Updates post-release/freeze

Tim Hull thully at umich.edu
Mon Jul 30 16:16:13 UTC 2007

 I know my last thread was confusing to some developers with regards to my
desire for a greater availability of updates post-release.  I thought I'd
clarify - I'm not primarily thinking of LTS releases, and I'm not suggesting
that a large number of supported components be version-updated between

However, I do see the desire for some updates to be available between
releases, to a greater extent than "backports" currently handles (for
instance, backports currently has no interest in making any new kernels
available, and only has a limited number of packages).  In many cases, users
who need something that is not in the stable release but which is available
(for instance, kernel fixes which came after the stable release, or a bugfix
for a universe application) are having to compile from source.

1)  For supported components, Stable Release Updates could be expanded to
incorporate all significant bugfixes that can be done in a sane and safe way
(i.e. without major version bumps).  This could include supporting new
hardware (like new revs of a wireless chipset) as well as fixing
miscellaneous issues like suspend-to-RAM breakage.  If a major version rev
is necessary, this could be included but not installed by default.

2) For unsupported components, Universe (and multiverse) could be updated on
a rolling basis after release.  This could be for mere feature updates -
though they would still have to not require new versions of "main"
components. Components in main could have unsupported updates in universe,
though these would have to install alongside the main packages (firefox3,
for instance, could be a Firefox 3 package).  A universe freeze could be
maintained, though updates after the fact would merely go in
"universe-updates" instead of "universe".  This would supplant the existing
backports system, and would actually parallel what FreeBSD does with its

Devs, I'm curious to hear your thoughts.  Is there anything I can do as a
user to help bring about anything like this?

Once again, thanks for the nice distro...

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