Road to FMYiRC V2.00
Freemed-YiRC Wiki - The Road to FMYiRC V2.00
NOTE! The original version of this article (circa 2007) has been moved to Road to FMYiRC V2.00 (OLD).
The current versions of Freemed-YiRC in stable release are the V1.xx releases. Each release adds a bit more functionality as well as bug fixes and whatnot. The current goals for Freemed-YiRC V2.00 are major in scope, which is the reason behind the major release release number change (i.e., V1 to V2). The goals and ideas for Freemed-YiRC V2.00 are discussed here.
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Much work has gone into making the Freemed-YiRC V1.xx series as easier to install. Step-by-step documentation is provided, including operating system (Linux) installation instructions and the availability of the Freemed-YiRC Helper CD for Mandriva Linux 2007.1. However, many agencies, especially smaller ones, may be lacking sufficient IT knowledge to install Linux and/or Freemed-YiRC even with the provided instructions. Many agencies are used to the Microsoft-like approach of just download and (somewhat) easy install. Therefore, a goal is in place to produce an easy-to-use install program for Freemed-YiRC which combines both the operating system installation as well as Freemed-YiRC integration and initial configuration. The goal is to get this entire package into a download-able package which is much smaller than the size of full-blown Linux distributions. Currently, most Linux distributions are the size of DVDs (~4.7GB). Some may be available as CDs (~700MB), but may require an Internet connection to download a lot of still essential stuff. The goal for Freemed-YiRC V2.00 is to include the option of downloading the entire operating system install plus Freemed-YiRC integration in the space of a CD (~700MB), hopefully even smaller. It may even be possible to provide a version which can be booted (and installed) from CD or USB memory key, which would provide a great demonstration tool.
A download-able version of Freemed-YiRC will still of course be provided for those agencies with sufficient IT knowledge to install Linux and Freemed-YiRC using the Linux distribution of their choice.
In the Freemed-YiRC V1.xx series, upgrades must be done sequentially, and for the system as a whole. There is no way to upgrade a single module within the system. One of the design goals for Freemed-YiRC is to modify this, and possibly allow for per-module upgrades. Many modules make use of other modules, so it may end up being that module upgrades will be limited to bug fixes and/or less-significant feature updates where this may apply. However, even this will in-and-of-itself be a significant upgrade. In addition, the goal is that new modules may be introduced between major system releases.
Support for PHP6
This is a technical goal, but an important one. PHP6 is intended to be more secure, and that is very important. Because PHP6 is not going to be 100% backwards compatible with PHP5, this means the entire code base of Freemed-YiRC is currently undergoing upgrades in order to make it PHP6 compatible. This is very different from previous PHP upgrades (PHP3 -> PHP4, PHP4 -> PHP5), where the PHP upgrades were somewhat less significant. To goal for Freemed-YiRC is to be 100% PHP6 compliant.
Additional Developer and Integrator Recruitment
Currently Freemed-YiRC is something of a one-man-band. There is only one primary developer. There have been several other minor developers over the years, but regardless, it's been an extremely tiny group. The goal here is to make Freemed-YiRC V2.00 much more open, friendly, and attractive to more developers and integrators. Who are integrators? The people who actually install and/or maintain live Freemed-YiRC installations at agencies.
How will this be accomplished? Options include:
- Continuing addition of documentation and procedures via the Freemed-YiRC Wiki (for developers and end-users alike).
- The above mentioned Easier Install and Easier Upgrades items.
- The creation of an RCS (Revision Control System) for Freemed-YiRC which would allow for easier developer additions/access to the code base.