Mailinglist Archive: opensuse-factory (661 mails)

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Re: [opensuse-factory] RFC: Announcing important changes in the distribution
  • From: Will Stephenson <wstephenson@xxxxxxx>
  • Date: Wed, 2 Dec 2009 19:54:40 +0100
  • Message-id: <200912021954.41467.wstephenson@xxxxxxx>
On Wednesday 02 December 2009 18:57:45 Lubos Lunak wrote:
it repeatedly happens that there is a change introduced in the
distribution that affects others yet those are not told at all or too late
to do something about it.

Examples would be the removal of X configuration including keyboard layout
from YaST as a consequence of deprecating Sax2, meaning that it is now not
possible to change keyboard layout for KDM/XDM, or the upgrade of
PackageKit to a newer version that no longer had PolicyKit as a dependency
but instead started requiring its newer and backwards incompatible version
polkit-1, requiring rewritting KDE support from scratch (which is the
reason why KDE in 11.2 uses polkit-gnome). In the first case, I don't
remember that mentioned anywhere, in the latter case, the kupdateapplet
maintainer was notified (where it didn't really matter) but not the KDE
maintainers. Others could probably come up with their own examples.

I'd prefer if such things didn't happen again, or at least if they were
known in advance. And it even seems doable, because some changes already
are announced, e.g. new gcc version, the switch to linking with
--as-needed, etc.

Therefore I want to suggest that announcing important changes in the
distribution that affect other components of the distribution becomes
mandatory.

I'd go a step further and say these important changes should be presented,
discussed and agreed on a fixed schedule, aligned with the roadmap milestones.

Right now we have freezes for kernel/toolchain, then everything goes until a
bit later, then translations.

I've never been privy to the old dist meetings, having just passed on what
will be happening in KDE during the release development window to the relevant
managers, and I expect that for much of the community that want to be a part
of making openSUSE the development process is even more obscure, consisting
mostly of announcements from Coolo before deadlines.

How about opening the Technical Project Manager's batcave and sharing what all
the critical components and teams are that have input into release design,
setting up a couple of rounds of meetings or email to present all these
potential Outside Context Problems [1] that can spoil each other's release
cycles, and making the rules clear to deter late breaking changes? I'm not
talking about SLE levels of paperwork here.


Will


[1] http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Excession#Outside_Context_Problem
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