Ruby 1.8.5 Released - Summary of changes and does it work with Rails 1.1.6?

With some excitement by some and frustrations by others, Ruby 1.8.5 was released this past weekend. According to this post from Matz, the creator of the Ruby language, this is primarily a bug fix release. If you want a blow-by-blow account of the changes, view the change log and scroll down to Fri Dec 24 of last year when Ruby 1.8.4 was released. If that’s a little too much detail, here is a nice summary of the changes: This page lists the changes between 1.8.4 and 1.8.5.

Main changes to Ruby 1.8.5

  • Non-blocking IO
  • Process.getrlimit/setrlimit
  • Changes in rdoc/ri
  • RSS + New style API for RSS generation ruby-talk:197284
  • Misc
  • What breaks (!!!)
  • References

Non-blocking IO

Several methods backported from HEAD have been added:

  • BasicSocket?#recv_nonblock
  • IO#read_nonblock
  • IO#write_nonblock
  • Socket#accept_nonblock
  • Socket#connect_nonblock
  • Socket#recvfrom_nonblock
  • TCPServer#accept_nonblock
  • UDPSocket#recvfrom_nonblock
  • UNIXServer#accept_nonblock

(see ruby-core:7917, ruby-core:7925). Process.getrlimit/setrlimit See ruby-dev:28729.

Changes in rdoc/ri

  • lots of documentation added
  • RubyGems? support: ri will search gem installation dirs for additional documentation
  • new options to limit the search path


  • added RSS::RootElementMixin?#to_xml (ruby-talk:197284), which can be used to convert feeds to a different RSS version as follows: rss10 = RSS::Parser.parse(“1.0.rdf”))“2.0.rss”, “w”) {|f| f.print(rss10.to_xml(“2.0”))}
    • Support for taxonomies added to the RSS parser and generator.
    • A number of convenience methods added

    New style API for RSS generation ruby-talk:197284 The recommended style is now xxx.new_yyy do |yyy| yyy.zzz = zzz … end This corresponds to the following in pre-1.8.5: yyy = xxx.new_yyy yyy.zzz = zzz

    Misc changes

    • added Kernel#Pathname(path) (require ‘pathname’)
    • added Kernel#pretty_inspect (require ‘pp’)
    • changes in the GC subsystem that result in better
    • performance in some cases
    • added OptionParser?#getopts
    • the per-object overhead went down to 20 bytes on win32 (from 24) ruby-core:7474

    What breaks (!!!)

    • Binding.of_caller, and therefore breakpoint (including Rails’)*1
    • several problems in ri reported: the documentation for some methods seems to have disappeared, and several methods that should not be documented appear in the indices; see ruby-core:08709