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Re: Proposal: Debian release numbers

On Sat, Jan 11, 2003 at 12:15:48PM +0100, Martin Michlmayr wrote:
number scheme shouldn't be changed on a whim but only with good
reasons.  People claim that every release of Debian is a major
release.  Yet, I argue that this is way too early to tell.  It has
often been claimed that testing will allow quicker release cycles.

How is differentiating between "major" and "minor" is at all a help
here? (Even if there was a sane way to make such a distinction for
debian, which there is not. Hell, the entire concept has pretty much
fallen by the wayside for the whole industry.) Do we use the information
for something useful, like supporting the most recent minor for each
major? (no) Or that we support upgrades from any version within a major
release to a later version? (no) Or maybe that we don't care about
upgrade issues between major releases? (no) Maybe we give free updates
between minor releases but charge for majors? (no) How bout, users can
look at the version number and immediately tell whether their software
can be easily upgrades? (nope, depends on which of the debian apps your
running, not the version of debian.) Speeding up the development cycle
doesn't change any of this. It just means that maybe we'd release 5 and
6 in the same year. So what? All the number tells you is that 6 is newer
than 5. Just like all 3.0 tells you is that it's newer than 2.2.

That hasn't happened yet, but perhaps it will.  We simply don't know
yet.  And it would be fatal to change our scheme now and later realize
that it was a bad idea.


Mike Stone

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