Ubuntu 11.10 Troubles

After upgrading to Ubuntu 11.10, I noticed some serious issues compiling and building GNU Radio. I spent the weekend working these out, and I'm happy to report that as of Sunday night, the git maint/master/next branches can all be built on Ubuntu 11.10 (and all previous builds, too, of course).

The work isn't quite done, yet, I'm afraid. There are still some bootstrap issues as the autotools guys have becomes a bit more restrictive/careful. The warnings that are generated are annoying but appear harmless. I worked out what I could, but there's one or two more that are alluding me right now. I'd appreciate any assistance in tracking this down that anyone wants to give me.

The other error was that we didn't explicitly link against the Boost filesystem library in a couple of places. That was another easy one to fix.

But the big issue came because of Ubuntu's change to using Qwt 6. We had been using version 5.2 since we build gr-qtgui. The change to the new API was not trivial, especially when trying to maintain backwards compatibility with 5.2. I'm happy to say that this has been achieved. The code's a lot uglier because of the Qwt version checks, and while I could have probably done it a bit more cleanly, this is still the right way to do things.

While the update to Qwt 6 was pretty painful, the new API and changes that they made have created a much better system. In particular, the waterfall plot has been greatly simplified from version 5.2. Once version 6 starts to take hold in all of our other OSes, I'll go through and clean out the old stuff required in 5.2. This probably won't be for a few years, though, but it will be nice when we can move on and create more simplified implementation.

New Server, New Service

We have recently updated the GNU Radio server to a new platform with updated versions of all of our services. There were a few hiccups along the way as proxies and other caching sites had to be refreshed for everyone to get to the new site properly, but I haven't heard any complaints in a while, so hopefully those initial jitters have gone away.

Among the new versions of our software is an updated Redmine. The new Redmine fixes some issues we had with registration, but it will also allow us to support multiple projects and other nice features like that. Keep an eye out for expanding information on the website as we integrate these new features.

Mostly, I hope this change hasn't effected anyone, and it should only serve to make the website more stable and nicer to use. The new server in the background has already saved us a ton of work.

One new change that has come about is an update from running Hudson to Jeknins. This will serve as our new continuous integration tool and I hope to start making good use of it in our project development cycle.

Initially, the most important change is that every time Jenkins builds GNU Radio, on a weekly basis, the resulting packaged tarball for the most recent master development branch will be published on our website. This means that people who don't want to or can't use git to access the software can get a new snapshot of the code weekly. The links to the tarball and the SHA1 sum of the tarball are found on the Downloads page of gnuradio.org.

Jenkins Interface: http://gnuradio.org/jenkins/

Download Page: http://gnuradio.org/redmine/projects/gnuradio/wiki/Download