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Re: Move to python 2.2 as default release?

On Wed, Aug 14, 2002 at 04:28:53PM -0400, Jim Penny wrote:
> On Wed, Aug 14, 2002 at 02:54:31PM -0500, Chris Lawrence wrote:
> > On Aug 14, Laura Creighton wrote:
> One final point.  We will almost definitely not switch the default
> python in sid (current unstable), until there is talk that Sarge is
> nearing a freeze.  There is simply no point in undergoing the pain of
> a major python release twice in a single unstable cycle.  We will 
> instead make the decision of what python will be default in Sarge 
> when it nears release, not now.

There is talk of trying to keep sarge in a permanently releasable state.
Debian release cycles take forever. I would think waiting around for a sarge
freeze before upgrading the default python would be waiting needlessly. We'd
just end up with Debian only getting every 3rd major Python release as the
default, and making each release all the more painful.

One of the main points of the current Debian Python Policy was to make
switching the default Python relatively painless... it just requires
releasing new wrapper packages that indicate which python is the default.

I'm not a developer, just an outside wanker, but I suggest upgrading the
default python regularly. The dependancies alone should ensure that the
upgraded packages sit in unstable (sid) until they are all ready, at which
point they will propogate into testing (woody). If the dependancies don't do
this properly, then they are wrong, and a bug report or two will hold them
back until they are fixed.

The longer you hold off upgrading the default, the harder it will be. The
policy does not absolutely require the use of wrapper packages, but those
who have used them will reap the benefits when upgrading python. If you
upgrade the default as fast as python upstream upgrades, then people will
stay in "upgrade python" mode, and packagers will end up taking more care to
ensure that their packages can be upgraded painlessly. Also it is much less
painful to migrate a package from 2.1 to 2.2 to 2.3 to 2.4 than from 2.1
straight to 2.4.

> Current stable, woody, is shipping with 2.1 as default.  That cannot be
> undone, it is released, and at the time the decision was made, 2.2 was
> way too close to the cutting edge for comfort.

Worth clarifying at this point; woody also includes python2.2, but it is not
the "default", where default means packages that depend on "python" will be
using python2.1. Python2.2 can be installed alongside the default python,
and packages that require python2.2 can specify this by depending on

> Moreover, we would not recommend that the target audience of
> Python-in-a-Tie run sid.  Sid breaks things occasionally, sometimes
> badly.  Sid tortures small defenseless things for a hobby!

If we upgrade the default in "unstable" to the latest stable upstream python
as soon as it is available, "testing" will always have a complete set of the
latest stable python as the default. 

Just my 2.2c (inc GST).

ABO: finger abo@minkirri.apana.org.au for more info, including pgp key

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