Release History

Renew 4.1

Renew 4.1 was released in January 2023.


  • Added the ability of the compilation and simulation of P/T nets with synchronous channels.


  • Fixed the bug that some formalisms are only loading empty palettes or even no palette.

For Developers

  • Added the ability to generate the Javadoc for all of Renew at once.
  • Added some missing documentation.
  • Decomposition of some plugins.
  • Improved test coverage.

Renew 4.0

Renew 4.0 was released in April 2022.


  • Reworked the whole user interface by combining the different windows into one. This should make the usage of Renew a lot easier.
  • The toolbars are grouped on the left side of the window.


  • A new attribute bar in the upper right corner of every net allows faster changes to net elements.
  • Added a zoom in, zoom out and zoom reset button.

Relevant for Developers

  • Changed Renew's architecture to the Java Platform Module System architecture, turning Renew's plugins into modules.
  • Changed the build system from Apache Ant to Gradle.

Renew 2.6

Renew 2.6 was released in April 2022.


  • The PNML export and import were reimplemented because the old implementation based on a prefinal standard of PNML. The new version implements the standard in version 2009 from
  • The accidental overwriting of imported files in the wrong format is now prevented.
  • The keyboard shortcut for the Align Middles command changed to Ctrl+Shift+-.
  • The keyboard shortcut for the PNG export changed to Ctrl+9.
  • The background for the PNG export is now transparent.
  • When exporting to EPS format with background transparency enabled (property set to true), a white background is added to included PNG images because images with transparency are not supported in EPS format. Previous versions threw an error in this case. If you want to include PNG images with a transparent background, we recommend using the PDF export.
  • Multiple smaller bug fixes and code improvements.


  • We now provide a zooming feature, which can be triggered using keyboard shortcuts (Ctrl and +/- to zoom in/out) or by using the mousewheel while pressing Ctrl (Ctrl+Mousewheel up to zoom in and Ctrl+Mouswheel down to zoom out). The zoom factor can be resetted with Ctrl+0.
  • The automatic layout now provides a new option Random, which uses a simulated annealing algorithm to automatically control the parameters of the automatic layout. The algorithm produces quite nice results.
  • Moving figures with the arrow keys now creates undo snapshots.
  • The installrenew script additionally generates a renewexport script to export images from Renew drawing files.

Renew 2.5.1

Renew 2.5.1 was released in November 2020.

This is a maintenance release that provides compatibility for Java 11 and above. It also updates the jline library, which fixes an error during start, which prevented the start of Renew with some terminal emulators. This version requires at least Java 11.

Renew 2.5

Renew 2.5 was released in June 2016.


  • Most obvious is the complete reimplementation of the Navigator plugin. It is now persistent, extensible and the tree view can now be filtered. We optionally provide some convenient extensions, such as the integration of the drawing’s diff feature (ImageNetDiff), which can now be triggered directly from the Navigator GUI.
  • The FreeHEP library has been upgraded to version 2.4.
  • The quick-draw feature has been improved, which results in a reduction to half the amount of mouse clicks during quickly drawing net elements.
  • Some key-bindings are now configurable.
  • The log4j configuration and the configuration GUI have been improved.
  • The individual log4j configuration file now resides in folder renew, which is located in the users home folder. The default location for log files moved there, as well.
  • The loading of plugins at startup can now be black-listed or white-listed.
  • The PDF export produces PDF documents with bounding boxes; configuration has been fixed.
  • The grid can now be adapted and it can be activated as default.
  • Several console commands have been improved, including the following plugin commands: list, load, unload and also export command ex. Type help to print a synopsis of all commands.


  • The Console plugin replaces the Prompt plugin. It employs the well-established JLine2 libray and provides several improvements: tab-completion for commands and attributes, command history and editable command line.
  • The Quick Fix feature improves the reporting of syntax errors by providing suitable proposals for remedies and their automatic realization.
  • The Refactoring plugin (optional) provides features such as renaming of variable or renaming of synchronous channels.
  • Drag & drop now works for Renew drawings. Simply pull the drawing over Renew’s main window. Drawings and also folders can also be dragged into the Navigator Window. Additionally you can add images to a drawing by dragging it on the drawing’s window.
  • Two new text tools have been added. One is the target text tool, which allows to add hyperlinks to any drawing element. The targets can be other model artifacts, for instance a net, or external resources referenced by a URL. The hyperlink is activated by using the Ctrl modifier key together with a mouse click. The comment tool allows to quickly add comments to a drawing element.


  • Macao format has been removed, since its usability was very limited.
  • The PostScript export has been removed. Use EPS export or PDF export instead.

Renew 2.4.3

Renew 2.4.3 was released in September 2015

This is a maintenance release that provides an update of the FreeHep library and a new version of the Mac OS X application bundle. It fixes issues concerning the export functionality with newer Java versions. This version requires at least Java 7.

Renew 2.4.2

Renew 2.4.2 was released in January 2015.

This is a maintenance release that provides a fix for the import of reference nets from PNML format (RefNet).

Renew 2.4.1

Renew 2.4.1 was released in May 2014.

This is a maintenance release that provides a fix for a race condition that occurs - under rare conditions - during the termination of the simulation.

Renew 2.4

Renew 2.4 was released in May 2013.


  • The support for the .xrn format is discontinued. We encourage the use of PNML instead.
  • We fixed Remote Server connection (RMI) by providing configuration (see the User Guide Section 2.6.9).
  • We have fixed the simulation database backing and adapted the mechanism for MySQL / InnoDB.
  • Remaining AWT dialogues have been converted to Swing.
  • The Logging GUI has been improved by decoupling the Simulator from the GUI.
  • The loadrenew script now starts a regular Renew instance if the connection to a Drawing Load Server is not possible.
  • The desktop integration for Linux and Windows have been improved.
  • We provide new unified icons for all operating systems.
  • Many minor bugs have been fixed. Some of these were:
    • Rare problems with locating nets relative to the classpath have been solved.
    • Changes on the line style now affects all figures.
    • The font style underlined now also affects small font sizes.
    • Export to PNML now always produces files in UTF-8 character encoding.
    • The Logging tab of the Configure Simulation dialog has been revised.
    • The log4j PatternLayout can now be set from within the GUI
    • Custom file appenders created in Logging GUI are now functional.
    • Net components are more robust if attached figures are manipulated.
    • It is now possible to escape whitespaces in command line commands. In that way it is possible to open drawings with whitespaces in the path from command line.


  • The Navigator now offers a button to recursively expand a directory sub-tree.
  • The Navigator now loads directories without locking the GUI.
  • PNML and ARM files are shown in the Navigator.
  • The keyboard shortcut Ctrl+Enter closes the text editor overlay.
  • The background transparency of EPS files can now be controlled by setting the property
  • Windows: The installation script installrenew.bat creates reg files that associate and disassociate Renew drawing files with loadrenew.bat and register icons.
  • We provide deb packages for Debian-based systems.

Relevant for Developers

  • We refactored large parts of the code base.
  • Many Java compiler warnings have been resolved and Javadoc documentation have been improved.
  • A few more JUnit tests have been introduced.
  • Logging and the simulator have been partially reworked to allow deadlock-free real-time (GUI) logging with only minimal time delay.
  • Several tools that were originally mandatory to build Renew are now optional: these are Cobertura, Jalopy, JUnit and Latex.

Renew 2.3

Renew 2.3 was released on 2012/03/01 almost exactly thirteen years after the 1.0 release. It offers some new features, enhances existing features and fixes some bugs. Java 1.6 is now required for compiling and running Renew.

  • The editor offers a better syntax check which proposes fields and methods in case your input doesn't match existing ones
  • List of recently saved drawings under 'File' menu
  • Navigator plugin, allows fast access to renew nets
  • nice splashscreen on startup
  • usability enhancements:
    • names and colors of places transfer to virtual places
    • keyboard shortcuts for selecting tools
    • adding two arc inscriptions ("x") to one arc is prevented
    • Adding new points in polygon figure arcs
  • code streamlining, documenation, usage of generics
  • switched to FreeHep Vector Graphics libraries version 2.2

Minor changes

  • reenabled token display without white background (optional, requires setting the de.renew.gui.noTokenBackground property)
  • new arrow tip "diamond"
  • shortcut for new Navigator Plugin is Strg-Shift-N
  • changed shortcut for net step is Ctrl-Shift-I


  • Resolved deadlock in SimulatorPlugin facade
  • Fixed bug in handling boolean properties
  • Fixed handling plugin locations with special characters
  • Plugins can now add nets from multiple jar files
    (previously only files from last jar file were loaded)

Renew 2.2

Renew 2.2 was released on 2009/08/28.

This release introduced the FreeHep vector graphics package for screen presentation and to support additional export formats like PDF, PNG and SVG. Several improvements were made to attributes of drawing figures and to user interaction via mouse and keyboard (see user guide for details).

Internally, all simulation-related code is now executed within specific threads. This allows to configure a separate priority for simulation threads and improves the loading of user-defined classes in the simulation context.

Java 1.5 is now required for compiling and running Renew.

Renew 2.1.1

Renew 2.1.1 was released on 2008/07/25.

This was a maintenance release that provided several minor bug fixes for PNML export, null token display and access to public methods of private (inner) classes in Java expressions.

The experimental AppleUI plugin now supports building an MacOS X application bundle.

Renew 2.1

Renew 2.1 was released on 2006/05/26.

This release introduces the Apache Log4J logging framework for all Renew components (except the console prompt).

Fixed several minor bugs.

The color and font attribute dialogs were improved.

Whitespace-only inscriptions are now deleted automatically (like empty ones).

Renew 2.0.1

Renew 2.0.1 was released on 2004/10/08.

This was a maintenance release that provided bug fixes for the install scripts and some redraw issues of the graphical net editor.

An experimental AppleUI plug-in is available as optional download. It provides rudimentary integration with the MacOS look and feel.

Renew 2.0

Renew 2.0 was released on 2004/06/18.

This release introduces a plug-in architecture to Renew. The application was decomposed into several plug-ins.

Java 1.4 is now required for compiling and running Renew.

The simulation engine was restructured. The handling of the various configuration properties has been canonised by the plug-in system. The ability to switch simulator modes, net formalisms, the net loader path, and the remote access feature on the fly was added. The class loader for custom classes has changed.

The GUI application classes were restructured and (partly) converted to use the Swing package from the Java foundation classes. A PNML-compatible export format was added. The editor is able to load drawings from URLs. The net loader can now search nets relative to the classpath.

The :net() channel is no longer invoked implicitly on instance creation. The RenewMode interface provided by the GUI has been removed. In consequence, the start scripts for the modes disappeared, too. The channel, name and isolated node checks have been removed from the Net menu because they need to be adopted to the new simulator architecture. The expanded token display feature has moved into the optional fs plug-in, this option has no effect unless the fs plug-in is installed.

Renew 1.6

Renew 1.6 was released on 2002/10/25.

This was a feature release, but it also included various small bug fixes throughout the code.

Renew requires Java 1.2 or higher now.

A remote layer allows the separation of simulation process and visualization process. A dynamic net loader allows on-demand loading of nets.

A new inscription manual can be attached to transitions that must not fire autonomously.

Renew 1.5.2

Renew 1.5.2 was released on 2001/07/03.

This was a maintenance release that provided bug fixes for the install scripts and a performance improvement of the simulation engine.

Renew 1.5.1

Renew 1.5.1 was released on 2001/06/11.

This was a maintenance release that provided bug fixes for the simulation engine.

Renew 1.5

Renew 1.5 was released on 2001/05/10.

This was a feature release, but it also included various small bug fixes throughout the code.

Arcs can be B-splines. An allignment can be specified for every text figure. Transitions and places can be refined. Subnets can be coarsened. Nets can be merged.

Drawings are now autosaved. A backup copy of any file is kept. Undo and redo commands were added. Search and replace commands were added.

The architecture guide was added, which is a manual that describes the most important internal algorithms and data structures of Renew.

Renew 1.4

Renew 1.4 was released on 2000/11/09.

This was a maintenance release that provided mainly improvements in the user interface, documentation updates, and bug fixes.

You can now inspect token Java objects in detail and put toolbars into their own window. You can insert intermediate points into connections more easily.

Renew 1.3

Renew 1.3 was released on 2000/09/01.

This was a feature release, but it also included various small bug fixes throughout the code.

The timed simulation mode was added. Lists were provided in addition to tuples.

Breakpoints were added in order to control the graphical simulation. An XML import and export facility was added. A graph layout algorithm that may help in viewing nets was added. More commands for arranging figures manually were provided. The ability to select and deselect figures by type was added.

Renew 1.2

Renew 1.2 was released on 2000/05/18.

This was a feature release, but it also included various small bug fixes throughout the code.

The simulation engine was made more robust and flexible. Minor bugs were fixed.

A single inscription figure may now contain multiple arc inscriptions or initial marking inscriptions that are separated by semicolons. Slight inconsistencies in the inscription language were cleaned up. The type rules were improved. The results of action inscriptions may now be passed through synchronous channels even in the presence of typed variables. Some display problems with Java 1.2 have been fixed.

Flexible arcs were added. Clear arcs were added. Inhibitor arcs were added.

Marked places and firing transitions can now be highlighted during the simulation. A rudimentary net layout algorithm has been implemented. The state of a running simulation can now be saved and restored. Restarting a simulation may now reload Java classes. Export of Encapsulated PostScript was implemented. Selection of groups of figures was improved.

Renew 1.1

Renew 1.1 was released on 1999/10/18.

This was a feature release, but it also included various small bug fixes throughout the code.

Some performance enhancements were implemented and minor bugs were fixed. Some source level inconsistencies were cleaned up. More versions of Java can now be used for compilation and execution.

The interactive execution of reference nets has been improved significantly. Both the inspection of the current marking and the simulation control are more flexible now.

The handling of null-objects in the simulator was corrected. The type system was made more compatible with the Java type system. The trace flag of net elements is now saved to disk.

The parallel simulation code was added. The checks for double names and for cyclic channel dependencies were added. Virtual places may now be used in nets.

Renew 1.0

Renew 1.0 was released on 1999/03/05. It included a net editor, a reference net simulator, a Java stub compiler, and example nets.

UHH, Inf

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Last modified: Mon Feb 13 21:30:01 CET 2023 by