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Release Notes for JMRI 2.9.9 release

Date: July 1, 2010

From: Bob Jacobsen

Subject: Test version 2.9.9 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 ninth (and hopefully last) in a series of test versions. We expect this series to end in a JMRI 2.10 production release in Summer 2010.

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:

(None yet)

Older warnings

Panel files written with JMRI 2.9.6 or later that contain Lights will not be readable by earlier versions of JMRI.

JMRI system names start with two capital letters, e.g. LT10 or NS23 or PLA5. Past versions have tried to cope when people enter lower cases letters, e.g. lt10 or Ns23 or pLA5, with various degrees of success. Unfortunately, this code isn't compatible with some new systems that are being working on, and we have to remove it. Starting with this version, JMRI requires that you enter consistent system names, including using the right case. If you use system names, and haven't been using consistent names, you'll probably have to practice a little to get in the habit. If you have any problems reading old files, etc, please post a note on the JMRI Users group and somebody will help you.

The LocoTools application is no longer supported, and is being removed. Some parts of it are still present, but you should use e.g. PanelPro or DecoderPro instead. They can do everything that LocoTools can.

The preferences have been significantly reworked. In some cases, preferences to add a button or do an action at startup may have to be deleted and re-entered before they will work.

The communications libraries for Mac OS X have been updated. We've tested these extensively, but there may be combinations of hardware and software versions that still aren't right. If the program can't see your layout connection, please post to the JMRI users group with the type of Mac you're using (PowerBook, PowerMac, MacBook, etc.), processor type (PPC G3, G4, G5 or Intel) and Mac OS X version (10.4, 10.5, etc; names like Leopard are OK) too. We've got several library versions and most likely have one that will work, we just have to figure out which.

If you're using a Lenz XPressNet connection, please uncheck the "Check Buffer Status" box in the preference pane where you selected the Lenz protocol.

This version of JMRI uses the new communications libraries introduced in JMRI 2.9.3. On Windows, the installer should take care of all installation and deinstallation required. On Linux, you may have to install and/or uninstall various communications library parts, see the JMRI Linux pages for more info. On Mac, depending on which version you were previously using you may have to remove a communications library, see the JMRI Mac OS X page.

You may get some messages like:

WARNING:  RXTX Version mismatch
        Jar version = RXTX-2.2pre1
        native lib Version = RXTX-2.2pre2
For now, this should be considered normal. We'll try to get it removed before the next production release.

The JInput USB library was updated in JMRI 2.9.1, and again in JMRI 2.9.5, which (should) have fixed problems on Windows Vista, Intel Macs and some Linux machines. We don't have a way to check this with all possible input devices, so please check to make sure that your USB-attached devices still work.

When loading an older panel file containing signal head icons, you may get WARN messages about "did not locate lunar icon file" and "did not locate flashlunar icon file". To make these stop, just store the file again so that it's rewritten in the most recent format.

Known problems with this release

None at the time of this release.

Download links:

Please use these links for downloading:

Mac OS X:



Changes since test version 2.9.8

Pete Cressman fixed a problem with rotating Signal Mast icons.

Paul Bender made improvements to the XPressNet communications internals.

Paul Bender improved how the Throttle handles functions when opening a throttle to a locomotive that's already in use.

Lionel Jeanson added support for lockable/non lockable functions from roster entry into USB Throttle Jynstrument.

Kevin Dickerson updated the editors to handle the setting of borders and margins better, by using a compounded border, the inner covering the margin, the outer covering the outline border. Fixes an issue seen by a user on the JMRI Users group.

Steve Todd updated the Android Engine Driver throttle program to have dual throttles.

Dan Boudreau made a minor GUI improvement in the edit track: Adjust frame so car type scroll bars don't always show up.

Dan Boudreau added a new operations feature: Users can now control which car loads a train will service.

Lionel Jeanson added a new throttle icon.

Kevin Dickerson updated the editor icons so that they always save the justification position. He removed some inconsistencies from the hidden option. He also removed the "clear" colour from borders, as that didn't do anything.

Lionel Jeanson updated the internal edit/play code for throttles to better handle backgrounds.

Lionel Jeanson provided a new "RosterImage" Jynstrument displaying the defined roster locomotive image in a throttle frame.

Paul Bender updated internals of the throttle support in general and for XPressNet.

Pete Cressman improved the Signal Mast icon for the editors.

Paul Bender improved the handling of unexpected XPressNet messages.

Brett Hoffman improved the WiThrottle communications.

Kevin Dickerson fixed a bug that was causing preference settings to be saved even if the Save button hasn't been pressed.

Pete Cressman made a change to how backgrounds are handled in the editor.

Michael Mosher provided a new definition for Soundtraxx Bowser locomotive decoders

Pete Cressman removed the "special mouse click" support from the control panel editor.

Dan Boudreau added two new devices to NCE show cabs: Cab06 and Mini-Panel.

Kevin Dickerson fixed an occasional bug while adding sensors.

Dan Boudreau updated the operations feature to allow users to use the format month-year for a car's built date.

Nigel Cliffe provided a new definition for the TT300 accessory decoder, a UK product by Traintronics.

Nigel Cliffe made minor changes to CT decoder, primarily extending the volume control from four-steps to sixty-four steps (yet more undocumented changes by CT(!), found when experimenting with new decoder)

Steve Todd updated the Engine Driver throttle for Andriod to version 0.6

Dan Boudreau improved the names of operations menu items

Dan Boudreau added an operations feature for locations: A button has been added to automatically adjust the car types that a location services. Only car types that are serviced by the location's tracks will be selected.

Brett Hoffman fixed a timing issue with WiThrottle and consists.

Dan Boudreau added a new operations car edit attribute tool feature: The "Delete Unused Attributes" will prompt the user to delete an attribute that hasn't been assigned to a car.

Matt Harris fixed the "config-portable" tool for standalone running.

Matt Harris changes the Windows installer build

Dan Boudreau added some operations tool tips

Dan Boudreau fixed an error when configuring the RPS system

Pete Cressman prevented false clicks on signal mast icons.