MapServer Report 2009

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  • Contact name: Steve Lime

Key Accomplishments

the top 5-10 key items that the project or PSC accomplished this period

  • MapServer 5.4 released in April 2009:
    • Notable features and enhancements include:
      • MS RFC 30: Support for WMS 1.3.0
      • MS RFC 40: Label text alignment and wrapping
      • MS RFC 44: Restore URL modification of mapfiles to pre-5.0 levels
      • MS RFC 47: Move IGNORE_MISSING_DATA to run-time configuration
      • MS RFC 48: GEOTRANSFORM Geometry operations
      • MS RFC 49: Symbology, Labeling, and Cartography Improvements
      • MS RFC 56: Improved security relative to untrusted directories and mapfiles
    • Other notable enhancements include:
      • improved polygon label placement
      • re-write of much of the PostGIS driver code
  • MapServer 5.6 released in December 2009
    • Notable features and enhancements include:
      • MS RFC 51: XML Mapfile schema and XSLT (see
      • MS RFC 52: One-pass query processing, making WFS queries on database backends much much faster
      • MS RFC 55: Improve control of output resolution, allows printing maps at printer resolution using a mapfile defined for screen resolution
      • MS RFC 57: Labeling enhancements: ability to repeat labels along a line/multiline
    • Other notable enhancements include:
      • Performance optimizations:
        • Load all GDAL image bands in one pass for faster processing
        • Optimized access to very large shapefiles
      • Several enhancements/fixes to OGC Web Services specs support
      • Several enhancements/fixes to all flavors of MapScript
  • Several releases for older versions tied to security improvements
    • The MapServer PSC worked with several 3rd parties who initially identified vulnerabilities
  • Most of the MapServer PSC participated in the first C-tribe code sprint in Toronto.
  • The MapServer project participated in the web mapping server shoot out at FOSS4G 2009.
  • MapServer had a couple of Google summer of code students, our first ever.
  • Special congratulations to PSC member Daniel Morissette on winning the 2009 Sol Katz award- much deserved!

Areas for Improvement

any weaknesses in process, software, management, etc. that you plan to address or recognize need some help

  • Keeping documentation up-to-date with development remains a challenge
    • Content is spread between the new website and the MapServer trac wiki and it is unclear when to transition between the two
  • Google Summer of Code: continue to try and attract more students
  • Work to attract additional developer talent to the project. We've been pretty stable for the last couple of years.
  • Cleanup bug backlog (550+ open bugs), and triage new bugs more effectively.

Opportunities to Help

list areas that could use some help from members and readers of the report

  • General website and documentation maintenance.
  • Although much progress has been made we need to add more language support to the documentation.
  • New coders always welcome, a good way to start is by contributing bug reports and patches.
  • Experienced users can contribute to the release process by testing the betas and release candidates and reporting their results.

Outlook for 2010

this is the motivational part that is meant to inspire readers to keep their eyes open for great stuff in 2010 :)

  • MapServer 6.0 to be release sometime in mid-2010.
    • Planned enhancements include:
      • Final release of the pluggable renderer API
      • Mapfile support for object references
  • MS4W 3.0 in early 2010
  • Strong presence at the New York City in February where we will focus on 6.0 release features and performance improvements.
  • New MapServer logo and website design.
  • Deployment of multi-language documentation, english and german to start.