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Re: An old idea, brought back to life

On Sat, Dec 19, 1998 at 12:11:52PM -0500, Michael Stone wrote:
> Quoting Oscar Levi (elf@buici.com):
> > And who is going to test this version?  Let's say we do this.  Let's
> > say that the unstable is the first stop for new packages.  After some
> > time when 'we' decide that these work we put them into unstable.  Who
> > is going to run prerelease Debian?  If I run prerelease Debian, how is
> > that different from running the current unstable?
> I think what you're missing is a change in release philosophy. As it
> stands now, a release is an all-or-nothing proposition. Packages that
> aren't ready delay the release of packages that have worked reliably for
> months. What we could do instead is move packages into stable as they
> are ready instead of waiting until all of unstable is ready. This is
> especially useful for new packages, e.g., one that is released just
> after a freeze, and which might otherwise wait a year to make it into
> stable.

Fine.  But, who is to say that moving a package as you suggest won't
introduce a problem not previously tested.  This is the root of
software epistemology.  I AGREE THAT A PACKAGE NEEDS TO BE HELD
(interpret as tested) BEFORE MOVING INTO THE ARCHIVE.  I don't see any
difference between unstable/stable and prerelease/unstable/stable
unless we implement formal testing.  We have Incoming now.  We could
put the packages some place else before moving them into the archive,
but then you're play a shell game.  

Verification only makes sense when done in the context where it will
be run.  Look at the way the emacs periodically breaks.  There are so
many packages that cooperate with it that it requires repeated
re-installs to check that the latest combo works.

I agree that the present situation has some glitches.  I don't agree
that adding another archive branch makes sense.

> Mike Stone
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