Adventurous day of releases!

I have had a somewhat adventurous and stressful time releasing version 3.13 of DONATION today.

I actually uploaded 3.13 to the web site yesterday, then informed all up-to-date paid users of it in an email this morning.

Early in the day, I heard from a user who had actually upgraded to it yesterday, after first installing version 2.70b in order to convert a database from a old version of DONATION. After that all went in apparently successfully, she was getting error messages when she tried to create her receipts, and since it’s almost the end of January when the receipts must be sent out by in the USA, she was understandably concerned.

Well, we worked together for a couple of hours off and on, with me trying to figure out what could possibly be wrong, and I finally figured it out. (Thanks for your patience, Cindy!) It was a bad bug in version 3.13, but that bug only showed up if you were converting from an old-style database (DONATION3.DB), or switching to a new 2nd database with Database -> Switch Database.

So, I put in a fix for that, and uploaded it as version 3.13b. It fixed the first user’s problem. But then, about 1/2 hour later, I heard from someone else who was upgrading a more recent version of DONATION, and when they installed version 3.13b and ran the program, they got an error message and it quit! That required another hour or so of scurrying. It turned out that my bug fix for 3.13b fixed the first user’s problem, but broke the program for everyone else! So, I quickly fixed the fix, and since it was so fast, just uploaded it as another version of 3.13b – no new name. About 4 more reports came in of version 3.13b being broken, but I was able to inform them all of the further fix, and they are OK now.

Then, I sent out an email informing the same paid users that I had informed this morning of version 3.13, that if they had gone ahead and upgraded to 3.13, they needed to upgrade further to 3.13b, to avoid that original bad bug. That seemed fine until someone wrote to say that they were using the new Database -> Check for Updates menu option to upgrade from 3.13 to 3.13b, and it just brought up their web browser but didn’t download the file for the update.

So, I talked to him, and discovered that his default web browser was Mozilla Firefox, rather than the more common Microsoft Internet Explorer. After some testing, I discovered that everywhere in the program where it tries to link to a web page, or a file on a web page, was broken for Firefox. (For instance, several options on the Help menu, like Help -> Donation on the Web.) Firefox came up, but no web page was displayed or file downloaded.

A quick Google  search found the problem and an easy fix. That will be released tomorrow morning as version 3.13c. I’m not going to follow that up with another email to everyone, because it just isn’t significant enough to bother people again about. Since that problem with Firefox has been there for ages, and nobody has reported it before, I’m guessing that very few of my users use Firefox as their default web browser.

Fun day, eh?

3 thoughts on “Adventurous day of releases!

  1. 3.13c is out now. If you want to really test this, first try Help -> DONATION on the Web in your existing version of DONATION. It should open Firefox, but only to a blank page or your home page. (That’s the bug!) Do the upgrade (via donupdt.exe from the DOWNLOAD page), then try it again – it should work.

    Of course, you won’t be able to test the fix to Help -> Check for Updates until there is an even never version than 3.13c available.

  2. Guess what, there’s yet another bug! If you select “Create Receipts via mail merge rather than normal report method” in Maintenance -> Receipt Options, the options on the Receipt menu give error messages like “Error retrieving receipt(s)”. I have fixed that, and will release it as version 3.13d tomorrow morning sometime.

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