Gallery online photo album - cropped
After two years of development, version 3 of the popular Gallery online album software, code named "Santa Fe", has now been completed. Compared with its predecessor, the new version is said to offer improved performance and stability and require fewer resources. The developers have also drastically trimmed down the program package: instead of the previous 14 Mbytes, the standard installation is now only about 4 Mbytes in size.
The program's comprehensive slimming down has brought about various functional and flexibility reductions. For instance, users' access rights are now managed on an album level, but no longer on an image level, which also benefits the program's usability. Another discarded option is the availability of multiple, differently scaled image versions. Gallery 3 only offers three versions of every image: a thumbnail, a downsized image suitable for online use and the original non-scaled version. However, the developers point out that this relatively popular feature can be reintroduced via a plug-in.
Like the rest of the program code, the plug-in interface has been given a thorough overhaul. Extension modules written for Gallery 2 can therefore no longer be used, but more than 90 Gallery 3 plug-ins, for creating slide shows, for rendering maps for GPS-encoded images, for integrating advertising and so on, have already been released. A plug-in for importing Gallery 2 albums is also available.
While there is no plan to upgrade old Gallery installations, those who have used the beta versions of Gallery 3 can start using the final release without having to reinstall. Gallery 3.0 documentation is available from the project wiki. The program's system requirements have grown considerably since Gallery 2: the minimum requirements are Apache version 2.2, PHP version 5.2.3 and MySQL version 5.1. While the support of Windows servers is no longer expressly listed under requirements, various users have reported successful Windows installations. That only Linux / Unix platforms are mentioned could also be due to security considerations as the developers say that Gallery 3 has been subjected to professional security testing in the Unix environment. Gallery 3.0 is licensed under the GPLv2 and can be downloaded from SourceForge via the Gallery 3.0 download page. (Robert Seetzen)
(Robert Seetzen / trk)