Monday, November 01, 2010

A new old PHP framework

With Horde4 the old "framework" block of code contained in the base Horde application will be split into its single component parts. This should help to underline the modular framework aspect of Horde itself.

The Kolab Server is one of the few systems that tried to use part of the Horde software stack even with Horde3. Both the free/busy system and the Resource management do not require more than a few packages from the Horde core framework.

With Horde3 this approach has always been somewhat awkward. The Horde release process made no use of the fact that the Horde framework was split into modules. With the Kolab Server we had to work around this limitation which resulted in the split packaging layout which will be available with Kolab-Server-2.3. But this is hand made on the Kolab side.

For Horde 4 p@rdus is pushing the use of PEAR with a specialized "component helper". The idea is to facilitate the handling of many small Horde components - each a PEAR package.

The tool currently allows automatic updates to Horde component manifests. It packages development snapshots. Builds continuous integration configuration for a component. It creates packaging specs for a distribution - and lists package dependencies.

Last but not least: It install components. And it does that primarily based on the code repository.

This is an essential feature for the continuous integration setup as all testing of the newest code will happen based on installed components. As a result the packaging will automatically be part of the quality control. Both the developers as well as the packagers will benefit from that.

Once the complete components setup is in place it will be very easy to derive a set of packages from it. Whether these packages are targeted for OpenPKG (Kolab Server 2.2.4 or 2.3) or some later native packaging will not really matter. p@rdus is of course actively working on such packaging and you can watch for commits on the horde4 branch of the Kolab server mercurial repository.


  1. I have just finished an RPM install of Horde 4, as such Horde project is a good start but there are some glitches to it.

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