This post will probably read like total gibberish to most of this blog’s regular readers, if such a thing as a regular reader exists. If, however, you do desktop publishing work using an open-source DTP program called Scribus, and you use this program on a Macintosh, then this post is meant for you.
Most of the time since May, the Aqua version of Scribus available front-and-center on the project’s web site has been the 1.3.4 development version. Technically, that’s a pre-release that includes features not yet in the stable release. I’ve been using Scribus 1.3.4 for a while, and it does what I need it to do. On January 8, the Scribus developers released an updated stable version, 184.108.40.206, and the Macintosh port of the program readily available through the Scribus web site is now the stable 220.127.116.11 version rather than the 1.3.4 development version that previously occupied its place. Note the numbering system in use here: Scribus 1.3.4 still comes after 18.104.22.168; this new stable version is a bugfix release in the 1.3.3 line and as such has not yet incorporated changes made in development versions 1.3.4 and later.
As a result, version 1.3.4, despite being available for the Mac earlier than the stable 22.214.171.124 version Mac users can now download, contains some newer features not available in the “new” version 126.96.36.199. Among the 1.3.4 features 188.8.131.52 is lacking are updates done to the Scribus .sla file format. Because of that, Scribus version 1.3.3.x cannot open files created by Scribus version 1.3.4. I just discovered this while doing some tinkering with a non-profit organization newsletter I make using Scribus.
Fortunately, if you install Scribus 184.108.40.206 on your Macintosh, and you already have Scribus 1.3.4 installed on your computer, the install will not automatically overwrite the copy of Scribus you already have. Version 220.127.116.11 installs with the name “Scribus133,” while version 1.3.4 installs with the name “Scribus,” so no overwrite occurs. Fortunately for me, I hadn’t trashed my old copy, so I still have version 1.3.4 hanging around to open my newsletter file.
If you have, unfortunately, overwritten or thrown out your copy of Scribus 1.3.4 for the Macintosh, you can still download it here.
So, my warning to you is that if you’ve decided to install Scribus 18.104.22.168 and you already have Scribus 1.3.4, don’t change the name of your install file to overwrite your current copy, nor should you otherwise trash the release you already have. If you’ve created a file in Scribus 1.3.4 already, the “new” Scribus release presently available through the Mac OS X download link on the Scribus website can’t read it.
I’m assuming this will all get worked out once a new stable version of Scribus beyond version 1.3 is released that incorporates the changes made in development versions like 1.3.4 and 1.3.5. Until then, don’t pitch your copy of 1.3.4. You’ll need it to open the files you made using it.