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Re: [Pkg-postgresql-public] Postgres major version support policy on Debian

	Hi again :)

* Markus Wanner <markus@bluegap.ch> [2008-10-06 17:34:13 CEST]:
> Gerfried Fuchs wrote:
> > On the
> > other hand, I still don't fully understand the problems of not being
> > able to upgrade to pg-8.3 properly. People seem to have been able to
> > upgrade from 8.1 to 8.2, so what's the real big difference between 8.1
> > vs. 8.2 and 8.2 vs. 8.3? If it's soo deep, wouldn't that mean that we
> > are having a general problem with the upgrade path here, too?
> Well, it's a general Postgres problem, not a Debian one. Upgrading
> between major versions requires a full dump/restore cycle, for which the
> downtime is proportional to the database size. For small or medium
> databases that's not an issue, but above some Gigabytes, that begins to
> hurt pretty badly.

 Then again, that was already required when switching from 8.1 to 8.2.
And it was never a secret that backports.org is a moving target, just as
testing is, where the backported versions on backports.org come from.

> Another problem also mentioned in the cited threads is that of custom
> built or contrib modules which are often problematic (i.e. costly to
> adjust) to upgrade as well.

 Likewise, 8.2 was never in stable so people already must have done that
thing at least once.

> Once Postgres supports in-place upgrades between major versions, this
> issue is solved.

 Good to hear. :)

> >  Erm, the referenced mail [2] refers to your own mail, so using that as
> > a reasoning argument is a bit fishy ...
> Uhm.. I'm mistyping sometimes, but not this time. [2] references:
> http://archives.postgresql.org/message-id/48E48822.5060009@usit.uio.no
> Which is certainly not from me.

 Yes. But the only thing given therein is a reference to the thread
started by you. That user clearly wants a clean stable system and seems
to be well aware of what backports.org might gain him, or might not. And
I don't think that your approach with yet another repository will make
him happy neither.

> > And you failed to outline the
> > "enough of a reason for an exception" argument you like to brag around
> > with.
> Well, at least several hours of downtime is enough of a reason for many
> people to not upgrade between major Postgres versions. It certainly is
> for us. And judging from the Postgres mailing lists, there are still
> quite some people on 7.4 just for these reasons.

 And that's absolutely fine and that's what the stable releases in
Debian are for. Backports.org is a moving target that is there to
support backports from testing (which is obviously a moving target,
too), and people doing upgraded from stable to versions from
backports.org should hopefully be aware of that. New version usually
mean new interfaces for working with them, and I don't see why this
should be considered differently for postgres ...

 People who are worried about downtimes for upgrades should never follow
a moving target, might it be testing, backports.org or anything else.

 Who is this "us" by the way, so just that "we" know who we are speaking

> >  Your argument might be valid, but it doesn't play for backports. It was
> > always clear that backports.org is about backporting packages from
> > testing.
> Okay, that's fine.
> In that case, 8.2 should never have been backported.

 Why do you claim so? It was a helpful ressource for quite some people.

> And very likely 8.4 shouldn't be backported either. Which is a pity
> IMO, and justifies an exception of such a rule.

 Why do you think so? What makes postgres so outrageous special in this
area than any other package?

> Note that I'm not just complaining, but offering to help and do better
> myself: I continue to maintain "backports" of 8.2.

 But with that you are just adding to the diversion which you so
strongly try to fight ...

> >  Backports.org is not the standard Debian infrastructure. And even if it
> > were, you should this rather bring it up e.g. debian-project list.
> That's why I'm cross-posting this, yes.

 But you haven't cross-posted it to the debian-project list (which
doesn't rule backports.org currently, but there's work underway here). I
guess having your original mail not sent to backports-users was a
mistake, you did bounce it there later.

> > Having a rule like that would though mean that an ancient version would
> > never be able to get removed anywhere at all,
> No. The Debian project could perfectly well drop it as soon as upstream
> drops support for it (which has often been around five years after the
> initial release, so far).

 Erm, that's extremely kind of you. Do you really want to go the path of
claiming that it's non-debian's decisions when Debian drops support for
a package? I consider that highly arrogant and unpractical.

> Note that these are bugfixes only and backporting those is certainly as
> much work as supporting a new major version. Often enough, this should
> just mean upgrading the sources, without having to adjust anything
> debian specific.

 I am not even talking about the effort of doing the backport. I would
happily support maintaining the pg 8.2 backports for longer, it just
doesn't make that much sense to me, especially not doing the work on a
voluntary basis when I'm not convinced myself by the big usefulness for
it. Please notice again with all the ruling and opression you want to
put onto the Debian project that you are not in the palce to do so.

> Nobody is telling anyone else what to do here.

 No? You clearly are requesting that this and that to be done, but noone
is telling anyone else what to do here? Either I read completely
different mails from what you write, or there's something going wrong
here ...

> I've created Debian packages and would like to find a good way to offer
> them to the broad public via the Debian infrastructure. I'm trying to
> find out the best way to do that. End of the story.

 Unfortunately, you don't seem to understand how the Debian
infrastructure works (which several people tried to explain to you),
otherwise you wouldn't claim that.

> >  By the same rule it could be argued that major version added to testing
> > should be maintained in testing for as long as can be. It's exactly the
> > same reasoning, and I guess you can see the pattern here and follow my
> > rationale outlined above.
> Uh.. that's what my first proposal was about: maintaining all major
> versions in testing.

 That would also mean maintaining them in unstable, too, just to get
things straight. And there just isn't enough power to do so properly,

> > That would also mean that you want postgresql 8.3 out of backports.org?
> > Is this really your approach?
> Well, it's pretty sure by now that Postgres 8.3 will be shipped with lenny.

 That wasn't the question. You can't be completely sure (long delays
have happened in the past), and at the time you can be sure quite some
people already starting to test upgrades so the reason for preparing the
backport might already be pretty little.

> Again, please don't be sorry. I appreciated having 8.2 (and now 8.3)
> available from the backports. So do lots of other users, AFAICT.

 That's what I actually thought before you started with this threads,
trying to put your opinion and how things should work onto others.

> However, silently removing a major version is not an option, IMO.

 But it was *NOT* done silently. I'm sorry if you haven't followed the
list before, but it was announced on the list (backports-users, that
is - and that's the list people using backports.org are meant to read).

 So long,

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