New Features in EPrints 3.2

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Release Notes

3.4 | 3.4.1 | 3.4.2 | 3.4.3 | 3.4.4 | 3.4.5

3.3 | 3.3.5 | 3.3.6 | 3.3.7 | 3.3.8 | 3.3.9 | 3.3.10 | 3.3.11 | 3.3.13 | 3.3.14 | 3.3.15 | 3.3.16

3.2.0 | 3.2.1 | 3.2.2 | 3.2.3 | 3.2.4 | 3.2.5 | 3.2.6 | 3.2.7 | 3.2.8 | 3.2.9



  • We now recommend LibXML in preference to GDOME. It's less buggy, and easier to install.
  • Upgrade may take several hours as it cleans up the unicode issues in the database.


  • In addition to MySQL, EPrints 3.2 now supports Oracle and Postgres


  • This release features a formal API. Not all functionality is yet available via the API, but will be added slowly and carefully in future releases.
  • The bugbear of EPrints internals, EPrints::Session has been merged into EPrints::Repository. All old code will still work.


  • Thumbnails are now documents in their own right
  • Built in document-format icons, as well as those you configure yourself
  • Thumbnailing now happens in the background as part of the indexer process

Deposit Interface

  • Edit Locking locks records reduces risk of 2 people editing a record at the same time.
  • Option to extract metadata and images from OpenXML files (.docx and .pptx)
  • Offers options to users and editors on the deposit screen if there are problems
  • Document upload screen has been redesgined to be clearer.
  • Split document uploading into adding a new document and editing existing documents
  • The documents inside an EPrint may now be re-ordered
  • Progress bar on file upload
  • Document upload methods (file, url, zip etc.) are now plugin-based and can be extended
  • When attempting to deposit an eprint with problems show Save button
  • Made it an option to provide action buttons top and bottom in workflow
  • Added support for "input_boxes" property to the workflow, so you can now specify the number of input boxes to show for multiple fields
  • epc: no longer crashes eprints on bad scripts, just reports an error

Search & Indexing

  • The search library has been entirely re-written to reduce use of cache tables and to improve performance. Simple searches are now over ten times faster.
  • The indexer now uses plugins, so you can schedule other tasks, like thumbnail conversion, to be done in the background.
  • Added config option "cache_max" to limit the cachemap tables used
  • Added --clear option to cleanup old/broken indexer jobs


  • EPrints use of unicode has been significantly improved.


  • A "REST" style interface to objects, via /rest/eprint/23/title.txt, for example. This can also support "PUT" to alter fields!


  • SWORD2 (1.3 Specification) is supported.

Linked Data Support

  • Ability to establish arbitrary relations between objects or provide additional metadata in triple form.

Collections Support

  • Collections can be built via use of linked data, object ids and relationships.

Semantic Web / Linked Data (RDF)

We have made a (difficult) decision to move these features to 3.2.1 (due out soon after 3.2.0) because testing showed it caused a significant slow down.

We're rewriting it to do the same thing but with much less overhead!

Storage Layer

  • Now uses plugins to store files
    • Local Filesystem
    • Amazon S3
    • Sun Cloud Storage


  • Search & Indexing much faster
  • Import is faster
  • Other parts of the code have been audited for speed, and optimised.


  • Modified Import UI to allow a per-plugin/single/bulk workflow

EPC & EPrints Script

  • New EPC tag: epc:debug, which is like print but sends the XML to STDERR for debugging purposes.
  • New EPC tag: epc:set which defines a variable inside it's scope.
  • Improvements to the epc:foreach processing (better handling of multiple object types in lists)
  • Added "limit" option to epc:foreach to limit the number
  • Inside <epc:foreach> blocks an $index variable is set, allowing you to test which interation it's on.
  • New EPScript methods: citation_link, dataset, related_objects, url, doc_size, is_public, thumbnail_url, preview_link, icon, human_filesize, control_url, contact_email, property, substr, filter_compound_list, to_data_array, pretty_list, array_concat, action_list, action_button, action_title, action_description, action_icon
  • New Script methods:
    • $$key) which takes a string and returns a property from a hash or dataobj.
    • $eprint.documents() which returns all the "real" (non-volatile) documents.
  • New Script inline math functions: + - / * %
  • New EPrints Script datatype: DATA_ARRAY: Represents a list of tuples of [$value, $epscript_type]


  • Stateless OAI Interface means no timing-out
  • Support for multiple constraints in custom OAI sets

Unit Tests

  • We have introduced unit-tests to improve both the short and long term quality of our code.

Metadata Types

  • Counter (incrementing value)
  • Timestamp (defaults to the current time)
  • UUID
  • MetaField::Search now has two properties:
    • "namedfields" which is an array ref of field names to search OR
    • "namedfields_config" which is the name of a config variable
  • MetaField::Search can now be used in any workflow (not hard-coded to editpermfields)
  • A captcha pseudo-field based on
  • added "repeat_secret" property to secret fields that will render a confirmation box which is checked with validate()
  • Storable (store arbitrary Perl structures - internal use)

Administration Interface

  • Converted Admin screen into several tabs.
  • Improved the BatchEdit interface
  • Show a progress bar while records are updated during batch edit

Editorial Interface

  • Improved "Review" Screen
  • The "Review buffer" can now be filtered for better management of large review buffers.
  • When an editor provide the "Move to Review" button if there are problems

User Defined Datasets

  • Allows 3rd party tools to create their own additional datasets
  • Suite of interface screens to work with these new datasets

Command Line Tools

  • Allow eprint ids to be specified for redo_thumbnails


  • Added support for OAI-ORE
  • Added support for JSONP
  • Added support for an 'n' argument to search exports
  • Added arguments support to export plugins. Passed by CGI arguments on abstract search or by the --arg option in bin/export

Abstract Page

  • Now generated with a citation
  • Shows an "action list", so plugins can register to appear on this page


  • Primary method of editing phrases is now the web interface
  • Added "ref" option to phrases, which will cause the referenced phrase to be used instead - Equivalent to calling the referenced phrase directly


  • Entire rendering of item lists and menus can be over-ridden by a function

Misc. Changes

  • Can now disable a repository through a system configuration setting
  • Refactoured DataObj::get_defaults so that you can now specify default values through a "default_value" property
  • Most of get_defaults() can now be specified through the metafield spec.
  • Can now apply multiple changes to the same field (???? I assume this means metafield?)
  • Preference field for users (to store k/v pairs in)
  • Simplified Apache configuration: generate_apacheconf will no longer overwrite existing files

Key Bugfixes

  • Fixed login/logout pages not using phrases
  • Fixed spurious history objects being created on document upload
  • Fixed an HTML insertion bug in the <title> element [Brian D. Gregg]
  • Fixed schema errors in uketd_dc and METS/MODS export plugins
  • Fixed bug in Compound creation of Set types that squashed the set options
  • Fixed order static directories are searched to: repository->theme->system
  • Support long values in browse views by using the MD5 of the value,
  • Subject inputform component can now be used with singular values
  • Fixed bug that is_advertised property on export plugins was being ignored.
  • Fixed bug in indexer which meant it didn't index in a round-robin fashion.
  • Fixed export not respecting metadata visibility

Changes to repository configuration

We've made some changes to the configuration of a new repository. These will not be automatically applied to your current repositories when upgrading.

Suggested Changes

If upgrading from 3.1 to 3.2, the following changes to your own configuration are suggested to gain the features described above.

  • cp lib/defaultcfg/cfg.d/rdf* archives/YOURID/cfg/cfg.d/
  • run epadmin recommit
  • edit cfg/lang/en/static/index.xpage and add the following to the <xpage:head> section.
  <link rel="alternate" type="application/rss+xml" title="Items in {phrase('archive_name')}" href="{$config{http_cgiurl}}/latest_tool?output=RSS2"></link>
  <link rel="alternate" type="application/atom+xml" title="Items in {phrase('archive_name')}" href="{$config{http_cgiurl}}/latest_tool?output=Atom"></link>
  <link rel="alternate" type="application/rdf+xml" title="Repository Summary RDF+XML" href="{$config{http_cgiurl}}/repositoryinfo/RDFXML/devel.rdf"></link>
  <link rel="alternate" type="text/n3" title="Repository Summary RDF+N3" href="{$config{http_cgiurl}}/repositoryinfo/RDFN3/devel.n3"></link>

(you may already have the rss & atom bits)

  • This list has NOT been completed yet, we're working on it!

New and Altered Config options

These need documenting and noting which ones we recommend setting/altering when upgrading.

  • Set "hide_document_conversion" to hide the Convert link on the document workflow
  • Broke up SystemSettings into logically named files
  • Can now disable a repository through a system configuration setting
  • Moved most of into a citation file: summary_page.xml
  • Updated defaults to show current configuration style
  • Improved layout to make it easier to add/remove suffix to mimetype mappings.
  • Added URI to EPrint Summary Page
  • Added RDF+XML and N3+NT Document formats
  • New metafield option: $defaults{render_max_search_values} = 5;
  • Added "show_help" option to workflow component to disable collapsing Usage: show_help={always,toggle,never}
  • Added config option "cache_max" to limit the cachemap tables used
  • user defined datasets
  • Made it an option to provide action buttons top and bottom in workflow
    • $c->{locking}->{eprint}->{enable} = 1;
    • $c->{locking}->{eprint}->{timeout} = 600;
  • REST privs
  • check registation email callback
  • epc:debug, epc:set, changes to epc:foreach
  • lots of eprints script functions (see list above)
    • "DEFAULT;render_fn=render_view_items_3col_boxes",
    • render_menu => "render_view_menu_3col_boxes"
    • ranges & variations were introduced in 3.1.? but need documenting.
  • Storage plugins
  • adding actions to abstract page
  • select targz,zip,plain etc. in workflow/upload