Friendica v2020.09 Release Notes

Release Date: 2020-09-20 // about 1 year ago
  • πŸ›  We are happy to announce the availability of Friendica 2020.09, wrapping up the work over the summer. It bundles some exciting new features and enhancements with numerous fixes along the way.

    πŸš€ This release is composed of 230 pull requests to the development branch, that closed 65 numbered tickets and enhanced several aspects of Friendica and the communication with other projects within the Fediverse. For a full reference, please have a look at the CHANGELOG file, some important things are worth highlighting here:

    • πŸš€ The speed of the full text search was enhanced significantly. If you had disabled it before, please check it out now and let us know if it works for you as we are considering to remove the option to disable it in a future release.
    • The themes got some updates. Among other things the way how a re-share is displayed. If you like the old display style better you'll find an option in the user settings to switch back.
    • Some time ago we did a user voting about which additional features should be handled in a unified way on all Friendica instances. The last of these items are now reworked. One of these is that all public calendar entries are now available as iCAL file from your profile.
    • πŸ‘ Friendica is now supporting Activity Pub relay server. For more information please have a look at this forum thread

    βž• Additionally this release contains a fix for a problem that Roger Meyer discovered in the processing of Activity Pub messages. We encourage all Friendica admins to update their nodes to the 2020.09 release to prevent problems arising from this. Thanks to Roger to report the issue!

    If you are using PHP version 7.0 there is currently a problem with one of the dependencies of Friendica. Please see this forum thread for more information.

    ⚑️ How to Update

    ⚑️ Updating from old Friendica versions

    πŸš€ If you are updating from an older version than the 2020.03 release, please first update your Friendica instance to that version.

    ⚑️ Pre-Update Procedures

    πŸš€ Ensure that the last backup of your Friendica installation was done recently. We had no problems reported during the upgrade process from 2020.07 to the 2020.09 release candidate, so hopefully you will have a smooth transition.

    ⚑️ Please make sure to use Barracuda as MySQL DB file format for your Friendica database. Change your database settings before you proceed with the Friendica update. This change will take some time depending on the size of your database.

    Using Git

    Important : We are removing the master branch and are using the stable branch instead.

    ⚑️ Updating from the git repositories should only involve a pull from the Friendica core repository and addons repository. Remember to update the dependencies with composer as well.

    cd friendica
    git fetch
    git checkout BRANCH
    bin/composer.phar install --no-dev
    cd addon
    git fetch
    git checkout BRANCH
    

    ⚑️ Where BRANCH is either the new stable branch or the develop branch, depending which version of Friendica you want to use. The old master branch will not receive any updates and will be removed soon.

    πŸš€ Pulling in the dependencies with composer will show some deprecation warning, we will be working on that in the upcoming release.

    Using the Archive Files

    πŸ’» If you had downloaded the source files in an archive file (tar.gz) please download the current version of the archive (friendica-full-2020.09.tar.gz and friendica-addons 2020.09.tar.gz) and unpack it on your local computer.

    πŸ†• As many files got deleted or moved around, please upload the unpacked files to a new directory on your server (say friendica_new) and copy over your existing configuration (config/local.config.php and config/addon.config.php) and .htaccess files. Afterwards rename your current Friendica directory (e.g. friendica) to friendica_old and friendica_new to friendica.

    The files of the dependencies are included in the archive (make sure you are using the friendica-full-2020.09 archive), so you don’t have to worry about them.

    ⚑️ Post Update Tasks

    ⚑️ The database update should be applied automatically, but sometimes it gets stuck. If you encounter this, please initiate the DB update manually from the command line by running the script

    bin/console dbstructure update
    

    from the base of your Friendica installation. If the output contains any error message, please let us know using the channels mentioned below.

    Please note , that some of the changes to the database structure will take some time to be applied, depending on the size of your Friendica database.

    Known Issues

    πŸ‘€ If you are using lighttpd to serve your Friendica node the boolean AND operator for the full text search seems not to be working at the moment.

    How to Contribute

    πŸ‘· If you want to contribute to the project, you don’t need to have coding experience. There are a number of tasks listed in the issue tracker with the label β€œJunior Jobs” we think are good for new contributors. But you are by no means limited to these – if you find a solution to a problem (even a new one) please make a pull request at github or let us know in the development forum.

    πŸ“š Contribution to Friendica is also not limited to coding. Any contribution to the documentation, the translation or advertisement materials is welcome or reporting a problem. You don’t need to deal with Git(Hub) or Transifex if you don’t like to. Just get in touch with us and we will get the materials to the appropriate places.

    πŸš€ Thanks everyone who helped making this release possible and have fun!


Previous changes from v2020.07

  • πŸš€ Friendica "Red Hot Poker" 2020.07 released

    πŸš€ We are pleased to announce the slightly delayed release of Friendica 2020.07.

    πŸš€ Thanks to everyone who contributed to make this release! The 2020.07 release is composed from 280 tickets, closing 66 numbered issues and enhanced several aspects of Friendica and the communication with other projects within the Fediverse and the Federation. For a full reference, please have a look at the CHANGELOG file, some important things are worth highlighting them here:

    • Friendica is now using table views for the database which can cause errors from the MySQL database (Prepared statement needs to be re-prepared). If you encounter such, please have a look at this issue in the Friendica tracker and this article at stackoverflow if you are encountering problems in that aspect,
    • In the frio theme we introduced a more... menu at the bottom of postings which contains the not so often used actions (editing, pinning, etc.), Additionally it is now save to hit the ESC key while composing a new posting.
    • πŸ‘ You will now find allow lists, deny lists and block lists instead of their old labels.
    • 🐎 We found some places where we could enhance the performance of Friendica.

    πŸš€ Not directly linked to this release but worth mentioning is the cleanup-friendica script by ingoj to assist Friendica node admins and help with forgotten or dead accounts.

    If you are using PHP version 7.0 there is currently a problem with one of the dependencies of Friendica. Please see this forum thread for more information.

    ⚑️ How to Update

    ⚑️ Updating from old Friendica versions

    πŸš€ If you are updating from an older version than the 2020.03 release, please first update your Friendica instance to that version.

    ⚑️ Pre-Update Procedures

    πŸš€ Ensure that the last backup of your Friendica installation was done recently. We had no problems reported during the upgrade process from 2020.03 to the 2020.06 release candidate, so hopefully you will have a smooth transition.

    ⚑️ Please make sure to use Barracuda as MySQL DB file format for your Friendica database. Change your database settings before you proceed with the Friendica update. This change will take some time depending on the size of your database.

    Using Git

    Important : We are removing the master branch and are using the stable branch instead.

    πŸš€ Updating from the git repositories of Friendica will be a bit more complicated as you might be used to as we decided to rename the branch for the stable releases to stable. Hence you need to switch the branch you want to use, after pulling the current version of the code from the repositories. As usual, please remember to update the dependencies with composer as well.

    cd friendica
    git fetch
    git checkout BRANCH
    bin/composer.phar install
    cd addon
    git fetch
    git checkout BRANCH
    

    ⚑️ Where BRANCH is either the new stable branch or the develop branch, depending which version of Friendica you want to use. The old master branch will not receive any updates and will be removed soon.

    πŸš€ Pulling in the dependencies with composer will show some deprecation warning, we will be working on that in the upcoming release.

    Using the Archive Files

    πŸš€ If you had downloaded the source files in an archive file (tar.gz) please download the current version of the archive (friendica-full-2020.07.tar.gz and friendica-addons 2020.07.tar.gz) and unpack it on your local computer.

    πŸ†• As many files got deleted or moved around, please upload the unpacked files to a new directory on your server (say friendica_new) and copy over your existing configuration (config/local.config.php and config/addon.config.php) and .htaccess files. Afterwards rename your current Friendica directory (e.g. friendica) to friendica_old and friendica_new to friendica.

    The files of the dependencies are included in the archive (make sure you are using the friendica-full-2020.03 archive), so you don’t have to worry about them.

    ⚑️ Post Update Tasks

    ⚑️ The database update should be applied automatically, but maybe it gets stuck. If you encounter this, please initiate the DB update manually from the command line by running the script

    bin/console dbstructure update
    

    from the base of your Friendica installation. If the output contains any error message, please let us know using the channels mentioned below.

    Please note , that some of the changes to the database structure will take some time (days)) to be applied, depending on the size of your Friendica database.

    Known Issues

    After the release it was reported, that one of the dependencies of Friendica is currently not compatible to PHP 7.0 , although claiming otherwise. If you are using this version of PHP and want to install Friendica 2020.07 you have to edit the source code slight.y. For more information, see the forum thread about the problem.

    If you are using MySQL there is an issue under investigation you should be aware of. This issue affects only users of MySQL, users of MariaDB have not reported this issue.

    How to Contribute

    πŸ‘· If you want to contribute to the project, you don’t need to have coding experience. There are a number of tasks listed in the issue tracker with the label β€œJunior Jobs” we think are good for new contributors. But you are by no means limited to these – if you find a solution to a problem (even a new one) please make a pull request at github or let us know in the development forum.

    πŸ“š Contribution to Friendica is also not limited to coding. Any contribution to the documentation, the translation or advertisement materials is welcome or reporting a problem. You don’t need to deal with Git(Hub) or Transifex if you don’t like to. Just get in touch with us and we will get the materials to the appropriate places.

    πŸš€ Thanks everyone who helped making this release possible and have fun!