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Sprint v4 released

Sprint is my best-selling Joomla extension to quickly produce a nicely-formatted PDF catalog with VirtueMart products.

Recently,  version 4 of the extension has been released. Let's see what's new.

External TCPDF

TCPDF is a PHP library to produce PDF via code. In Joomla 1.5 this library was included in the core package, while from Joomla 2.5 this has been removed.

To make life easier for my users, I decided to include TCPDF in Sprint package.

This creates a few problems though:

  • I often have to update TCPDF version in my package
  • it makes the package bigger
  • it makes more complicated for Sprint to be accepted into JED

Generally speaking, it's always better if your package just declares its dependencies, without actually including them.

Luckily, recent VirtueMart releases make use of TCPDF so they created an installable package and distributed it in the VirtueMart wrapper package itself.

That means anyone using VirtueMart can easily install TCPDF as well, and that means Sprint no longer has to.

Refactor and refresh

Sprint code was showing its age, so I took the opportunity to refactor the code.

Mainly I removed / replaced deprecated methods, but I also extracted some code into separated methods and improved some long-standing issues.

No new features here, except all compatibility with Joomla 2 and VirtueMart 2 has been removed.

Free and Pro variants

This is probably the most interesting new for would-be Sprint users: there is now a Free variant that you can download with no subscription.

The Free variant is completely functional with no time-limit, but it only has one available layout, and of course I don't provide any support to this variant.

I think you can use Free to evaluate the component, and then move on to Pro as soon as you're positive that it's good for you.

But of course, you may be completely happy with Free and just use it forever. That is ok as well!

In a future article we will talk more about the differences between Free and Pro.