CubicWeb 3.6 is (almost) out!

And that's great news, after several months of development (things started moving in the beginning of august 2009...), it should be available on our Debian repositories and ftp site in the next few hours.

So, we can say this release contains a (too) large set of improvements and refactorings. I'll talk about the most important ones here.

Appobject/Entity classes namespace cleanup

First of all, the namespace cleanup... 3.6 is a step towards cleaning the entity classes (hence more generally appobject), which are used for a lot of things, making it impossible to tell for sure what could be used or not as an attribute or relation name. We decided to declare identifiers starting with _cw or cw_ reserved for the core classes. A lot of methods have been deprecated to cleanup the base appobject class namespace. The remaining methods on entity classes will be removed in future version, by the introduction of an ORM for database related methods, and by the (most probable) introduction of ZCA adapters for other aspects. The most notable renaming are:

  • .req -> ._cw
  • .rset -> .cw_rset
  • .row -> .cw_row
  • .col -> .cw_col

This is probably what you'll see first when upgrading to 3.6: a huge stack of deprecation warnings on your screen :)

Another step towards a nice and powerful form system

  • cleaner reponsibilities separation between form, field and widget

  • fields and widgets are now responsible for handling POSTed values (the editcontroller was handling this, making things really unflexible). The editcontroller has been rewritten and now properly gets values from fields. Another benefit is that you can now easily have a widget handling multiple inputs (see the new datetime picker for instance, or the custom widget for Bookmark.path)

  • refactored automatic forms:

  • rewrite 'generic relations' as a field

  • inlined forms are now encapsulated into a field

so you get much more control on these parts of automatic forms by using mechanism provided generally by fields

  • clearer form relations tags: removed autoform_is_inlined, more understandable autoform_field_section

Hooks refactoring

Hooks are now regular appobjects, with selectors (don't forget to reuse, remember that !). They should simply implement call with no argument (well, only self) and will get info previously passed as argument as instance attributes, according to the matching event.

Test API cleanup

EnvBasedTC, ControllerTC, WebTest, RepoBasedTC are all gone. Simply use CubicWebTC, with an unified API similar to what you use in cubicweb-ctl shell and in usual development.

The Bytes File System Storage

You can now specify a custom storage for attributes of entities stored in the system source. This mechanism is used to provide a way to store Bytes attributes (such as for instance) as files on the file-system instead of BLOBs in the database. You can configure which attributes should use this storage for your instance and then everything is transparent.

Schema definition changes (yams 0.27)

In your schema definition file:

  • "symetric" should be correctly spelled "symmetric" :)
  • "permissions" was renamed to "permissions"

Also, permissions for relations are now supported per definition, not per type, at the cost of a visible impact when writing/reading the schema.

Note about backward compatibility

We worked hard to keep backward compatibility, but you shouldn't upgrade to 3.6 without checking that everything is fine... Check notably:

  • forms, if you're using custom forms by overriding internal methods
  • import for date functions from cubicweb.utils (they moved to

And also

CubicWeb 3.6 comes with a set of 37 cubes "3.6"-ready to avoid too much warnings!