X-Git-Url: https://ncurses.scripts.mit.edu/?p=ncurses.git;a=blobdiff_plain;f=announce.html.in;h=84b9d4297de5879a7d15349313114813d6c657fa;hp=c73a5dd2c04976c1e06bc4e3fdaf1e440ebdde7a;hb=a5fe3726f7d4374e9b1551b535c8617b423996f2;hpb=3c19a91c36092255fbac7de00e3db8830aefc053 diff --git a/announce.html.in b/announce.html.in index c73a5dd2..84b9d429 100644 --- a/announce.html.in +++ b/announce.html.in @@ -1,8 +1,7 @@ - + + "HTML Tidy for HTML5 for Linux version 5.2.0"> Announcing ncurses @VERSION@ - + + -

Announcing ncurses @VERSION@

The ncurses (new curses) +

Announcing ncurses @VERSION@

+ +

Overview

+ +

The ncurses (new curses) library is a free software emulation of curses in System V - Release 4.0, and more. It uses terminfo format, supports pads and - color and multiple highlights and forms characters and - function-key mapping, and has all the other SYSV-curses - enhancements over BSD curses. + Release 4.0 (SVr4), and more. It uses terminfo format, supports + pads and color and multiple highlights and forms characters and + function-key mapping, and has all the other SVr4-curses + enhancements over BSD curses. SVr4 curses became the basis of + X/Open Curses.

+ +

In mid-June 1995, the maintainer of 4.4BSD curses declared + that he considered 4.4BSD curses obsolete, and encouraged the + keepers of unix releases such as + BSD/OS, FreeBSD and NetBSD to switch over to ncurses.

+ +

Since 1995, ncurses has been + ported to many systems:

+ + + +

The distribution includes the library and support utilities, + including

+ + + +

Full manual pages are provided for the library and tools.

+ +

The ncurses distribution is + available at ncurses' homepage:

+ +
+

ftp://ftp.invisible-island.net/ncurses/ + or
+ https://invisible-mirror.net/archives/ncurses/ .

+
+ +

It is also available via anonymous FTP at the GNU distribution + site

+ +
+

ftp://ftp.gnu.org/gnu/ncurses/ .

+
+ +

Release + Notes

+ +

These notes are for ncurses + @VERSION@, released February 12, 2020.

+ +

This release is designed to be source-compatible with + ncurses 5.0 through 6.1; providing + extensions to the application binary interface (ABI). Although + the source can still be configured to support the ncurses 5 ABI, the reason for the release is + to reflect improvements to the ncurses 6 ABI and the supporting utility + programs.

+ +

There are, of course, numerous other improvements, listed in + this announcement.

+ +

The most important + bug-fixes/improvements dealt with user-defined capabilities + in terminal descriptions. The release notes also mention some + other bug-fixes, but are focused on new features and improvements + to existing features since ncurses + 6.1 release.

+ +

Library improvements

+ +

New features

+ +

There are several new features:

+ + + +

Additionally, to improve performance other changes (and + extensions) are provided in this release:

+ + + +

Other + improvements

+ +

These are revised features:

+ + + +

These were done to limit or ultimately deprecate features:

+ + + +

These are improvements to existing features:

+ + + +

These are corrections to existing features:

+ + + +

Program + improvements

+ +

Several improvements were made to the utility programs:

+ +
+
clear +
+ +
+ +
+ +
infocmp +
+ +
+ +
+ +
tic +
+ +
+ +
+ +
toe +
+ +
+ +
+ +
tset +
+ +
+ +
+ +
tput +
+ +
+ +
+
+ +

Several changes were made to the generated ncurses*config + scripts and the analogous “.pc” files to + reduce differences between the configurations they report:

+ + + +

Examples

+ +

Along with the library and utilities, improvements were made + to the ncurses-examples. Most of + this activity aimed at improving the test-packages. A few changes + are more generally useful, e.g., for the main ncurses + test-program, and for analyzing traces using the + tracemunch script:

+ + + +

There are other new demo/test programs and reusable + examples:

+ +
+
color_content +
+ +
Demonstrate the color_content and + extended_color_content functions.
+ +
demo_tabs +
+ +
A simple demo of tabs in curses.
+ +
dump_window +
+ +
A portable curses screen-dump, used to compare ncurses + screen contents with Solaris.
+ +
pair_content +
+ +
Demonstrate the pair_content and + extended_pair_content functions.
+ +
report_hashing +
+ +
Check hash-tables used for terminfo and termcap names.
+ +
parse_rgb +
+ +
Sample implementation of the ncurses RGB extension from + user_caps.5, used + in picsmap and savescreen programs.
+
+ +

A variety of improvements were made to existing programs, both + new features as well as options added to make the set of programs + more consistent.

+ + + +

Terminal database

+ +

There are several new terminal descriptions:

+ +
+

alacritty, domterm, kitty, + mintty, mintty-direct, ms-terminal, + n7900, nsterm-build309, + nsterm-direct, screen5, ti703, + ti707, ti703-w, ti707-w + vscode, vscode-direct, xterm-mono, + xterm.js

+
+ +

There are many changes to existing terminal descriptions. Some + were updates to several descriptions:

+ + + +

while others affected specific descriptions. These were + retested, to take into account changes by their developers:

+ +
+

terminator, st

+
+ +

while these are specific fixes based on reviewing + documentation, user reports, or warnings from tic:

+ +
+
adds200:
+ +
+ +
+ +
gnome-256color +
+ +
+ +
+ +
interix +
+ +
+ +
+ +
linux-16color +
+ +
+ +
+ +
nsterm-256color:
+ +
+ +
+ +
regent40:
+ +
+ +
+ +
regent60:
+ +
+ +
+ +
tvi950:
+ +
+ +
+ +
tvi955:
+ +
+ +
+ +
vi200:
+ +
+ +
+ +
wy50:
+ +
+ +
+ +
wy50 and + wy60:
+ +
+ +
+ +
xterm+x11hilite:
+ +
+ +
+
+ +

A few entries use extensions (user-defined terminal + capabilities):

+ + + +

Documentation

+ +

As usual, this release

+ + + +

In addition to providing background information to explain + these features and show how they evolved, there are corrections, + clarifications, etc.:

+ + + +

There are no new manual pages (all of the manual page updates + are to existing pages).

+ +

Some of the improvements are more subtle, relating to the way + the information is presented. For instance, the generated + terminfo.5 file uses a different table layout, allowing it to use + space on wide terminals more effectively.

+ +

Interesting + bug-fixes

-

The ncurses distribution is available via anonymous FTP at the - GNU distribution site ftp://ftp.gnu.org/gnu/ncurses/ .
+

While there were many bugs fixed during development of ncurses + 6.2, only a few (the reason for this release) were both important + and interesting. Most of the bug-fixes were for local issues + which did not affect compatibility across releases. Since those + are detailed in the NEWS file no elaboration is needed here.

- It is also available at ftp://invisible-island.net/ncurses/ .

+

The interesting bugs were in tic/infocmp's handling of + user-defined capabilities. These were not recent bugs. Initially + it was a simple problem:

-

Release Notes

This release is designed to be upward - compatible from ncurses 5.0 through 5.8; very few applications - will require recompilation, depending on the platform. These are - the highlights from the change-log since ncurses 5.8 release. + -

It also improves the Ada95 binding:

+

For ncurses, the elapsed time to fix this bug was less than + three years. Someone reported a problem with the terminal + description a few weeks after releasing ncurses 6.1 (in tmux #1264), and + the terminal description was updated that week (ncurses patch + 20180224):

+ +
+
+20180224
+        + modify _nc_resolve_uses2() to detect incompatible types when merging
+          a "use=" clause of extended capabilities.  The problem was seen in a
+          defective terminfo integrated from simpleterm sources in 20171111,
+          compounded by repair in 20180121.
+        + correct Ss/Ms interchange in st-0.7 entry (tmux #1264) -TD
+
+
+ +

The larger part of that change added a check to prevent a + simple merge of terminal descriptions where the same user-defined + name was used with different types. But it raised some + questions:

-

Features of Ncurses

The ncurses package is fully - compatible with SVr4 (System V Release 4) curses: +

Since the correction to terminfo.src + could have been readily adopted by packagers, there was nothing + more to be done from ncurses' standpoint on that part. But + improving ncurses to prevent issues like that is the reason for + making a release.

+ +

Nothing more (constructive) was mentioned with regard to + simpleterm. But a few problems were found in the handling of + user-defined capabilities:

+ +

Both of these issues dated from the original implementation of + user-defined capabilities. Fixing them does not change the + terminal database, but a older tic without the fixes + will not be able to handle terminfo sources which rely upon those + fixes. Starting in June 2019, the download link for the terminfo + source file was capped at that date. The development sources have + an up-to-date copy of the file, for people with a legitimate need + for it.

+ +

The “-c” (check) option of tic + is not very useful if it cannot offer advice on parameters needed + for user-defined capabilities. The various Caps files + were reorganized to reduce redundancy, and in the common portion + (Caps-ncurses), + a registry of user-defined capabilities is provided for use by + tic. While users can still define their own custom + capabilities, tic will not offer any advice when their + parameters do not match.

+ +

In ncurses 6.2, tic makes a special check to allow + any type for RGB, but its being able to do this relies + upon fixes made in the ncurses library in mid-2019.

+ +

Configuration changes

+ +

Major + changes

+ +

There are no major changes. Several new options were added to + ease integration of packages with systems using different + versions of GNAT and ncurses. Also, + improvements were made to configure checks.

+ +

Configuration options

+ +

There are a few new/modified configure options:

+ +
+
--with-config-suffix +
+ +
+

helps work around a filename conflict with Debian packages + versus test-packages.

+
+ +
--with-ada-libname +
+ +
+

allows one to rename the “AdaCurses” library + (at least one packager prefers a lowercase name).

+
+ +
--with-fallbacks +
+ +
+

now ensures there is a value, and adds the fallback + information to top-level Makefile summary.

+
+ +
--with-pcre2 +
+ +
+

check for pcre-posix library to help with MinGW port.

+
-
  • Full support for SVr4 curses features including keyboard - mapping, color, forms-drawing with ACS characters, and - automatic recognition of keypad and function keys.
  • +
    --with-tic-path and
    -
  • An emulation of the SVr4 panels library, supporting a stack - of windows with backing store, is included.
  • +
    --with-infocmp-path +
    -
  • An emulation of the SVr4 menus library, supporting a - uniform but flexible interface for menu programming, is - included.
  • +
    +

    help work around problems building fallback source using + pre-6.0 tic/infocmp.

    +
    + +
    --with-versioned-syms +
    -
  • An emulation of the SVr4 form library, supporting data - collection through on-screen forms, is included.
  • +
    +

    option value can now be a relative pathname.

    +
    +
    -
  • Binary terminfo entries generated by the ncurses tic(1) - implementation are bit-for-bit-compatible with the entry format - SVr4 curses uses.
  • +

    Portability

    -
  • The utilities have options to allow you to filter terminfo - entries for use with less capable - curses/terminfo versions such - as the HP/UX and AIX ports.
  • - The ncurses package also has many useful extensions over - SVr4: +

    Many of the portability changes are implemented via the + configure script:

    -

    State of the Package

    Numerous bugs present in earlier - versions have been fixed; the library is far more reliable than - it used to be. Bounds checking in many `dangerous' entry points - has been improved. The code is now type-safe according to gcc - -Wall. The library has been checked for malloc leaks and arena - corruption by the Purify memory-allocation tester. +

    Here are some of the other portability fixes:

    -

    The ncurses code has been tested with a wide variety of - applications including (versions starting with those noted):

    + -
    directory-editor
    - http://invisible-island.net/ded/
    +
    -
    dialog
    +

    Features of + ncurses

    -
    the underlying application used in Slackware's setup, and - the basis for similar applications on GNU/Linux.
    - http://invisible-island.net/dialog/
    +

    The ncurses package is fully + upward-compatible with SVr4 (System V Release 4) curses:

    -
    lynx
    + -
    mail utility
    - http://www.mutt.org/
    +

    The ncurses package also has + many useful extensions over SVr4:

    -
    ncftp
    + + +

    Applications using + ncurses

    + +

    The ncurses distribution + includes a selection of test programs (including a few games). + These are available separately as ncurses-examples

    + +

    The ncurses library has been tested with a wide variety of + applications including:

    + +
    +
    +
    aptitude +
    + +
    +

    FrontEnd to Apt, the debian package manager

    + +

    https://wiki.debian.org/Aptitude

    +
    + +
    cdk +
    + +
    +

    Curses Development Kit

    + +

    @WEBSITE@/cdk/
    +

    +
    + +
    ded +
    + +
    +

    directory-editor

    + +

    @WEBSITE@/ded/

    +
    + +
    dialog +
    + +
    +

    the underlying application used in Slackware's setup, + and the basis for similar install/configure applications on + many systems.

    + +

    @WEBSITE@/dialog/

    +
    + +
    lynx +
    + +
    +

    the text WWW browser

    + +

    https://lynx.invisible-island.net/

    +
    + +
    mutt +
    + +
    +

    mail utility

    + +

    http://www.mutt.org/

    +
    + +
    ncftp +
    + +
    +

    file-transfer utility

    + +

    https://www.ncftp.com/

    +
    + +
    nvi +
    + +
    +

    New vi uses ncurses.

    + +

    https://sites.google.com/a/bostic.com/keithbostic/vi
    + +

    +
    + +
    ranger +
    + +
    +

    A console file manager with VI key bindings in + Python.

    + +

    https://ranger.github.io/

    +
    + +
    tin +
    + +
    +

    newsreader, supporting color, MIME

    + +

    http://www.tin.org/

    +
    + +
    vifm +
    + +
    +

    File manager with vi like keybindings

    + +

    https://vifm.info/

    +
    +
    +
    + +

    as well as some that use ncurses for the terminfo support alone:

    + +
    +
    +
    minicom +
    + +
    +

    terminal emulator for serial modem connections

    + +

    https://alioth.debian.org/projects/minicom/

    +
    + +
    mosh +
    -

    The ncurses distribution includes a selection of test programs - (including a few games).

    +
    +

    a replacement for ssh.

    -

    Who's Who and What's What

    Zeyd Ben-Halim started it from - a previous package pcurses, written by Pavel Curtis. Eric S. +

    https://mosh.mit.edu/

    +
    + +
    tack +
    + +
    +

    terminfo action checker

    + +

    @HOMEPAGE@/tack.html

    +
    + +
    tmux +
    + +
    +

    terminal multiplexor

    + +

    https://github.com/tmux/tmux/wiki

    +
    + +
    vile +
    + +
    +

    vi-like-emacs may be built to use the terminfo, + termcap or curses interfaces.

    + +

    @WEBSITE@/vile/

    +
    +
    +
    + +

    and finally, those which use only the termcap interface:

    + +
    +
    +
    emacs +
    + +
    +

    text editor

    + +

    https://www.gnu.org/software/emacs/

    +
    + +
    less +
    + +
    +

    The most commonly used pager (a program that + displays text files).

    + +

    http://www.greenwoodsoftware.com/less/

    +
    + +
    screen +
    + +
    +

    terminal multiplexor

    + +

    https://www.gnu.org/software/screen/

    +
    + +
    vim +
    + +
    +

    text editor

    + +

    https://www.vim.org/

    +
    +
    +
    + +

    Development + activities

    + +

    Zeyd Ben-Halim started ncurses + from a previous package pcurses, written by Pavel Curtis. Eric S. Raymond continued development. Jürgen Pfeifer wrote most of - the form and menu libraries. Ongoing work is being done by - Thomas Dickey. - Thomas Dickey acts as the maintainer for the Free Software - Foundation, which holds the copyright on ncurses. Contact the - current maintainers at bug-ncurses@gnu.org. - -

    To join the ncurses mailing list, please write email to - bug-ncurses-request@gnu.org containing the line:

    -
    -             subscribe <name>@<host.domain>
    -
    + the form and menu libraries.

    + +

    Ongoing development work is done by Thomas E. Dickey. Thomas + E. Dickey has acted as the maintainer for the Free Software + Foundation, which holds a copyright on ncurses for + releases 4.2 through 6.1. Following the release of ncurses 6.1, + effective as of release 6.2, copyright for ncurses reverted to + Thomas E. Dickey (see the ncurses FAQ for + additional information).

    + +

    Contact the current maintainers at

    + +
    + bug-ncurses@gnu.org +
    + +

    To join the ncurses mailing list, please write email to

    + +
    + bug-ncurses-request@gnu.org +
    + containing the line: + +
    +

    subscribe + <name>@<host.domain>

    +

    This list is open to anyone interested in helping with the development and testing of this package.

    -

    Beta versions of ncurses and patches to the current release - are made available at ftp://invisible-island.net/ncurses/ .

    +

    Beta versions of ncurses are + made available at

    + +
    +

    ftp://ftp.invisible-island.net/ncurses/current/ + and
    + https://invisible-mirror.net/archives/ncurses/current/ .

    +
    + +

    Patches to the current release are made available at

    + +
    +

    ftp://ftp.invisible-island.net/ncurses/6.1/ + and
    + https://invisible-mirror.net/archives/ncurses/6.1/ .

    +

    There is an archive of the mailing list here:

    -

    http://lists.gnu.org/archive/html/bug-ncurses - (also https)

    +
    +

    http://lists.gnu.org/archive/html/bug-ncurses + (also https)

    +
    + +

    Related + resources

    -

    Future Plans

    +

    The release notes make scattered references to these pages, + which may be interesting by themselves:

    We need people to help with these projects. If you are - interested in working on them, please join the ncurses list. +
  • tack – terminfo action + checker
  • -

    Other Related Resources

    The distribution provides a newer - version of the terminfo-format terminal description file once - maintained by Eric +
  • tctest – termcap + library checker
  • + +
  • Terminal + Database
  • + + +

    Other + resources

    + +

    The distribution provides a newer version of the + terminfo-format terminal description file once maintained by + Eric Raymond . Unlike the older version, the termcap and - terminfo data are provided in the same file, and provides several - user-definable extensions beyond the X/Open specification. + terminfo data are provided in the same file, which also provides + several user-definable extensions beyond the X/Open + specification.

    You can find lots of information on terminal-related topics not covered in the terminfo file at - Richard Shuford's archive .

    + Richard Shuford's archive . The collection of computer + manuals at bitsavers.org has also been + useful.

    + +