Fwd: KDE Frameworks Release Cycle

Ben Cooksley bcooksley at kde.org
Tue May 20 07:07:41 UTC 2014

On Tue, May 20, 2014 at 6:04 PM, Kevin Ottens <ervin at kde.org> wrote:
> On Monday 19 May 2014 22:28:27 Scott Kitterman wrote:
>> Speaking as a packager for a distro that's in group #2, I don't see this as
>> any change from your initial proposal.
> That's correct...
>> You're proposal moves us into group #1
> ... which is what I stated I think.
> Chosen extracts:
>> > Going forward I see four options for addressing those packagers:
>> >  1) Don't care, which means we're pushing them toward the case 1, they'll
>> >  release outdated versions with hand picked patches on top;
>> >  2) Gain the necessary trust of our downstream to show that our new
>> >  releases are not less stable than our former bug fix releases;
>> >  3) Provide a yearly LTS branch as I've seen proposed;
>> >  4) Provide release branches for which we commit backports.
>> > [...]
>> > So, even though I understand why it wouldn't please packagers, I don't
>> > think we should change course overall. So the tactic we'll follow is (1)
>> > hoping to get to (2).
>> > Indeed, if we don't change course, I expect the distributions will all
>> > move to a scheme of backporting. That's unfortunate, but hopefully, we'll
>> > manage to gain the required trust to prove that the releases are not less
>> > stable than the former bug fix releases
> So it's not that I don't understand, I completely see what will happen at
> first.

And in the meantime, users will get hurt and those of us who do user
support will experience severe confusion.
We'll have to keep track of which distributions have backported which patches.
Your proposal completely destroys the consistency our patch releases
previously provided.

At the moment, if a user says they're getting a crash in Foo running
version 4.Y, everyone else can usually reproduce it.
Under your proposal, we'll have users running 5.X who can't reproduce
it, while others running 5.X can. A total nightmare.

I don't even want to think what it will do to triagers (mission
impossible as above), nor do I want to consider how we will handle
this for the CI system.

As it stands, this proposal is convenient for the KF5 developers, and
disregards all the support services. Completely.
It will be a complete and unmitigated disaster.

> Now, I think we'll have to agree to disagree on something. You believe there's
> some rule written in stone somewhere which will make the "everyone will pile
> up backports only" the new status quo forever, I say let's try and find out.

In the meantime, everyone but the developers will suffer.

> Regards.
> --
> Kévin Ottens, http://ervin.ipsquad.net
> KDAB - proud supporter of KDE, http://www.kdab.com
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Ben Cooksley
KDE Sysadmin

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