Patches and repository management

  • Daniel FAIVRE

    Daniel FAIVRE - 2011-02-02

    Who is responsible for patches management ? And where should i ask for a write access to the code repository ?

  • Stephen Arnold

    Stephen Arnold - 2011-02-02

    Almost anyone (logged in with account) should be able to post a patch. They should be properly explained, adequately documented and provide important extra features or resolve an outstanding bug.

    If the patch is valid, fits the code correctly in style and format, and provides a useful tool or resolves a bug - then it will most likely be added to SVN by one of the few remaining developers and then included in future releases.

  • Daniel FAIVRE

    Daniel FAIVRE - 2011-02-02

    Thank u Stephen. I've posted a simple patch to add french regions flags to the Google maps module, and nobody seems to have checked it and/or assigned it to an active developper for an integration in the repository.

    On the web, some sites reports that many developpers have gived up with phpgedview to a fork called webtrees, but webtrees seems to be almost a "pgv 5" without any real improvements, no ? Furthermore, what is the problem now with sourceforge policy ?
    I'm very sensible to really free softwares, and ready to swap from one software to a more open-source one if needed, BUT I want to fully understand what's under that !

    And about a write access to the repository ? What is the Phpgedview policy ? The webtrees one ? What would you advice to me and other readers of this message about these questions ?

  • Stephen Arnold

    Stephen Arnold - 2011-02-02

    webtrees seems to be almost a "pgv 5" without any real improvements, no ?

    I would argue that there are significant improvements contained within webtrees, but I leave it to those who have not yet made the switch to determine if relying on one database, improving menu consistency, configuration and presentation, more speed - especially on larger gedcoms, and several dozen other major enhancements are significant enough to switch.

    Furthermore, what is the problem now with sourceforge policy

    There are no changes in the policy AFAIK. It remains restrictive, and incumbent upon the developer to assume any distribution risks.

    And about a write access to the repository ?

    The decision is made by John Finlay as to whom has developer privileges. While not overly restricted, from previous experience I can tell you that he looks for people who have demonstrated a better than average level of understanding of the PGV product, who have made contributions to its polish and operational aspects through the channels available, and who have demonstrated programming capabililtes and understand the obligation incumbent upon them. It took me over 2 years to prove I was perhaps an asset to the team, but some have been accepted in a matter of months.

    The webtrees one?

    AFAIK, not substantially different. A strong programming background. A proven demonstration of product knowledge. A willingness to be a team player. etc.  Many have contributed code without being a team member and the webtrees SVN is privately hosted with SVN builds released every other day via LaunchPad.

    As to your previous patch, I'm not as familiar with the GM functions as others, so perhaps I'll let Jerry review your patch and see if it can be included.  webtrees is about to switch to Google Maps v3 API as v2 has been deprecated.

  • Stephen Arnold

    Stephen Arnold - 2011-02-02

    I did receive your flags and I added them to the code. Now available on SVN and with the next update.

  • Daniel FAIVRE

    Daniel FAIVRE - 2011-02-02

    Thank u, Stephen,

    I google a bit and found these page about the fork reasons. It may interests others readers of present thread.

    At this time, I'm interested enough to set up locally webtrees for tests purposes. So I've downloaded 1.06 zip. As a first feeling, I was surprised by :
    - remaining disparate js libs in the /js directory, including prototype which is well known to cause problems or at least duplicates features with jQuery.
    - no source code for translations in the zip release, but only the .mo files for gettext. That's logical BUT where is the source code ??? I've searched a bit and saw the bazaar on launchpad WITHOUT the trunk code. I've also tried a checkout from svn:// BUT the access is restricted by passaword EVEN FOR A SIMPLE CHECKOUT !!!
    - the /modules directory is filled up by what seems to be all the available modules.

    As I fully agree with the developpers motivations for the fork (i didn't uploaded anything on sourceforge since years except the little flags patch) , I'm very interested to switch from PhpGedView to webtrees, BUT it require that webtrees grant the fundamental opensource user's rights : does it ? May I've missed something about access to source code ? (at least for trunk checkout).

    I understand and sometimes share the fear of developpers from foolish or simply unskilled contributors, but their choice of bazaar could imply a very open way to contribute, IF maintainers use bazaar to receive, evaluate, and integrate or discard contributions. That's why I have NOT understood why they also setted up a SVN at svn:// and worse why these SVN is restricted by a password even for a simple checkout !!!

    The access to source code MUST be granted to users for opensource software. That's the basis !!! (

    And if I've missed something about access to webtrees source code, I apologize but also suggest improvements in the documentation upon this essential point ! ;-)


  • Stephen Arnold

    Stephen Arnold - 2011-02-02

    I'll try to respond a bit more, but most of these issues are either well covered by numerous previous posts, or are specific to webtrees. It in impolite to evangelize a 'competing' software product within this forum, and perhaps I have said too much, but I will reply here once again.

    I started my genealogy quest with PGV when it was in its infancy (index only) and watched it mature nicely. I have tried other forks prior to webtrees and found them, for various reasons, to be wanting. As my GEDCOM has grown (from 1,500 INDI's to now over 88,000, I have strained PGV's ability to manage large databases responsively - a good test of any software - and it continues to serve, albeit a bit slower than the new competitor. Over the years, it has become a bit bloated, with tons of added 'feature sets' but lacked the ability to turn these on or off as desired. For that, and numerous other reasons, I've moved my production site and some 400+ users over to webtrees, while still trying to assist here from time to time.

    The reasons for the fork, a solid description of the current product and an outline for some future enhancements is well presented on the main webtrees software site. Also present are informative links to several reviews. No need to 'google' anything or wonder as to the thought process. It is very transparent.

    The webtrees help forum has over 7,000 posts in a very short time. There are many experienced contributors, as well as team members, who give of their time and experience to provide prompt, courteous guidance, and the forum software has excellent search functions (again, like the SVN, privately hosted). The forum now has several active French-speaking users, most former PGV users, so we have added a french forum AND a french WIKI.

    LaunchPad provides access to the webtrees source code, as released: Numbered, stable releases builds and incremental 48-hour builds. Access to the beta-SVN code can not be offered as it is hosted on a private server with limited bandwidth and is made available to previously approved team members only. webtrees operates and releases our software under the GNU guidelines. There are no requirements within the GNU guidelines that it be otherwise, but if you believe this is less than 'tranparent or adequate', then webtrees is not for you.

    All translations are handled by gettext. This has leveraged the voluntary efforts of the translators on LaunchPad and allowed webtrees to substantially complete translations of this new software in very short order. The MO and PO files are readily available and there is only a minor registration and approval process to contribute translation skill via LaunchPad. Recently released or updated interim language files are included in the Addons section of the webtrees forum and can be downloaded from there. With the right, open-source software, these files can be modified and encoded, but we'd prefer you contribute via LaunchPad so others may benefit from your efforts.

    There have been well over 5,000 major changes to the webtrees code since forking from PGV (less than one year), and a multitude of minor changes as well. This is not a trivial matter and one that occupies a good deal of time and requires a great deal of commitment by the developing team. Version 1.1 will include an entirely revised administration procedure, with all new pages, inline editing, and a huge improvement in user management, role assignment and privacy application. There is much left to be accomplished, including more documentation and many enhancements (earlier, I didn't mention that Street View will also be included in the Google Map update). Improvements in the GED-Assistant to expand beyond the Census Assistant, new menu system, new sprite system, new theme creation (skinning) and more are all planned. Wish we could wave a magic wand and have it all happen overnight, but sadly, such is not the case. It is planned, methodically applied, team efforts that have created this fork and it will succeed as we continue instigating our plans.

    PGV IS a great product. It is a true compliment to its strengths and its design that there are 'copies' of its concept. I remain convinced that there will be those who wish to contribute their expertise here and help it become vibrant once again. In the mean time, the recent webtrees fork, while providing an easy-to-use conversion wizard, can attract others who may like its ease of use.

    Hope this answers your questions. I think further comments should be reserved for discussion on the webtrees forum, or by one-to-one emails. I'm easily accessible via both my site email (from my avatar) or via the sourceforge link.

  • Daniel FAIVRE

    Daniel FAIVRE - 2011-02-03

    Thank you very much again, Stephen,

    I've switched to the webtrees forum to continue this discussion somewhere else than in a "concurrent forum".


  • Gerry Kroll

    Gerry Kroll - 2011-02-03

    There are some significant quality problems with the flags supplied in the patch.  Also, the file names included in the patch did not expand properly on my Windows system when I used 7-Zip to accomplish the expansion.

    I'm still looking into improving the quality of the flags and correcting deficiencies that I noticed.  There is also some disagreement (politically, mostly) about which flags are correct for some of the more contentious (or fractious, if you wish) regions. 

    I think you were premature in adding the flags to SVN.

  • Daniel FAIVRE

    Daniel FAIVRE - 2011-02-03

    I agree with canajun2eh about imperfections, but something not perfect seems to be better than nothing, and will help anybody to improve it ! But Windows platform configuration for utf-8 and windows applications bugs seems not relevant.

    These flags are fitted to the current GM API with flag style, to appear as flags on the flag hamp included in the module.

    I also agree about possible disagreements about some regions flags : everybody  must know that :
    - some regions prohibits the use of their current logos as flags in such interfaces which doesn't fit their licensing requirements (e.g. : Rhône-Alpes)
    - some regions admit both traditionnal and modern flags (e.g. Lorraine)
    - and some regions have special flags linked to their history, well-known by everybody in France : Bretagne (gwen-ha-du) and Corse (Maure head). These flags are often used by indepandantists movement and may cause disagreements between them and centralists.

    Please precise the problems you are speaking about : if I can enhance the first version, I will be glad to do so.

  • Gerry Kroll

    Gerry Kroll - 2011-02-04

    Hello, "geomaticien":
    Here are the observations I mentioned previously:

    Some of the flags belong to "overseas departments".  They should not be present in the collection of  "France" flags, since each such French colony is treated, according to the Chapman codes used, as a country in its own right.  There are flags to match.  There is no mechanism in place to display the "Overseas department" flags when one looks at the map of France.

    The flags used for these territories are according to the CIA web site:  However, since the full collection of flags used in PGV was created in Dec. 2005, it's now time to verify the accuracy of the collection and to correct errors.  This will happen in due course.

    The errors I noticed with the patch where names contain accented letters are not present in the SVN repository.  The accented letters download from the repository correctly.

    Most of the flags have a 1-pixel black border.  This reduces the effective size of each flag from 25x15 to 23x13 and results in serious loss of detail.

    The flags appear to have been created from relatively small originals.  There's not enough detail in some of them to make them easily recognizable.  It would be better if the size reduction occurred from a large original - the larger the better.

  • Daniel FAIVRE

    Daniel FAIVRE - 2011-02-04

    @ canajun2eh : thanks.

    a) that's right, despite somes of these territories ARE regions (by law). Perhaps the best thing to do is to delete these unused flags ?

    b) good new ! Accented letters are essential in french tongue.

    c) That's true ! I've spended time doing that to fit EXACTLY with the "flag stick" (should i say "flagpole" ?) included in the Google Map Module. Later, I've uploaded a screenshot to show these flags fits with the "stick" (should I say "flagpole" ?) of the current GM module. Furthermore, each flag have a "one pixel lack" in this black border exactly where it is required to get something clean when included in the google map module view. For a later version of this module, an idea could be to reconsider the stick/flagpole and flag drawing in another way, automatically, but these flags were drawn to fit for the GM module "as it is".

    d) No : I've got very large originals (and also vectorials ones, if needed), and I've rescaled them with GIMP carefully, tested different algorithms when unsatisfied, and redrawn manually the flags too complex to stay recognizable after rescaling (e.g. : Languedoc-Roussillon, which have a complex drawing nearly impossible to be reduced to 23x13 or even 25x15 automatically in a proper way. For the Languedoc-Roussillon flag, I've tested all the GIMP rescaling algorithms, with different parameters, and I wasn't satisified). Nevertheless, a manual artistic redrawing may increase the quality of some of them.

  • Gerry Kroll

    Gerry Kroll - 2011-02-05

    Thank you for the screen shot that you uploaded to your patch.  That makes your points very clear.

    However, I'll remove the "Overseas department" flags since there is no way to display them on a France map.  Afterwards, I'll create a new patch from the SVN files using 7-zip.  That should cure the "accented letters" problem.

  • Gerry Kroll

    Gerry Kroll - 2011-02-05

    I stupidly deleted your screen shot from the patch section.  This was not intentional.  Can you please upload it again?


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