The application of Jeremy Bicha for Core Developer - Q&A and Voting Thread

Jeremy Bicha jbicha at
Tue May 30 20:46:56 UTC 2017

On Tue, May 30, 2017 at 4:01 PM, Brian Murray <brian at> wrote:
> I've seen a lot of your work while reviewing Stable Release Updates. One
> thing that recently caught my eye was the Regression Potential from
> and the one in

The webkit2gtk regression I pointed out last year affected Ubuntu's
development release and not any Ubuntu stable release. (One major
effect was that it broke the installer slideshow).

webkit2gtk releases do have regression potential, but we've done
pretty well in Ubuntu over the past year. Most of these updates are
now handled promptly (within a week) by mdeslaur from the Ubuntu
Security Team. That particular one was not because it did not have any
publicized CVE numbers attached.

I do upload the beta webkit2gtk major releases to the Ubuntu
development release to catch some regressions before they show up in a
stable webkit2gtk release. (webkit2gtk follows GNOME's release cycle).

> How will you work to prevent regressions in core Ubuntu software?

GNOME Shell 3.24 has been a bit buggy. Part of that was from the
Weather integration feature which landed after GNOME's Freeze :(
Hopefully, the SRU that Tim Lunn is preparing for will help there. If GNOME Shell is
running under X, then GNOME Shell will automatically restart itself
when it crashes with no real lost work. But with GNOME on Wayland, a
GNOME Shell crash will log the user out.

In Artful, I enabled gnome-shell's unit tests but they are
unfortunately not complete enough to catch these kinds of potential

The challenge with SRUs is providing bug fixes while trying to keep
the regression risk as low as possible.
For instance, I reverted an upstream commit in which fixed problems for some
people but introduced regressions for others. It's not worth
introducing new bugs into a Stable Ubuntu release just to fix old

Generally speaking, new major upstream releases are not suitable for
SRUs. There are a few exceptions (key web browsers, webkit2gtk).
gnome-shell/gjs/mozjs might end up becoming another exception for LTS
releases because of Ubuntu Security Team concerns. (mozjs is the
Firefox ESR JavaScript engine which is only supported for one year).

On the other hand, providing high-impact Stable Release Updates is
very important so we shouldn't stop doing them just because they're


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