Subject: Re: NetBSD version naming - suggestion
To: Havard Eidnes <>
From: Bill Studenmund <>
List: current-users
Date: 04/22/2003 15:33:03
On Wed, 23 Apr 2003, Havard Eidnes wrote:

> > Why do our users need to understand what a "branch" is? Sure, the
> > difference between "development" and "safe" is important, but why do they
> > need to understand things the way the developers do?
> The basic concept that maintenance is separated from ongoing
> development is pretty basic, and without grasping this basic feature
> of our maintenance process, and that maintenance continues after the
> major release on the same code base as the major release, users will
> fall into the trap of trying to compare 1.6.1 to e.g. 1.6K or 1.6M.

I agree that "safe" (-STABLE, relese branch, etc.) vs devel is important.
But I think we have made the difference very small (a letter replacing a
number), and other projects make it very large (2.4.X vs 2.5.X etc.). Thus
folks get confused - the small difference we have doesn't seem imortant.

> > It's a recurring problem, why not come up with something that makes sense
> > both to developers and to new users? Or at least closes the windows for
> > foot-shooting?
> I think I've said so before (and didn't do much about it then, other
> than writing a bit in the release notes) that the version numbering
> scheme could use some better documentation, and being pointed to from
> a few more places in our web pages.  We'll see if I can manage to
> contribute something this time.

I think part of the problem is that what we do isn't what folks expect, so
we need this education effort.

> > > Instead, the rule "contains letters, is not a release" should be
> > > quite straight-forward to understand.
> >
> > It should (and is for many), but it isn't for a lot of folks.
> Before we do something as drastic as introduce major changes in our
> version numbering scheme, I think we should try to better understand
> why our current version numbering scheme is misunderstood for these.


Take care,