Joplin v2.5 is available for desktop and mobile!

Joplin v2.5 is now available for desktop, mobile and CLI!

Here's an overview of the changes:

Support for Markdown + Front Matter

Markdown + Front Matter is a format that allows attaching metadata, such as tags, creation date, or geolocation to a Markdown file. This is done by adding a block of YAML code (a "front matter") at the top of the file.

Thanks to Caleb John's efforts the Joplin desktop and CLI applications now support importing and exporting these files. When exporting, we try to preserve as much metadata as possible, while still keeping the formatting user friendly.

Here's an example, with the Front Matter at the top, delimited by "---", and the text below.

Markdown + Front Matter is an excellent way to share notes with someone who doesn't have Joplin, to backup notes in a durable format (since no third-party application is needed to read it), and also to export notes to other applications, or to import them.

As with the regular Markdown exporter, the images and attachments are also exported.

Add support for callback URLs

Callback URLs is a semi-standard that defines how certain resources in an application can be accessed via URLs. Either to view the resource, or to perform certain actions, such as deletion, creation, etc.

Joplin now supports callback URLs to open notes, notebooks and folders. To do so, right click on a note and select "Copy external link":

d7faab652f714595b1ffa5ae26dadba2

That would give you a URL such as this:

joplin://x-callback-url/openNote?id=b7a7b93281f54d928612eea550f33a7f

Then if you click this URL from outside the app, the app will open and select this particular note.

In practice such a feature allows third-party application to interact with Joplin by creating links that can be opened from outside. For example, you may use a different application for project planning, then link to the individual notes for more details about each task.

Many thanks to Roman Musin for adding the feature!

Improved end-to-end encryption support

The series of quiet but major changes to the end-to-end encryption support continue in this new version. One goal is still to allow sharing notebooks while encryption is enabled.

To that end, v2.5 includes support for RSA public-private key pairs. If you have encryption enabled, they will be automatically generated when you synchronise by the mobile, desktop or CLI applications, so you don't need to do anything. Later on, these keys will be used to allow sharing encrypted notebooks.

The second goal of these E2EE changes is to simplify the system enough that it can be enabled by default. To that end, the master password dialog and encryption screen have been improved further. An option to reset the master password is now also available.

Various other improvements and bug fixes

In total this release includes about 11 other bug fixes and improvements. There was in particular several improvements to the share feature. It is now also possible for a share recipient to leave the shared notebook.

Mobile app update

As always the mobile apps (to be released soon) benefit from several of the above changes and bug fixes since they share the same codebase as the desktop app.

Specific to the mobile version 2.5 are some improvements to the beta editor - in particular the layout has been cleaned up, and the first word of sentences is now automatically capitalised, which makes typing notes easier. If you haven't tried the beta editor yet, you can enable it from the Configuration screen. It supports syntax highlighting and list continuations to make Markdown editing easier.

The full changelogs are available there:

34 Likes

Big thank you to you and all who worked on this! The YAML export option is really neat. Totally human readable. I don't know when I would need it, or the call back urls, but they are both a great thing for the app.

3 Likes

strange: can't exit full screen mode (Joplin 2.5.8 and Windows 10) ?

Awesome job.

Thank you all so much, this is a huge effort and these new features are really useful.

1 Like

Hi,
I don't see the full implications of these developments yet, but I can easily recognize that Joplin is being enhanced with features that open up some very interesting possibilities.

Thanks to all those who are taking Joplin to the top.

Thank you for implementing the callback URLs! That is a very nice feature. Keep up the good work all.

2 Likes

Great work @laurent and team. Thanks to @CalebJohn for the help with the YAML Front Matter export.

Freedom to export notes to md losslessly really helps make the platform truly open for the non-technical folks who use Joplin.

3 Likes

I started using Joplin this year and I love it, feature rich yet simple to use.
The release cadence feels a bit intense for a desktop app though, it looks like there's been 11 releases in the last 6 months, so on average (desktop) users get prompted to update every 2 weeks. This feels like a lot to me.

You have a few options actually:

  • Disable auto-update in the settings, that way you only update it when you want to

  • Click "Skip this version" and the app won't ask you again.

If that's not enough, what else do you think would help?

We can't make less frequent updates at this time because we don't have a team to do QA, so small releases are better to ensure that everything works and remains manageable.

5 Likes

Thanks for the reply. Your rationale for small, frequent releases makes sense.
I can certainly take responsibility for how often I want to update with the options you suggested rather than upgrading at every release, that also makes sense.

Thanks for all the work, it's a great project, I should probably look at the frequent releases as a positive!

3 Likes

@laurent - don't know whether this is at all feasible and whether even anybody would want this, but it would be nice to have the export md file creation/update dates correspond with the metadata in Joplin. I'm currently thinking about writing a Python script to go through my files and do that job.

It has been requested before but isn't planned to be added.
Personally, I agree with Laurent that note updated/created times should not be mixed with the file updated/created times. But I recognize that's just personal preference.

The Joplin plugin API makes it easy to have custom exporters that would do exactly this though, so I'm sure of there's enough demand someone will eventually create one.

That's fair enough - I can see why it wouldn't be switched on by default.

For what it's worth, I subsequently felt bad for complaining that such a useful and free open-source tool was being updated too frequently (a foolish complaint in hindsight), so I made a small donation to buy you a drink Laurent. Looking forward to the next release! :grinning:

9 Likes

I'm happy the sync is back working again after the certificate trouble! Now I can sync again between devices. The sync appears to work as it should (on a hosted Nextcloud service). Happy!

After upgrade to 2.5, I can't launch Joplin on IOS 12.5.5. The application remains running in memory, but interface won't show up. Tried to re-install - it didn't solve the problem. Device - iPhone 6.

1 Like

Exactly the same issue for me with my iPhone 6+. Do hope the issue can be resolved with a new update.

How do I use front matter? I tried it in a note, and it just behaved as if the text immediately above the closing --- demarkation was a markdown title

---
title: foo
---

title: foo

Just like here :point_up:

I also tried using the joplin node version like in the example above, but still no go