[development] Announcing DRUPAL-7-0-UNSTABLE-7

Angela Byron drupal-devel at webchick.net
Wed May 27 05:23:43 UTC 2009

Bonsoir, devel list!

It's been a *stupidly* long time since our last interim Drupal 7  
unstable release. Sorry about that! I'm going to go ahead and blame  
this on taxes. And traveling. And a general lack of delicious ice  
cream in my freezer. It's a tragedy, really.

But the *good* news is that DRUPAL-7-0-UNSTABLE-7 is jam packed full  
of awesomeness! That's right! JAM packed! The complete commit log is  
attached. There's also a full list of API changes in UNSTABLE-7 at http://drupal.org/node/224333#UNSTABLE-7

We are just about at the *three-month mark* until code freeze. That  
means the time to make your wildest Drupal dreams come true is RIGHT  
NOW. Check out the Drupal core initiatives page at http://drupal.org/community-initiatives/drupal-core 
  to see what folks are tackling now if you're looking for a place to  
jump in. Or, feel free to add your own!

Ok. Here we go!

Changes for developers:

- A spangly new Job Queue API which allows for batch processing of  
items. See http://api.drupal.org/api/group/queue/7 for more info.

- Some nice performance improvements:
   o SimpleTest module no longer has to instantiate every test class  
in order to simply read its metadata. $memory_usage--;
   o There's now a taxonomy_vocabulary_load_multiple(),  
user_delete_multiple() to improve performance around massive amounts  
of these types of data.
   o Drupal now serves more sensible headrs for reverse proxies.
   o Core now defaults to using MySQL's InnoDB storage engine rather  
than MyISAM.

- A new centralized static caching mechanism, so we don't need to  
litter $reset parameters all over the dang place.

- New hooks hook_node_access_records_alter() and  
hook_node_grants_alter() to allow for complex interactions between  
multiple node access modules.

- Field API improvements, including a pluggable storage mechanism,  
increased test coverage, and de-coupling from Form API.

- Lots of DBTNG conversions. Less than 10 more to go! http://bit.ly/DBTNG_Conversion 

- Tests for OpenID module. We actually got a lot of tests, but these  
were *extra* awesome (and sorely needed), so I wanted to mention them  
specially here. ;)

Changes for themers:
- There are now nice extra body classes added to match a page's  
template suggestions. So for example node/1/edit would give you  
classes of page-node, page-node-edit, and page-node-1. The Zen theme  
offers this too in Drupal 6.

- box.tpl.php is DEAD. DEAD, my friends! In its place are far more  
sensible theme_comment_form_box() and theme_search_results_listing().  
That's right. There was absolutely nothing about box.tpl.php that had  
anything to do with block.module. Go figure.

- A whole gaggle of formerly "special" things are now just regular old  
blocks. Footer message, feature-specific help text, mission statement,  
and even $content! This means they can be more precisely positioned  
and have the same configurable visibility as other blocks in the system.

Changes for users:
- Those tired and ugly collapsed fieldsets on the node form have now  
become nice looking and useful Vertical Tabs! See http://buytaert.net/drupal-7-usability-update 
  for a screeshot.

- The horrible frankenstein "dumping ground of random crap" monster  
that is the default "Navigation" menu has now been split up into:
   o User menu: Contains "My account" and "Logout" links. This is  
positioned in the upper-right corner.
   o Management menu: Contains "Add new content" (formerly "Create  
content") and "Administer" links. Think of this as the "do stuff" menu.
   o Navigation menu: The same as before, but now at least with fewer  
links! :D

- There's a slick new input format selector. Goodbye, 3-foot long  
collapsed fieldset with radios showing every godforsaken option known  
to mankind, hello compact, JS-ified select box!

- There's a new top-level "International" administration menu for any  
localization/translation-related modules to put their stuff and a  
"Development" administration menu for developer tools.

- On the permissions page, permissions checked for authenticated users  
will auto-check the same permissions for all other roles on the client  
side. This helps make it more obvious to people what checking that box  
actually does.

- Removed Clean URL choice from installer. Seriously, are you ever  
going to opt *not* to have Clean URLs? If so, there's a settings page  
for that. :P

- Some security improvements:
   o A watchdog event is now fired whenever modules are enabled/ 
   o PHP module is now the "global killswitch" for whether users can  
use PHP anywhere in the system.

Catch you next month, Drupalistas! :D


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