[Glass] Curious about GemStone 3.5

Dale Henrichs dale.henrichs at gemtalksystems.com
Wed Apr 10 15:05:50 PDT 2019

Good questions, Bruno:) ... my replies are below.

On 4/10/19 2:00 PM, BrunoBB via Glass wrote:
> Hi,
> I have read in Git issues and mail list some features of GS 3.5 ...
> It seems it will support Tonel package format

Tonel format package loading will be present in GemStone 3.5.0, however, 
that support is very limited and has not been integrated into the 
GLASS/GsDevKit environment ... at this point in time it is more akin to 
doing GemStone fileins -- it installs code into the image, but there is 
no package management to speak of ...

At one point in time, the plan was to include Rowan support in GemStone 
3.5.0 and Tonel support was added to the base in anticipation of Rowan 
replacing the functionality. We are using Tonel format for a small 
subset of the base image code. Unfortunately, reality intervened and 
Rowan was not complete enough to be included in 3.5.0.

Rowan v1.2.x is in production at a customer site, but v1.2.x does not 
quite have the full set of functionality that is needed.

Work has been underway on Rowan v2.0.0 for several months now and 
probably has several more months of development before it will be ready 
for general availability. When Rowan v2.0.0 is complete, there will more 
development needed to properly integrate it into the GLASS/GsDevKit 
environment ... Rowan is a replacement for Metacello/Monticello and it 
isn't clear to me at this point in time how the two project/package 
management systems will be merged together ... right now I am focusing 
on Rowan functionality ... I have several ideas as to how they will be 
merged, but the real proof is in the pudding:)

Rowan includes a Tonel reader/writer implementation so the likely 
solution will be to use the Rowan Tonel reader/writer from within 
Monticello ... as we speak I am working on the Rowan Tonel reader/writer 
and when I finish this work it would be possible for someone else to 
take that work and do the Monticell/Metacello integration (I will still 
be busy working on the remaining bits of Rowan:)

> and run a Gem without the need
> of a Stone.
This feature will be in GemStone 3.5.0 and it is called topaz solo. You 
will be able to use topaz to read class definitions from an extent 
without needing a stone or shared page cache ... you will not be able to 
persist any objects with topaz solo (the extent will be read only), but 
you will be able to execute GemStone smalltalk code using topaz as your vm.
> It is possible to list features here ?
> Or i should wait until official release ?
The release notes and new documentation for 3.5.0 when we release are 
the best places to get the full list of features...
> Some doubts in my mind:
> * How the Stoneless Gem will get the classes if it is not connected to a
> Stone ?
... the topaz process attaches to an extent that was created by a stone 
and reads the classes that are present there ... the extent is basically 
a read only image file.
> * Maybe it will be a special Gem with the behavior stored somewhere else (or
> preloaded) ?
>     - If the Stone is upgraded how this will affect the Stoneless Gem ?
for upgrades, you would simply attach a stone to the extent and then run 
through the upgrade process ...


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