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Re: package stability



On 3/8/07, Mike McGrath <mmcgrath redhat com> wrote:
Patrice Dumas wrote:
> On Thu, Mar 08, 2007 at 06:42:55AM -0600, Rex Dieter wrote:
>
>> I'm with Mike here, that EPEL simply make a best effort, to be more in
>> line with what (Fedora) Extras does.
>>
>
> As a user I enjoy centos for its stability, including ABI stability, and I
> guess other also do. If adding the main EPEL repo breaks that I think it
> will be of much less use.
>
I'll make a deal with you, if you can pay our volunteers what RH pays
its engineers to do the type of backporting required to make the ABI's
stay the same and we'll see to it that the EPEL packages are just like
the RHEL ones.  Otherwise this is a lesson in learning that you can't
_make_ volunteers do anything and this, we're left with best effort.  In
this case its the spirit of the rule more so then the actual rule.

In my opinion this is a lesson that should be learned from Fedora
Legacy. It takes a LOT of work to backport stuff.. and having un-paid
volunteers do it is not something that will happen. I think (and I
emphasize "think") that the average backport bug-fix in code known by
the developer takes 12 hours of development time, and 10 hours of QA
time to show that it fixes something, doesnt break otehr things, etc
etc.

If we were to use a salary of US$ 30.00/hour (which is low for
maintenance coders..), that is a cost of US$ 660.00 per bug fixed. In
cases where you are having to patch code you are not familiar with,
the time factors are multiplied 2-3x. The average coder volunteer has
about 2-4 hours per day that they can spend on focusing on their
volunteer activity. This is leisure time that they are using and is
usually considered a higher cost and may not be solid time.

I do not know what the average bugs per package are that require a
release. That would be a useful cost analysis to get an idea of how
much a package support time and how many people are needed to support
it.


> In Fedora Extras there is a best effort to be latest and greatest. It is
> the exact opposite, we cannot be in line with what is done for fedora.
>
Yep, we want best effort for stability, not latest and greatest.
> Having packages packagers cannot reasonably commmit to keep ABI
> stability in a separate repo under the EPEL umbrella would seem right
> to me, however
See above.

    -Mike

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--
Stephen J Smoogen. -- CSIRT/Linux System Administrator
How far that little candle throws his beams! So shines a good deed
in a naughty world. = Shakespeare. "The Merchant of Venice"


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