Archi version 4.5 is now available to download.
The focus for this release has been on the following key areas:
- Speed and memory optimisations
- Better plug-in management
- Building upon more recent versions of Eclipse and Java
Speed and memory optimisations
When Archi was first developed, almost 10 years ago, we had no idea that it would be as successful as it turned out to be. With an average of around 6,000 downloads a month Archi is probably the most popular ArchiMate tool available, at least in terms of downloads. We certainly hadn’t anticipated the degree to which users would make more demands on the software. At first users were creating small to medium sized models, perhaps with twenty or so Views and a couple of hundred ArchiMate concepts. Now users are creating huge models with hundreds of Views and thousands of concepts, with file sizes of many megabytes.
With Archi 4.5 we have focused on performance when working with larger models and made improvements in the following areas:
- Models load faster
- Memory is freed when a model is closed
- Working with the UI is faster in the Properties window
- Enumerating user Properties is faster
- Deleting and renaming concepts is faster
- Internal optimisations for folder and concept management and navigation
Archi 4.5 should provide you with a much better experience.
Better plug-in management
Installing and managing Archi plug-ins has been improved.
Prior to this version, Archi plug-in files were effectively copied into Archi’s “plugins” folder. Now, installing an Archi plug-in copies it to a “dropins” folder located in the user’s home directory. This means that, from today, when you update Archi to a new version you no longer have to re-install your Archi plug-ins. This is because the Archi installation folder (or Archi app, on a Mac) is separate to the “dropins” folder.
You can either install official Archi plug-ins (these are packaged in a zip file) with the new Plug-ins Manager accessed from the “Manage Archi Plug-ins” menu item under the “Help” menu, or you can manually copy the plug-in files (*.jar files) into the “dropins” folder.
With the new Plug-ins Manager you can install more than one plug-in at a time, see what Archi plug-ins are already installed, and easily uninstall selected plug-ins if you no longer require them.
Building upon more recent versions of Eclipse and Java
Archi is built on Eclipse. The previous version of Eclipse used for Archi was 4.7. We now build Archi with Eclipse 4.11. This version includes many bug fixes and solves some issues for each OS platform. However, Eclipse 4.11 only supports 64-bit operating systems so we can no longer ship 32-bit versions of Archi.
We are now bundling OpenJDK 11 (https://adoptopenjdk.net/) with these installers, which means that you don’t have to worry about installing different versions of Java on your system. Also, the Windows installer gives you the option of installing the Java Runtime. So if you already have Java 11 installed you can choose not to install Archi’s bundled version and use the system Java instead.
There are many more features and fixes in Archi 4.5. You can read the full list in the Change Log.