Tuesday, June 27, 2017

Change Log: 2.11.359

...and we're back. Deployment of the new release had the Manager down for about 10 minutes, and everything is looking really nice in the aftermath.

In terms of what's in this release, let me just say that 2.11.359 is a big boy: it took me a couple of weeks to put it together and it improves the Manager quite a bit. What follows is a quick breakdown of everything included in this major release.

Installation/deployment. This release fixes the numerous sysadmin-type problems/issues with the last one, which revised the way the manager is deployed (i.e. the way its various services and processes are initialized). Long story short, the last release made a lot of assumptions about the target system that ended up not being true: the installer now displays more flexibility/adaptability in those critical areas.

Settlement Sheet upgrade! Release 2.11.359 one also includes some important usability improvements, the most significant of which is the implementation of an angularjs-based locations picker on the Settlement Sheet, which will finally mean (drum roll, please) that the Settlement Sheet will no longer reload/refresh when locations are added/removed using the Settlement Sheet controls.

Back-end security and performance enhancements. There are some improvements on the back-end as well, including some new code in the legacy webapp and the API that will help transition the old application to the API's security model and allow us to start locking down parts of the API. 2.11.359 also migrates a number of legacy webapp methods/features to the API, which will a.) make them perform more reliably and b.) get us closer to our alpha release of The Watcher.

Fixes and corrections. As far as fixes go, this release also resolves all of the issues that were reported during my two-month hiatus, including several issues with the Location picker, the resurrection bug affecting the Controls of Death and the way that API failures happen.

At this point, the most important short-term goals, in terms of getting the API ready to work with The Watcher and modernizing the legacy webapp are these:
  • refactor all Javascript used by the legacy webapp to no longer use the modifyAsset() function, i.e. the function which makes a call to the legacy app to update a survivor or settlement, and replace all of those methods with API calls.
  • make the "private" API routes, i.e. the ones that manage user-created assets (Survivors and Settlements), require JWT authorization. 
  • deprecate all legacy webapp code that modifies user assets and replace it with an equivalent API method.
Finally, due to some outside complications, I will be taking another break from active development/support of both the Manager and the API from July 17th through August 17th.

Which means that the agenda for the next few weeks of development is to make some of the major enhancements that we need for The Watcher and stabilizing the legacy webapp so that it doesn't need any serious attention while I am out of office.

As usual, hit the jump for the full change log.

Thanks again for using the Manager!

Scheduled downtime starting soon!

As I mentioned in my last post, I am re-installing the Manager today and will require a short downtime to change everything over and deploy the new release.

With any luck, this will be the last time I end up having to do this and we won't have any more downtime deployments going forward.

At any rate, the downtime will start in about an hour.

Sunday, June 25, 2017

New release this week: short downtime and Settlement Sheet enhancement!

A new release of the Manager will be out this week and, like the last one, it will require a short downtime.

With any luck, this will be the last release for a while that requires a downtime. Either way, as usual, I will post a warning here shortly before the production application goes away and I will post a follow up when it comes back.

Also, I am happy to say that the release will also include some new features intended to improve usability and performance by leveraging some of the API development that has been going behind the scenes for The Watcher.

Among other things, the next release of the Manager will (finally) update the Settlement Sheet's location picker so that it no longer refreshes the Sheet when locations are added or removed!

Check out the animated GIF feature demo in this post to see it in action at tablet resolution.

I am presently targeting Tuesday of this week for the release. Watch this space for updates.

And thanks for using the Manager!

Monday, June 12, 2017

Change Log: 2.9.318

...and we're back.

Regular enhancements/support for both the Manager and the KDM API have officially resumed, effective immediately!

As I mentioned earlier, release 2.9.318 required a downtime/outage to deploy because it implements a new, unified process for installing the Manager and the API. The updated README.md file on GitHub describes the new process, which, in addition to being greatly simplified/streamlined, should make both planned system updates and unintentional system restarts go much more smoothly.

Additionally, this release pushes a couple of significant bug fixes for the Settlement Sheet, including one that allowed users to add forbidden innovations to the settlement and another that prevented users from adding the "Pictograph" innovation.

Now that I am back to work on the project, I will take a look at the old, planned milestones and the outstanding, open issues in the project and redesign the development roadmap accordingly, so watch this space for updates on that.

And thanks for using the Manager!

Scheduled downtime/outage imminent!

Release 2.9.318 is ready to ship and, as I mentioned yesterday, it will require a downtime to fully/correctly deploy.

That downtime will take place in about 15 minutes from now. The outage is not expected to take longer than a few minutes (but one never knows with these things).

See you on the other side!

Sunday, June 11, 2017

Outage/downtime and new release tomorrow!

I'm back!

After a bit of a hiatus from the project, I am happy to say that I am back and I've got new code to deploy. In fact, I am actually going to re-install the whole application.

I will release full change notes when I push the changes tomorrow, but the next revision of the Manager fundamentally alters the way that it is installed and initialized, in order to deliver a.) easier deployment, b.) better recovery and c.) better resilience overall.

In order to roll those changes out, I basically have to switch over to a new version of the webapp in production, which means that the Manager will go away for a while tomorrow afternoon, probably about half an hour or so.

As usual, I will post a short notice here before the outage and then an "all clear" notice when we are fully cut-over.

Thanks for using the Manager!