Starting in SYMPHONY 5.0, we introduced a number of new features that give
SYMPHONY some unique capabilities. These include the ability to solve
biobjective integer programs, the ability to warms start the solution
procedure, and the ability to perform basic sensitivity analyses. These
capabilities have been further developed and enhanced with the introduction of
Versions 5.1-5.3. Other new features and enhancements are listed below.
- SYMPHONY has an interactive optimizer that can be used through a
command shell. In both the sequential and parallel configurations, the user
can set parameters, load and solve instances interactively, and display
results and statistics. For Windows users, this means that SYMPHONY can be
invoked using the familiar procedure of ``double-clicking'' on the
symphony.exe file in Windows Explorer.
- SYMPHONY supports automatic configuration using the new COIN-OR
build system and the GNU autotools. Using the autotools, it is now possible to
build SYMPHONY in most operating systems and with most common compilers
without user intervention.
- Both the distributed and shared memory parallel configurations are fully
implemented, tested, and supported. The user can now build and execute custom
SYMPHONY applications in parallel, as well as solving generic MILPs in
parallel "out of the box."
- There are additional options for warm starting. The user can trim the
warm starting tree before starting to resolve a problem. More specifically,
the user can decide to initiate warm starting with a predefined partition of
the final branch-and-cut tree resulting from a previous solution procedure.
This partition can include either a number of nodes created first during the
solution procedure or all of the nodes above a given level of the tree.
- The COIN-OR repository, the current host of SYMPHONY has
recently undergone some significant improvements of its own that have
resulted in improved services to users, detailed below.
- SYMPHONY has a project management Web site, where users can submit
trouble tickets, browse the source code interactively, and get up-to-date
information on development. The address of the new site is
- SYMPHONY is hosted using subversion, a version control system with
features vastly improved over CVS, the previous hosting software. This has
required some reorganization and renaming of the header files.
- SYMPHONY is tightly integrated with other COIN-OR projects. Due
to improved procedures for producing stable releases, it will now be much
easier for us to determine the exact version of SYMPHONY and all other COIN
projects you are using when you report a bug.
- SYMPHONY is distributed with all COIN software needed to build a
complete solver. Previously, other COIN software packages had to be
downloaded and installed separately.
Two features have been deprecated and are no longer supported:
- The native interfaces to OSL and CPLEX are now deprecated and no longer
supported. These solvers can be called through the COIN-OR OSI interface.
- Column generation functionality has also been officially deprecated. For
now, there are a number of other software packages that offer better
functionality than SYMPHONY for implementing branch and price algorithms.
For what's new specifically in Version 5.3.4, please check the README
file that comes with the distribution.