xemacsweb / Releases / 21.4.1.content

XEmacs 21.4.1 "Copyleft" is released.
Stephen J. Turnbull
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From: "Stephen Turnbull, XEmacs 21.4 Release Manager" &lt;;
Date: Fri, 20 Apr 2001 01:05:27 +0900

* XEmacs 21.4.1 "Copyleft" is released.

"Copyleft" is the second in the OXYMORON series of releases.

Relative to XEmacs 21.4.0 "Solid Vapor", it contains a few typo fixes
in the documentation and some fixes to critical bugs (all of which
manifest rarely, fortunately).  More detailed information about the
changes is presented below.

XEmacs 21.4.0 itself contained a large number of improvements and
extensions to the current stable version, XEmacs 21.1.14.  For more
information about the OXYMORON series, see etc/NEWS, the initial
release announcement

and the release planning page,

For general information about XEmacs, the developers, and the user
community, see our home page,

* XEmacs 21.4.1 is "gamma" software. 

Besides the usual "no warranty" disclaimer (see etc/WARRANTY, sections
10 and 11), we are now experimenting with a level of stability
intermediate between "beta" and "stable", dubbed "gamma".  At this
point all the developers and most of our beta testers trust the 21.4
code base with all their editing needs.  However, for several reasons,
for users who absolutely must minimize risk, we continue to recommend
the 21.1 series.

Nevertheless, almost all users will get very high reliability from
XEmacs 21.4, and in return, access to many new features and improved
functionality.  No new destabilizing code will be added; each release
in the 21.4 series should be strictly more stable and bug-free than
the preceding one.  We also recommend the 21.4 series to distribution
packagers (such as Linux distributions and the open source BSD "ports"
or "packages" maintainers) for their "testing" and "development"

* Changes included in XEmacs 21.4.1 "Copyleft"

  - Temporary fix to crash in map-keymap applied.  Thanks to Mike
    Alexander.  No thanks to your Release Manager, who managed to omit
    applying it a couple of weeks ago.

  - Crash in Motif builds on closing frame fixed.  Thanks to
    Glynn Clements.

  - Descriptions of workarounds for crashes and hangs related to ESD
    (don't configure it) and Athena3d (how to configure it properly)
    added to PROBLEMS.

  - about.el overhauled, a few new hackers' entries or photos added,
    and old ones updated.  Thanks to Ben Wing.

  - More etc\NEWS.  Thanks to Ben Wing.

  - Typo fix in etc\sample.init.el.  Thanks to Ben Wing.

  - Typos fixed in a number of documents.

* Getting XEmacs 21.4.1
XEmacs 21.4.1 is available in source form, including pre-compiled 
"core" Lisp libraries and pre-built Info files, from
and mirrors (

for general information about downloading XEmacs.  (It will be updated
to reflect the latest information about 21.4.1 shortly; our Webmaster
is taking a well-earned vacation.)  For those wedded to their old
command-line FTP client, the following URLs may be useful:

or build the Lisp and Info from source, saving download time, with

In either case, you need the "packaged Lisp" for more than the most
basic functionality.  You may use packages previously installed for
use with XEmacs 21.1 or later without change.  For new installations,
the "SUMO" distribution of (almost) all packaged Lisp is available as

The latter should be installed only if you are building XEmacs with
the MULE multilingual support; it contains Lisp files that cannot be
correctly loaded by a unibyte XEmacs.  See README.packages.

XEmacs 21.4.1 is also available via anonymous CVS.  To get the latest
in the 21.4 series, check out (or update) with the "release-21-4"
tag.  This should be sufficient for almost all users; from now on
patches will be carefully screened to ensure that every release is
more stable than the last.  If for some reason you specifically want
this release, use the "r21-4-1" tag.

See for general instructions on getting XEmacs
via anonymous CVS.

Binary kits are not planned at this time, except for the MS Windows
platform.  The "netinstaller" for MS Windows uses prebuilt binaries,
so it lags the source release by a few days.  There will be an
announcement of availability shortly.  (The adventurous can subscribe
to the xemacs-nt mailing list to learn about prerelease tests.)
Installshield and Wise versions are also being discussed.

We are considering providing binary kits for important platforms that
lack independent distributors (a la the Linux "distributions" or the
FreeBSD "ports" maintainers) for at least some releases once 21.4 is
accepted as "stable".  Volunteers should contact the Release Manager,
"Stephen Turnbull" &lt;;, and let me know what
platforms you can build for.

* Important notice for CVS users:

The CVS Repository structure has been rationalized thanks to Michael
Sperber.  The development code is now on the trunk.  There are several
active branches, each with per-release tags of the form "r21-4-0"
(major-minor-patchlevel), and a branch tag which always gives the tip:

Branch                     Branch tag    Release tag
Development trunk (21.5):  none          r21-5-xx
"Gamma" branch (21.4):     release-21-4  r21-4-xx
Stable branch (21.1):      release-21-1  r21-1-xx

The trunk has a special "moving" release tag, "r21-5-latest-beta".
This is updated with each release to reflect the most recent beta
release.  (The Beta Release Maintainer makes some effort to ensure
that beta releases at least build; there is no way to make such a
guarantee for the tip of the trunk in our development model.)

There is no "moving" release tag for stable versions; just use "-r
release-21-1" if you need the current release of version 21.1, and "-r
release-21-4" for 21.4.

To update an existing CVS checkout to the trunk (development), use the
-A flag to cvs update, or simply cvs checkout with no -r flag.  To
checkout or update to one of the other branches, use the -r flag with
the appropriate branch tag. has more
information.  It is in the process of being updated, so some
information about tags may be inaccurate for a few days.

* Thanks

... to all the developers, reviewers, and testers; to the
Electrotechnical Laboratory and for financial support; to and SourceForge[tm] for hosting services; and to our users.

* Apologies

No, I'm _still_ not using the latest and greatest XEmacs to write
this.  Next time....

April 19, 2001
XEmacs 21.4 Release Manager
Stephen J. Turnbull &lt;;

University of Tsukuba                Tennodai 1-1-1 Tsukuba 305-8573 JAPAN
Institute of Policy and Planning Sciences       Tel/fax: +81 (298) 53-5091
_________________  _________________  _________________  _________________
What are those straight lines for?  "XEmacs rules."</pre>
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