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Re: Is Sid for broken stuff? Is it too much to ask for testing the packages?

On Thu, Dec 12, 2002 at 01:08:37AM +0100, Marek Habersack wrote:

> Going back to postgres - apparently the maintainer "has no time" to
> test upgrades from earlier formats of the database to the latest
> format. If the upgrade isn't tested by the maintainer and isn't tested
> now - when is it going to be tested and on whose data?  Ours? Our 
> users's in 6 months when a broken package hits stable? At least last 3
> Debian releases of the postgresql packages were broken - the database
> format upgrade from 7.2 to 7.3 seems to be broken upstream, is it too much
> to ask the maintainer to test at least such things before uploading packages
> to Sid? We, developers, are supposed to use Sid machines - they are our
> working environment - and if they are broken because of somebody not doing
> their job, something's definitely going wrong somewhere...

Developers are expected to build their packages against unstable, and
also to test to make sure they work in unstable; this does not mean they
are expected to trust their important data to unstable.  Whether or not
you think "this is unstable" comments help, it's not fair for you to be
mad at maintainers who HAVE done what they can to test packages before
uploading them.  If maintainers were capable of doing all the necessary
testing themselves and could guarantee that the software was free of RC
bugs before uploading, why would we NEED a distribution called

If the possibility of eat-your-system bugs in unstable could cost you
important data or lead to expensive downtime, *don't run unstable on
those systems*!  Being a developer and helping turn unstable into stable
doesn't mean letting bugs affect your work.

In the case of Postgres, the maintainer did make it clear that he had
installed the packages on his system to test them before uploading.
Now, if you're not happy with the amount of testing he's done, you
really only have three choices:  you can help him test the package more
extensively; you can accept that the package may be buggy when uploaded;
or you can tell the maintainer how bad of a job he's doing, which will
likely lead to the package being orphaned.  You can't force the
maintainer to dedicate more time to testing the package.  If everyone
spent two days *testing* their packages by installing and uninstalling
them, when would anyone have time for actually fixing bugs?

> because it is getting serious with the constant stream of untested 
> packages pouring in Sid in the recent times.

"untested" is not the same as "not tested to your satisfaction".

Steve Langasek
postmodern programmer

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