Subject: Re: NetBSD version naming - suggestion
To: None <>
From: Havard Eidnes <>
List: current-users
Date: 04/23/2003 00:25:59
> Why do our users need to understand what a "branch" is? Sure, the
> difference between "development" and "safe" is important, but why do =
> 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.

> > It's also clear that those who try to "upgrade" from 1.6R to 1.6.1 =
> > not read the first part of the install notes either, in particular =
> > section "Upgrade path to NetBSD 1.6.1".
> True. But why should we punish them for it?
> It's a recurring problem, why not come up with something that makes s=
> both to developers and to new users? Or at least closes the windows f=
> 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.

> > 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.

> While I'm not saying this method is what we should do, I think we
> should do something different than what we do now.

If changes to our documentation is one of the options for "do(ing)
something different than what we do now", I'd go along with that.


- H=E5vard