoder definitions were added and improved,
  • JMRI throttles can now address decoder functions up to number 28,
  • improved fast clock support,
  • additions to the layout editor,
  • additional sounds and graphics for creating USS CTC panels,
  • lots of additions to the help screens
along with lots of other changes. See the complete list below.

Some of the changes involved are quite extensive. They may require a certain amount of experience before they are working well. Therefore, this test version should be considered experimental.

JMRI is now only available under the GNU General Public License. For more information, please see our copyright and licensing page.

New warnings for this version:

The starting location of file chooser windows used to determine which file to open or where to save a file have been updated to (hopefully) more useful initial places. They now retain their location from one use to the next, so you don't have to keep navigating back to the same place. Please let us know (via a comment on the jmriusers list) if these two changes are an improvement or not.

Warnings from older versions:

The NCE support has been revamped so that "NCE USB" is a new choice in the preferences window. Note that this support is still experimental, and will likely evolve as NCE adds features to the adapter.

This version of JMRI no longer supports NCE AIU broadcasts. This change was needed so that JMRI could reliably read certain CV values. We recommend that if you use NCE AIUs, that you upgrade the command station EPROM to version 2007 or newer and turn off AIU broadcasts. Code has been added to detect if AIU broadcasts are enabled, and a warning message will appear at startup requesting that AIU broadcasts be turned off for proper operation of the JMRI programs.

This version of JMRI requires Java 1.3 or later. To see JMRI's plans for which Java versions will be required when, please see our technological roadmap page.

Indexed CVs will not be included in any printouts for this release.

QSI CV 56.129 Engine ID Access is not supported in this release.

While programming QSI decoders in Ops mode, it is necessary to disable CV 62 QSI Control (Verbal Acknowledgement), otherwise the writes will fail.

QSI CV 64 CV Numeric Verbal Readout currently does not work for indexed CVs.

The beginnings of support for the QSI Programmer device are present, but it's not complete yet

Download links:

Please use these links for downloading, including the "?download" at the end. That adds to SourceForge's advertising statistics, which makes them happy to host our stuff.

Mac OS X: http://downloads.sourceforge.net/jmri/JMRI.1.9.3A.dmg?download

Windows: http://downloads.sourceforge.net/jmri/JMRI.1.9.3.exe?download

Linux: http://downloads.sourceforge.net/jmri/JMRI.1.9.3A.tgz?download

Changes since test version 1.9.2:

Dan Boudreau has done more work on the NCE USB support

David Duchamp has added single crossover turnouts and an optional grid to Layout Editor

Handling of hardware and software fast clocks has been updated by David Duchamp, with help from Ken Cameron

Fixed a bug that prevented adding a "Ops Mode Programmer" button in the advanced preferences.

The help system search is working again. Lots of help screens have been added and updated.

Added a sample script (jython/AD4OnOff.py) that gives you a checkbox on the screen to turn on and off local control of AD4-connected turnouts.

Dick Bronson provided new sounds, icons and backgrounds for use in creating USS CTC panels. Particularly interesting are the images in the resources/icons/USS/background/ folder, with which you can build up a realistic USS CTC panel of any (reasonable) size.

Dan Boudreau has updated the throttle to have functions up to F28. The popup menu on each function button lets you configure which function is on which button.

The EasyDCC system now provides a CommandStation interface. This is mostly an internal thing, but we thought you might want to know.

When adding backgrounds in the panel editor, the file chooser now remembers where you left it, which makes it easier to build backgrounds from the "slices" that Dick Bronson provided. Also, backgrounds are added at the specified X, Y location, so you can precisely position the slices. The default is now 0,0, and can be set via properties.

So that parts of the program can respond when a C/MRI node goes offline, sensors defined on a C/MRI node are set to UNKNOWN if the program loses contact with that node and has to reinitialize it.

David Duchamp added a 12hr/24hr option to the fast clock support.

Dan Boudreau fixed a bug in the NCE Macro Editor that caused problems for turnout numbers greater than 255.

Fixed a problem with CV115 (Auto brake squeal) and CV116 (Coupling sound type) in the MRC 1631 and 1636 decoder definitions.

With the help of Bill Carman, decoder definitions have been added for the Athearn Challenger and F Unit built in decoders. These are provided by MRC, and are filed there in the selection window. Note that the decoder documentation says that the decoder "does not support the CV read back feature".

Logged messages are also now being written to a "messages.log" file in the program directory. This is capped at 1MB in size, after which the log rolls over to a new file. One old version is kept.

The file choosers in the program have been overhauled so they start in more useful places, and have filters to highlight just files with the preferred suffix. The filters also help with a problem seen by some people using Java 1.6 where file operations get very slow if the user has large .zip archives around, especially on their desktop.

Mike Waters provided decoder definitions for the Zimo MX63 and MX64 decoders, versions 22 to 30.