CommandBox 4.2.0 Released

Brad Wood August 13, 2018

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Brad Wood

August 13, 2018

Spread the word

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We our pleased to announce the release of CommandBox 4.2.0.  This is a minor release to CFML's CLI, REPL, and Package Manager that addresses a handful of bugs and also adds a number of nice enhancements and new features.  


You can get the new release using whatever your favorite method of installing CommandBox is:

CommandBox will auto-upgrade when you run the new binary for the first time and you'll be ready to go.


As usual, this release is fully documented here in our official CommandBox docs

You can also view the updated list of all commands in our API docs

New Stuff

Here's some of the more notable changes in 4.2

Random Fixes

In no particular order...

  • Fix background colors not showing up in Powershell and Windows cmd
  • System Setting expansions not always working in server.json
  • testbox run no longer blindly assumes you're returning JSON.
  • Piping commands into box was broken since 4.0.0
  • Starting server with --debug didn't output logs on error.

Random New Features

Sorted by createUUID() DESC...

  • Custom commands have more control over their tab completion candidates. Docs Here
  • Control how many levels deep package list displays
  • New versions of Lucee, JGit, JLine, and WireBox
  • More pack200 of the Lucee jar (and more improvements to come soon in the next version of Lucee)
  • Automatic detection for build servers like Travis-CI to hide progress bar animations. Docs Here
  • Cloning Git repos during install has a nice new progress bar that plays well with interactive jobs
  • You can use the aforementioned progress bar for your own purposes in custom commands and Task Runners. Docs Here

Improvements to Native Binaries

The run command has been a pain over the last few versions as every "fix" has seemed to lead to another regression.  We've made some more changes to try and get each use case working as expected with no annoying bash messages about "job control". Fingers crossed.

Single one-off command, streams output to console as it comes.


Piping output of native binary into another Command (output captured all together and not streamed).

!pwd | #listLast /

Running interactive commands.  No output at all really, standard input and output of CommandBox bound directly to native shell

!nano index.cfm

Better Exit Code handling

You can now control the exit code that CommandBox (or your recipe) exits with.  Remember, zero is successful, any other number is failure.

exit 123

Access the Exit Code of the previous command via a System Setting expansion of ${exitCode}.

echo ${exitCode}

Recipes now have better support for exit codes.  If a command throws an error OR returns a non-zero exit code, the recipe will stop and the exit code of the last command will be returned as the exit code from the recipe command.  And if it was a non-interactive shell, the exit code will flow all the way back to the operating system from the box binary.  Also, running "exit" inside of a recipe will no longer exit the entire shell, but just that recipe execution.  This give you a lot better control over your recipes.

Command Chaining

Let's take a moment to review an existing but little known feature of CommandBox that we borrowed from bash.  This is not new, but you need to know this for the following section to make any sense.  Similar to bash, CommandBox allows you to chain multiple commands together on the same line and make them conditional on whether the previous command was successful or not.


You can use && to run the second command only if the previous one succeeded.

mkdir foo && cd foo


You can use || to run the second command only if the previous one failed.

mkdir foo || echo "I couldn't create the directory"


You can use a single semicolon (;) to separate commands and each command will run regardless of the success or failure of the previous command.

mkdir foo; echo "I always run"

New Assertion Commands

With the above building blocks, we can get clever to create simple conditionals to only run commands if a condition is met. Or these can simply be used to cause recipes to stop execution or to fail builds based on a condition. The following commands output nothing, but they return an appropriate exit code based on their inputs.


Returns a passing (0) or failing (1) exit code whether the path exists.  

# Only run the package show command if the box.json file exists
pathExists box.json && package show

You can specify if the path needs to be a file or a folder.

# output server.json only if it exists
pathExists --file server.json && server show

# Create the dir foo only if it doesn't already exist
pathExists --directory foo || mkdir foo


Returns a passing (0) or failing (1) exit code whether truthy parameter passed. Truthy values are "yes", "true" and positive integers. All other values are considered falsy

# If this package is private, then run a package script
assertTrue `package show private` && run-script foo

# If this env var is true, then run a command
assertTrue ${ENABLE_DOOM} && run-doom

# Use the boolean output of a native CFML function to control this echo
assertTrue `#fileExists foo.txt` && echo "it's there!"


Returns a passing (0) or failing (1) exit code whether both parameters match. Comparison is case insensitive.

# If the name of our package isn't a specific string, only then set it
assertEqual `package show name` "My Package" || package set name="My Package"

# If this env var is the string "production", then perform a production install of dependencies
assertEqual ${ENVIRONMENT} production && install --production

New S3 Endpoint for Installing Packages

Big thanks to John Berquist and Dominic Watson for helping add this new feature.  You can now install packages directly from S3, Amazon S3, Digital Ocean Spaces and Google Disk.

install s3://my-private-bucket/

There are several different authentications mechanisms available too:

  • Per bucket credentials in your CommandBox endpoint settings
  • Global credentials in your CommandBox endpoint settings
  • Environment variables
  • AWS credentials file
  • IAM role

The full docs are here:

Updated Server Tray Menus

We've added 17 pieces of flair to our server tray menus to show you more information such as PID, webroot, and port as well as a new option to open up the web root in your file system explorer.

Release Notes

Here's the full list of everything that changed in CommandBox 4.2.0.


  • [COMMANDBOX-417] - .zip files in artifacts cache don't include empty folders
  • [COMMANDBOX-808] - "bash: no job control in this shell" error message (pull request)
  • [COMMANDBOX-809] - external commands/shells that are interactive (such as vi) are not working when executed from commandBox
  • [COMMANDBOX-810] - tab hinting colors wrong in PowerShell terminals.
  • [COMMANDBOX-811] - System settings not always used in server.json
  • [COMMANDBOX-829] - "testbox run" formats outputfile as JSON even if it's not
  • [COMMANDBOX-833] - Piping input to CommandBox broken
  • [COMMANDBOX-834] - Bleeding edge upgrades show wrong URL after S3 artifacts move
  • [COMMANDBOX-835] - --debug doesn't dump job logs on error

New Feature

  • [COMMANDBOX-814] - Allow arbitrary command params to have file/folder completion via annotation
  • [COMMANDBOX-815] - Allow custom completion UDFs to provide group and description
  • [COMMANDBOX-839] - New conditional commands pathExists, assertTrue and assertEqual
  • [COMMANDBOX-840] - Allow access to previous exitCode as system setting
  • [COMMANDBOX-841] - Allow user to exit shell with specific exit code
  • [COMMANDBOX-842] - Improve recipe handling of exitCodes


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