Our last 3 servers are finally being migrated on Friday morning (UTC).
Expect downtimes for the following services during this period:
As always, I will try my best to keep the downtimes low and let you know
when everything is over.
ReactOS 0.4.10 will be released tomorrow, Tuesday, November 6, 2018!
The download will be officially available around noon (CEST).
A Press Kit for the ReactOS 0.4.10 release is already available:
Feel free to send it to interested parties to let them know about the
upcoming release in advance.
The ReactOS project is pleased to announce the release of version
0.4.10, the latest of our quarterly cadence of releases. The project has
seen an increasing emphasis on consistency and stability over the past
few months, an emphasis the rapid release schedule helps reinforce to
provide a better end-user experience. Even as new pieces of
functionality are added, all this would be for naught if a user could
not access them reliably.
Booting from BTRFS
The headline feature for 0.4.10 would have to be ReactOS’ ability to now
boot from a BTRFS formatted drive. The work enabling this was part of
this year’s Google Summer of Code with student developer Victor
Perevertkin. While the actual filesystem driver itself is from the
WinBtrfs project by Mark Harmstone, much of Victor’s work was in filling
out the bits and pieces of ReactOS that the driver expected to interact
with. The filesystem stack in ReactOS is arguably one of the less mature
components by simple dint of there being so few open source NT
filesystem drivers to test against. Those that the project uses
internally have all gone through enough iterations that gaps in ReactOS
are worked around. WinBtrfs on the other hand came with no such baggage
to its history and instead made full use of the documented NT filesystem
Parallel to this effort was more basic work needed to expose the option
to use BTRFS in the ReactOS installer and bootloader. It is all well and
good for ReactOS to have a working driver, but the user ultimately needs
to have a way to put it into use. The combined effort proved fruitful
indeed, and users are invited to try out BTRFS support in 0.4.10. The
newness of the feature will mean there will be the inevitable bug here
and there, but it can only be with the community’s assistance in
reporting them that the project can further improve.
When someone uses ReactOS, the interface through which they do so is the
shell. And underpinning the shell’s functionality is the shell32
library, whose improvements are often directly exposed to the end user.
For the past few months Katayama Hirofumi, a longtime contributor to the
project, has fleshed out several new features while making improvements
to other existing ones.
For those of us whom do any significant amount of work on the command
prompt, a wide range of tricks and shortcuts exist to make our lives
easier. One such trick is being able to drag and drop a file or
directory from the file explorer onto the command line in order to get
its full path. And to complement this trick, Katayama-san has also made
improvements to those of us that are steeped in the graphical shell more
than the command prompt. In the past ReactOS offered only extremely
limited means of interacting with things in the shell. Folders in
explorer were rendered only a certain way, you could not change whether
to use a single versus double click to enter them, and interacting with
multiple windowed applications was clunky and more limited than one
might expect. All this and more have been improved, and the following
screenshot sums up that improvement far more succinctly than mere words can.
The overall look and feel of ReactOS has also improved, or rather that
of applications that run upon it. One special class of applications
would be installers, of which the MSI family performs graphical
rendering based on font heights. Users are likely to recall in the past
a certain something just looking off when running MSI installers, just
something slightly askew in how these installers appeared.
As seemingly small as these features may sound, many of them are
expected by a user and their absence does not go unnoticed. Indeed the
greatest success ReactOS could achieve is to have a user not even have
to think when they navigate the system, everything working the way they
expect. Katayama-san’s work takes us further down that path, the
culmination of a multitude of small steps along the way.
Finally, the project would be remiss to not mention the contributions of
other developers to the shell’s continuing improvement. While Hermès
Bélusca-Maïto’s important backend work remains somewhat inscrutable to
end users, fixes by Denis Malikov and Jared Smudde to deal with file
copying and shortcut creation will likely be more easily appreciated as
another sign that ReactOS works, as expected.
Stability is generally a hard thing to quantify, since it is often very
subjective. Probably one thing that we can all agree on is that anything
that prevents ReactOS, or applications running on it from crashing is a
plus in the stability column. To that end while improvements to the
memory management stack by Timo Kreuzer and Pierre Schweitzer might
sound opaque and vague, they are nonetheless instrumental to ReactOS’
Simultaneously, each time a major widely used application achieves full
functionality on ReactOS, also constitutes a victory. A contribution by
Stanislav Motylkov to the C Runtime library used in ReactOS now allows
Git, the version control software used by this very project, to finally
work correctly. A nice follow-up to the self-hosting achievement from
last time around, we think many would agree.
And of course no one is a fan of BSoDs, even if they evoke a slight
sense of nostalgia. Fortunately for ReactOS’ sake, Mark Jansen was able
to nail the cause of one such crash relating to the FreeType font
library. Better that blue screens are consigned to our memories than be
a perennial part of our daily computing experience.
The surest metric of stability is however arguably how much of ReactOS
and the desired collection of applications one wants to run actually
work. For this, there as yet remains no substitute for human testing. To
that end Joachim Henze has invested a tremendous amount of time,
performing what amounts to continuous regression testing even before the
formal process of preparing the release began. The fruit of his labors
sits before you today, and while you may not see the countless number of
fixes, reversions, and tweaks that were selectively filtered to produce
version 0.4.10, rest assured that together they combine to provide a
worthy testament to the effort that is the ReactOS Project. We hope you
Stanislav Motylkov did some work on correctly retrieving BIOS
information. Now the blank entries in dxdiag are filled with actual
values. The community helped him to gather over 1000 unique BIOS dumps
to help him test the implementation.
Third Party Attributions
As always, it would be remiss for the project to not provide
acknowledgement of the third party bits we make use of. For this
release, Amine Khaldi has synchronized the user-mode DLLs to
WINE-Staging version 3.9. Furthermore as mentioned above, ReactOS’
support for BTRFS owes a debt of gratitude to the WinBTRFS project, of
which Pierre has synchronized to the latest version, 1.0.2.
JIRA Issues fixed (this includes both bugs and improvements) - 148
Number of commits - 660
The oldest bug fixed for 0.4.10 - https://jira.reactos.org/browse/CORE-1246
0.4.10-release branch was forked from master on 2018-08-23 after
- Press Release: https://reactos.org/project-news/reactos-0410-released
- General Notes: https://reactos.org/wiki/0.4.10
- Tests: https://reactos.org/wiki/Tests_for_0.4.10
- Changelog: https://reactos.org/wiki/ChangeLog-0.4.10
- Community Changelog: https://reactos.org/wiki/Community_Changelog-0.4.10
- Community video showcasing some 0.4.10 features:
- Download page: https://reactos.org/download
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