Rails 3 nears with release candidate availability
David Heinemeier Hansson, the creator of the Ruby on Rails web framework, has announced the availability of the first release candidate of Ruby on Rails 3, noting over 842 commits by 125 authors made to the code since the most recent beta. The release candidate, originally promised in June, was delayed for a fourth beta release and more testing.
Many of the fixes have focussed on bringing the performance up to Rail 2.3 levels with improvements to start up speeds and faster development cycles. Rails 3 is a major revision of Rails, bringing together the Rails and Merb frameworks to create a slimmer and faster platform for web applications written in Ruby. An early version of the release notes is available which covers the changes in architecture in the framework.
Heinemeier Hannson says that in use Basecamp, 37Signals flagship application, "went from insufferable to about 2.3 levels of enjoyment". He did note though that Active Record performance still needed work and that the developers aimed to get it back to "at least 2.3 levels before release". Other changes in the Rails 3 release candidate include support for the MySQL2 gem, support for shallow routes (for shorter URLs), fixes to auto-loading and web encoding issues and a change which allows the
rails command to work "even when you're in a subdirectory".
The details of the changes are available in the change logs for the ActionPack, ActiveModel, ActiveRecord and ActiveSupport components or in intricate detail in the commit history. Rails is available under an MIT licence and can be installed by running
gem install rails --pre on a system with Ruby and RubyGems installed. The current stable release of Rails is version 2.3.8 and instructions for installing it are available on the Ruby on Rails web site.