NICOS 3.0 has been released

NICOS 3.0 is now available for download.

Changes in this release series:

In this release, the “custom” directory with setups and modules for instruments has been replaced by Python packages. The most important consequences from this change are:

  • Individual instrument customizations are separated by facility, called nicos_<facility>. By default, all such packages are installed alongside with the main nicos package.

  • Custom modules no longer need to be mapped into nicos.<instrument> with a nonstandard manipulation of __path__, which makes it much easier for tools and IDEs to find and process them.

  • All device and class names in setups, as well as, must now be fully qualified. There are no shortcuts (leave out nicos.) anymore.

  • The custom_paths setting for nicos.conf has been replaced with a setting setup_package. It specifies only a Python package name. The package is found along PYTHONPATH.

  • The INSTRUMENT environment variable should now be of the form nicos_<facility>.<instrument>.

Other changes:

  • GUI

    • The GR-based live detector view can show ROIs.

    • The device list can now show arbitrary parameters of a device, in addition to the current value and status. Which devices should show which parameters is configured in the for each instrument.

    • In the scans panel, opening new scans automatically can now be switched off.

    • If a script exits with an error, the last executed line is marked with a red arrow in the script view.

    • Multiple bugs have been fixed in the find/replace dialog of the script editor.

  • Devices

    • A new sequence item, SeqWait, has been added for sequencer devices.

    • EPICS support has been improved considerably.

    • A ScanningDetector has been added to the generic devices. On count, it will perform a scan of a device and collect the subscan results.

  • Commands

    • A new waitfor command has been added to replace simple while-loops.
  • Core

    • The rsa module is now a required dependency, and will always be used for encrypting credentials between the daemon and its clients.

    • Support has been added for encrypted password and other credentials storage.

    • Daemon slowdown due to slow/hanging/intermittent network connections has been reduced.

  • Documentation

    • The user documentation for some commands was extended.
  • Test suite

    • Many tests have been added, and the test suite is more reliable due to a rework of test fixtures.

    • Tests can be run in Docker containers.