Mailinglist Archive: opensuse-project (502 mails)

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Re: [opensuse-project] Versionitis - Results
  • From: Thomas Hertweck <Thomas.Hertweck@xxxxxx>
  • Date: Wed, 13 Apr 2011 22:04:38 +0100
  • Message-id: <>

On 12/04/11 23:20, Drew Adams wrote:
I have proposed a model for version numbering that would make the openSUSE
numbering much more meaningful( this would look like 12.0, 12.1, 12.2, 12.3,
etc.). If there is NO way to move from the voted upon numbering system than I
think we should at least use it with my model (that is where the 12.1.1,
12.1.2 numbering comes from)... I know you said this would be bad and maybe
you are right but then I think that the only other model that works is the
I proposed originally. [...]

I would like to know how you feel about the numbering and release model I
proposed. Also what you think your colleagues would think of the number we
would use with it?.. that is if you feel comfortable making that prediction.

I appreciate your input. We will probably never find a solution that works
for everybody. I guess for the time being we just have to accept
the results of the poll and live with it to fight another day... ;-)

I can't give you my colleagues' opinions on your proposal right now, I can
only provide my personal opinion: Any scheme that follows the XX.YY
convention implies a major/minor versioning. That's perhaps not
necessarily how it is meant to be (certainly not the current openSUSE
versioning scheme), but that is what the majority of people will assume
because it is a logical assumption based on the experience with many other
software projects. It's the intuitive interpretation of seeing a version

A logical consequence of what I have just said is the following: If we
treat all officially released openSUSE distributions as equal in terms of
importance, quality etc, then we should use a version string that reflects
such a situation, i.e. the version string should only have a single
identifier (I have seen various proposals, from year/month based schemes
to theme-based names to Roman numbers to plain Arabic numbers, and so on).

There's one rule in software development that can be found in many books
on software project management. In a nutshell, the rule states that
software should be simple and intuitive. Unfortunately, I think we violate
this rule with the old and the new versioning scheme.

If I understand your proposal correctly, you would like to follow the
Fedora way and call the major versions 12 (13, 14, ...) etc (or 12.0,
13.0, 14.0, ..., respectively). Updates (that means the original version
plus the patches that have been shipped up to that point) would be
released as .1, .2, .3 and so on in regular intervals. Correct? I think
from a theoretical point of view this would work fine because the approach
clearly follows the major/minor scheme. The first number is the major
version number, the second number reflects the minor release (the update
level, so to speak). However, I don't know a) how feasible it is in terms
of available resources and required effort, and b) how useful the approach
is in general (i.e. the cost/benefit ratio). In principle, all that users
save in this way is some download volume for the first "online update"
after an initial install, right? Unfortunately, I don't know how difficult
it is to create the ISOs etc but I guess that your proposal might fall a
bit short when it comes to the cost(effort)/benefit ratio.

Kind regards,
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