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In a previous post I detailed changes I made to add Growl for Windows support to Autotest Growl.

These changes have now been integrated back into the autotest-growl gem. Along with some major improvements to the analysis of test results, and the details in the notifications. Thanks to Svoop, the creator of autotest-growl.

This gem isn’t yet available on Rubyforge, but you can grab a copy from my fork on GitHub until it is:

gem install karl-autotest-growl --source http://gems.github.com

This should be a drop in replacement for the previous version of karl-autotest-growl, the only thing you should notice more detail from the growl notifications!

I’ll post again once the official gem is available on Rubyforge.

I previously posted an update that enables Growl notifications for Autotest in Windows.

Which is nice, but what about other Ruby programs, they might want to send Growl notifications too. To this end Vision Media have produced a Ruby Growl gem which makes it easy for any Ruby program to send Growl notifications.

But the visionmedia-growl gem only works on OSX.

Now With Added Windows Support

So I had a go at adding Windows support. The short version is that it works, but the code is seriously ugly and not well tested (you have been warned!).

Check out my visionmedia-growl fork. Or just install the gem:

sudo gem install karl-growl --source http://gems.github.com

Packaging growlnotify

First up I decided to package both the OSX and Windows versions of growlnotify with the gem.

This is a departure from the existing gem, which requires that you have installed growlnotify yourself. I wanted to be able to include this gem in new projects without having to bother users to download extra dependencies.

Choose the Right growlnotify

I decide which growlnotify to use by checking which platform we are running on:

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  def self.is_windows?
    processor, platform, *rest = RUBY_PLATFORM.split("-")
    platform == 'mswin32'
  end
 
  ##
  # Execute +args+ against the binary.
 
  def self.exec *args
    bin = PACKAGED_BIN
    bin += '.com' if is_windows?
 
    Kernel.system bin, *args
  end

Different Switches on Different Operating Systems

The biggest headache with adding Windows support was adding the ability to generate Windows style command line arguments.

Example OSX command line:

growlnotify --message llamas --title Llama! --image images/llama.png

Example Windows command line:

growlnotify.com llamas /t:Llama! /i:images/llama.png

Note that in the Windows command line, switches are specified with /x: prefix, and no space. The names of the switches don’t correspont exactly with the OSX ones.

Also, with the Windows version of growlnotify you don’t give an switch for the message body, just include it as the first argument.

Adding Support for Windows Style Switches

The first part of adding this support was to map the OSX switches to their Windows counterparts (where they existed).

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    switch :title,      :t
    switch :sticky,     :s
    switch :priority,   :p
    switch :host,       :host
    switch :password,   :pass
    switch :port,       :port
 
    switch :name,       :a
    switch :message,    :EMPTY
    switch :image,      :i
    switch :identifier, :id
 
    switch :iconpath,   nil
    switch :appIcon,    nil
    switch :icon,       nil
 
    switch :udp,        nil
    switch :auth,       :hash
    switch :crypt,      nil

As you can see, not all OSX switches are available in the Windows version of growlnotify. I dealt with this at the moment, by just stripping out any switches that won’t work in Windows.

Finally I altered (hacked?) the Growl run method, to produce parameter strings for either OSX or Windows.

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    def run
      raise Error, 'message required' unless message
      self.class.switches.each do |name, win_name|
        if send(:"#{name}?")
          value = send(name).to_s if send(name) && !(TrueClass === send(name))
          if is_windows?
            next if win_name.nil?
 
            switch = (win_name == :EMPTY) ? "" : "/#{win_name}:"
            args << switch + value
          else
            args << "--#{name}"
            args << value
          end
        end
      end
      Growl.exec *args
    end

The main points of interest here are the The windows switches don’t have any space between the switch name and the value. So instead they are concatenated together into a single string.

Finally we deal with the special case where using the Windows version of growlnotify we need to add the message parameter without a switch, so we use the special token :EMPTY to deal with this.

The Result

The results of this is a Ruby gem that supports Growl notifications in Windows. The gem can be installed with the following commands:

sudo gem install karl-growl --source http://gems.github.com

And used in your Ruby program as follows:

Growl.notify {
    self.message = 'Hello World'
    self.image = File.join 'path', 'to', 'image.png'
  }

For more usage examples see the karl-growl site.

Known Issues

There are a few known issues. The biggest of which no support for normalised icons.

To support OSX and Windows always give a path to an image, e.g.

  :image => 'path/to/image.png'

There are a number of switches that only work in OSX, and are ignored in Windows. Unsupported switches are:

  :iconpath
  :appIcon
  :icon
  :udp
  :crypt

The gem has only received the most cursory of testing, so there may be a whole host of other issues, be warned!

The Future

I’m treating the current version of this gem, as a design spike, a proof of concept that shows we can have cross Operating System support. The code is a real mess, and has no unit tests, but I’m releasing it here to follow the ‘better now beats best later’ rule.

I hope to refactor the code into something more production worthy when I get a chance.

Autotest Growl for Windows

July 10th, 2009

In a previous blog post I detailed how to get Autotest Growl notifications on Windows using Snarl. But, there now exists an official Growl client for Windows.

So how about we update autotest-growl to support Windows (on top of it’s existing support for OSX).

If you don’t want to know all the gory details, you can just install my fork of the autotest-growl gem, that includes native Growl Windows support:

gem install karl-autotest-growl --source http://gems.github.com

Obviously, you’ll need to have Growl for Windows installed as well!

Updating Autotest Growl to support Windows

First up download and install Growl for Windows (if you haven’t already).

Updating Autotest Growl turns out to be pretty simple. We need to download growlnotify for Windows, and add it to the growl/ directory.

Then we can update the autotest-growl code to decide which growlnotify to use depending on the Operating System.

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  def self.is_windows?
    processor, platform, *rest = RUBY_PLATFORM.split("-")
    platform == 'mswin32'
  end
 
  ##
  # Display a message through Growl.
  def self.growl title, message, icon, priority=0, stick=""
    growl = File.join(GEM_PATH, 'growl', 'growlnotify')
    image = File.join(ENV['HOME'], '.autotest-growl', "#{icon}.png")
    image = File.join(GEM_PATH, 'img', "#{icon}.png") unless File.exists?(image)
 
    if is_windows?
      growl += '.com'
      cmd = "#{growl} #{message.inspect} /a:\"autotest\" /r:\"Autotest\" /n:\"Autotest\" /i:\"#{image}\" /p:#{priority} /t:\"#{title}\""
    else 
      if @@remote_notification
        cmd = "#{growl} -H localhost -n autotest --image '#{image}' -p #{priority} -m #{message.inspect} '#{title}' #{stick}"
      else
        cmd = "#{growl} -n autotest --image '#{image}' -p #{priority} -m #{message.inspect} '#{title}' #{stick}"
      end
    end
 
  system cmd
  end

You’ll notice that the command line flags are slightly different for the Windows version of growlnotify, the using the /x: format, rather than the OSX -x format.

The Windows version also adds the flat /r:"Autotest" to ensure the Autotest application is registered the first time it is run.

There is no need to deal with the @@remote_notification settings, as Growl for Windows does not have the same problem with intermittent notification loss that OSX does.

Installing updated Autotest Growl gem

I have rolled all these changes into my fork of autotest-growl. To switch over to this fork, open a Windows command prompt and enter:

gem uninstall autotest-growl
gem install karl-autotest-growl --source http://gems.github.com

And then watch the notifications roll in!

Growl and Autotest work brilliantly together. Autotest runs all your tests in the background every time a file changes, giving you extremely fast feedback on your test driven development. And Growl notifications save you from needing to flip back to the Terminal to see the result of each test run, you get an unobtrusive popup in the corner of your screen showing the success or failure of the tests.

But what about those users working on the Windows platform?

Snarl is a windows counterpart to Growl. Providing much of the same functionality.

And there is a Snarl Ruby gem allowing us to create Snarl notifications from Ruby.

So lets convert our Growl calls to Snarl calls, and get Autotest notifications under Windows.

Installing Autotest, Snarl, and the Growl to Snarl converter

If you haven’t already download and install Ruby.

First up we need to download and install Snarl.

Then we need to install Autotest and the autotest-growl gem (that we are later going to override). Open a command prompt, and type the following (Autotest is part of the ZenTest gem):

gem install ZenTest
gem install ruby-snarl
gem install autotest-growl

Then save the code below to lib/autotest/growl-to-snarl.rb within your project. This code converts any Growl calls to equivalent Snarl calls.

growl-to-snarl.rb

require 'snarl'
module Autotest::Growl
 
  # Display a message through Snarl.
  def self.growl title, message, icon, priority=0, stick=""
    image = File.join(ENV['HOME'], '.autotest-growl', "#{icon}.png")
    image = File.join(GEM_PATH, 'img', "#{icon}.png") unless File.exists?(image)
 
	Snarl.show_message(title, message.inspect, image)
  end
 
end

Next we need to update our .autotest configuration file to include the autotest-growl gem, and the Growl to Snarl converter. Add the following to your .autotest file in the project root directory.

require 'autotest-growl'
require 'snarl'
require 'lib/autotest/growl-to-snarl'

Running Autotest with Snarl support

First up ensure Snarl is running (check for the icon in the system tray).

Autotest will fail to run on Windows if a HOME environment variable doesn’t exist, so we need to create one before we run (I’ve also noticed that the Ruby gem command will fail to run if the HOME evironment variable does exist, which is frustrating!).

Open a command prompt, navigate to the project root directory. Then enter the following to set the HOME environment variable and run Autotest.

set HOME="C:\Documents and Settings\username"
autotest

The results of your test runs should now display as Snarl notifications.