XNAT 1.6.4 Release Notes

The latest stable released version of XNAT is 1.6.4, released on 17 November, 2014 (note: 1.6.4 was originally released on 10 November, but had a small emergency fix slipped in and the release bundles were then updated).

Changes for 1.6.4

The following major areas of functionality were fixed or added in this release:

  • Custom user groups and feature roles were enhanced and made generally available. User groups have always been available in XNAT. The standard access restrictions in previous versions of XNAT, with project owners, members, and contributors, were implemented using XNAT's user group support. However, XNAT administrators and developers had no way to access, modify, create, or delete user groups. These functions have now been exposed through the project management functions.
  • Limited scripting and event trigger support is now available. Currently this is only available in the 

    ScriptedSessionAssignmentExtractor class, but more information on how to access and leverage this capability will be available soon.

  • Non-expiring user accounts (e.g. for pipeline processing daemons and the like) are now available.

  • Projects are created as auto-archive projects by default.
  • Many other security-, performance-, and usability-related bugs were also resolved. See the XNAT 1.6.4 Resolved and Closed Issues spreadsheet for a list of the issues that were resolved in the 1.6.4 release.

The issue numbers in the XNAT 1.6.4 Resolved and Closed Issues spreadsheet include links to the XNAT issue tracking site. Currently this site is not accessible by users outside of the NRG lab, since early use of the XNAT project there often included data from active research projects and so may contain PHI or other sensitive data. Over the New Year break, we will be working on removing any PHI or sensitive data that might be in there and should be able to make the full issue reports available. Please watch the XNAT discussion group, the NRG/XNAT Twitter feed, or the XNAT Water Cooler site for announcements on changes.

Virtual Machines

As of XNAT 1.6.4, we are only releasing 64-bit versions of the XNAT development virtual machines. These are built on top of Ubuntu 14.04.1 64-bit server and desktop releases.

These servers come with XNAT 1.6.4 running on Java 7 and Tomcat 7 proxied through the nginx HTTP service .

The default user name on these machines is xnat.

The password is xnat4life.

If you are using this VM anywhere that may be accessible from the outside, it's highly advisable to change the password for the XNAT development user, since that user has full root access to the machine's functions via the sudo command.

The virtual machines are provided as Open Virtualization Archive file. You should be able to open the archive in any VMWare application such as Player, Workstation, or Fusion, as well as Oracle VirtualBox. You may get a warning about the import failing due to compliance issues. This is from VMWare Player:

Just click Retry or whatever option is available to continue.

You can start working with XNAT on the desktop machine by opening Firefox and going to the URL http://xnatdev. For the server machine, you'll need to map the server hostname (by default, set to xnatdev) to the virtual machine's IP address on your host machine and use a browser from there.

There are four XNAT-specific folders in the xnat user's home directory (note that, on the desktop machine, these are actually located under the ~/Development folder).

  • logs contains links to various folders containing log files that may be of interest during development, including the XNAT application logs, the XNAT pipeline engine logs, and the Tomcat 7 application server logs
  • modules is the external module repository configured for the XNAT builder application: there are no modules in it by default, but you can place module archives there and run the builder update to install the modules
  • pipeline-1.6.4 is the pipeline engine installation folder
  • xnat-1.6.4 is the XNAT builder installation folder

There are some additional convenience scripts:

  • setupXnat.sh will build XNAT from scratch.
  • updateXnat.sh will update your XNAT installation from the current build.

These scripts do not shut down your Tomcat service or update the source from the bitbucket repository. In the interest of reducing the overall download size of the virtual machines, the Mercurial metadata that allows you to update directly from the development repositories has been deleted. You can still pull the source from bitbucket yourself, as described in the Build XNAT from Source Repository documentation.

For some reason, the desktop version of the XNAT 1.6.4 virtual is quite large. We've tried various tricks to reduce the size but haven't made any noteworthy progress. We'll continue to try to reduce the size of this download, but for now if you want the desktop version, be prepared to wait a bit!

VirtualBox resolution issue

The desktop VM may have issues displaying at the proper resolution in VirtualBox. This is a problem with Ubuntu 14.04. To solve this, you need to install the VirtualBox Guest Additions packages. Open a terminal on the VM and run

sudo apt-get install virtualbox-guest-dkms virtualbox-guest-utils virtualbox-guest-x11

Then restart the VM.

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