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Gmane
From: Warner Losh <imp <at> bsdimp.com>
Subject: Re: FreeBSD has serious problems with focus, longevity, and lifecycle
Newsgroups: gmane.os.freebsd.devel.hackers
Date: Tuesday 17th January 2012 21:09:40 UTC (over 4 years ago)
On Jan 17, 2012, at 11:12 AM, John Kozubik wrote:
> Again, I'm not suggesting more snapshots - I am suggesting more real,
bona fide releases.  This will help people.

I tend to agree with you.  Our release engineering process isn't serving
the needs of users as much as it once did.  When Walnut Creek was running
release engineering, we had releases often because they wanted to make
money from their subscriptions.  This produced reasonably spaced minor
releases and except for 4-5, decently spaced major releases.  Even after
the torch passed from walnut creek to others, there was still either
residual pressures to make the releases happen, or inherited mindset that
keep on the same pace.

Today we have lost our way.  We have no major vendor pushing the process
along to make it happen faster.  We have no reason to get things done
faster or differently than the volunteers are doing it.  So we're
languishing.  9.0 took forever to get out, and we didn't do stop-gap 8.x
releases.  Our port collection has also gotten bigger since those by-gone
days so doing a release of the whole ports tree is taking longer to QA, so
pressure to do it more often meets up with resource constraints.  Our
binary update tools lag considerably compared to Linux, and there's a big
reluctance to whole-heartedly embrace PBI as a possible solution.  Maybe
pkgng will help there.  Maybe the various attempts to get ABI stability to
allow for easier decoupling of FreeBSD base and FreeBSD ports releases.

But we have a real problem here.  One I don't have easy answers for how to
solve.  One that likely has many other root-causes than the few I've cherry
picked for this reply.  The underlying balances that allowed the early
project to succeed have shifted, but we've not shifted with them.

Warner

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