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Re: Fedora Release Engineering Meeting Recap - 2009-05-04

On Wed, 2009-05-06 at 16:52 -0700, John Poelstra wrote:
> The overall Fedora 12 schedule with a GA date of 2009-11-03 is 21 days 
> shorter than Fedora 11 and exactly the same length as Fedora 8 so it is 
> not unusually short.

Well 21 days is a lot of days to take in, particularly when a lot of
them seemed to come between the GA of 11 and the Alpha freeze of 12.

> > way I could do that was to drop the Alpha cycle.  While already a
> > non-blocking freeze, it still drew too much attention away from ongoing
> > development in order to deliver something that was weeks old and already
> > irrelevant.  The alpha has had dubious quality to the development cycle,
> > at least from the developer and tester POV.  About the only thing of
> > quality it provided was a "known good starting point" for which to
> > install and then update to rawhide, and even that hasn't been true for
> > large swaths of folks in recent releases.
> I'd be curious to see our torrent and download numbers for the F11 Alpha 
> to understand how insignificant it was.  Where can we find them?

Torrent numbers are at http://spins.fedoraproject.org:6969/  but
downloads alone don't show the whole picture.  By the time people got to
the Alpha bits, the general feeling I have is that most of the bugs in
alpha were already known, and the solution was to update to rawhide.
Even if the bugs weren't fixed, the first suggestion was always update
to rawhide, so rawhide is really the target we're after, alpha just
appeared to be an easy way to get there.

> Although it is simple to just "not do the Alpha" it will take more 
> coordination across the other Fedora teams AND good messaging in the 
> press and wider world that no alpha is coming for Fedora 12 along with 
> the reasons why. Have we considered the cost of this trade-off to our 
> brand and community?

Hard to judge the cost, however our "three tests and a release" which
turned into "Alpha Beta Preview Release" was really designed before we
had things such as Test Days and the easily available live images, or
the ability to easily compose regular install images with slightly
different package sets.  The prohibitive cost to doing images on demand
has gone down considerably, and combined with test days provides a
better harness for gathering feedback as we go than the date based
quickly stagnant snapshots.

> >> 1) What dates are we proposing for releasing "development snapshots"
> >> before the beta?  We should put these on the schedule now.
> > 
> > I honestly hadn't planned on doing regular snapshots during this period.
> > Instead I was hoping for some test-days to drive the need for live
> > images and/or full media images for a particular test target.  For
> > people looking for a good "jumping off" point, they can install the GA
> > of F11 and yum update to rawhide.
> No snapshots at all or just not before Beta?  

Just none planned before Beta.

> Here was the original 
> draft which I can change to reflect the "no alpha" scenario if it goes 
> forward:
> http://poelstra.fedorapeople.org/schedules/f-12/f-12-releng-tasks.html
> If we plan to push out final freeze and corresponding GA by one week are 
>   we proposing to start the beta a week later too? Or have one week 
> longer between public beta release and final freeze?

One week longer between public beta release and final release.  The
dates leading up to the Beta are fine.  I'd still like to only have 3
snapshots, so we can start snapshot 1 a week later as well.

Jesse Keating
Fedora -- FreedomĀ² is a feature!
identi.ca: http://identi.ca/jkeating

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