Development of FreeWAIS-sf was begun in Summer 1993 as bug fixes for version 0.202 of the CNIDR distribution. These fixes included boolean operators, partial match search and phonetic indexing. We mailed the fixes to CNIDR but received no acknowledgement. We decided to redesign the server to parse the queries since we felt that boolean operations cannot be performed correctly without ensuring that the query conforms to a syntax. At the same time we felt that adding C-code for indexing new document formats is too much to require of most data or system system administrators. We also saw a need to split up documents into a number of different fields with possibly different indexing methods.
Since feedback from CNIDR was still missing in February 1994, we released our first version called freeWAIS-0.2-sf-alpha.tar.gz. This first version used Imakefiles for installation and was successfully compiled on many systems. Due to fixes to installation code and numerous bug fixes 8 subsequent versions (through freeWAIS-0.2-sf09-alpha.tar.gz) were released.
Since this last alpha version contained most of the features we want to implement, we generated the first beta version. Many people, (namely running AIX and DG/UX systems) had no working imake on their machines, we added a configure script generated by autoconf for the installation procedure. This script generates templates containing system and installation information. Simple makefiles are thereby generated which allow compilation and installation of FreeWAIS-sf on a great variety of systems. See the list of supported systems. This Makefiles do not contain dependencies of the generated files. To recompile after changes, run make clean then make all or use Makefiles generated by imake. The last beta version was freeWAIS-0.2-sf-beta-05.tar.gz At this time we decided not to wait for CNIDR, which seems mainly concerned with the Z39.50 Version 3 definition and differentiate this version from the CNIDR products by dropping the -0.2- in the name.
During July, August and September we removed some bugs in memory handling. Purify is now completely happy with waisindex, waissearch and waisserver. For more information on some minor changes, look at sections 2 to 2.
A couple of beta testers spent their time for porting to other systems. From all the people helped us with comments, suggestions and patches (63 netters!), we would like to mention the following (which had a really hard time):
Thank you all!
After that we be released
in September 1994.