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Call for beta testers

Any large multi-platform software project quickly surpasses its developers' efforts to identify all the problems on their own. The IMS Open Corpus Workbench is no exception. We are looking for people who have some experience with the CWB to help us spot problems in the current development branch v3.2 by acting as beta testers. All help is very gratefully accepted.

If you think you can help in this regard, then this is how to do it:

  1. Join the mailing list by going to this link
  2. Download and install a beta release of the CWB as explained below.
  3. Make use of the CWB in exactly the way you normally would – trying out all the functions you use regularly – and send a notice to the list whenever you encounter a problem.

Version 3.4 — leading up to a new stable version

Development in version 3.4.x is focused on getting as many bugs as possible ironed out for a stable 3.5 release, and also on simplifying the Windows build procedure. Bug reports are very welcome, although we are alreadya ware of quite a few!

While 3.4 is pretty stable for most purposes (and in production usage on the and server), a new guaranteed-stable version is critical to our plans to make major changes in versions 3.9 and 4.0, to address some of the major obstacles to implementing oft-demanded features.

Development in version 3.2.x was focused on Unicode support (in the UTF-8 encoding), but you don't necessarily need to have UTF-8 corpora to help out as a beta tester. One of our main worries is to make sure that everything keeps working as intended for corpora in ASCII or Latin1 encoding, including those indexed in older versions of the CWB, and also to make sure there are no serious performance regressions.

To beta-test CWB 3.4.x on a Unix system (Linux, Mac OS X, Solaris...), you have to do the following:

There are two ways to beta-test CWB 3.4.x on a Windows system:


The CWB running on MS Windows – we bet you never thought you'd live to see this!

The easy way:

The hard way:

We're working on a way to compile the CWB source code natively on a Windows machine, using MinGW and selected GnuWin32 tools. Any help from people with more Windows experience would be most appreciated. One possibility is to get as far as possible with Windows Toolset for R and its convenient executable installer package. Another is to use Strawberry Perl (which would also help solve the problem of porting the CWB-Perl interface).

Version 3.1 — native Windows port

Version 3.1 introduced Windows support and was originally maintained separately to Version 3.2. However, many more changes have now been made; so we are now asking Windows beta testers to use version 3.4 for all testing.