Releasing Alphas and Betas without "freezing"

Jono Bacon jono at
Thu Jun 21 06:14:05 UTC 2012

On Wed, Jun 20, 2012 at 9:24 PM, Scott Kitterman <ubuntu at> wrote:
> On Wednesday, June 20, 2012 09:13:17 PM Jono Bacon wrote:
>> On Wed, Jun 20, 2012 at 8:52 PM, Scott Kitterman <ubuntu at>
> wrote:
>> >> For our current Ubuntu ISOs. Flavors currently are coordinating their
>> >> own testing efforts. They could either latch into the two week
>> >> cadence, or use their own cadence if desired.
>> >
>> > I find it somewhat unfortunate that the "community" testing efforts
>> > exclude the community sponsored flavors in the Ubuntu project.  I would
>> > have hoped that the community team was not just about Canonical's
>> > products.
>> This shouldn't be a particularly big surprise; Canonical supports our
>> flavors with infrastructure, but we primarily focus our engineering
>> and community team staff members on Ubuntu.
>> If we had more resources we would love to provide help for the
>> flavors, and we are certainly happy to offer any guidance and advice,
>> with with our current resources and staffing, Nick doesn't have the
>> bandwidth to handle more the than the Ubuntu ISOs and associated
>> testing. Saying that, I know Nick is in contact with many of the
>> flavors to ensure they get the support they need to set up their own
>> comprehensive testing plans.
> Perhaps I misunderstood, but I thought that you were saying this was about the
> community team he had organized to support ISO testing.  Nothing to do with
> Canonical resources.  I think that such a team should not be focused on just
> Canonical products.
> As a Kubuntu developer trying to get Kubuntu images tested for milestones,
> I've often gotten a lot of help from Canonical people in Ubuntu QA.  I
> appreciate that.  That's not what I'm talking about.

Well to be clear, Nick is one member of the Ubuntu community who is
focused on testing. Other people are welcome to coordinate testing
campaigns and get others interested and excited about testing, but
Nick's focus is explicitly on the Ubuntu ISOs. Of course, if community
members want to volunteer to help test the flavors then that is great.

I don't think it is unreasonable for Canonical to focus its resources
on Ubuntu as opposed to the flavors.

> None of the non-Canonical flavors have the resources to pick up the pace of ISO
> testing.  If Canonical is insistent on reorganizing the development process in
> a way that works better for them (dropping milestones and more frequent
> testing), you're going to leave us behind.
> Fundamentally the development and testing model has to be something that the
> entire project can support and I don't think it's unreasonable to expect that
> the community team person assigned to work on QA would be trying to build a
> team of community members to accomplish that.

To be clear, the testing cadence is up to whatever the flavor wants it
to be; I am not suggesting we impose this two-week cadence on anyone
other than me imposing it on Nick. :-)

My mail earlier in this thread was merely making it clear that from my
teams perspective, we are assigning resources on a two-week cadence.
Now, admittedly, a big reason why we can do this is because we pay
Nick to help coordinate this work.

Naturally our flavors generally don't pay people to coordinate this
kind of testing (maybe Blue Systems could invest here for Kubuntu?),
but there is no requirement for the flavors to test every two weeks.
If you folks want to test once a month or once every six weeks, then
go ahead and do that. Importantly though, as with all flavors, you
will need to coordinate this work yourselves within your community.

I see the milestones as quite disconnected from the testing: the
milestones are a useful means of consolidating efforts around
*something*, such as targeting work items and deadlines; it is just
that we happen to use these milestones as a means to release. I
personally don't see the point of the alpha releases...our users don't
use them, and our developers are running the daily development branch
anyway, so to me it makes sense to get rid of the milestones at some

My goal in this cycle is to ensure we have a regular testing cadence
for Ubuntu and not based on milestones; if the Kubuntu team want to
have your own internal milestones for targeting work and testing, I
see no reason why you can't do that on your own schedule.


Jono Bacon
Ubuntu Community Manager /

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