Lucid auto-syncing with Debian testing

Steve Langasek steve.langasek at ubuntu.com
Mon Nov 2 09:08:01 GMT 2009


On Sun, Nov 01, 2009 at 10:32:28PM +0100, Matthias Klose wrote:
> On 01.11.2009 22:10, Robbie Williamson wrote:
> > Please see https://wiki.ubuntu.com/LTS.

> > Note that our synching from testing is *only* for the LTS release.

> IMO that's a bad idea which doesn't help starting lucid at all.

>   - you rely on unstable -> testing transitions which currently
>     are blocked by eglibc/xulrunner/sqlite. waiting for every
>     such transition hinders lucid, it doesn't help it. The
>     merge/sync window is short enough this cycle, please don't
>     delay it further.

>   - For an LTS we are going to try reducing the number of
>     versions for a software; consolidating on the versions
>     that Debian currently switches to reduces the amount of
>     resources spent on these tasks.

> To get advantages, we should start syncing from unstable, and later
> switch to syncing from testing.

What happens then when Ubuntu reaches feature freeze and these packages have
still not reached testing due to release-critical bugs in Debian?  Debian's
Release Manager has announced a March freeze for squeeze:

  http://lists.debian.org/debian-devel-announce/2009/10/msg00002.html

Trying to extend the auto-sync from Debian until after the start of the
squeeze freeze in order to pick up bugfix-only changes in Debian is not
viable, because best case scenario is that this would take us past Beta 1,
cutting into the time available for stabilizing Ubuntu itself for release.

Having our import freeze coincide with the Debian freeze would be counter to
the aim of stabilizing for release, because that would mean shutting down
the import right *after* the last round of "quick, upload this new feature
right now before the release team cuts us off" changes.

And a DIF earlier than the Debian freeze with syncing from testing, after
starting out syncing from unstable, increases the risk *both* of pulling in
not-yet-stabilized changes from testing, and of important fixes superseding
whatever random packages we pulled from unstable at the beginning of the
cycle not having reached testing yet by the time we freeze.

So I think that autosyncing from testing *only* is the right thing to do
here.  I don't see any reason to think that autosyncing from unstable for
the next few months is going to significantly improve the release quality
for Lucid.  It would get us closer to having the same upstream versions of
software in the Lucid and Squeeze releases - but mainly for those packages
that no one in Ubuntu is looking at, and not a whole lot more given when
Debian is freezing.

Bear in mind that nothing about this autosync policy prevents *targeted*
syncs/merges from unstable for packages where that's the correct thing to
do.

On Mon, Nov 02, 2009 at 10:32:51AM +1100, Robert Collins wrote:
> >   - you rely on unstable -> testing transitions which currently
> >     are blocked by eglibc/xulrunner/sqlite. waiting for every
> >     such transition hinders lucid, it doesn't help it. The
> >     merge/sync window is short enough this cycle, please don't
> >     delay it further.

> Also we'll be waiting 10 days even for normal changes unless we fiddle
> the urgency field in Debian - that sort of latency would make it pretty
> hard to fix any bug by doing an upload to Debian *even for packages we
> maintain there*.

Feel free to fire off a request to sync from unstable at the same time that
you upload?  (Or, if you're like LaMont and too impatient to even wait for
the package to clear the Debian incoming queue... :)

On Sun, Nov 01, 2009 at 05:15:08PM -0500, Scott Kitterman wrote:
> Once Debian freezez we should sync from Testing up until at least Beta
> Freeze (and for Universe all the way to Final Freeze).

Well, see above regarding the Debian freeze timeline and why this is
therefore not viable as a blanket policy.

Cheers,
-- 
Steve Langasek                   Give me a lever long enough and a Free OS
Debian Developer                   to set it on, and I can move the world.
Ubuntu Developer                                    http://www.debian.org/
slangasek at ubuntu.com                                     vorlon at debian.org
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