Why preview release instead of something more official like a beta? Well there has been lots of changes on the installer front (which I am mostly covering for this post), so a preview release ensures that our installer changes are locked down and stable for the eventual beta/RC/final releases that follow. It'd be a bit embarrassing to release a beta with fubar installers now wouldn't it?
Windows Installer Changes
The installer changes were driven by the following changes since 2.2:
- Upgrade of PHP, which has replaced the ISAPI module with FastCGI for IIS
- Upgrading the windows compiler to Visual Studio 2010 (and .net Framework 4.0)
- Bundling of Subversion metadata with viewer files
Because of these changes, the installer now requires the following pre-requisites:
- FastCGI for IIS if you are using IIS6 or older. For IIS7 and newer, you can enable the FastCGI feature.
- .net Framework 4.0 if you are using IIS/.net
- Visual C++ 2010 and Visual C++ 2008 Redistributables (automatically installed by the installer)
- (Optional) A subversion client (eg. TortoiseSVN)
Just like with previous .net versions. If you are using IIS configuration with .net, you must install the .net Framework 4.0 (and register ASP.net with IIS) before you run the installer.
If you are using IIS configuration, you must have FastCGI enabled/installed before you run the installer.
The installer will tell you of this important fact before you proceed regardless:
The old PostGIS FDO provider is no longer bundled with 2.4. You should all be using the PostgreSQL FDO provider now, because with 2.4 this will be your only choice.
We've had concerns from users about the new SVN metadata feature being potentially mandatory. Well you can disable it if you so please.
For 2.4, we've also given much thought to making MapGuide more friendly and accessible to new developers, so in this respect we've bundled the following samples with the installer:
- .net Viewer Sample*
- PHP Viewer Sample*
- Java Viewer Sample*
- .net Developer's Guide Samples*+
- PHP Developer's Guide Samples*+
- Java Developer's Guide Samples*+^
New Windows Deployment Option: MgInstantSetup
Is the windows installer too restrictive for you? Want side-by-side installs of MapGuide with minimal configuration disruption and conflicts? For 2.4, we've also included a new zip distribution with the MgInstantSetup utility bundled in.
The zip basically contains the build output before it is packaged up into an msi, so it has a whole bunch of configuration files with templated placeholder tokens, which the MgInstantSetup utility will help fill the values in for you.
This utility does not make any registry settings and presuming you've filled in the values correctly will not result in conflicting services, virtual directories or port numbers.
Ubuntu Installer Changes
What's this? An improved installer experience for Ubuntu as well? See for yourself:
Based on your choice of FDO providers, the matching debs will be installed and the matching XML fragments will be put into providers.xml
Granted, that's all you will get in terms of interactivity and customization at the moment, but anything that makes installation more flexible is a good thing. Not full apt-get flexible, but small baby steps.
Stay tuned for Part 2, where I talk about the meat and potatoes: The new features.
* All these samples require the Sheboygan sample dataset to be loaded first before you can run them.
+ To run these samples you will have to load the respective MGP file found in the root directories of each of these samples.
^ You may notice that the Java Developer's Guide samples do not cover the whole API like the .net and PHP ones. For now, you should just take a look at the .net one given the syntactic similarity to Java.