[dev-context] MetaPost 1.501 (alpha version)

Taco Hoekwater taco at elvenkind.com
Fri Jul 23 09:07:32 CEST 2010

I am happy to announce a new *alpha* release of MetaPost:

MetaPost 1.501

The standalone distribution package and a win32 binary can be downloaded
immediately from


This is an *alpha* release following a major internal rewrite, so do
not use this version for production purposes, but please test with
as many files as you can.

The win32 binary is intended for texlive or a similar web2c-based
installation, this executable will *not* work for miktex.

Of course, we welcome any comments (either good or bad) that you may
have. Simply replying to this message is fine, but see the bottom of
the message for a more formal way to report bugs and feature requests.

What is new in MetaPost version 1.501:

* The maximum number of variable instances has increased from approx.
  33 million (2^25-1) to 2 billion (2^31-1).

* New build system and kpathsea imported from TeX Live.

* Many small bugfixes to 1.500.

What is new in MetaPost version 1.500:

* Actual memory dump files do not exist any more. --mem=<MEM> and
  all other methods of supplying a MEM file are now interpreted
  somewhat like this pseudo-metapost-code:

    let dump = end;
    input MEM[.mp];

  this process is supposed to be transparent besides the facto that
  there is some extra terminal output and logging.

* All memory is now allocated and freed dynamically. There are only
  two remaining overflow errors(1):

  "expansion depth" : this is a guard against infinite recursion,
                      the value is 10000.
  "sizes per font"  : this is maxed out for data-structure reasons,
                      the value is 32767.

  from texmf.cnf, now only the "error_line", "half_error_line" and
  "print_line settings" are used.

  (1) but now you can reach the operating system limits, of course.

* As this is an alpha release containing lots and lots of new code,
  MetaPost starts up with the internal equivalent of 'loggingall;'
  in effect. This results in log files that can help in debugging.

* Expect bugs and (minor) memory leaks.

Legal notice / license / bug reports

MetaPost is a system for producing graphics developed by John Hobby
at AT&T, based on Donald Knuth's Metafont.  The MetaPost home page
is http://tug.org/metapost.

MetaPost is free software: you can redistribute it and/or modify it
under the terms of the GNU Lesser General Public License as published
by the Free Software Foundation, either version 3 of the License, or
(at your option) any later version.

The MetaPost development project is currently hosted at Supelec,
http://foundry.supelec.fr/gf/project/metapost; with a bug tracker
at http://tracker.luatex.org/. Please report bugs and
request enhancements through there if possible. Alternatively, you
can reach us through the <metapost at tug.org> mailing list as well.

Have fun!

Taco Hoekwater, for the MetaPost team, July 23, 2010

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