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fre:ac development status update 10/2018 Print
Written by Robert   
Saturday, 03 November 2018 09:35

Hi all, this is the fre:ac development status update for October 2018. I have a lot of interesting things to share.

Haiku packages and fixes

fre:ac running on HaikuFirst and foremost, I created fre:ac packages for the Haiku operating system. The Haiku project just released their first beta in the end of September and fre:ac is now available via their HaikuDepot package manager. Just search for it and you are one click away from installing fre:ac.

I also fixed the Fraunhofer AAC encoder and updated the LAME MP3 encoder package for Haiku while at it. I plan to also port Monkey's Audio to this interesting OS.

But while it's great that fre:ac now runs on Haiku, the 20180913 release is still far from perfect. I implemented a lot of fixes in October to make the next alpha run much better:

  • Fixed window titles becoming inactive when a menu, dropdown or tooltip is shown
  • Fixed scrollbars not working when moving the cursor outside the window
  • Improved image downscaling using a weighted average box filter
  • Added support for font scaling (limited HiDPI mode)
  • Fixed application signature to avoid warning on startup
  • Fixed resource compilation to simplify package script

A new alpha with these fixes and more will probably be out in mid-November.

Notarization of macOS version

Apple recently introduced notarization for apps distributed outside the app store. It's basically an automated malware and best-practices check for applications that when passing will display a "this app was checked by Apple" message on macOS Mojave.

It took me a weekend to adapt the fre:ac package for this new security feature, but now it's functioning very well. Starting with the next release, fre:ac for macOS will be notarized by Apple.

Other fixes

Some other fixes have been implemented in October:

  • Linux HiDPI fixes
    The Linux version of fre:ac will now evaluate the GDK_SCALE environment variable in order to automatically scale the font and UI element size on HiDPI displays.
  • freaccmd fixes for non-Windows systems
    The fre:ac command line interface had some issues with spaces in file names. Namely, the current version does not work with the standard Unix shell space escaping (which is putting a backslash in front of each space character). This will be fixed in the next release.
  • Fixed issue with enabling "Write to input folder" and "Delete original files after encoding" options
    When enabling the "Write to input folder" and "Delete original files after encoding" options at the same time and the output filename equals the input filename, the current version of fre:ac can delete both, the existing input and the new output file after conversion, leaving you with none of the two. The next release will fix this and will be brought forward one or two weeks for this.

Work place changes

Finally, after more than 15 years at the previous company, I changed my job on 1st of October. I'm now working for PreSonus Software Ltd. in Hamburg, Germany on tasks much closer to what I'm already doing in my free time with fre:ac.

I will mainly work on the Notion music notation software, but also look into improving Studio One's audio file export and conversion capabilities and much more.

I'm happy to be part of the PreSonus team and really looking forward to great things coming in the future.

That's all for this month. Be sure to come back next month for another update.