I’m happy to announce that PHP Monitor 6 is entering its final phase of development. My current plan is to release PHP Monitor 6 around the last week of April. I also have an announcement to make!
As usual, the app will be available free of charge with the source code available on GitHub. Yet, as the release approaches, I wanted to do something special for my sponsors.
Over the last year and a half, a bunch of amazing people have supported me and my progress on PHP Monitor.
As a thank you for sponsoring me (and an incentive for potential new sponsors), you will now get exclusive sponsor access to work-in-progress builds, starting with PHP Monitor 6. You can try out these features and provide critical feedback and hopefully very few bug reports in preparation for the big update.
The plan is to continue this in the future as well, with early access builds going out to sponsors before they hit the DEV and stable channels.
PHP Monitor 6 Sponsor Access
Anyone who is a current GitHub Sponsor contributing a monthly amount will get immediate access to a private repository.
All GitHub Sponsors will receive a message when I have big announcements to make, which may include a link to early access builds. (One-time sponsors cannot be granted access to the private repository manually.)
Here’s why you should sponsor me:
- You get early access to new features and can help shape new features
- Early releases may require some extra UI polish for the final release and may contain some bugs, especially if it concerns new features1
- Sponsor builds have some extra touches (e.g. no sponsorship pop-up, even on new installs)
- If you chose to sponsor publicly, the name in your GitHub profile will be included in the list of sponsors in the credits in the final release version2
For current sponsors, exclusive sponsor access builds are available to download today.
If you are a current sponsor, please visit the early access releases repository. I do ask that those with access do not share early access builds and/or source code.
What’s new in PHP Monitor 6
PHP Monitor 6 comes with a few important new features, including Standalone Mode, Instant Homebrew Response and the highly anticipated PHP Version Manager.
PHP Monitor can now work untethered from Laravel Valet, and will offer you some key functionality if you don’t have Valet installed. A lot of the original functionality is available without Valet, but there are some features that will be unavailable.
Because PHP Monitor relies on Valet for some underlying functionality, some functionality will be unavailable. To learn more about which features are disabled, please check out the GitHub issue.
I intend on building complimentary functionality that will also work without Valet, but this is not a massive priority unless you all start asking for this.
I still recommend using PHP Monitor with Valet enabled (it’s such a great solution!) but I understand some of you simply don’t need Valet which is why I really wanted to add Standalone Mode. I hope this comes in clutch for some of you.
Instant Homebrew Response
PHP Monitor now closely watches the linked PHP version. If something happens to the linked binary (due to Homebrew upgrading it, relinking or unlinking it) then PHP Monitor will immediately try to figure out what’s going on.
This way, you will always see the latest reflection of your system’s configuration in the status bar. This will work even when PHP is unlinked, but there may be some edge cases where this might still cause crashes during the testing period.
Previously, PHP Monitor would only refresh this information passively in the background or immediately if PHP Monitor itself ran some sort of Homebrew command. This reactivity is key for the next feature, which is…
PHP Version Manager
Because of the various underlying changes to PHP Monitor’s core systems to support the two features above, it was now possible to make PHP Monitor do more.
Yes, PHP Monitor can now manage the actual installation and/or upgrades for the different PHP versions on your system, all exposed via a simple GUI.
When needed, PHP Monitor will even prompt for admin access to take ownership of folders with incorrect permissions to rectify the situation. This way it’s easier to stay up-to-date with your local version of PHP as well: you can easily check if a newer patch version is available.
Right now, PHP Version Manager was built with Homebrew 4.0 compatibility in wind and having Homebrew 4.0 installed will be an enforced requirement in a future update to the early access builds.
PHP Monitor 6 public release
Coming in April or May
Some weeks after this post and after sufficient testing (likely in April), new builds of PHP Monitor 6.0 will be made available to the general public: to both DEV and stable channels, free of charge and with access to the source code. After all, I do have this notice on my GitHub Sponsors page:
I have already promised that PHP Monitor will remain an open source tool and will remain available for free for everyone. I’m not turning PHP Monitor into a paid product, and the source code will remain public.
I may build other things in the future that I might charge for, but as long as it remains possible, PHP Monitor will remain available for free under the MIT License.
Over the last year or so, many other developers and entrepreneurs have reached out and told me to monetize the app.
I have thought about offering a paid option for business or enterprise users. One would be able to pay for priority support, but as I am just one guy (and not the owner of a business) I cannot legally do so at this time. All I can do at this time is accept donations, which is good enough for now.
In the future I may offer a commercial license for some form of PHP Monitor, but in that case this should not affect the open source nature of PHP Monitor nor the fact that I intend to keep the app available and updated as it exists today. With the introduction of Sponsor Access today, I just wanted to firmly emphasize this.
This is just me pointing out what could happen in the future. I might also build another app that is just straight-up paid upfront… Some app that makes working with Docker a better experience for PHP developers, for example?
To be honest, I’m not sure what comes after, but I do know I’m not done with PHP Monitor yet, so stay tuned for more to come.
The intent is not to simply “hold back” regular releases for more sponsorship, that would not feel right. I would prefer legitimate feedback and testing from sponsors. In the past, I have sourced a lot of community feedback and am incredibly grateful for it. ↩
I reserve the right to exclude your name if the name on GitHub is offensive or there is suspicion of impersonation. ↩