The next release will be focussed on maintenance...
With the increasing number of users, we have to focus on the stability of our website and ecosystem for updating our software. This will mean that, although we will have improvements, bug fixes, and some enhancements, we will introduce new features that will enable us to improve our update process.
What does it mean for you?
It became clear that we needed a mirror location to host our software. Although untouched, our website has been under attack and could have taken down our environment. Thinking about that possibility, we have decided to set up a new mirror site that is only accessible from within the PHsPeed IDE. If the connection to our leading site is lost, you will still be able to maintain your development environment with updates, etc.
Another thing that was on our list for quite some time was that we were not completely satisfied with updating Xampp. To implement new PHP releases, MySql / MariaDB, etc., we had to deploy a full Xampp release. The disadvantage was that updating this way would overwrite the sample databases, which could contain your databases. Although there was a procedure in the software to overcome this disadvantage, it would still be necessary to perform a backup and restore procedure just in case.
In the upcoming release, you will get an additional module that enables us to release Xampp en PHsPeed modules separately. It will allow us to update the PHP releases without the need for a full Xampp install, and it also means that you will be able to keep up with the latest versions of the PHsPeed modules without a complete installation procedure. All these updates will lead to an incremental update of PHsPeed from time to time, the regular releases.
Setting ports for XDebug, MySQL/MariaDB, and Apache is now done from one place, used by the installer and IDE. The process of deleting duplicate functions continues, and the IDE gets smoother at every new release. We will also move some of the preferences into the new configuration module.
As a Dutch company, we comply with the EU privacy regulations. We have received questions about why we don't update fully automated like some other products. Sometimes, we are unsure if that aligns with the EU regulations. We have decided that our end-users should initiate the update procedure to avoid discussions and procedures around this regulation. The software informs you when a new release is available, you decide if and when you upgrade. It also avoids issues with virus scanners that detect automatic updates and marks the software as a potential threat. Especially Symantec is a well-known problem, as they do not look to the digital signature of our software and don't respond to our questions. But most other virus companies have white-listed PHsPeed, Microsoft, and Google have accepted it so that you can install the MSI directly from our website. But if you run into issues, then white-list the folder you are installing PHsPeed into and let us know so that we can contact the anti-virus company that is giving you trouble.
In the near future, we will open up a new customer portal. The access to the website, service desk, and bug tracker will be centralized and bound to a valid PHsPeed license. We see a lot of registrations on our website without an underlying use of PHsPeed. We consider that a 'threat' as we have no idea why those users registered. To our current customer pool, we ask you to change your account and that you enable 2-factor authentication. If you want to use the new customer portal later this year, it will be required.
Besides the upgrade of our ecosystem, we will also make some internal upgrades. Initially, the new release will be as we always do. We will deploy a new Xampp release containing the latest Apache, MySQL/MariaDB, and PHP versions (7.4, 8.0, and 8.1). This time you will have to upgrade the regular way. As of that date, you will be able to keep up the Xampp environment separately.
The Chromium version in PHsPeed will be upgraded and will support downloading files. We have had reports that some videos do not play. However, that is a known issue. Due to license issues, the Chrome package lacks particular codecs available in the 'full' browsers. So if you need to create software with videos and run into this issue, set the IDE preference to use an external browser for debugging. The webform will be displayed in the external browser while the IDE keeps working. It is also an excellent way for developers with two monitors, they can split the output: a monitor for the ide and a monitor for the output.