The All New ARgen

In May, Bob and I announced that ARGen would become one of my projects and that I would maintain it going forward. Since then, I have been hard at work reimagining ARGen, as well as preparing for API 2.0.

It is with great excitement that today I announce the newest version of ARGen!

The all new ARGen project window

Key new features in the latest ARGen include:

  • API 2.0 framework support
  • Multiple database connections in one project
  • Verify class properties still exist in the database
  • Foreign keys that are nil are inserted as NULL values
  • Xojo Console project type
  • Easily switch between project frameworks in one spot

API 2.0

The ActiveRecord library and ARGen have both been updated to support API 2.0! The ActiveRecord library warnings have also now all been handled. Generated projects are now clean of errors and warnings (except the intentional database hookup #pragma).

Originally, I had thought the API 2.0 user interface generation would be an extra challenge. With the changes I had planned for the project generator, the new user interface generation would fit in this release. So it’s done – ARGen supports API 2.0 code and user interface generation!

VerifyClass

New to this release is the ability for ActiveRecord to check that class properties defined as columns still exist in the database at runtime. This can be handy to ensure you are connecting to the right version of a database.

When generating classes, ARGen will tag properties that are columns with an attribute flag. Developers using the ActiveRecord classes without ARGen will need to add a DatabaseField = True attribute to each property.

About the Build Number

Those astute to detail may have noticed that I’ve been avoiding calling ARGen by any specific version number. I have dropped point numbering for ARGen and will use the build number to identify versions. I briefly considered “ARGen X” for the new version, though decided rebranding in that manner wouldn’t help identify the new version in a beneficial way.

To help, the build number is now prominently displayed on the project connections window.

ARGen project connections window featuring the build number

ARGen will now be licensed using the updates period model that Xojo, ExeWrapper, and the plugin vendors use. Purchasing a license will unlock the current version and any version released within your updates period. The updates period can be extended any time before or after the end date with a friendly discount 🙂

In my opinion, this model is the most fair to everyone. Users aren’t locked out of the software when the updates period ends, and there’s an incentive to renew or extend. It also provides me the freedom to work on features without having to plan for when a feature becomes a major revision.

Check It Out

I’m very pleased with how this version of ARGen came out. The interface rework makes it so much easier to use, and I say that as a heavy user of the previous version. I would encourage you to check out ARGen, it’s free to try. Connect to a database and take a look at the options it offers!

Some users reminded me that ActiveRecord had an individual download, and so I have uploaded the latest release of ActiveRecord to it’s own page. The ActiveRecord page will tell you more about ActiveRecord, and is where you can download the 2020.01 release.

Happy coding!