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Bits from the release team: on merged-/usr and the bookworm release

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Dear all,

Although we don't particularly like the need to make a statement, the
Release Team feels obliged to make the following statements about

* When we're talking in this mail about the merged-/usr transition or
  forced migration we are talking about the (automatic, opt-out)
  mechanism that during upgrades from bullseye to bookworm will
  migrate the system to a merged-/usr filesystem layout as defined in

* The Release Team is of the opinion that Debian's merged-/usr project
  is only finished when dpkg supports it. We prefer dpkg to be fixed
  before the bookworm freeze starts, however this does not block the
  forced migration.

* We recommend coordinating the upgrade migration mechanism sooner
  rather than later. I.e. inform and agree on timing between the
  upload to unstable and infrastructure maintainers that need to
  ensure that their infrastructure opts-out of the merge.

* We will not delay the release of bookworm for the absence of an
  implementation of the forced migration upon upgrades. We consider
  the forced migration a special transition. The migration to testing
  needs to happen before the Transition and Toolchain freeze or it
  will not be part of bookworm.

* The TC resolution #994388[1] recommended a moratorium on moving
  files' canonical location from / into /usr. Until there's support in
  dpkg for merged /usr, we want this moratorium to remain in place,
  even after the bookworm release. Files moving their canonical
  location between / and /usr (details in [1]) *and* from one binary
  package to another binary package within one release cycle remain an
  RC issue unless dpkg supports it.

* If the forced migration makes it into bookworm in time, then
  non-merged-/usr root filesystems are officially not supported after
  the release of bookworm, except during the upgrade. If the forced
  migration implementation misses the freeze deadline, bookworm
  officially supports non-merged-/usr root filesystems.

* For the bookworm release, time is running short.

On behalf of the Release Team

[1] https://bugs.debian.org/cgi-bin/bugreport.cgi?bug=994388#110



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