Robot Framework 7.0 development started at the end of August, 2023, and now it’s finally ready.
The release was done already several hours ago, but we have been trying to debug why GitHub fails to render the release notes properly. The problem seems to be with GitHub, but we haven’t yet heard back from their support. As a workaround, we have generated a PDF version of the release notes that can be viewed until the issue is resolved. Unfortunately links don’t work when the PDF is viewed on GitHub, but they work if it is downloaded.
This mess with the release notes is annoying, but the release itself is awesome, so let’s try to celebrate that instead of worrying about GitHub bugs.
The release has several high priority enhancements targeted for people creating external tools. These include big listener v3 enhancements, JSON result format, possibility to mix embedded and normal arguments with library keywords and enhancements to automatic argument conversion. Let’s see what kind of a new tools the ecosystem gets in the future!
The are also lot of nice enhancements for normal users. These include the native
VAR syntax for creating variables and dark mode with reports and logs.
The biggest backwards incompatible change is that output.xml files have changed so that most external tools processing them are incompatible. To support tools that haven’t yet been updated to support RF 7.0, it is possible to use the new
--legacy-output option to get an output.xml file in same format as earlier.
There are also some deprecated features. The most visible one is the deprecation of the
[Return] setting that should be changed to much more versatile
RETURN statement. If you have used
[Return] a lot, the easiest way to update it is using the Robotidy tool.
If you are interested to learn more about the new features in Robot Framework 7.0, join the RoboCon conference in February, 2024. I will go through the key features briefly in the onsite conference in Helsinki and more thoroughly in the online edition. The conference has also dozens of other great talks, workshops and a lot of possibilities to meet other community members as well as developers of various tools and libraries in the ecosystem.
Huge thanks for Robot Framework Foundation and its member organizations for sponsoring the development. If your organization is using Robot Framework and not yet a member, try to convince them to join. All money the foundation gets, including profits from RoboCon, is spend for developing the framework and tools in the ecosystem further.
Thanks also for everyone who has contributed code and to everyone else who has tested preview releases, submitted bug reports, proposed enhancements, debugged problems, or otherwise helped with Robot Framework 7.0 development.