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September 28, 2011

Delphi XE2 Update 1

Less then a month after the product release, Embarcadero has released a first significant update to Delphi XE2.

Less then a month after the product release, Embarcadero has released a first significant update to Delphi XE2, as you can read in the official annoucnement on EDN. The page has also the download links, which depend on the product edition. Update 1 Release notes are here.

1. Bug Fixes

Embarcadero claims that Update 1 has 120 bug fixes (a list of the public ones coming from QC is here), which is certainly good for the stability of Delphi XE2. Notice that installing this update implies making a new full install of the product, after uninstalling the release version. Certainly time consuming, but this is likely due to what I'll explain in section 2 below. In any case, they warn that future updates will be patches of Update 1 (you won't need a full re-installation again), so you need to go through this step anyway.

According to the Relase Notes (which also detail the installation process) the bugs fixed fall in these areas:

  • FireMonkey design-time and run-time fixes
  • New VCL Styles
  • VCL Styles design-time and run-time fixes
  • IDE fixes to improve stability
  • C++ and Delphi compiler fixes

2. License Issues

A second reason for the update, clearly explained in the announcement, is that after release Embarcadero was notified of accidental usage of some GLScene code. You can read the original blog post highliting the issue.

Embarcadero claims to have gone through a consulting company for locating potential IP infringements or open source code coming from their recent aquisitions, and that this issue was not identified. The code has now been rewritten, to avoid any potential problem (and the fact the original authors, including Eric Grange,  have been supportive rather than trying to extort money was certianly a huge benefit).

So Embarcadero claims that to have a perfectly legal FireMoneky 3D application you'll need to recompile it against Update 1, so that no copyrighted open source code is involved in your production application.

Will Keep Coming, But What About a Subscription?

Embarcadero has promised frequent updates to XE2. For now, they've been very active, with this first patch after less than a months. Hope that bug fixes keep coming... 

If I have to be nohest, I think it is now time Delphi switches to a full subscription model, with minor releases coming during the year, rather than goign for a yearly cycle. Let's consider Windows 8 support. The technical elements of Windows 8 were announced after Delphi XE2 shipped, but waiting until next August of September to have a clear plan of how Embarcadero will support the new features of the OS might be a bit late (in case Windows 8 ships a tthe end of 2012). A mid-year release with Windows 8 support (maybe limited to the Intel platform) will be a great bonus to Delphi developers.

 





 

8 Comments

Delphi XE2 Update 1 

Thanks for the heads-up - and yes, I'd have thought
the subscription-based model would be good, not just
for developers, but also for Embarcadero, in terms of
growing their user base.

Ideal time to tackle this now, following all the
fanfare of XE2 and FireMonkey - and with a product
that is clearly going to need to evolve quite rapidly
for some time.

Cheers,


Jon
Comment by Jon Souter on September 28, 09:03

Delphi XE2 Update 1 

Interesting tidbit about the consulting company, some
snippets where so idiosyncratic a google search for
them pointed right back at GLScene source code.
Maybe there was just so much copyrighted code in the
original source that some bits had to slip through the
filter?
Comment by Eric [http://delphitools.info] on September 28, 09:09

Longer release cycles and SPs instead of a subscription model 

IMHO a subscription model may be not the right option
for a development tools. We are required to revalidate
whole products every time we change something in the
compiler or libraries. And automated tests can't cover
everything (as all the bugs fixed now shows...). I
would prefer a longer release cycle, and service packs
which fix issues without adding anything new.
Technology previews could be realeased beyond a small
beta group for major new features like Windows 8. I
can't see the advantage to deliver commercial support
months earlier for a product which is not yet
finalized and shipped.
A subscription model could be good for Embarcadero
pockets, and could suit some kind of users, but not
others which can't simply recompile and ship.
Comment by Luigi D. Sandon on September 28, 09:39

Delphi XE2 Update 1 

Nice to have an update of course (thanks Marco for
pointing out some overview) but I would prefer to get
a higher quality product from the beginning. Why not
wait one more month as an investment in satisfied
users instead of forcing the eary adopters to do a
complete re-install? Of course, the product would not
be without bugsa month later, but as s developer it
could help you to save time and money.
Comment by Roman on September 28, 10:14

Delphi XE2 Update 1 

 I'm agree with a subscription model with atractive 
payment per year. Now people that bought Delphi 2009 
or Delphi 2010 think maybe they do a bad decision, 
for this maybe a lot of people still work with Delphi 
7.
Comment by MoreWood on September 28, 11:22

@Roman 

I believe Software Assurance became a strong driver in
deciding release dates. To keep the cash flow
Embarcadero needs a release within the SA year, or
many customer could become angry. Not the smartest way
to deliver a product like Delphi.
I decided years ago to stop being an early adopter for
Delphi, it became too risky. Until now I decided to
wait at least for the UP1, but it looks now it is
better to wait at least for the UP2, if they had to
release an update so early.
It looks the real XE2 beta has just started...
Comment by Luigi D. Sandon on September 28, 14:02

@Luigi 

Yes, you are right. Let's see what people say in about
3 months. May be it is better to wait for the second
generation of th x64 compiler. Like it was with Kylix
(can anybody remember?).
Comment by Roman on September 29, 08:37

Delphi XE2 Update 1 

Subscription Model?
@Lugi, SA partially agree. I have more the impression
that it shines through more and more that EMB sells a
contract that is fulfilled 'somehow' and the focus is
not to ship something that simply works, no the focus
is to streamline the organization along a yearly
release cycle.

No one demands. No one demanded, the biggest beta -
this is a nice argument put on top if working things
are shipped but never an excuse for shipping things
that don't work. There is not benefit at the moment,
when someone had seen an opportunity in 2003 with .net
1.x and wanted to jump on board early. this was one of
the last opportunities to jump on a new train this way
... but a future generation will not walk such a path
anymore.

I can remember back at the times of DOS someone was a
good network service guy who knew what 3COM driver
runs with what card and how to setup PNP network cards
on WinNT 4 SVP3 and assigning IRQs and DMA address.
Installing Delphi requires a similar knowledge but
this was long time ago, when such knowledge was
respected today this seen as wasting time.

We will see too what Update 2 will bring ... A non
working V1 is no longer accepted, nowhere. In the SAP
world something like XE2 shipped in the state from
August is called - First Customer Shipment usually
companies only do it one time. Evil. If they declare
it this way. I can live with D32bit because it will
not hurt me here ... 

I wonder how to recommend Delphi ... Buy it but
install it with the ISO from purchase date + 6 months
and know lots of EDN entries with special patches.
This is not realistic.

Upddate 2 will hopefully do it's job somehow. Spring
was my bet and spring will be the most early point in
time.

Mike
Comment by Michael Thuma on October 3, 17:44


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