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Re: Proposal: Debian release numbers



On Tue, Jan 07, 2003 at 09:20:54AM +0000, Scott James Remnant wrote:
[snip]
> 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. 
> 
> 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. 

I agree with this. There is no reason to have a version of the form X.Y
unless there is some meaning to the ".Y" part. I think the minor updates
(our present r1, r2, etc.) are precisely in line with the "minor changes"
in the Linux kernel numbering system, and hence should correspond with the
".Y" part of the version number. 

In my limited observation, point releases are supposed to be upgrades that
are "compatible" (in some sense of the word) with other point releases
under the same major version number. In the case of Debian, every release
we introduce at least one major change (e.g. libc5 -> libc6, linux 2.0 ->
linux 2.2, XF3.x -> XF4.x, etc.). Furthermore, this often means that the
two systems aren't interoperable without some major library / other
software replacement. So, it constitutes a major change.  The proposed
mapping of one release = one major version number fits well into this
scheme.

The resulting mapping of major version = release number and minor version
= "patch upgrade" is cleaner and much less arbitrary. I like it.

And about version number bloat: as others have already pointed out, our
releases are infrequent enough that the other distros will probably be
always "ahead" of us in terms of version number, so there's not much to
fear here. Besides, since our releases actually *are* major releases, why
not bump the major version number? The whole version bloat issue is a
concern only when we decide to go from Debian 4.0 to Debian 2004 just
because it looks better. The proposed scheme clearly is NOT suggesting
that.


T

-- 
IBM = I'll Buy Microsoft!

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