Exaile 4.0 release notes

Johannes Sasongko edited this page Aug 7, 2018 · 52 revisions

NOTE: This is a draft.

This document details changes made to the Exaile music player between its 3.x series and the new version 4.0.0, released on xxxx-xx-xx.

The major change in Exaile 4 is that it uses GTK+ 3 and GStreamer 1. Existing users are strongly recommended to upgrade because GStreamer 0.10, used in earlier versions, is unmaintained and may contain security issues.

The move to GTK+ 3 means Exaile is now able to use dark GTK+ themes and work well with HiDPI displays. There are minor UI differences between Exaile 3 and 4 to accommodate the toolkit upgrade, but the overall layout of the app is still exactly the same.

Table of contents

Fixes and improvements

  • Exaile's playback engine has been rewritten. There is only one engine now, which supports gapless, fade in/out, and crossfade features (the latter is still experimental).
  • Massive speed improvements, can handle 50000+ song library (#457, #458, #465).
  • On RTL locales, keep playback controls in LTR order (#144).
  • Disallow mouse scrolling on numeric tags in the tag editor to prevent accidental changes (#6).
  • Ogg Opus tags can now be read correctly (#150).
  • Show loading indicator when opening large playlists (#135).
  • Fixed bug on tracklist selection when a new track plays while the tracklist is being filtered (#80).
  • New tracklist columns: Year (#127), Language (#252, tagger support in #208), Website.
  • Save the Track Properties dialog location and size (#212, #236).
  • MP3 transcoding now uses the lamemp3enc GStreamer plugin instead of lame (#214).
  • Smart playlists can now be correctly exported (#216).
  • The progress bar now seeks on mouse scroll (#230).
  • Fixed Track Properties dialog not showing up when the BPM tag is non-numeric (#209, #235).
  • Unknown tags are now shown as empty instead of "Unknown", except in the title field (#250).
  • Matroska files with no TimecodeScale are now supported.
  • Fixed showing of Matroska discnumber and tracknumber tags.
  • Exaile now includes a 128x128 icon.
  • When going up the directory hierarchy in the Files panel, the previous directory is selected.
  • Searching on the collection and tracklist can be done regardless of diacritics (#176).
  • Fixed intermittent segfault when quickly browsing through menus (#97, #283).
  • Support for .aac files.
  • Fixed reading certain wav files.
  • Improved support for reading .aif/.aiff/.aifc files (#463).
  • Fixed failure on deleting tags from certain formats (#152, #286).
  • Smart playlist now supports filtering by bitrate (#274).
  • Smart playlist now supports matching by a whole word (#486).
  • Smart playlist now supports a user-specified default sort order (#469).
  • The search language now supports the "contains word" (w=) and "does not contain word" (!w=) operators. They have also been added to the smart playlist dialog.
  • A lot of dialog windows that were previously parentless are now properly attached to an Exaile window.
  • When using PulseAudio, other PA clients such as volume controls will classify Exaile's stream as music and correctly show Exaile's application name and icon (#324).
  • Exaile now comes with Bash and Fish completion scripts (#132 for Bash).
  • When Exaile fails to play a file due to missing GStreamer plugin, it tries to give the option to install the plugin using gstpbutils (#35).
  • New dialog to list available shortcuts: Help → Shortcuts. A few new shortcuts have been added.
  • New menu entry: Help → Open error logs.
  • Pressing Spacebar on the tracklist now triggers the play/pause action (#441).
  • Covers are now associated with album+artist+date instead of just album; if the musicbrainz_albumid tag is available then it is used instead (#306, #501). This may require covers to be re-fetched.
  • Playlist widget: implement sorting across multiple columns (#510).
  • Fixed track and disc number parsing on remote tracks (#520).
  • There is an option to tell GTK to use a dark theme if available.
  • On Windows and OSX, we now use pyinstaller to produce frozen executables, and our installer will no longer require installation of external dependencies.

Plugins

  • New plugins:

    • mpris2 implements most of the MPRIS 2.2 spec for external control of Exaile from compatible clients (e.g. GNOME Shell, KDE Plasma, and Playerctl). A few minor functionalities are still missing, and there is no plan to implement the optional TrackList interface.
    • keybinder replaces the xkeys plugin, providing multimedia keys support for setups where D-Bus is not available. It requires libkeybinder3, which uses Xlib directly and thus won't work on Wayland or MS Windows.
  • Fixes/improvements/changes:

    • All plugins distributed with Exaile now have version numbers identical to Exaile's (#82). This is mostly to keep things more consistent than they have been in the past. External plugins are not affected and may use any versioning scheme they consider appropriate.
    • Plugins can now specify dependencies and supported platforms in their PLUGININFOs. Plugins with missing dependencies are shown with a warning icon (#503). Plugins for the wrong platform are hidden by default.
    • bpm can detect track BPMs using GStreamer's bpmdetect element.
    • equalizer presets have been normalized so they are of somewhat similar loudness (#104). Existing configs may not be affected.
    • grouptagger can export group tags to JSON. It can't import them yet.
    • ipconsole has been updated for IPython 5, although some features are still buggy.
    • minimode's Playlist window now acts more like a normal window than a popup (it doesn't hide automatically) (#222).
    • moodbar has been rewritten for GTK+ 3. However, some visualization options have not been reimplemented.
    • When previewdevice is enabled, moodbar also replaces the secondary (preview) player with a moodbar (#81).
    • screensaverpause also supports MATE and Cinnamon Screensaver.
    • winmmkeys now has experimental support for the keyboard Python module.
  • Need love:

    • abrepeat, lastfmcovers, lastfmdynamic, librivox, minimode, and podcasts are in various levels of disrepair.
    • amazoncovers, awn, bookmarks, currentsong, lastfmlove, massstorage, multialarmclock, musicbrainzcovers, shutdown, and streamripper need testing. If you use any of these plugins, please let us know whether they work.
  • Removed plugins:

    • contextinfo, droptrayicon, and ipod depend on APIs or libraries that are not compatible with the new PyGObject API.
    • exfalso has not worked with up-to-date versions of Ex Falso for a while now.
    • gnomemmkeys and mpris are superseded by mpris2.
    • lyricsviewer has been merged into core Exaile (#421). To download lyrics from online services you will still need a lyrics provider plugin.
    • notifyosd has been merged into notify (#404).
    • xkeys is superseded by keybinder.

Any help in porting forward some of the missing functionalities will be appreciated.

Dependency changes

  • Exaile now depends on GTK+ >=3.10 and GStreamer >=1.6.
  • Exaile now requires the bsddb or bsddb3 python module.
  • The Python version requirement has been bumped up to 2.7.
  • Plugins:
    • daapclient and daapserver now depend on system spydaap instead of bundling its own (#445).
    • jamendo now uses the built-in json module from Python instead of bundling simplejson (#205).
    • lastfmlove now depends on system pylast instead of bundling its own (#183).
    • musicbrainzcovers now depends on system musicbrainzngs instead of bundling its own (#206).
    • podcasts now depends on system feedparser instead of bundling its own (#242).
    • wikipedia now uses WebKit2 instead of WebKit.

The full dependency list can be viewed in the DEPS file.

For packagers

  • Please note the dependency changes above.
  • Some of the Makefile variables have changed. Some are now not configurable through environment variables, but rather have to be passed in to the make command (e.g. make FOO=1 instead of FOO=1 make). Please let us know if this is inconvenient to use in your packaging system.
  • There is a new MANPREFIX variable to set where manpages are installed (#70).
  • The Bash and Fish completion scripts are new. Please check that they end up in the right locations.
  • When PREFIX is not /usr, the Makefile will by default install config files to $PREFIX/etc instead of to /etc (#62). For example, if PREFIX is /usr/local (e.g. on FreeBSD), config files will be installed to /usr/local/etc.

Known issues

  • If the Collection panel doesn't render correctly (overlapping rows), it's because your GTK+ theme is missing support for GtkTreeView separators (#362, #527). Known upstream bug reports: Ambiance/Radiance, Box, Breeze.
  • If you are running Exaile on MSYS2 and it crashes often or outputs garbled audio, this may be due to various bugs in GStreamer's WASAPI sink (#532, #534). To avoid this issue, go to Edit → Preferences → Playback and set Audio Sink to DirectSound (or set it to Automatic and choose an Audio Device marked "[directsound]").
  • After upgrading to Exaile 4, you may need to rescan the library (Tools → Rescan Collection) if Exaile can't find files which are present on disk (#188).
  • The splash screen doesn't show on most platforms (#342).
  • The mainmenubutton plugin may crash due to a GTK+ 3.20 bug which has been fixed in GTK+ 3.22 (#257).
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