Robocorp Lab (4.9.11)

Updates, fixes and tweaks

  • Updated to the official version of JupyterLab v3.
  • Lab now uses MicroMamba instead of MiniConda to build the environments, resulting in a considerable speed boost during builds.
  • Lab now supports using the ROBOCORP_HOME environment variable to change the location of common data for all Robocorp Applications.

The mysterious case of 'spaces in username'

NOTE: This only affects users with operating system usernames containing spaces or special characters (like scandics).

The solution is for now to use the ROBOCORP_HOME environment variable to point to a 'tool friendly' -location on the system (For example: C:\temp\robocorp).

The next Lab release will include a more user-friendly way of managing this setting.

Background & next steps:

During MicroMamba tests, we noticed that having spaces in username (and special characters like scandics) does not affect only users on Windows, but also on other operating systems in addition to internal tools like pip.

While testing for the shift to MicroMamba, we realized that the issues caused by spaces or other special characters in the username affect users on all operating systems (not only on Windows), in addition to interfering with the correct functioning of tools like pip.

So we had to change direction from just solving the issue for Lab on Windows to solving it for all users on all platforms.

The fix is included in version 8 of the underlying tool RCC: this means that the Vs Code extension will also benefit from it at the same time.

RCC executions will now warn you in case it detects issues with your ROBOCORP_HOME location.

Once we have the user-friendly implementations for fixing the issue in the tools we will change RCC to just block execution in these cases.

Known issues

  • JupyterLab V3 has a new "Simple Interface Mode" that activates automatically if you resize the editor window to a small enough size.
    • To get back to the normal interface mode go to: View -> Click on Simple Interface to deactivate.
    • We are looking into ways of disabling this functionality, because it appears to be rarely useful in automation cases.
  • Some reports for errors INIT_3_10 and INIT_4_10 under investigation
    • These errors seem to be really specific to individual system setups, so please submit issues on these with your email attached so that we can get in contact with you and figure out the root causes.
    • Some cases have been tied to firewalls blocking outbound traffic. To solve these kind of issues, you can now find details on how to configure your firewall in the troubleshooting section.
January 21, 2021