Software Update: Amarok 2.3.1 Beta 1 ‘Dark Star’

Last Sunday, the first beta release of version 2.3.1 of Amarok was released. This audio player features extensive options for playing and organizing music. It is primarily developed for KDE, but there are also versions for Mac OS X and Windows, but they are not at the same development level. In version 2.3.1 we not only find bug fixes. New features include the ability to automatically create playlists, similar artists can be found, and support for the new KDE SC 4.4 toolbar. There are also performance improvements. The main changes since version 2.3 look like this:

Features

  • Persistant Queue Saving: The playlist queue is now saved when Amarok is closed and restored upon startup. (BR 215057)
  • Automated Playlist Generator: allows smart creation of playlists that match user-specified constraints. Combines the features of “Smart Playlists” in Amarok 1.4 with the Bias system of Amarok 2.0.
  • It’s now possible to mark all episodes in a channel as old or new at once.
  • New “Upcoming Events” applet, displays future concerts for the artist of the currently playing track. The event info is fetched from Last.fm.
  • New “Similar Artists” applet, displays a list of artists which are similar to the one currently played. The list is fetched from Last.fm.
  • The scripting system now offers a new function for detecting that a track has finished. Patch by Michael MacDonald . (BR 227312)
  • New “CoverBling” applet, which allows to browse your collection in an animated 3D view. Thanks to Manu Wagner .
  • Support for the new System Tray technology from KDE SC 4.4. This adds nice animations and a better looking popup menu to the System Tray. Thanks to Aurelien Gateau for the patch.
  • Allow playlist layouts to group tracks by directory. (BR 230594)
  • Cover fetcher: The UI was improved. Now an icon view is used to display results, with an informational sidebar that may show interesting bits about an image.
  • Cover fetcher: Added ability to enter custom queries via Yahoo!, Google, or Discogs (in addition to Lasf.Fm). Note the source for automatic cover fetching is still Last.fm only.

changes

  • Allow changing the number of recently added albums in the albums applet.
  • Magnatune.com store: Added “Home” link to all artist and album pages leading to the Magnatune.com front page.
  • Magnatune.com store: Improved Magnatune.com front page.
  • Magnatune.com store: Completely remove option to purhcase single albums as this is no longer supported by Magnatune.com and the API for doing so will be disabled in the future.
  • The new file browser now supports “places”.
  • Added “up” and “home” buttons to the new filebrowser.
  • Items in the breadcrumb navigation bar are now hidden if there is not enough room to show all of them (similar to how it works in Dolphin) (BR 231497)
  • Improved performance (dramatic in some cases) when filtering the Playlist (231185).
  • Remove information that is already displayed elsewhere in the playlist from the playlist tooltips.
  • Make showing the playlist tooltips a per playlist layout option.
  • When bookmarking a view in the local collection, also store (and restore) the settings for “Show Cover Art” and “Show Years”. (BR 230562)
  • Allow moodbar files witout the leading ‘.’ (both ..mood and.mood now work)
  • Change example SQL command for setting up an external database to remove (sometimes incorrect) host name and possibly fix some random regression in some MySQL versions. (BR 225052)

Bug fixes

  • Fixed Youtube video clip broken engine due to their recent change.
  • Fixed Wikipedia no loading the css on KDE 4.4 (due to a regression in Qt 4.6.) (BR 222875)
  • Settings dialog could become too wide with translations. (BR 233752)
  • Fixed re-mounting iPhoneOS devices after having been unplugged without being unmounted. Thanks to Jeffrey Dodge . (BR 233305)
  • Fixed connection to iPod Touch devices. Patch by Jeffrey Dodge . (BR 233257)
  • Fixed the deletion of empty directories after deleting, or organizing. (BR 190881)
  • Fixed a hang that would occur when organizing a track and the source file was the same as the destination file. (BR 233181)
  • Fixed the double delete confirmation dialog when organizing tracks. (BR 233200)
  • Fixed broken rendering of ratings in Current Track applet on startup.
  • Fixed command type names shown in the Bookmark Manager not being translated. (BR 226829)
  • Fixed crash on startup for users of MySQL 5.5. Thanks to Bartosz Fabianowski for figuring it out. (BR 231166)
  • Readded missing hover info for the new file browser.
  • Fixed missing images in the hover info shown for various browser categories.
  • Fixed crash when running some Amarok urls on startup. (such as when passed on the command line or clicked in another app) (BR 231626)
  • Fixed crashes when Amarok is started and the Info applet is loaded with certain version of Qt. (BR 227639) (BR 229756)
  • Fixed organize collection dialog deleting tracks at new location instead of old. (BR 217002)
  • Fixed a broken podcast feed that had a minor compliance issue in date format. (BR 231062)
  • Fixed “files” bookmarks not storing the actual path shown in the file browser (BR 231437)
  • Fixed incorrectly displayed cover images for albums with the same name, eg “Greatest Hits”. (BR 170146)
  • Fixed problems with new Main Toolbar and SHOUTcast streams: Since these streams cannot be paused, we detect this now and stop them instead.
  • Fixed permission errors with each file copied to an iPhone via iFuse. Thanks to Colin Guthrie for the patch. (BR 231021)
  • Fixed issues with using random navigators while filetering or searching the Playlist. (BR 229226) (BR 222129)
  • Fixed crash related to the new playlist tooltips. (BR 229696)
  • Fixed some artist/album/track names not getting shown or getting shown incorrectly in the Current Track applet because of html encoding. (BR 222765)
  • Fixed issue with the Albums applet not correctly updating when playing a track by an artist not present in the local collection.
  • Fixed Albums applet not getting updated if the artist of the currently playing track was edited. (BR 210296)
  • Fixed bad window title for the details edit dialog in the playlist layout editor. (BR 227912)
  • Fixed wrong track getting dragged from the Playlist when sorting and/or filtering is active. (BR 226503)
  • Fixed visual indication for “Stop After This Track” not getting shown immediately when using the global shortcut. (BR 230569)
  • Cover fetcher: Fixed a crash involving reappearing cover found dialogs and pending cover fetches. (BR 230215)
  • Display tooltips with applet names in the context toolbar. (BR 230736)
  • File browser: “Add to Playlist” doesn’t add playlist files to the playlist. (BR 229290)

Amarok screenshot, click on the image for a larger version.

Version number 2.3.1 beta 1 “Dark Star”
Release status beta
Operating systems Linux, BSD, Solaris
Website amarok
Download http://amarok.kde.org/wiki/Download
License type GPL
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