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Release Notes for JMRI 2.5.4 release

Date: May 26, 2009

From: Bob Jacobsen

Subject: Test version 2.5.4 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 fourth in a new series of test versions. We expect this series to end in a production release in late June 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:

If you're using a MERG CAN-RS or CAN-USB unit to talk to a MERG CBUS, you should check that your preferences are set properly.

Warnings from older versions:

Starting with version 2.5.3, JMRI uses a new version of the Log4J library, and several additional libraries. If you've written your own Java code using JMRI, or have your own startup scripts, you might have to make some changes to adapt to these new libraries. If you don't get messages about missing or deprecated methods, you don't have to worry about this.

The XSLT location was moved back to the web in JMRI 2.5.3.

Starting in JMRI 2.5.2, Logix support has a lot of new capabilities, but panel files that use these capabilities can't be read by previous versions of the program. Please keep backup copies of your panel files in case you want to move back to a previous version.

Starting in JMRI 2.5.2, there have been extensive changes to the way JMRI installs and starts on Windows. If you have custom shortcuts (ones you made), you may have to update them. The JMRI-created ones will be updated automatically. Users of Mac OS X and Linux will not be affected by this change.

The downloads are significantly larger due to more text and images in the help pages, especially the updated manual.

JMRI now requires Java 5 or later. (Java 5 is also called Java 1.5) If you are using an older version of Java, please upgrade your Java installation. To see JMRI's future plans for this and other compatibility issues, please see the JMRI technology roadmap.

Starting in JMRI 2.5.1, the way you drag things in the Layout Editor has changed if you are using a Linux computer.

Download links:

Please use these links for downloading:

Mac OS X:



Changes since test version 2.5.3:

Andrew Crosland sorted out a problem with the GridConnect connections to CAN and CBUS. This fixes a problem sending frames that was present in JMRI 2.5.1 and 2.5.2. Note that if you're using a MERG CAN-RS or CAN-USB unit, you should check that your preferences are set properly.

Dan Boudreau made some operations updates. The "show route" location box as grayed out if train can't service that location. The location print/preview now includes which car types and roads are serviced by each location and track.

Dan Boudreau improved reporting and printing in the operations tools. You can now see and print what type of cars and engines can be serviced by a location. You can also request that all of the info provided by the edit location be printed.

Paul Bender added support for F13-F28 on Lenz systems upgraded to XPressNet version 3.6.

Paul Bender updated the XPressNet support for the Hornby Elite: Do not send the "OFF" XPressNet message (The Elite appears to react in the same manner to both the "ON" messages and the "OFF" messages).

Dick Bronson improved the USS CTC panel background images in icons/USS/background to remove the appearance of repetitive blotches in the track background area. He also added some new 850 pixel high background slices sized to fit the new 1440 x 900 pixel wide screen monitors.

A number of JMRI implementation classes have been moved to clean up the code organization. This only effects you if you've written somewhat low-level Java or Python code to e.g. implement a new system. If you've done that, and you encounter compilation problems, look in the jmri.managers and jmri.implementation packages.

Jeff Schmaltz updated the Massoth LBG, eMotion motor and sound decoders, and LGB 55027 decoder definition.

Nigel Cliffe fixed a bug found earlier CT DCX decoder definition (actually a bug in the decoders). CVs 152/153 take different values if the decoder is v27-59 or v66. Splitting the decoder file on the version number of the decoder seems easiest, so there are now two definitions.

Paul Bender has added initial support for an "XPressNet Simulator" connection type. It currently handles only certain basic message types.

Dan Boudreau added an operations control for whether car lengths and car colors are printed on manifests and switch lists.

Jack Shall updated the Comprehensive programmer format to look better with complex sound decoders.

Dave Duchamp has updated the dispatcher support to fix some bugs, and to add tools to Section Table to automatically add direction sensors to signal logic for simple APB signaling.

Dan Boudreau changed the Panel Editor info message when closing a panel. You can now decide to hide or delete the panel when closing.