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Movable Type 4 Release Candidate: Ready To Go

By Byrne Reese
Posted July 25, 2007, in News.

About seven weeks ago we released to the world the first beta of Movable Type 4.0. In that time the Beta has been downloaded tens of thousands of times, bringing new users into the MT4 community at a rate that's never gone under one every minute. And on top of that, thousands more have tried the Amazon EC2 image and MT4 demo site that community members have set up to get the new version in the hands of even more testers.

Since then, all of you have sent hundreds upon hundreds of emails to us giving us your feedback, reporting bugs, and most importantly sharing your passion and insight about how blogging should work. Now's your chance to get a good sense of how our community's efforts have created something truly special.

  • We incorporated over three dozen new themes built right into Movable Type because you told us how important a good collection of professional designs is.
  • We bundled podcasting support into the core application and integrated it with MT4's smart media library, to let you easily create podcasts, videocasts, or even photocasts from the content you upload.
  • You told us you loved the WYSIWYG editor but wanted it to be even more meticulous about the HTML it outputs, to make sure it works correctly with your markup. Done.
  • We iterated through a number of significant changes to the primary navigation of the application, refining each version based directly on user feedback and testing.
  • We toiled over every pixel on the screen, revisiting each of Movable Type's icons to make them clearer and more intuitive.
  • New in this release is API support that makes Movable Type 100% compatible with Nokia's LifeBlog application, allowing many users to blog directly from a mobile phone - without the need of an intermediary.
  • And of course we fixed hundreds of bugs, many of which we probably couldn't have found without the help of our beta testers. More often than not, you went the extra mile to collect data for us, help us in reproducing the bug and then verifying the fixes we provided. Thanks!
In fact, since the launch of the Beta we have fixed and addressed over 1000 unique bugs and feature requests from customers and have responded to an equal number of inquiries. In just seven weeks we have come a long, long way.

And that's why we feel confident that we can release the first Movable Type 4.0 Release Candidate. Of course, it's inevitably not going to be perfect, but we think the bugs that remain will be minor or cosmetic.

With the release of MT4 RC1 we begin the final stages of our beta process as we prepare for what we hope to be an imminent release. Our QA team has officially begun final regression testing, browser compatibility testing, and final bug verification of the application, and we have begun working closely with a number of customers who will be moving their production systems over the new version of Movable Type in coming days.

So for those of you who have been waiting for the right release before you start using Movable Type 4.0 for "real": This is it. Wait no longer. We can't wait to hear what you think. Get started by downloading MT4 for free now.

Update: Following reports from users that an issue was found in the upgrade process in MT4.0 RC1, we have decided to release an update RC1b which contains a fix for this issue. We have also published an MT4.0 Upgrade Guide to help users prepare existing Movable Type installations for their move to the new version.


SK on July 25, 2007, 11:43 p.m. Reply

I am a bit confused. Is the RC download available from released under an OSI approved license? As far as I can see, it is not. So the next question would be - when and where would the Open Source version of MT 4 be released?

Anil Dash

Anil Dash on July 26, 2007, 12:12 a.m. Reply

The GPLed release of MT will follow shortly after general availability of MT 4.0 — we’re still getting our ducks in a row with the bug tracker and public repository, but it’ll work just like LiveJournal’s does now.


lezardbreton on July 26, 2007, 12:44 a.m. Reply

Does RC still need List::Util perl module ? I can’t see that in the changelog, and I don’t know the plan for the future.

Lutz-R. Frank

Lutz-R. Frank on July 26, 2007, 2:59 a.m. Reply

just upgraded my Vista/Apache to RC1, no issue reported - trying to submit an new entry with “Create Entry” results in a “An error occurred close Can’t call method “entry_class” on unblessed reference at lib/MT/ line 935. ” Post appears nevertheless. Preview works fine


Carina on July 26, 2007, 3:32 a.m. Reply

I have exactly the same as Lutz-R above wrote.

I tried to update an entry. I received the error saying something about category so I then removed category and received the above error:

“An error occurred close Can’t call method “entry_class” on unblessed reference at lib/MT/ line 935. “

Previewing works just fine but I cannot rebuild anything as it continuously gives that error. I also never received any information concerning the captcha issue so perhaps I shall just go back to MT 3,35 paid version for personal use.


Carina on July 26, 2007, 3:38 a.m. Reply

One more thing trying to add a coment gives the same error but the comment gets there when looking at the preview but not on the real entry. To me that looks as if it does go into the system but due to the unability to republish it will not show on the entry itself.

The entry I mean in patricular is this


Carina on July 26, 2007, 3:42 a.m. Reply

Sorry for being such a pain. The commenting error did not show when making sure that I was not signed in using Typekey. When signing anonymous that works but not using any of the services that I have an ID on. on July 26, 2007, 5:07 a.m. Reply

Hey, that’s quick! I just installed Beta7.

About GPL’ed vs non-GPL’ed release, are these beta’s time-locked? Meaning, it will not work after x days?


Bud on July 26, 2007, 5:23 a.m. Reply

The changes sound great. I’ll download this one and give it a try. You’ve done a lot of hard work and had to deal with a lot of community feedback. My vote would be to expand the community process in the ways you describe.

MT has become a very complex product with many dependencies. I’d also vote for figuring out how to reduce those or at least create a smoother tiered structure.


Sara on July 26, 2007, 6:47 a.m. Reply

Already filed the bug reports, but am having some of the same issues as mentioned above which renders rc-1 virtually unusable to me not being able to publish, re-publish entries or new weblogs.

Steph Mineart on July 26, 2007, 7:58 a.m. Reply

For those of us who will be upgrading, can we get a list of plugins that are known to be incompatible, and a “how to upgrade” guide that addresses differences between upgrading and simply installing new?


Sara on July 26, 2007, 8:51 a.m. Reply

Did some more digging around concerning those “unblessed” errors. Deleted everything but mt-static and mt-config, reuploaded and was then able to publish new weblogs and entries.

This is a weird error though.


Adam on July 26, 2007, 9:08 a.m. Reply

There’s a list of working and non-working plugins here.

SK on July 26, 2007, 9:54 a.m. Reply

Thanks for the clarification Anil and Bryne. As you guessed, I thought the .org was exclusively for the GPLed version of the software. It would be great to look at the MT code again, first time after 2.661.

Anil Dash

Anil Dash on July 26, 2007, 9:59 a.m. Reply

Not sure if this is the cause of the issues reported here, but I did notice this in the changelog:

The extensible archives plugin and the associated plugins like Date-based category and author author archives plugins have been folded into the core and removed from the plugins directory. Users upgrading from Beta 7 and before should remove these “old” plugins manually from their plugins directory.

Any idea, from those who’ve seen the problem, whether this was causing the issue?


Sara on July 26, 2007, 10:05 a.m. Reply


I would not be surprised if that was the cause of the problems, since everything started working (For me at least) again after having uploaded a fresh copy of rc-1. That little blurb probably should have been highlighted a lot better than just being hidden in the changelog. Things tend to get lost in such a nice long list of fixes and improvements. :)


Bud on July 26, 2007, 1:59 p.m. Reply

@Byrne, the wysiwyg editor is still producing break tags not paragraph tags. So, it appears that change did not actually make it in, nor is it in the change log.

Byrne Reese

Byrne Reese on July 26, 2007, 4:46 p.m. Reply

I wanted to let people know following this thread that we just released an update to RC1, called RC1b. This new build contains the fix to which was preventing some users from upgrading from a previous version of Movable Type.

We have also published an Upgrade Guide to provide more comprehensive instructions on the upgrade process.

Jun Kaneko

Jun Kaneko on July 26, 2007, 6:25 p.m. Reply

Is there any point in upgrading to rc1b when I’d already nuked my old blog and recreated it with the rc1 that was here first?

Lutz-R. Frank

Lutz-R. Frank on July 27, 2007, 12:37 a.m. Reply

@Anil: Updated to RC1 with prior removal of the Plugins folder and the error message is gone - looks like a typical RTFM :) on July 27, 2007, 5:21 a.m. Reply

Is it normal for Textile/Markdown to not appear parsed in the Atom feed?

Anyway, version 4 is looking pretty good, I’ve been messing with it for a few weeks now and am overall impressed.

Geof Harries on July 27, 2007, 7:23 p.m. Reply

I’ve been running the demo in Safari 2 and Firefox 2 but can’t notice a difference.

Is RC1 fully compatible in Safari?

Roger on July 30, 2007, 5:42 a.m. Reply

I’ve just started playing around with 4 and I’m (mostly) loving it. The WYSIWYG Editor seems a little buggy to me…can’t always get my post to look just like I want.

Also, is there a way to allow people to upload a small photo (say 150 pixel by 150 pixel) as part of their user profile so that we can see who’s saying what?

Overall, very good work. I was just starting to look into more flexible CMS systems like Drupal and this keeps me rooting for MT. on July 30, 2007, 5:18 p.m. Reply

PR1 seems to have fewer templates than beta7 had. I happened to like the DC city template (and in general, like the idea of city templates; in fact, I’ll provide a Danish translation of the open sourced MT if you make a template for Copenhagen :-)).


errecielle on July 31, 2007, 3:51 a.m. Reply

I’m trying to install the RC1 and I have this error: Error during upgrade: Can’t call method “archive_type” on an undefined value at lib/MT/ line 99.

What now?




Syca on July 31, 2007, 3:50 p.m. Reply - I do a fresh install with ever new MT beta release (deleted DB and all files and start a new) and I too noticed that there are missing templates.

I had the Las Vegas template as my default in Beta 7 and now it’s gone. :-(

Steve on July 31, 2007, 5:15 p.m. Reply

The only issue I’ve had (and it’s a big one) is that the archive mapping options don’t work for me. All the archives use dashes instead of underlines, even when I change the option and rebuild. This would effectively kill all my traffic from Google to my old posts, which is up to 200k visits a month :(

Anyone else have this problem or can help clear it up?


Su on July 31, 2007, 7:37 p.m. Reply

Gotze and Possum: See changelog item 54981. on August 1, 2007, 8:54 a.m. Reply

Su: Thanks, I noticed that, but the point is that the cityscape templates are nowhere to be found. Nor in the style browser.

Marco on August 1, 2007, 9:28 a.m. Reply

I was wondering if there will be support for the “Well-Formed Web Comments” extension (as in Wordpress). The release candidate rocks!


errecielle on August 1, 2007, 1:15 p.m. Reply

Anyone could solve my issue? I’ve already posted a bug…

many thanks



Su on August 1, 2007, 6:54 p.m. Reply

Gotze: Oh, I see. Sorry. I would assume they’ll become available upon final release. In the meantime, there’s nothing stopping you from just pulling them out of the beta7 archive, assuming you still have it(I’m a packrat.) Otherwise, I think it’s just a “sit and wait” unfortunately.


Nilesh on August 1, 2007, 9:04 p.m. Reply

@errecielle, I too got the same error message. I traced it to a problem probably specific to my installation and it may not be the same for you. Nevertheless, you can try it if you know how to edit your database contents manually.

Create a new dummy blog and edit it’s id in your MT3.x database to ‘1’. That is if no other blog with id 1 is present in the database. Change all references in various tables to this blog id (1). Now re-run the upgrade and it should run successfully.

Chris on August 2, 2007, 3:18 a.m. Reply

What do I do?!?

Can’t call method “entry_class” on unblessed reference at lib/MT/ line 935.

I can’t even publish a new entry on my blog. I really can’t reinstall everything. I tried to submit a bug report as I did before but now that option isn’t on the menu as it was before of my install.

This is a VERY serious error and I have four seperate servers with different configurations and they are all doing it. I would have expected this is a previous beta build (they all ran pretty good though) but never in the RC build.


errecielle on August 2, 2007, 10:44 a.m. Reply

@nilesh, thanks for your help but in my table the blog (1) already exist. The error I have is when the upgrade process, “removing unused template maps…” Thanks again


errecielle on August 2, 2007, 10:59 a.m. Reply

I’ve solved in this way: - backup of the templatemap table - delete of all records except the first one - repeat the upgrade process (it works!) - drop the templatemap table - import the old template map table

It looks ok, now.


errecielle on August 2, 2007, 11:17 a.m. Reply

hmm… Not all… On the Desing menu, now I’ve only: Template and Widgets. Styles does’nt appear…

Lutz-R. Frank

Lutz-R. Frank on August 3, 2007, 1:00 a.m. Reply

An advise to all upgraders to RC1 (RC1b) who have issues with missinbg tmpl Files or missing classes - delete all except the MT_STATIC and mt-config File and re-upload the whole archive of the RC1(b) distribution. There are some massive filename changes in at least the tmpl\cms\dialog folder aswell as parts moved directly into the core.

After doing this all my issues are resolved. Might therefore be worth a try.

Keiichi Inoue

Keiichi Inoue on August 7, 2007, 5:55 a.m. Reply

We’re still getting the:

Error during upgrade: Can’t call method “archive_type” on an undefined value at lib/MT/ line 99.

Since I’m not a SQL wiz - not sure how to fix. We did a clean install as mentioned above and still no go.


Kelly on August 20, 2007, 5:50 p.m. Reply I’ve had the same problem with Markdown/SmartyPants-formatted text not parsed correctly in Atom or RSS feeds. I reported it as a bug long ago in the beta process, and I’ve followed up several times with no response. This is a deal breaker for using the now-included Markdown/SP support. Why should we use it when it significantly disadvantages users who read by feed?

I appreciate that this RC version (which I have now surpassed; I’m running the 4.0 release) has over three dozen new themes. In the entire 4.0 beta and RC process I have never found where these themes live and how I can easily change them for my blog. This is an area that is pretty underdeveloped with documentation, other than the old StyleCatcher plugin. I know these themes are here somewhere - please tell me how I can change them!

Byrne Reese

Byrne Reese was previously the Product Manager of Movable Type at Six Apart, where he had also held positions as the Manager of Platform Technology and Product Manager for TypePad. Byrne is a huge supporter of the Movable Type user and developer community. He dedicates much of his time to promoting and educating people about Movable Type as well as building the tools and plugins for Movable Type that are showcased on Majordojo. He contributes regularly to open source; and he is an advocate for open protocols and standards like Atom and OpenID.