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Review Board 1.7 is released!

The wait is over! Our latest and greatest Review Board 1.7 is out and ready! This was a massive release, and is the first big step in taking Review Board in a new and exciting direction.

Lookin' good!

Review Board 1.7 offers a revamped look and feel and a variety of new features designed to improve the workflow for both users and administrators. There's improved issue tracking, better support for file attachments, moved file support in the diff viewer, extensions, a brand new administration UI, per-user timezone support, and more.

Better issue tracking

In 1.6, we introduced issue tracking. When writing a new comment, you could indicate that you have an issue that must be addressed before the change goes into the product. This was a huge improvement for many developers, as it gave them a bit of a to-do list.

In 1.7, we've improved issue tracking by actually showing a to-do list of all opened issues right on the review request. You can quickly look through what needs to be done, jump down to the discussion and comment, and jump back. The list of issues can be filtered by state or by reviewer. Never miss another filed issue in a flood of reviews.

Extensions

Starting in this release, we're greatly expanding what people will be able to do with Review Board. We've introduced two new concepts that, while young, we expect will become quite popular over time: Extension support, and pluggable review UIs.

Third parties wil be able to write new features and customizations that can be plugged into any standard Review Board install. These can add new fields to a review request, or dashboard views. New API. Content to any page. Administration dashboard widgets. They can perform actions when review requests are posted, or automate tasks in the database.

Extensions can also provide new review UIs for different types of files. Now, it's possible to write support for display the content of specific types of file, commenting on them, and displaying those comments in a review. It's not just about code anymore.

Over time, we'll provide official extensions, and an easier way to download and install them directly into your own Review Board.

New administration UI

The administration UI got a bit of a revamp. When you next log in, you'll see a dashboard of widgets showing statistics on your server, graphing activity, and showing a quick glance of your important settings.

A new top-level Extensions page was added that will show you what extensions are available on your system, and which are enabled. Through here, you can manage your extensions, configure them, and even inspect their database contents.

We've made improvements all throughout, and will be continuing to improve on it in the 1.7.x releases, and through new extensions.

A note about Windows

Starting in this release, we're dropping official support for running Review Board on a Windows server. We've found that many of our users who tried to install on Windows ended up with a frustrating install experience due to conflicting versions of Python and other modules in ways that just simply doesn't happen on other platforms.

The 1.6.x releases will continue to be supported on Windows, and technically, 1.7 should work as well. We just won't be offering support anymore for Windows-specific problems.

If you're running on Windows, we highly recommend installing Review Board on a Linux VM and running that in a product like VMware Workstation or ESXi/vSphere.

And Python 2.4

We've also dropped support for Python 2.4. If you need to upgrade, your best bet is to install on a modern Linux distribution, as compiling it yourself may be a bit of a headache. We recommend upgrading to something with Python 2.7, which will be supported long-term.

Other shiny things

You can see a breakdown of everything that's new in our release notes. And check out the rest of the screenshots to see our new features and style in action.

Review Board 1.6.15 released

Review Board 1.6.15 is out the door. It's a small bug fix release on top of 1.6.14, with a handful of fixes to annoyances we and others have noticed. The highlights are:

  • Fixed extra whitespace rendering in the diff viewer.
  • Fixed a bug that could cause incorrect counts in the dashboard.
  • Fixed the display of some saved settings in the admin UI.
  • Updated our Gitorious support to be compliant with their preferred URL scheme.

Full release notes are available.

Stay tuned tomorrow for another release announcement... :)

Review Board 1.7 RC 1 released

Today I'm happy to announce the release of Review Board 1.7 RC 1, the last milestone (hopefully) before the final 1.7 release.

We had hoped to get this out the door a bit earlier, but decided to smooth over some rough edges to give people a better upgrade experience, and it was worth it.

1.7 RC fixes a large number of bugs, both those found in 1.7 beta 2 and those we've had in Review Board for some time. The UI should feel faster, smoother, with fewer jumpy editors and nice usability tweaks here and there.

Along with the bug fixes, we've laid the foundation for pluggable review UIs for different types of file attachments, introduced a couple new file attachment thumbnail renderers, and fully replaced screenshot review with image file attachment review.

Some major bugs with extensions have been fixed. In particular, the list of extensions and their configuration is now properly synchronized across all your web server threads/processes, and all URLs provided by extensions will no longer "randomly" fail to work.

The next big step before 1.7 is getting all our documentation done. We expect code changes to be at a minimum. The exceptions will be some UI polish and any major bugs that turn up in RC.

If you're looking to upgrade to 1.7 soon, we suggest giving 1.7 RC a try, as it'll more or less be what we'll ship for 1.7.

Full release notes are available.

Review Board 1.6.14 released

Hello, world! To those who celebrated Thanksgiving this week, I hope you all had a great one, with delicious food and good company.

Tonight we've released Review Board 1.6.14. This is a large bug fix, performance enhancement, and feature enhancement release, and will probably be the last big 1.6.x release, as we're putting the finishing touches on 1.7.

Some of the highlights include:

  • Support for very large files in the diff viewer. We clocked a 44,000 line file at just around 3 seconds, instead of several minutes in 1.6.13.
  • Further improving loading times for review requests.
  • API support for creating, modifying and deleting review groups and managing their user lists.
  • More helpful text when configuring a repository path.
  • Many bug fixes and minor improvements.

Full release notes are available.

As I said above, we're very close to the final 1.7 release now. We'll have a release candidate out any day, and barring any major problems, expect to have a final release within the next two weeks.

RBCommons End of Year Sale

For over a year now, we've provided professional Review Board hosting for businesses at RBCommons. It's been a very good year and change, and we're celebrating by offering an End of the Year sale.

For a limited time, new signups and upgrades on the Small, Medium or Large plans will receive 50% off the price for 3 months.

If you're looking to get started with Review Board and don't feel like hosting it yourself, give us a try. There's never been a better time!

Review Board 1.6.13 released

Review Board 1.6.13 is out, and with it comes a bunch of nice little bug fixes.

A couple of the highlights have to do with the new incremental diff expansion feature. There were problems in the diff headers shown in e-mails, and the expansion links for certain function/class headers, which are now fixed in this release.

There's also a number of other fixes for several other bugs across the product.

See the release notes for more information.

Review Board 1.7 beta 2 released

We're inching closer to the finish line with Review Board 1.7 beta 2!

The big highlight is a brand new style for Review Board. We've kept the same basic style since we first introduced Review Board, and decided it was time for a change. The new style is slicker, more polished, more consistent, fits better on the screen, and yet is still familiar.

There's also some fixes for problems people have encountered with beta 1, and of course all the fixes and enhancements in the latest 1.6 release.

This will not be the last beta. We are introducing two new pieces of architecture soon that will allow for really awesome things in future releases. The first is support for writing custom review UIs for different file types (the beginnings of which will land in beta 3). The second is a new JavaScript architecture that extension developers will be able to take advantage of to better integrate with Review Board and plug into our browser-side UIs.

Those who are interested in writing extensions should discuss their needs on the reviewboard-dev mailing list. We have a limited number of hook points right now, and need your help to prioritize.

Full release notes are available.

RBTools 0.4.2 released

RBTools 0.4.2 is out!

This releaase is full of bug fixes of many kinds, and is worth upgrading to. There are fixes for Git, Subversion, Mercurial, and Clear Case, along with various other compatibility fixes.

We've added improved debug output, so it'll be easier to diagnose problems when they occur.

Full release notes are available.

Review Board 1.6.12 released

Update 25-Sep-2012 2:16AM: There was a small regression with the display of function headers on some comments. No crashes or anything, just displaying content wrong. We've re-released 1.6.12 with this fix.

Review Board 1.6.12 has been released, and is full of long-requested goodies.

We have fixed a number of key issues with parsing diffs. In particular, SVN diffs with property changes no longer totally break, and Git diffs no longer have the useful information like the summary and author stripped away.

We also introduced a new feature by popular request: Incremental expansion for diffs. You can now expand 20 lines at a time or up to the listed function or class, instead of expanding an entire collapsed region at once. You can also re-collapse the expansion. NetApp, Inc. sponsored the development of this feature.

There's also many other fixes and improvements in the release.

See the release notes for the full breakdown.

Review Board 1.7 beta 1 released

The first beta for the next big Review Board release is out now. We've just released 1.7 beta 1, which brings with it a number of new and exciting features.

First up is our new extension support. For a long time now, we've been developing a branch with support for loadable extensions that can enhance the features of Review Board. This is finally ready to ship in an experimental form. There's basic documentation on writing an extension, and we'll be working on some sample extensions people can install. As I said, the extension support is experimental, and will likely change and improve over time.

Administrators will see a new administration UI in this version, complete with fancy graphs of what's happening on the server. The administration UI now features an enhanced dashboard with widgets full of various bits of information. New widgets can be provided by extensions (though there's not yet a way to customize which widgets are shown).

Administration UI

Reviewers and developers will better be able to track what issues remain with the new issue summary table. This is a filterable list of issues that have been filed, shown on every review request. You can quickly check what's been opened, discarded, or resolved, and jump to the comment in question. We'll be integrating this more tightly into review request updates in the future.

Issue Summary Table

We have better file attachment previews for certain file types. Right now, this includes text files, which will show snippets of text, and image files, which will show thumbnails.

You can look forward to smaller databases from here on out. Previously, every new upload of a diff would create new copies of each per-file diff, even if it didn't change since the last revision, taking up unnecessary space. No longer! We consolidate these now, reducing the amount of space that's needed. This will only apply to new diffs, though.

For those who have users spread across the world, we now localize dates and times. Users can set their timezone in their My Account page and all dates and times will be based on that timezone.

There are many more changes. You can see the full details in the release notes.

Please note, this is a beta, and not intended for production use. We do recommend testing it and making sure it works for you, though, and we are actively dog-fooding it.

Also, note that Python 2.4 is no longer supported. You will need Python 2.5 or higher. We recommend installing 2.6 or 2.7 to ensure the highest compatibility going forward.

Contact our mailing list if you have any problems, or file bugs for any regressions you find.

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