A new PyVISA release is around the corner and we need your help

PyVISA is a Python wrapper for the VISA library that enables controlling control all kinds of measurement equipment through GPIB, RS232, USB and Ethernet. It has served the instrumentation community very well since 2005 (that's Python 2.3!) and still does.

However, Python and the different supported platforms have changed a lot in the recent years. We think that PyVISA can use an update. Within the Lantz Project we did a small proof of principle of such update in visalib. Now we are taking what worked well and use it into PyVISA 1.5 (without changing the API!). In other words, PyVISA 1.5 brings several important changes in the underlying architecture without forcing you to change the programs.

The new architecture is summarized here and the comparison with the previous one is here. Briefly you get Python 3 support, Mac OS X support, a better way to find libraries in your platform, an isolated ctypes wrapper. But the most important change is that the VISA library is not opened on import anymore. You can still use the instrument and get_instruments_list helpers (although we encourage not to do it!), but under the hood they will only instantiate a VisaLibrary object when you need them. We think that this will lead to more explicit and clear code, easier to deploy and to upgrade. There other small goodies around. Take a look at the docs.

We really need your help before uploading this to PyPI as an stable release. PyVISA is all about interacting with your operating system (finding and locating the C library) and you instruments. With the variety of platforms around, it is very difficult to test. We are asking all users to install PyVISA from the github repository and test it on your programs. You can do it safely on a virtual environment:

$ virtualenv --system-site-packages pyvisa15
$ cd pyvisa15
$ source bin/activate
$ pip install -U https://github.com/hgrecco/pyvisa/zipball/master

or just use the last line (you can always revert back to the pyvisa version that you were using before)

Submit your bug reports, comments and suggestions in the Issue Tracker. We will address them promptly. We even have

Read the docs: http://pyvisa.readthedocs.org/
or fork the code: https:/https://github.com/hgrecco/pyvisa/

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