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Thread: Q: Is v5 more developer friendly?

  1. #1
    Eric Ruff

    Default Q: Is v5 more developer friendly?

    Could anyone please give feedback on any improvements in v5 targeted for multi-developer environments that have either solved bugs/problems or added needed functionality over v4.5?

    Specifically, I'd like to hear from someone with two or more A5 developers who concurrently develop under v5 on the same db. [My biggest difficulty with v4.5 is integrating changes made to forms, reports, and functions on a laptop copy of the db while another makes updates to other forms and reports on the main network db. Another difficulty is EXTREMELY SLOW lock acknowledgement when accidentally trying to edit a form or report another developer is editing.]



  2. #2
    Alpha Software Employee Cian Chambliss's Avatar
    Real Name
    Cian Chambliss
    Join Date
    Oct 2000

    Default RE: Q: Is v5 more developer friendly?

    Some effort has been made to make checking for layouts being locked quicker.

    The improvements that would effect a multi-developer environment are mostly in the area of scripts (the code pane) - since scripts automatically track when created them and when the last change was made in the header comment -- also code auto-formatting improves readability of other developers code. Also, there are utilities like global script searching that make it easier to find code.

    The only built-in advantage A5 offers in the layout editors is in reducing the time it takes to produce new forms and browses(through the new genies) + faster bulk setting of properties through stylesheets. Also, it is now easier to copy forms/browses/reports between databases (i.e. there is a copy command for every layout). However, tracking changes that developers make *within* a form/browse/report is not handled (i.e. there is no indication of what fields are 'new' since the last time you looked at the form).

    Also, the 'send' command makes it easier to send your changes if the developers are distributed - and in the case of scripts and functions, you can selectively extport or email (and import) scripts - unfortunatly we didn't implement this for layouts (maybe in a point release).

    A revision tracking system could be implemented in xbasic as an addin, but may be tough to make completely bulletproof without more hooks at the system level.

  3. #3
    Eric Ruff

    Default RE: Q: Is v5 more developer friendly?

    Thanks for responding, Cian. I appreciate all the effort you folks are making, and I'm anxiously awaiting the point where we can start playing with v5 to take advantage of the improvements. Any and all improvements in "developer friendliness" and speed will always be appreciated.

    Having been a founder, CEO, president, and chief architect of two software companies (Gazelle Systems and PowerQuest), I know what it's like to try to balance all the demands of the users and the marketplace, and I think you guys are doing a great job. You've got a great product.


  4. #4
    Alpha Software Employee Selwyn Rabins's Avatar
    Real Name
    Selwyn Rabins
    Join Date
    Mar 2000
    Boston, MA

    Default RE: Q: Is v5 more developer friendly?

    in v5 when you try to edit a layout that is already open in another session, the "layout is locked" error message now comes up essentially instantaneously.

    in v4.5 it could take quite a while before it came up.

  5. #5
    Eric Ruff

    Default RE: Q: Is v5 more developer friendly?

    Thanks for fixing that msg wait issue; it was one of my biggest issues. In a month or so, we'll start the process of upgrading/migrating to v5.


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