New Stacks v5.1.1 beta 1 available

I like the sound of this new feature:

v5.1.1 beta 1

  • A “feature” to allow users to disable Externals entirely if they’re finding extra unwanted Externals attached to their projects.

Looks like you can disable templates too.


At last! I went onto Discord, but while I stopped a Zombie Apocalypse and scored 20,000 points, I couldn’t find the Beta. Where did you find it?

There is a link somewhere on Discord but my Stacks update picked it up.

Still not sure what the implications are if you disable Externals/Templates. What happens to any Externals and Templates that you may need but are burried deep amongst the others that have jumped ship.


I asked Isaiah about this and Isaiah replied:

If Externals and/or Templates are Disabled, and you load a Stacks project file that has Externals and/or Templates, will a warning message be displayed?

isaiah — No. It will silently convert it to a partial.

isaiah — This is a feature primarily for folks that were having some issues managing Externals in their projects.

Also a couple “advanced” users were digging in their project files and manually deleting data.

That’s generally a bad idea and can cause Stacks instability. Stacks and RapidWeaver do extra logging when they find data that should have been written to the project is no longer there.

For users who need a way to safely remove all Externals data from their examples before shipping them out, this is a much better way.

It was a ‘bad idea’ for externals to add 40MB+ to Rapidweaver project files — especially since the “advanced” users who were experiencing this did nothing to cause it, nor were too happy with this excessive bloat, made up of ridiculous images that weren’t theirs. It was a major bug in Stacks (in fact, it behaved like an aggressive virus), and it would have been nice if Isaiah had been willing to own this before now. This workaround suggests that externals are still a broken feature in Stacks.

In any case the best answer (discovered by trial and error, rather than customer support) was to create a new Rapidweaver project — without any other RW projects open — and then copy and paste all stacks from the bloated project into it. It’s a pain in the ass, but as Isaiah recognises here, shipping bloated and infected demo and project files is really not on.

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I don’t think it is a bug exactly. It is a potentially good feature, but when big local images are added into externals or templates, then opening 2 or more Projects at once will potentially lead to bloated project files.

The issue didn’t even happen in RW7 with Stacks 4.5.

Roll on Stacks Pro.

It is a bug, because this behaviour of importing junk images, and infecting new files, happens even if you never use externals or templates.