Release Notes for JMRI 2.7.6 release

Date: October 4, 2009

From: Bob Jacobsen

Subject: Test version 2.7.6 of JMRI/DecoderPro is available for download.


This is a test release. Please post a note if you encounter any new or old bugs! And please back up your JMRI files before installing this, in case you want to go back to an earlier version.

This is the sixth in a series of test versions. We expect this series to end in a JMRI 2.8 production release in December 2009.

It contains many new features, including:

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 Windows installer now puts the Java libraries (jar files) in a lib subdirectory. This is the same layout used on Linux and Mac OS X, and makes the JMRI program directory much more organized and easier to understand. If you have your own custom startup scripts, you may have to adjust them to the new library location. If you're just using the JMRI installer and its startup tools, you shouldn't have to change anything you do.

The orientation of the coordinate system has changed in the new audio support. Starting with this release, when you are looking at the model railroad, X is positive toward the right, Y is positive into the layout (away from you), and Z is positive upward. If you wrote scripts using the new audio support with JMRI 2.7.5, you'll have to swap axes.

Warnings from older versions:

The new audio support in JMRI 2.7.5 requires some new libraries. Those libraries are included in the JMRI downloads. They, in turn, require that the startup scripts include the new libraries, so these have also been modified. The 2.7.4 and earlier scripts will not work with 2.7.5 and later. In particular, if you've created your own copies of startup scripts, you'll have to update those:

If your roster contains locomotives with Soundtraxx Steam Tsunami decoders, you should migrate those roster entries to the new decoder definition names. We've created a tool to make that easier. For information on how to use that tool, please see the separate note.

JMRI 2.7.4 changes the way filenames for icons, etc, are stored in XML files by JMRI. The advantage is that this new method will make it much easier to move panel files from one computer to another, even of a different type. So long as you keep all your files in the JMRI preferences directory on both machines, the files should just move over without trouble. The warning is that files written in this format will not be properly read by JMRI versions before 2.7.4. This includes files from earlier versions that are read by JMRI 2.7.4 or later and then written out again, as the program will update them to the new format upon storing them.

Download links:

Please use these links for downloading:

Mac OS X:



Changes since test version 2.7.5

Matt Harris improved how the new audio support handles some errors.

Dan Boudreau made some improvements to the operations tools: Added some tool tips, improved performance with large rolling stock collections, fixed an occasional timing problem, created a more random set of cars and engines for building trains, limit the number of cars printed in the build report to 500 cars to avoid out-of-memory conditions when previewing a printout.

Pete Cressman fixed a problem with italic text in the panel editor.

Kevin Dickerson fixed a problem controlling Turnouts and Signals through an SPROG, and greatly improved the internal structure of that code.

Kevin Dickerson added support for the MERG Signal Driver 2 board.

Pete Cressman fixed a bug in Logix support for Memories

Dan Boudreau fixed the panel editor to allow the user to use the + and - functions to nudge labels.

Kevin Dickerson reduced to one the number of times a function is sent to a decoder by an SPROG system, thus for sound functions it prevents the sound being repeated three times or a turnout being set three times.

Dan Boudreau improved the operations "engine import" feature to check if the model exists.

Kevin Dickerson added support for groups in the DecoderPro roster.

Ken Cameron updated the RobotThrottle2 script to solve the 'waiting for throttle' problem, and to provide smoother stops.

Matt Harris updated the audio GUI to be compatible with smaller screens.

Kevin Dickerson added formatting features into the Text and Memory Label on the Layout Editor:

Dan Boudreau added options to allow operations users to control the display of error messages.

Matt Harris updated the build.xml file so that JMRI can be built with Java 1.7 (1.5 is still the default)

Ken Cameron added Jython command support to Logix.

Kevin Dickerson updated the layout sensor, so that it can be converted and displayed as a text label instead of an icon. Formatting options are similar to that added with the positional label, default text will either be from the sensor username or that it blank then it will use active, inactive.

There is now a IMCURRENTTIME memory variable that contains the current fast time.

Matt Harris provided a new "SoundPro" application.

Lionel Jeanson added support for icons to the roster, so you can associate images with your locomotives. He also updated the Throttle to display them, and provided a throttle preferences panel for controlling that.

Peter Ulvestad updated the Comprehensive programmer format to display built-in speed table information better.

Peter Ulvestad updated the MRC Sound Brilliance 1820 definition to better display CV 6. He also provided new MRC 1637 and 1665 definitions, and updated the MRC Diesel 1829.

Paul Fraker updated the MRC Athearn Genesis SD45-2 definition and updated the MRC Diesel 1829 definition.

Elmer McKay provided a nice help file describing how to start putting signals on your layout.

Dan Boudreau add two new operations tools for trains and locations. The "Modify Trains" and "Modify Locations" tools allows the user to quickly edit which car types a train or location will service.

Kevin Dickerson added a function to allow the system throttle manager to notify software throttles that they have lost control over the selected loco.

Jack Shall updated the SoundTraxx Diesel Tsunami definition to include the new ALCO 539 models.

Micheal Dunn and Peter Ulvestad provided a new definition for the MRC 1658 Sound Brilliance decoder.