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Techie Italian Blogging on Delphi and More



Updated: 2016-12-07T14:25:39.481Z

 



Less is More - Why Less Major Releases with Non-Breaking Updates Adding Features is a Good Thing

2016-12-07T14:25:39.481Z

Answering to pressing requests from customers and partners, RAD Studio is moving from a 6 month release cycle with one main bug-fix update to a 1-year release cycle with multiple updates including fixes and new features.

Answering to pressing requests from customers and partners, RAD Studio is moving this year from a 6 month release cycle with one main bug-fix update to a 1-year release cycle with multiple updates including fixes and new features. 

As we announced in our last published roadmap, https://community.embarcadero.com/article/news/16418-product-roadmap-august-2016, we are significantly slowing down the release cycle, going back to a more or less yearly major release for the product, from the faster cycle of recent years. There are many reasons for this change, but it mostly addresses complaints from customers (and tech partners, and component vendors).

The original requirement to release more often was driven by the fast-paced change in mobile operating system, compared to the Windows world -- which is actually now moving much faster under Windows 10, but that's a separate story. This requirement still applies, but it can be fulfilled in a different way.

This change in delivery cycle and model, in fact, is tied to another change, namely the fact that update subscription is now compulsory. I know you might not see the connection, but this gives us freedom to release new features and support new versions of operating system in updates, with no negative effect to the business financials. The only caveat, of course is maintaining the largest degree of binary compatibility with existing DCU files and packages. This might not be doable for a new operating system, but it is certainly doable for VCL and Windows, which is the platform the largest projects from our customers are on.

Berlin Update 1 was borderline, with some new features like native iOS grid added to the product, but most of the focus on fixing bugs. Berlin Update 2 has been the first this release in this new direction, with new VCL controls, new IDE designers, support for Desktop Bridge, and more.

It is true that delivering the same amount of features in a non-breaking update will require us some extra work, and in some cases (like Delphi language changes) it won't even be doable. So we might have to delay some features, because of the technical limitations due of non-breaking updates. But we feel the benefit of a slower release cycle to the stability of RAD Studio and of our customer projects, and hope this will allow more customers to stay and migrate on the latest version sooner -- with a good benefit in terms of their experience.

Needless to say your feedback is critical -- and even more because this was mostly driven by customer feedback. Do you still feel the product can move in the right direction with this model? Do you feel your update subscription remains relevant? Will you be able to safe time and money while keeping up to date with RAD Studio? Or will you upgrade your projects every 2 or 3 years no matter what? Let us know.

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Speaking at SDN Event, December 9th, in the Netherlands

2016-12-06T20:36:09.421Z

Friday I'll be speaking at an event of the SDN group in Zeist, in the Netherlands.

Bob Swart, who coordinates the Delphi events for SDN, invited myself and Andrea Magni (all Italian crew) to talk at the SDN Event next Friday, December 9th. I'll be giving a keynote on the status of Delphi, a session on Windows 10 and the Centennial Bridge, and one on my experience publishing mobile applications. Andrea is talking about this FireMonkey and REST open source libraries.

More information at https://www.sdn.nl/EVENTS/9-december-2016

​I won't be around much, traveling only for the event, feel free to stop by and have a chat.

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Building and Deploying a Local Appx Package

2016-11-24T14:17:05.864Z

With Delphi (and C++Builder) Berlin Update 2, you have the ability to create and deploy on the local machine an Appx package, leveraging the Microsoft Desktop Bridge (aka Centennial Bridge). This blog post and the related video show all of the steps in details. With Delphi (and C++Builder) Berlin Update 2, you have the ability to create and deploy on the local machine an Appx package, leveraging the Microsoft Desktop Bridge (aka Centennial Bridge). The IDE also support deployment for Windows Store, using slightly different steps. However some of the steps are far from obvious, particularly including generating and registering a self-signed certificate. This blog post highlights some of the steps need, and the related video (extracted from one of my CodeRage sessions) show all of the steps in details, going from a vanilla version of Update 2 to the APPX deployment. Detailed Content The video covers: - Configuring the Windows SDK in the IDE to enable the execution of the required SDK utilities - Creating a self-signed certificate from the IDE - Creating a project and build it for store deployment, configuring the provisioning page - Looking into the list of deployed file and in particular into the Appx manifest file - Installing the self-signed certificate among the trusted certificates on the local machine (for this step, there is a detailed description below) - Installing the Appx package on a machine, uninstalling it, looking at the file system location where it is stored and the versioning model The Video The video in itself is slightly over 10 minutes, and you can see it on YouTube at https://youtu.be/_GNPT9Cvyag. width="560" height="315" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/_GNPT9Cvyag" frameborder="0"> Further Instructions for Certificate Registration To import the certificate having the .pfx file generated by the RAD Studio IDE:In File Explorer, select the certificate file and use the Install PFX local menu item: In the Store Location group, select Local Machine Click Next and OK to confirm the UAC dialog Confirm the certificate file selection Enter your certificate password In the next screen of the Certificate Import Wizard, change the selected option to "Place all certificates in the following store" Click Browse. In the Select Certificate Store window, scroll down and select Trusted People and click OK Click Next. A "Completing... " screen appears Click Finish As an alternative, you can import the certificate from the Appx package (like a customer would) and in this case the password won't be requested: In File Explorer, right click an Appx that you've signed with the certificate (most likely the Appx package you want to install) and choose Properties from the context menu. Click the Digital Signatures tab Click on the certificate and choose Details Click on View Certificate Click Install Certificate In the Store Location group, select Local Machine Click Next and OK to confirm the UAC dialog In the next screen of the Certificate Import Wizard, change the selected option to "Place all certificates in the following store" Click Browse. In the Select Certificate Store window, scroll down and select Trusted People and click OK Click Next. A "Completing... " screen appears Click Finish (agreeing to the following confirmation dialog if displayed) These are steps I borrowed from Microsoft, of course, but worth sharing, as they are critical to be able to do local debugging or your applications once deployed into an Appx package. Remember that file access rules and even WinRT API call rules are different for applications executed via an Appx package and the Windows Desktop Bridge, so you need to do adequate testing in this scenario.   [...]



Further Information About RAD Studio Berlin Update 2

2016-11-18T09:54:58.914Z

Here is some further information and links related with the recent Update 2 release of Delphi, C++Builder, and RAD Studio Berlin 10.1

Here is some further information and links related with the recent Update 2 release of Delphi, C++Builder, and RAD Studio Berlin 10.1.

More official info

- The official press release can be found at http://www.businesswire.com/news/home/20161115006033/en

- The specific page of the web site with update 2 info is (a bit hidden) at https://www.embarcadero.com/products/rad-studio/10-1-berlin-update-2

- The blog post by Stephen includes all release videos: see https://delphiaball.co.uk/2016/11/15/10-1-berlin-update-2-anniversary-edition-windows-store/

The Special Offer

If you haven't updated to 10.1 Berlin and are not on Update Subscription, there is a special offer until the end of November to celebrate the release: 10% off Professional, 15% off Enterprise and 20% off Architect. Read about this and other active offers at https://www.embarcadero.com/radoffer

Issues, Workarounds, Etc

- Issue with winapifamily.h (for C++Builder) explained at https://community.embarcadero.com/article/articles-support/174-rad-studio/installation-registration/16436-issues-with-winapifamily-h-and-other-header-files-after-installing-c-builder-10

- Deferring of C++ Rename Refactoring covered at https://community.embarcadero.com/blogs/entry/deferring-c-rename-refactoring-from-10-1-berlin-update-2

- Startup problems and fixes by Daniele at http://www.danieleteti.it/delphi-10-1-berlin-update-2-startup-problems-and-fixes/

And A Nice Tweet

A nice tweet I saw. Well, we call it CodeInsight, but the fix around static arrays causing trouble was done and well received:

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RAD Studio Berlin 10.1 Update 2 Anniversary Edition Available

2016-11-15T09:05:11.581Z

Embarcadero released today the second update of RAD Studio, Delphi, and C++Builder 10.1 Berlin, with significant new features (mostly focused on Windows 10 Anniversary Update) and quality improvements.

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Embarcadero released today the second update of RAD Studio, Delphi, and C++Builder 10.1 Berlin, with significant new features (mostly focused on Windows 10 Anniversary Update) and quality improvements.

The features were announced in last week webinar available as a replay at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TvUJXJDhF4E and include support for Windows Desktop Bridge deployment in the IDE, a new CalendarView control, new designers called QuickEdits, and much more. You can read a detailed description of these new features in the docwiki help page at http://docwiki.embarcadero.com/RADStudio/Berlin/en/Subscription_Update_2.

The update has also several quality improvements and bug fixes, including the most voted issue on Quality portal, the problems with CodeInsight and static arrays. Other notable fixes include dynamic arrays optimizations (following regressions in Berlin), DataSnap issues, several DBGrid regressions fixes, C++ compiler improvements, REST clients calls with compressed data on mobile, and many others. You can find the list of publicly reported bugs fixed in this update at http://edn.embarcadero.com/article/44726.

All customers with an active update subscription can download the new version of the product at one of the following links:

- The GetIt based Web installer can be found at http://cc.embarcadero.com/item/30648

- The ISO with the traditional installer is at http://cc.embarcadero.com/item/30652

Notice that if you want to preserve your registry setting in this uninstall/re-install cycle you should use the same installer technology of your most recent install. Before you ask, the GetIt based installer this time will ask you if you want to preserve your registry settings, and would make a copy and reapply them after the installation completed.

Hope you like the quality improvements and new features of Berlin Update 2. And stay tuned to CodeRage today and the coming two days.

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CodeRage XI Next Week

2016-11-11T11:23:42.084Z

The 11th edition of the online CodeRage conference is kicking off next Tuesday. As usual it features dozens of technical sessions by Embarcadero speakers, MVPs, and tech partners. Don't miss the most comprehensive online event of the year for Delphi and C++Builder developers.

(image) The 11th edition of the online CodeRage conference is kicking off next Tuesday. As usual it features dozens of technical sessions by Embarcadero speakers, MVPs, and tech partners. Don't miss the most comprehensive online event of the year for Delphi and C++Builder developers.

Titled Productivity, Platforms and Performance, CodeRage XI is going to be informative but also a lot of fun. While you'll be able to view the session replays later, only attending them live give you the opportunity of asking questions and of interacting with other attendees. 

The conference program, from Tuesday to Thursday, is kept up to date on the Embarcadero community at:

https://community.embarcadero.com/article/news/16433-coderage-xi-productivity-platforms-and-performance

The conference offers sessions at different levels and for different audiences, covering most of the technologies in RAD Studio, and has specific parallel tracks for Delphi and C++Builder.

I'll be giving the Delphi keynote on Tuesday, after the conference kickoff -- at 7AM PST or 4PM Europe, and a session on Windows 10 and the Desktop Bridge on Thursday (which is a day reserved for customers on update subscription) -- again at 7AM PST or 4PM Europe. And I'll try to be online as much as I can during the conference, to help answering questions. I'll probably also blog quite a bit. Stay tuned.

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A Delphi UWP App on Windows 10 Store

2016-11-04T13:57:24.990Z

Using the Windows Desktop Bridge, I've been able to publish a Delphi-based UWP application on the Windows Store, for Windows 10 Anniversary Update desktop user.

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Using the Windows Desktop Bridge (aka Project Centennial), I've been able to publish a Delphi-based UWP application on the Windows Store, for Windows 10 Anniversary Update desktop user. This is great news as it proves in practice a long anticipated opportunity Microsoft is giving to developers with Win32/Win64 code bases. The desktop bridge, in fact, allows developers to take existing applications based on the Windows API and package them as UWP applications (or appx packages) to be distributed directly to Windows users or to be distributed (and sold) via the Microsoft store.

The specific app in question is a Win64 FireMonkey app, the Windows version of my (and my son) My Minifigures app that is fairly popular on Android (with over a quarter million downloads). The Windows version hasn't been clean up and optimized much, so it feels a bit odd -- hope to have time in the next few days to make it work better on Windows.

You can find the app here: https://www.microsoft.com/en-us/store/p/my-minifigures/9nblggh42ct8

The point I want to make, of course, is not about the app itself but the fact that this is becoming a very interesting way to distribute applications built with RAD Studio. I showed the install process in the Berlin Update 2 Webinar we did yesterday (replays will become available) and we also explained in that same webinar how RAD Studio will make it extremely simple to create appx packages with IDE integrated support -- in a very similar way of creating mobile and macOS packages with the IDE. This is going to be another first, as (for what I know) Visual Studio still lacks integrated IDE support for the Windows Desktop Bridge.

As soon as we'll release Update 2 I'll follow up with a lot more technical details. If you want to get started, though, there are two steps you should do. The first is submit you Desktop Bridge app request to Microsoft at https://developer.microsoft.com/en-us/windows/projects/campaigns/desktop-bridge. The second is to actually register yourself as an app developer with Microsoft, at https://developer.microsoft.com/en-us/store/register. There is a one time only fee of 19 USD/EUR or 99 USD/EUR for individuals or companies.

I'll follow up soon with the steps needed for store deployment, compared to what it is needed to create an appx package for direct use, something I already covered in this blog a few months ago.

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RAD Studio Berlin Update 2 Announce Webinar Tomorrow

2016-11-02T10:44:44.977Z

Tomorrow the RAD Studio PM Team (Nick, Myself, Sarina and David) is hosting a webinar introducing the new features in Update 2 for Delphi and C++Builder.

Tomorrow the RAD Studio PM Team (Nick, Myself, Sarina and David) is hosting a webinar introducing the new features in Update 2 for Delphi and C++Builder.

You might be surprised to learn that this update has bug fixes, but also significant new features. In fact, it is the first update ever to have feature work, as part of the new model based on update subscription and longer release cycles. This is the reason we are giving to this update an actual name "Anniversary Edition". 

From the invite: "RAD Studio Berlin Update 2 Anniversary Edition brings you major productivity enhancements around the Windows 10 Anniversary Update and the Windows Store, new VCL controls, IDE component editors and C++ refactoring."

Sign up for the webinar, held twice during the day, at: https://attendee.gotowebinar.com/register/1076354091907408898

 

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Speaking at EKON 20 Next Week

2016-10-31T17:24:37.599Z

Next Monday I'll speak at the 20th edition of EKON, one of the best and probably the longest running Delphi conference, to be held in Dusseldorf, Germany

(image) Next Monday I'll speak at the 20th edition of EKON. This started at a multi-language, multi-tool conference but has recently been mostly focused on Delphi, although it does cover other technologies for developers. This year conference is the 20th and this is likely the longest running Delphi event, and one of the largest ones in Europe. I've spoken to many of them, probably well over a dozen.

This year conference is being held in Dusseldorf, November 7th to 9th, and you can find more information at https://entwickler-konferenz.de/. There are sessions and tracks in German and in English, and the conference generally has an international audience. The list of speakers is fairly significant, with many from Germany but a few international ones, starting with Ray Konopka.

I'm going to give a keynote on the status of Delphi, present a session introducing RAD Server / EMS form a technical perspective, and delve into Centennial support. Of course, I'll be around both conference days, for any question and follow up.

 

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Delphi Blogs of the Week/Month #47

2016-10-18T09:51:10.940Z

Here is another of my periodic blog posts with news and links from the Delphi and RAD Studio worlds.

Here is another of my periodic blog posts with news and links from the Delphi and RAD Studio worlds.\

Conferences

Embarcadero Conference in Brazil on October 26th: For information see http://www.embarcaderoconference.com.br/#inscricao

​CodeRage 11 Online Conference Call for Papers: http://community.embarcadero.com/blogs/entry/coderage-xi-call-for-papers

​I'll be speaking at EKON 20 in Germany (but that's a conference with an English track for all European attendees): http://entwickler-konferenz.de/. The speakers list and topics are pretty interesting.

Updates

InterBase ToGo Update for Android by Stephen at https://delphiaball.co.uk/2016/10/17/interbase-togo-android-update/

The actual hotfix (required to submit to Play Store) is at http://cc.embarcadero.com/item/30630

Blog Posts

Jim's experiments with compile times in Delphi, using generics: http://community.embarcadero.com/blogs/entry/compile-time-and-generics

Accessing comma-separated files in Delphi by Holger at https://flixengineering.com/5-minute-snack-accessing-comma-separated-files-in-delphi

​When Migrating to FireDAC, You Must Understand UpdateMode by Cary at http://caryjensen.blogspot.it/2016/10/when-migrating-to-firedac-you-must.html

Using Advantage? Enhance TAdsQuery to include Query Callback by Joachim at https://www.jd-engineering.de/enhance-tadsquery-to-include-query-callback/

Very interesting article on running Delphi applications on Linux using Wine at https://kriscode.blogspot.it/2016/10/there-was-time-when-borland-approached.html

Upgrading from Delphi or C++Builder Berlin Starter edition to higher editions by Sarina at http://community.embarcadero.com/article/articles-support/174-rad-studio/installation-registration/16430-upgrading-from-delphi-or-c-builder-berlin-starter-edition-to-higher-editions

Not a new blog post, but an interesting StackOverflow question to keep a link to, covering a "List of Delphi language features and version in which they were introduced/deprecated" at http://stackoverflow.com/questions/8460037/list-of-delphi-language-features-and-version-in-which-they-were-introduced-depre

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