Erlang/OTP 26.0 Release

May 16, 2023 ยท by Henrik Nord

Erlang/OTP 26 is a new major release with new features, improvements as well as a few incompatibilities.

For details about new features, bugfixes and potential incompatibilities see the Erlang 26.0 README or the Erlang/OTP 26.0 downloads page.

Below are some of the highlights of the release:

There is also a Blogpost about the highlights.

Parsetools #

  • Leex has been extended with optional column number support.

Stdlib #

  • The family of enumeration functions in module lists has been extended with enumerate/3 that allows a step value to be supplied.
  • Update Unicode to version 15.0.0.
  • proc_lib:start*/* has become synchronous when the started process fails. This requires that a failing process use a new function proc_lib:init_fail/2,3, or exits, to indicate failure. All OTP behaviours have been fixed to do this.

The Shell #

There are a lot of new features and improvements in the Erlang shell:

  • auto-complete of variables, record names, record fields names, map keys, function parameter types and filenames.
  • Open external editor in the shell to edit the current expression.
  • defining records (with types), functions, specs and types in the shell.

New terminal #

  • The TTY/terminal subsystem has been rewritten. Windows users will notice that erl.exe has the same functionality as a normal Unix shell and that werl.exe is just a symlink to erl.exe. This makes the Windows Erlang terminal experience identical to that of Unix.

Compiler and JIT optimizations: #

  • Creation and matching of binaries with segments of fixed sizes have been optimized.

  • Creation and matching of UTF-8 segments have been optimized.

  • Appending to binaries has been optimized.

  • The compiler and JIT now generate better code for creation of small maps where all keys are literals known at compile time.

  • Thanks to the optimizations above the performance of the base64 module has been significantly improved. For example, on an x86_64 system with the JIT both encode and decode are almost three times faster than in Erlang/OTP 25.

Maps #

  • Map comprehensions as suggested in EEP 58 has now been implemented.

  • Some map operations have been optimized by changing the internal sort order of atom keys. This changes the (undocumented) order of how atom keys in small maps are printed and returned by maps:to_list/1 and maps:next/1. The new order is unpredictable and may change between different invocations of the Erlang VM.

  • Introducing the new function maps:iterator/2 for creating an interator that return the map elements in a deterministic order. There are also new modifiers k and K for the format string in io:format() to support printing map elements ordered.

Dialyzer #

  • Added the new built-in type dynamic() introduced in EEP 61, PR introducing EEP 61 improving support for gradual type checkers.

  • Dialyzer has a new incremental mode that be invoked by giving the --incremental option when running Dialyzer. This new incremental mode is likely to become the default in a future release.

Misc ERTS, Stdlib, Kernel, Compiler #

  • Multi time warp mode is now enabled by default. This assumes that all code executing on the system is time warp safe.

  • Support for UTF-8 atoms and strings in the NIF interface including new functions enif_make_new_atom, enif_make_new_atom_len and enif_get_string_length.

  • The BIFs min/2 and max/2 are now allowed to be used in guards and match specs.

  • Improved the selective receive optimization, which can now be enabled for references returned from other functions. This greatly improves the performance of gen_server:send_request/3, gen_server:wait_response/2, and similar functions.

  • New trace feature call_memory. Similar to call_time tracing, but instead of measure accumulated time in traced functions it measures accumulated heap space consumed by traced functions. It can be used to compare how much different functions are contributing to garbage collection being triggered.

  • It is no longer necessary to enable a feature in the runtime system in order to load modules that are using it. It is sufficient to enable the feature in the compiler when compiling it.

  • inet:setopts/2 has got 3 new options: reuseport, reuseport_lb and exclusiveaddruse.

  • Fix so that -fno-omit-frame-pointer is applied to all of the Erlang VM when using the JIT so that tools, such as perf, can crawl the process stacks.

  • In the lists module, the zip family of functions now takes options to allow handling lists of different lengths.

  • Added the zip:zip_get_crc32/2 function to retrieve the CRC32 checksum from an opened ZIP archive. gen_server optimized by caching callback functions

  • The modules Erlang DNS resolver inet_res and helper modules have been updated for RFC6891; to handle OPT RR with DNSSEC OK (DO) bit.

  • Introduced application:get_supervisor/1.

  • Cache OTP boot code paths, to limit how many folders that are being accessed during a module lookup. Can be disabled with -cache_boot_path false.


  • Change the client default verify option to verify_peer. Note that this makes it mandatory to also supply trusted CA certificates or explicitly set verify to verify_none. This also applies when using the so called anonymous test cipher suites defined in TLS versions pre TLS-1.3.

  • Support for Kernel TLS (kTLS), has been added to the SSL application, for TLS distribution (-proto_dist inet_tls), the SSL option {ktls, true}.
  • Improved error checking and handling of ssl options.
  • Mitigate memory usage from large certificate chains by lowering the maximum handshake size. This should not effect the common cases, if needed it can be configured to a higher value.

  • For security reasons the SHA1 and DSA algorithms are no longer among the default values.

  • Add encoding and decoding of use_srtp hello extension to facilitate for DTLS users to implement SRTP functionality.

For more details about new features and potential incompatibilities see the readme

Many thanks to all contributors!

Download links for this and previous versions are found here