PortableApps.com Platform 12.0 Beta 3.2: Improved Updater/App Store, Modern Theme and More

John T. Haller's picture
Submitted by John T. Haller on April 30, 2014 - 12:33am

PortableApps.com is proud to announce the PortableApps.com Platform Version 12.0 Beta 3.2 release. This third beta in the 12.0 line is a relatively minor update over the current beta. It is designed to continue to test fixes to the updater and app store, refinements to the new theme and menu layout change, updated branding that's more subtle and manual proxy support. Like previous releases, it has automated app updates, customizable folders (categories) in the menu, a full theming engine with multiple chrome styles, the Portable App Directory app store for automatic download and installation of portable apps, find-as-you-type search (just type / or F3) to easily find apps in your ever-growing collection, an improved updater, more-complete translations into more languages and lots more. If you'd like to see more features and functionality keep coming, please read a personal appeal from PortableApps.com founder John T. Haller to help! Read on for all the details...(permalink)

Existing Platform users can automatically update by clicking Help - Check for Updates and getting a fast-install 1MB update patch if they have the beta channel enabled under the Advanced tab in Options.

New in 12.0 Beta 3

Beta 3 features a partially rebuilt app store and updater that checks for updates up to 10x faster and improves download of the app database by shrinking it to less than 1/5th the previous size. Multiple bugs, both functional and visual, have been fixed. 18 languages have been updated. Complete details are available in the platform changelog.

12.0 Beta 3.1 is a small patch release that fixes an issue with the progress bar in the updater and app store.

12.0 Beta 3.2 is a 2nd small patch release that fixes an issue with the updater automatically closing on platform upgrades and provides updates to 16 locales.

New 12.0 Theme, Branding, Features

For 12.0, we're simplifying the branding on the PortableApps.com Platform to make it more subtle and modern. The logo is also changed on the taskbar and system tray We're also introducing a new default theme that's more modern and clean with simplified iconography. The new theme is not yet complete, but we have included both a light and dark version, replacing the existing Default Light and Default Dark themes included in 11.0 stable. Don't worry, we'll be bringing back the existing themes in an upcoming release for those who like them. The space at the top where the large PortableApps.com logo used to be will be used by an always-visible search bar in the final release which will have focus by default, enabling find-as-you-type search without the need for a hotkey. We recommend using Silver and the Light theme. Give it a try!

In addition, multiple new features have been added including manual proxy support, OEM branding (KeyZ, Gigs2Go, etc), and more.

Platform Development Restarted, Finalizing 12.0

As many users know, platform development has been on hold for a while as we worked on shoring up the business side of things and while our lead developer has recovered from surgery (and is having another surgery today). Development has been restarted albeit at a slower pace in the recent months.

For the 12.0 final release, we'll be focusing on finalizing the existing features as well as adding in the completed work from two contributors (one via permission to license his code as open source, one via a one-time contribution of code to the platform). These contributions add a cascading list of apps to the right-click of the system tray icon and help enable us to automatically close running apps as you exit the platform. This work will be completed over the next few weeks so we can get the 12.0 final changes out to our userbase as quickly as possible.

Beyond 12.0

After 12.0, we'll be working on the remaining features listed in the Platform bug report and feature list and doing a new platform release about monthly. One big feature we'll be working on post-12.0 will be file associations. Work on this has been stalled as the lead developer is currently the only platform developer and has otherwise been occupied with the business side of things, app updates/releases, and his recent injury and surgery. The underlying code is mostly complete, but the UI for them is still in a relatively early state. Additionally, the method we are using does not appear to function on Windows 8/8.1 due to the way Windows now requires the end user to select which app will open which file. We're exploring incorporating the basic double-click detection in eXpresso/CAFE as a backup for this situation so that all operating systems are covered and will update as we know more.

Ongoing Donation Drive

PortableApps.com needs your help to keep bringing you great software! To learn more, read a personal appeal from PortableApps.com founder John T. Haller. Now you can sponsor the PortableApps.com Platform and help us keep delivering awesome software for free. With options ranging from having your name included to a full-blown site-wide sponsorship, there's a good fit for everyone. Sponsor us today and be a part of the action!

We also accept donations of any size to help with development and hosting:

Make a Donation - Please help support PortableApps.com's development and hosting

Discussing The Release, Enhancements and Bug Reports

For bug reports, localization updates, and discussion of the sorting methods, please use these threads:

Download Today

You can download the beta version of the PortableApps.com Platform from the PortableApps.com Platform Beta page. Get it today!

Please note that any bug reports and feature requests go in the PortableApps.com Platform Bug Report and Feature Request Tracker.

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John T. Haller's picture

Please remember that this is a relatively minor update after development was on hiatus for quite a while. It's designed to get fixes for some annoying bugs into everybody's hands. The biggest changes you're likely to notice are the improved app updater performance, better iconography, updated locales, and the like. Beta 4 will introduce a few more minor features and then we'll go stable and just keep on going. For now, though, I'm off to bed as I have surgery in the morning.

Sometimes, the impossible can become possible, if you're awesome!

Thanks for the reminder for a donation. Sometimes we forget how much work folks like you do for us. I love your apps and have used them for years and never really thought about supporting what you all are doing for us. Folks that don't understand the cost of bandwidth have no idea what it costs you out of pocket to do this for us for FREE.

Hoping you heal quickly and get back to doing the things you were able to do before your fall. The ice this year (in the NE) was horrendous! I lost a good friend on Christmas even to a fall on the ice while walking his dog. Heal well, and thanks again for what you do for us all.


Riding my Iron Horse to spread the Word of God!

If i upgrade from 11 to 12 Beta 3, does my platform becomes unstable and will it crash ?

Gord Caswell's picture

No, not at all.

Version 12 beta 3 is a test of the upcoming version 12, and doesn't yet have all the bugs worked out.

It is no less stable than version 11. In fact, it is actually more stable, as there have been a number of bugs fixed between those two versions.

John T. Haller's picture

A small patch release has been posted to fix the issue with the progress bar in the updater and app store. Another beta with additional features and language updates will be posted in a few days.

Sometimes, the impossible can become possible, if you're awesome!

I have to use PortableApps in an environment when the proxy of Internet Explorer is wrong and cannot be changed.
I have to use a local proxy (localhost:3128)

the PortableApps Updater beta3.1 cannot use the proxy and moan (Translated from my French locale)
"Unable to connect to PortableApps.com" to download portable applications. please try later [Send Request Error ].

Notice that I tested version beta3.0 on my home PC (where there is no proxy, but where I installed my local proxy) and it worked well...
It is strange, but i see few possibilities:
- regression from beta3.0 to 3.1
- when configured as proxy, in fact it use IE or noproxy without asking
- administrator rights are required

Note that beside that, I'm afraid the chrome installer will not work since it requires download and probably use Internet Explorer configuration.

PS: if you (or someone here) want I can donate my patch of jHTTPp2 (java proxy). I use it massively and it works. I can explain why it is useful, compared to cntlm.

John T. Haller's picture

As indicated in the post, please report bugs over here rather than as comments on a news story: https://portableapps.com/node/28593

When reporting, please note that nothing changed proxy-wise between beta 3.0 and 3.1 in the updater/app store code. It is quite literally 3 lines of code that update the progress bar. So, if it doesn't work in beta 3.1, it didn't work in beta 3.0.

Second, SOCKS4/5 proxies are not yet supported, only standard proxies. The inetc component used for downloading has zero SOCKS support. We'll be adding it at some point in a future release as per the upcoming features list also in the linked thread.

Sometimes, the impossible can become possible, if you're awesome!

John T. Haller's picture

A small beta patch release has been made in the form of 12.0 Beta 3.2. This release fixes an issue with the updater failing to automatically close on platform updates. Beta 3/3.1 users, just click Finish and then click OK to allow the installer to upgrade.

Updates to the following locales have been included: Armenian, Bulkgarian, ChineseSimplified, Dutch, English, EnglishGB, French, German, Greek, Italian, Polish, Portuguese, Slovak, Slovenian, Spanish, Spanish International.

Another beta with additional features and language updates will be posted soon. Stay tuned!

Sometimes, the impossible can become possible, if you're awesome!