This document provides information on the previous releases of ACEDB for Windows. This information was previously embedded in WinAce.shtml but has been segregated out.
For information about the current release of ACEDB for Windows go here
Note: All releases 4.5.6 and previous are now the 'classical' builds of WinAce based upon Microsoft Visual C/C++ technology. These have now been superseded by a new Gnu C build of WinAce for Release 4.8
Bug Fixes and Enhancements in Previous Releases
Release (4.5.6) Changes/Bug Fixes
- A partially functional standalone version of dotter is now available in the archive.
- Menu picks outside the drawing extents but inside the client area of a (resized) graphic window now brings up the default "box 0" menu for the graph.
- Mouse double click selection of objects was previously a bit flaky. This bug has been repaired.
- Copy/Paste now works. In addition, copy (and paste in contexts where it makes sense) is now available as an option in some graph popup menus (e.g. key sets, tree displays, etc.)
- The ACEDB for Windows API for external application use of the ACEDB for Windows dynamic linked libraries has been refined. Contact Richard B. (email@example.com) for details and the required software package to exploit this functionality.
- Tace: DOS file specification wild cards ("*" and "?") are now accepted in filenames given to the "Parse" command, and results in parsing in of all files matching the given filename specification with wildcards.
- The dendrogram display is in 'beta' release state (code reviewed and cleaned up).
Release 4.5.5 - July 15th, 1998:
- The main purpose of this release was to enhance and repair ACEDB for Windows connectivity with the "external world". This includes the following:
- A significant program limitation inadvertently introduced in Release 4.5.4 when run under Windows NT is that " privileged" user status was required to run the program. This stemmed from program recoding to make use of the system registry. Unfortunately, writing to the registry under NT requires special "write" privileges generally available only to Adminstrator users. Note: this problem should not occur under Windows '95/'98. In 4.5.5, this problem has been partially alleviated by providing problem free "readonly" access privileges to ACEDB for Windows for all users, and limiting (commandline) environment parameter setting privileges to Administrators. That is to say, the "DATABASE=< databasename>" suffices to run the database if the database is originally run once with all the necessary command line parameters (see program installation and configuration below...) by a user with "Administrator" system registry write privileges.
- A small glitch in window sizing of scrollable text windows caused windows (i.e. tree displays with lots of text) to be resized off the screen. This bug has been fixed.
- Rapid mouse button "double clicks" were previously a bit strange. For example, such double clicks for "Pathway" keysets would bring up two copies of a given pathway graph. Such double clicks in tree displays on "hidden/expended" tag subtrees would not work properly (one needed to make two slow mouse picks to see the correct behaviour). This bug has been fixed.
- Blixem and Dotter (and pixel graphics in general) are now almost fully functional. Blixem "efetch" operations are still not properly supported and may be superseded in a future release by a WWW based retrieval mechanism (SRS based?). Dotter plot printouts may be obtained; however, this developer notes that better quality plots result from the user of "screen capture" utilities, because of their ability to capture the nuances of plot colours.
- For Blixem alignment, it should be noted that users should configure ACEDB PLAIN (and FIXED) fonts to use a true "fixed pitch" font such as "Lucida Console" to obtain the best display results. TrueType fonts such as Courier New don't seem to work quite as well...
- ACEDB email functionality is now available to ACEDB for Windows. In order to use this functionality, you should have a properly configured email client on your machine (i.e. be internet or LAN connected). E-mail remains somewhat interactive even after dispatching: ACEDB for Windows invokes your client window with recipient addresses and content filled in. You need to push the "Send" button to dispatch. Not as painless as the UNIX version (which uses command line UNIX "mail" to dispatch messages) but it works!
- Some "cosmetic" enhancements/fixes in various places (e.g. the genetic map display) genetic map display) have been made.
- The "Add/Alias/Rename" dialog box has been enhanced to provide for selection (and display) of "non-visible" classes, for object creation.
- A new "Phylogenetic"/"Taxonomic" tree graph display has been developed. See specific new documentation under "Dendrogram.html" in whelp. Some class model additions are required to run this feature. Some sample data (.ace files) are provided with this release.
- Implementation of the new ?URL model class is under development and will provide WWW links, displayable in a browser. The long term objective is to directly couple the ?Script functionality (see below) with ?Url, to provide customized input and display of WWW sourced data within the ACEDB shell. Users wishing to use this class must explicitly add it into their wspec\models.wrm file:
?Url Url UNIQUE Text // Simple, text of URL Template UNIQUE ?Url // use this object as a generic template Reference_tag UNIQUE Text // look for this tag in the reffing object for url Remove_prefix UNIQUE Text // prefix to remove to make url Remove_postfix UNIQUE Text // postfix to remove Prepend UNIQUE Text // then add these. Append UNIQUE Text
In addition to the model, users can add the following to options.wrm:
_VUrl -V -D WWW
and may wish to put the class name into their layout.wrm file (for it to be visible?). In the present release, ?URL is only partially implemented so is not very useful. This notice merely provides an opportunity for users to consider using the ?URL class and begin building their models and databases accordingly. Full ?URL functionality should be available in the next release or so.
A new ?Script class alternative to Pick_Me_to_Call scripting functionality is under development. Unfortunately, due to technical constraints (shell "pipes" don't seem to work properly under "graphics" Winace?), STDIN/STDOUT scripts must read and write from redirected files, not directly from STDIN or STDOUT. Thus, ACEDB writes to such a file, then invokes a script, then reads the results. For example, this new class can be used to run Perl scripts. (Of course, to run Perl for NT, you must have it properly installed on your machine)
A new ?Script class model is now available for ACEDB for Windows, which has the following form and semantics (tags currently implemented or which may be implemented). Users wishing to use this class must explicitly add it into their wspec\models.wrm file:
?Script Program Text // name of an application program, e.g. "perl" Options Text // program option (command line switches) Script Text // Name of perl script (located in wperl) Directory Text // Working Directory (for data only) Args Switches Text // Commandline switches understood by the script Input Prompt_User_Input // Prompt user for input source filename Input_File Text // Input file name, of data // in form "Input_Format" Input_Format UNIQUE TextIn // Text only input AceIn // Ace file input FastaIn// Fasta Sequence formatted input Output Prompt_User_Output // Prompt user for output target filename Output_File Text // Output file name Output_Format UNIQUE TextOut // Text only output AceOut // Ace file output, // automatically read back into ACEDB for Windows FastaOut // Fasta output Display Completion_Message Text // User specified completion dialog message Graph // If Output is "AceOut", display single objects // in their default display; // multiple "type B" objects
In addition to the model, users can add the following to options.wrm:
_VScript -V -D SCRIPT
and may wish to put the class name into their layout.wrm file (for it to be visible?). Users then create the scripts and the ?Script objects in ACEDB for Windows to run them. Stay tuned for future developments which will permit "pipelining" of scripts.
Release 4.5.4 - May 1st, 1998
Crash Bug Fixes
- WinAce ACEDB generated crashes ("messcrashes") under Windows '95 would "hard crash" the program, thus not giving any indication of why ACEDB crashed (i.e. no informative error message. This was not a problem under Windows NT, thus reflecting some low level difference between '95 and NT. A program fix was devised which appears to eliminate the hard crash and now gives the user an "ACEDB" crash error message which is more informative.
Environment Parameter Data
- The pop-menu "sticky menu selection" problem bug has been fixed: when a user hits "escape" clicks outside the pop menu, NO item is selected (i.e. "Quit" is no longer selected by accident :-) Other additional menu problems were fixed.
- Window behaviours have now been tamed somewhat: scroll bars and window (re)sizing should work better than before (i.e. especially during "Query..Table Maker" operations, tree display graphs, etc.) In general, blixem scrolling and tree display tag "expand/contract"operations will no longer result in the "dwindling window" phenomenon. Several displays exhibiting improper "clipping" (e.g. ?Grid's) now display properly.
- It used to happen that if you attempt an "Add-Remove" keyset operation, add some objects dismiss the message box when the original keyset (owning the message box) is not active, then continued to behave as if the message box was still present ie clicking inside removes, outside adds. This bug is fixed.
- "Print Preview" has been disabled for the time being since its operation has been problematic. However, this should not upset anyone too much because REAL printing is very much improved: essentially WYSIWYG, with automatic pagination across multiple pages (if you need a single picture, you'll need to "cut and paste"). Page numbering is analogous to spreadsheet "A1" cell numbering: [A..Z] columns, [1..n] rows.