Mailinglist Archive: opensuse-project (465 mails)

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Re: [opensuse-project] Re: openSUSE versioning scheme
  • From: "Bryen M. Yunashko" <suserocks@xxxxxxxxx>
  • Date: Tue, 06 Jul 2010 19:31:23 -0500
  • Message-id: <1278462683.4622.30432.camel@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
(Top posting because my response isn't to any specific post in this
thread but to the overall thread itself.)

Now keep in mind that I'm putting on my marketing cap for the most part
here. (You've been warned! :-) ) I sat down tonight to read through
this thread in its entirety hoping to finally get a better understanding
of what the versions mean to us. And in the end, after many postings, I
find the answer just as elusive as when I started reading this thread.

From a marketing perspective, I'm not really expecting to see huge
numbers for the upcoming 11.3 release. I'm not expecting to see huge
writeups out there about 11.3. I'm not expecting to hear a lot of buzz
out there about 11.3. For one simple reason. The dot three sounds
simply like a minor update to the family of openSUSE 11 product line.

You and I both know that really isn't the case. Each release we put out
there is an improvement, an enhancement, and yes even a patch to
previous versions. There can be many new things in there, and there can
be some old things that *work better* in there (we hope!).

What I had hoped to see in this thread was a better understanding of
what each "set of releases" means. What is the goal and purpose of each
one? What does 11 and its successors (.x) mean? Is the next major
version (12) truly a major version from 11? Or is it a continuation of
the wonderful enhancements and additions we've made from 11.3? This is
unclear to me.

And its unclear to journalists too. And we have to spend extra time
reaching out to journalists who gave us the pass-over thinking its not
big news, and say to them... "No! 11.3 isn't just a patch update. It's
really cool and new! You gotta check it out!"

So, let's take a step back from talking about versioning schemes a bit
and get to the real heart of the matter here. Defining clearly what
each release is supposed to mean and if its a set of releases (e.g.
11.0, 11.1, 11.2, 11.3) then explain what our overall goals were for
that particular line and what our new goals are for 12.0 and its

And by doing this, by becoming clearer what our long-term goals for a
release (or release set) we can enable our community to talk about it
earlier on to the world. Right now, most buzz about a release happens
right around release time. But if we can generate buzz very early on,
we can attract more testers, we can attract more contributors, we can
attract more developers, you get the drift here. And doesn't having
more testers early on in the release development mean better things for
us at release time?

We need to define our releases and thus our versioning schemes early-on
so our discussions become more proactive than reactive.

Bryen M Yunashko
openSUSE Board Member
openSUSE Marketing Team lead

On Wed, 2010-07-07 at 00:00 +0200, Gerald Pfeifer wrote:
On Tue, 6 Jul 2010, Per Jessen wrote:
Wrt Michaels comment, I think it might be possible to define reasonable
major number thresholds. We (and presumably SLE product management)
would just have to accept that major releases won't happen very often.

From a SUSE Linux Enterprise perspective we are looking at major release
cycles of three or more years. And, yes, product management is fine with
that. ;-)

Bit of a catch-22 - we won't know what the last minor is until SLE is
out, but that is already based on the last.

That is something we could untangle by providing more insights into our
plans for SUSE Linux Enterprise up front. I guess this is something I'd
be able to take care of.

I am in no way intimately familiar with the SLE product cycle etc., but
is it important to have such a strong coupling between openSUSE and SLE?

I am quite intimately familiar with both SUSE Linux Enterprise and
openSUSE and it's been nice in the past, while I do not consider it
truely important going forward.

Note: none of the above is a request to keep the status quo, nor is
it a request for change. In my mind this is something for openSUSE
to decide independently and I will be glad to provide whatever data
may be needed for that.

Dr. Gerald Pfeifer <gp@xxxxxxxxxx>
Director Product Management, SUSE Linux Enterprise, openSUSE, Appliances

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