Release 0.9.1: An Unexpected Journey

Published: 2012-09-22 17:38:41 -0400

The Fellowship of Deploys

Release 0.9.1 will be split into two releases, as the final parts of the filter rewrite will need a little bit more testing time and we wanted to get out these fixes as soon as possible. We are now entering the very last phase of poking and prodding the new filter code (and completely revamped advanced search form) until we can be reasonably sure that nothing will break upon deploy to the Archive. We apologize for the delay in this!

Part 1: The Two Bugfixes

(It's actually around a dozen bugfixes and improvements, but once you commit to a theme, you commit.) Tireless coders Ana, Elz, Enigel, Sarken, and Scott contributed to this release. Testers Jenn Calaelen, Lady Oscar, mumble, Radka, and Sam J. helped confirm that all fixes were working as expected. This deploy includes the following fixes:

  • Design/Display
    • Our intrepid frontend lead Sarken completely revamped the bookmark blurbs and tidied up bookmark listings, making both more useful and easier to navigate, offering more information (such as word count, chapters and number of hits, date last updated, and collections the bookmark is in) at a glance, and basically improving all the things
    • There was a hidden header and help text link on the filter box, only accessible to screenreaders or through keyboard navigation; the fieldset legend and little blue question mark are now visible
  • Works/Tags
    • There was a critical bug that prevented updated works from being bumped to the top of the relevant tag pages (e.g. fandom, characters, relationships...) and would only update the tag pages with newly-posted works; this has been fixed and works that you update with a new chapter should now correctly appear
    • We found an issue where changing a tag name on the admin side would not update the autocomplete options for users, leading to problems when a user selected the old, but now unwrangled tag in some contexts; this has been fixed
    • In the same vein, a collection title change would not update the title in the autocomplete options when trying to add a work to a collection, creating the impression the collection didn't exist; this has also been fixed
    • When a work or series you subscribed to was deleted, your subscriptions page would throw up an error 500 and become inaccessible; we thought this fixed in a previous deploy but tracked down a lingering issue when we were still getting reports of this problem and should be in the clear now
    • For works with many comments, paging to the next set of comments would bump you down to the bottom of the page, forcing you to scroll up to read the comments; paging through comments will now keep you at the top of the comments section
    • In preparation for more backend changes, we renamed the database table for counting hits and widened its scope to keep track of more work stats as well; this shouldn't affect you right now
  • Notifications/Emails
    • We've been experiencing problems with activation emails relentlessly getting eaten by spam filters, resulting in a dozen Support tickets every day to take care of account verification; after some analysis we found that our subject line resembled common spam patterns; we have now renamed the emails to say "[AO3] Confirmation" and will track if this improves matters
    • Related to this, we've fixed a loophole making it possible to request a new password for an unverified account, ultimately resulting in an error 404 when trying to use the new password; users are now asked to contact Support if they didn't receive an activation email instead of being sent a new password

Please note: If you want to ensure that all Archive emails, including subscriptions and comment notifications, reach your inbox, please add do-not-reply@archiveofourown.org to your contacts and/or follow these unofficial instructions for whitelisting all emails from the Archive. Gmail especially seems to place emails from our address in spam folders at random.

Part 2: The Return of the Filters

As most of our users know, we've been working hard the last few months to rewrite the code for our tag filters (we touch upon some of the problems with the old filter code in our post AO3 performance and growth: some details). This deploy doesn't include the new filters, but it does include lots of the background work which is needed to support them. The rest of the code will be in our next deploy - the new filters don't look too different from the old ones, but they are much spiffier and more efficient behind the scenes.


A sneak peek of the new filters (frontend); not pictured: massive backend changes for scalability and maintainability