Releasing Alphas and Betas without "freezing"

Thierry Carrez ttx at
Mon Jun 18 08:04:36 UTC 2012

Robbie Williamson wrote:
>> Yeah, you are right there, so if we get working dailies every day do we
>> still need alphas at all?
>> Ideally we would have the automatic testing flagging isos "green" when
>> they have no issue (with the goal to always have them good) and we would
>> recommend people to just pick the current green iso.
>> Can we just drop the image rolling part of milestones? We still probably
>> want fixed checkpoints in the cycle to review the features, etc but they
>> don't especially need to be linked with a special image...
> With our dailies, I've found that the milestones are most useful for
> planning bug fix landings and feature deliverables. I'd be +1 on
> dropping alphas all together. [...]

I'd certainly agree that the main value of milestones is as target dates
and to create an internal cadence within a cycle. That said, I still
think there is value in singling out a given build once in a while to
serve (1) as a reference point ("this bug wasn't present at alpha2"),
(2) to encourage user testing ("please test beta1"), and (3) as an event
that builds excitement towards the upcoming release ("let me introduce
the last milestone before 12.10 final release").

The trick is to make the release process of the milestone as light as
possible, so that it does not generate a significant extra amount of
work, nor should it block development. In that respect, getting rid of
soft freezes sounds like a very good idea. Something like taking a daily
from the Tuesday and tagging it on Thursday as the milestone, unless a
critical issue gets discovered in the meantime that justifies to use a
later daily as the milestone.


Thierry Carrez (ttx)

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