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On Mon, Feb 9, 2009 at 12:14 PM, Mark Haney <mhaney ercbroadband org> wrote:
> That said, rolling updates are the way to go.  No need for continual
> upgrades to 'releases' just update to the latest version of a package
> and be done with it.  I'm just not sure a 'major release' design is the
> way to go any longer.  With internet access the way it is, why not just
> do rolling updates?

Do you understand that there are some operations which can not be done
on the running system. The jump to kernel 2.6 and the migration to
using udev from the static device naming scheme are not the sort of
things that you could have been done easily with rolling updates.
These are examples of a class of low level technology changes which
make preupgrade and the installer imaging worthwhile compared to live
upgrades.  That doesn't say live upgrades are impossible, but it may
require extra effort on your part to deal with low level changes that
you may not completely understand and that package management is not
designed to solve.

Additionally rolling updates significantly complicate testing. Static
release points make it possible to carve out a set of priority test
cases as part of the pre-release process and focus on those senarios
to make sure they get the most testings. We do not have the resources
to test all possible upgrade scenarios that you could run into. Bugs
happen. Bugs will continue to happen. If we spread testing so thin
that we are trying to test every possible upgrade scenario..they will
all work equally poorly. What we can do is prioritize testing. Highest
priority is fresh installs...because ultimately that is the fall back.
 Next highest priority is upgrades via media or preupgrade. Live
upgrades would be prioritized both of those given the manpower

Once you come to terms with these last two paragraphs, you are free to
attempt to do rolling updates by switching your fedora-release package
(rawhide or the next Fedora release) with the knowledge that you may
run into some deep level incompatibility that the live/rolling
upgrades can not handle.


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