Update for the last five months until March 19th, 2013


  • OpenPetra Alpha 0.2.24 was released on March 19th, 2013.

The release contains a lot of new functionality and bug fixes! It can be downloaded from here. A Windows installer is available.

The OpenPetra release 0.2.24 follows up the achievements of the previous version, which proved to be the most stable so far. This then enabled us to thoroughly test essential functions and to fix many of the raised issues. We continued implementing the validation framework into various screens, extended the functionality of the different modules and further improved the usability of the application – in particular when handling additional ledgers. Many setup screens have been extended and items that previously were provided by demo data only can now be maintained within OpenPetra.

WolfgangB introduced the Recurring GL Batch Screen in the Finance Module. He also worked on General Ledger setup functionality, introducing a screen for ledger settings which includes defining accounting periods and calendar, enabling/disabling sub systems, etc.. An overview page of general ledger settings is now provided, too.
In the Partner Module WolfgangB added functionality to combine, intersect and subtract extracts as well as an option to add/delete partner types for all partner records in an extract at once. It is now also possible to delete a partner record.

ChristianK Introduced a MessageBox that lists Forms that need to be closed in order for the user to be able to close the OpenPetra Client.
He finished the basic implementation of the ‘Shepherd Framework’ (this got started as a Student Project). This framework will facilitate the creation of ‘Shepherds’ when it is finished – ‘Shepherds’ are user interfaces that will guide a user step-by-step in a data entry process.
ChristianK also worked on our proposed documentation wiki system that will in the end hopefully provide a single-source publishing solution for the OpenPetra User Guides.

TimotheusP: Annual gift receipts for the Nazareth Charity have again been printed with OpenPetra. This is the third year we are printing annual gift receipts with OpenPetra already.
Timotheus worked on an initial version of the finance details on Partner Edit, where one can maintain the bank account of the donors, and the annual gift receipt flag.
For OM Germany, Timotheus has implemented an export of finance data according to GDPdU.
Timotheus has worked on OpenPetra.Now, which aims to be a hosted solution of OpenPetra for smaller charities and church offices. This service will be offered by the company of Timotheus, SolidCharity.

ChrisT continued his work on the Gift and GL batch screen with a particular focus on gift reversals, analysis Attributes for transactions and recurring gift screen functionality in cooperation with WolfgangB. In addition he fixed several issues in the ICH Stewardship area.

Since January Alan P has been able to spend more time on Open Petra than in 2012.
He has fixed a bug with the grid control that meant that the current record did not always scroll completely into view when the selection changed. After that he implemented some standard code to catch the inadvertent creation of a duplicate record and display a relevant message within the standard validation framework.
AlanP has spent some time fixing bugs and improving the behaviour of the two exchange rate screens.

TimI has been fixing many issues that have been raised by developers and users. Plenty of minor changes especially in the area of finance reporting and Accounts Payable will have an impact on the overall usability.

DouglasM has completed the progress dialogues for the GL and Gift batch import. He is currently working on the Gift batch validation.

Technical bits:

  • ChristianK introduced an additional option for a conditional OpenPetra Server shutdown.
  • He also implemented Singleton (=single-instance) Forms capability (needed e.g. for modal Find screens such as the Partner Find screen) and made changes to wherever a Currency Amount is displayed or entered: the Currency (e.g. ‘EUR’ for Euros) is now displayed separately from the Amount (which is still editable in the Text entry field).
  • TimotheusP has worked on a redesign of the communication between client and server, which reduces complexity for the developers and makes the software faster for the user. This will go into trunk soon after the next release.

Other news:

  • DouglasM joined the OpenPetra Team as a part-time software engineer at the end of November last year.
  • Next year the ICCM Europe conference will be held in Mosbach/Germany (5 – 8 February 2014). This will be a good opportunity for the OpenPetra team to be present! http://www.iccm-europe.org/.
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