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#1 2020-09-23 07:42:09

benedict_0
Member
Registered: 2019-11-08
Posts: 43

Packages release cycle

Hi!

I am interested in knowing what are the steps between the release of a new software by developers (is that called upstream?) and the time it lands in the arch repos.

I noticed for instance that I already benefit of Firefox 81.0 that was released yesterday, but not yet of Gnome 3.38 that was released on September 16.

Note that I am not asking for an ETA. I am genuinely interested in what happens in the meantime: is there a security proofing? A need to work on breaking changes? Compatibility?

I searched a bit but couldn't find relevant answers. Thank you for your replies.

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#2 2020-09-23 07:53:03

a821
Member
From: My Location
Registered: 2012-10-31
Posts: 192

Re: Packages release cycle

Packages are basically released when they're ready.

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#3 2020-09-23 07:59:06

benedict_0
Member
Registered: 2019-11-08
Posts: 43

Re: Packages release cycle

Thank you a821. I should have said I read that answer in the FAQ. If you allow me to rephrase I am interested in knowing what is being done in the process. What do the package maintainers have to do in order to grant the "ready" status?

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#4 2020-09-23 08:07:07

V1del
Forum Moderator
Registered: 2012-10-16
Posts: 10,867

Re: Packages release cycle

They bump the version, do any changes in the PKGBUILD to get it to compile, test for basic functionality on their own systems, maybe pull/develop patches for compatibility with newer libraries...

You might want to read through: https://wiki.archlinux.org/index.php/De … Wiki:Index as it contains some general guidelines for how the packaging process works.

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#5 2020-09-23 08:08:27

a821
Member
From: My Location
Registered: 2012-10-31
Posts: 192

Re: Packages release cycle

Bump the pkgver and then check that it builds and work? I don't think there's more to it, but I not a dev/TU. Some packages go to testing, so if you want to collaborate, enable the testing repo and report any issue back.

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#6 2020-09-23 08:12:18

benedict_0
Member
Registered: 2019-11-08
Posts: 43

Re: Packages release cycle

Thank you V1del, much appreciated! That's more in the line of what I had in mind.

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#7 2020-09-23 12:20:28

schard
Member
From: Hannover
Registered: 2016-05-06
Posts: 995
Website

Re: Packages release cycle

Also devs usually test the integration of packages when it comes e.g. to DEs as you mentioned.
While firefox is (more or less) a stand alone package that either compiles and runs or doesn't, huge DEs like Gnome consist of multiple packages that need to play together seamlessly and also with other desktop applications.
This is why most DEs also have a testing repo, that users can enable to thoroughly test new DE releases and whether their components work well and stable.

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#8 2020-09-23 12:57:09

benedict_0
Member
Registered: 2019-11-08
Posts: 43

Re: Packages release cycle

Thank you schard, that makes sense. I think I am a user with enough experience to enable such a testing repo soon smile

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#9 2020-09-23 13:24:06

Trilby
Inspector Parrot
Registered: 2011-11-29
Posts: 24,454
Website

Re: Packages release cycle

It's also important to keep in mind that different arch devs are responsible for different core/extra packages, and yet others people (Trusted Users) are responsible for community packages.  Each individual volunteer has a different lifestyle / habits / and time available that they devote to packaging.  This will always be a factor - and from a user's perspective a random or non-deterministic factor - in the time between an upstream release and when the package is ready for our repos.

It's quite possible that one upstream of firefox is released on a Thursday and is in our repos on Friday, but the next release comes on a Saturday and isn't in our repos until the next Friday - not because there was any more work to do, but perhaps that packager just sets aside time on Fridays for packaging (and this example even assumes the time they set aside for packaging is a consistent / regular schedule).

So while the technical information from previous posts is hopefully valuable, I suspect much of the variance in the time interval will actually come more from these human factors.


"UNIX is simple and coherent..." - Dennis Ritchie, "GNU's Not UNIX" -  Richard Stallman

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#10 2020-09-23 19:44:00

digitalone
Member
Registered: 2011-08-19
Posts: 281

Re: Packages release cycle

I hope Arch will have Gnome 3.38 before Ubuntu 20.10.

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#11 2020-09-24 06:48:44

benedict_0
Member
Registered: 2019-11-08
Posts: 43

Re: Packages release cycle

Trilby wrote:

It's also important to keep in mind that different arch devs are responsible for different core/extra packages, and yet others people (Trusted Users) are responsible for community packages.  Each individual volunteer has a different lifestyle / habits / and time available that they devote to packaging.  This will always be a factor - and from a user's perspective a random or non-deterministic factor - in the time between an upstream release and when the package is ready for our repos.

It's quite possible that one upstream of firefox is released on a Thursday and is in our repos on Friday, but the next release comes on a Saturday and isn't in our repos until the next Friday - not because there was any more work to do, but perhaps that packager just sets aside time on Fridays for packaging (and this example even assumes the time they set aside for packaging is a consistent / regular schedule).

So while the technical information from previous posts is hopefully valuable, I suspect much of the variance in the time interval will actually come more from these human factors.

Thank you Trilby. It is important to stress out - as you did - that these people are volunteers. As much as I like cutting-edge software, I always remember that there are a bunch of people disseminated on the planet to whom I am indebted for bringing me those software.

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#12 2020-10-01 07:32:10

kubrick
Member
Registered: 2016-10-07
Posts: 28

Re: Packages release cycle

As a side note regarding gnome 3.38, the list of bugs opened since release is quite scary, it's probably wise to wait for a point release...

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#13 2020-10-08 07:47:09

benedict_0
Member
Registered: 2019-11-08
Posts: 43

Re: Packages release cycle

Kubrick, is there another place to look at than https://bugs.archlinux.org/index/proj1? … &sort=desc?

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#14 2020-10-08 08:23:13

schard
Member
From: Hannover
Registered: 2016-05-06
Posts: 995
Website

Re: Packages release cycle

Yes: https://bugzilla.gnome.org/ resp. https://gitlab.gnome.org/GNOME

Last edited by schard (2020-10-08 08:23:55)

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#15 2020-10-08 13:52:55

benedict_0
Member
Registered: 2019-11-08
Posts: 43

Re: Packages release cycle

Thank you schard!

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