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Re: Proposal: Debian release numbers

On Tue, Jan 07, 2003 at 10:54:53AM +0100, Wesley W. Terpstra wrote:
> On Tue, Jan 07, 2003 at 09:20:54AM +0000, Scott James Remnant wrote:
> > I therefore propose that we alter the scheme for release numbers as
> > follows.
> > 
> > Debian stable releases will be identified by their code name and a single
> > release number, starting at the next whole number (4) and incrementing it
> > for each new stable release.  The next stable release would therefore be
> > "Debian 4 (sarge)", the release after "Debian 5 (etch)", and so on.
> I think this is a great idea!
> When people talk about debian, they always refer to 'hamm', 'potato',
> 'woody', 'bo', etc. This is a good indicator that our version numbering
> system is not memorable. We should definitely be including the codename
> in all version numbers so that people understand which debian they have.

I'm not sure I agree here. You're just encouraging version number inflation.
Is this a plan so we can catch up to other distributions?

Seriously, the reason people remember the name is because you never use the
number. apt lines use the name, the directories on the CDs/archives/websites
use the name. Very, very few places use the version numbers, so it's no
surprise you don't remember it.

So perhaps the real solution is to drop the number altogether and talk about
woody.0 :)

> Not to mention, I think every one of our code-named releases constitute a
> major upgrade. Even as a debian developer I would be hard pressed to tell
> you what the version number of potato(!) was without looking it up. A single
> number always accompanied by the codename people remember is sure to be more
> understandable to users as well as reinforce the codename<->number mapping.

All our releases are major because there's such a big delay between each. If
we released faster they wouldn't be so major.

> > Revisions of the stable release, which currently use the "X.YrZ" form of
> > release number, would instead append and increment a minor number to the
> > release.  The first revision of sarge would therefore be
> > "Debian 4.1 (sarge)", the second "Debian 4.2 (sarge)", and so on.
> This makes more sense too. People often ask me what the rZ is about. I
> explain it is like a patch-level and they understand. However, this is not
> accurate. I believe that because people ask this question and that because
> the easiest way to explain it is wrong, we should conclude that this system
> is also not working.

Isn't it a patch level? It's merely very minor updates to an existing

> > I think that sarge is the most appropriate time to adopt this proposal.
> > "Debian 4" would naturally follow on from "Debian 3.0" without causing
> > any confusion, while at the same time implying the change in release
> > number scheme by dropping the ".0" suffix.
> I whole-heartedly agree with this!

I don't. If we don't remember or use the version numbers now, why do we care
what they look like?

Martijn van Oosterhout   <kleptog@svana.org>   http://svana.org/kleptog/
> Support bacteria! They're the only culture some people have.

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