Proposed pocket racing uninstallability and SRU verification around release time

Robie Basak robie.basak at
Wed Oct 19 20:19:50 UTC 2016

On Wed, Oct 19, 2016 at 12:41:26PM -0700, Steve Langasek wrote:
> I understand the intent.  Testing -proposed as a whole then still leaves you
> the problem of root-causing any regressions.  Have you had success in
> feeding back the results of your testing into the SRU process?

I'd like to present another use case. In the "devops" world, it is
considered best practice to have tests for automated deployments. This
means that these users have CI - they can see at a glance whether
everything they need in their deployment still works.

For users who do this, it would be trivial to add -proposed to their
matrix. Root causing on a red would still be necessary, but they would
need to do this anyway if they don't tell us about a regression and
their deployments from -updates goes red.

I don't currently know of anyone actually doing this for -proposed, so
perhaps it isn't worth the effort to fix the other issues you point out
that currently stop testing -proposed as a whole being useful in this
way. Perhaps we can revisit this (for this particular use case) if users
actually tell us they want this.

> AIUI Robie's concern was that -proposed is a mess immediately after a stable
> release.  And it was *my* argument that this is a quantitative, rather than
> qualitative, difference from the rest of the cycle. :)

Point taken, thanks. We should document that enabling proposed wholesale
is not recommended, as I think the documentation currently is the
opposite of this. It should probably be removed from the GUI option that
can enable it then, too, since to my knowledge that doesn't enable any
kind of apt pinning to stop a wholesale update to proposed.

IOW, the top part of is
broken. "Selective upgrading from -proposed" (the second section) should
be the default, and the GUI shouldn't lead people into doing the first
but not the second.

Should we perhaps ship a proposed pin in preferences.d by default?

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