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Re: [etch-and-half] release notes review

On Wed, Jun 25, 2008 at 09:55:44AM +1000, Vincent.McIntyre@csiro.au wrote:
> first off, congrats to the team on getting to this point, and thanks!
> I am looking forward to using the new Intel drivers in particular.

Feel free to pull them from proposed-updates in the meantime :)
Sorry for the late reply, been busy with a few other things.

> Permit me to second a couple of Franklin's points and then go back to 
> lurking...
>>>   http://people.debian.org/~fjp/tmp/etchnhalf/
>> * "is essentially just the most recent point release for etch"
>>  Of course this will have to be updated once 4.0r5 is released
>>  but I like the phrasing otherwise.
>>  Let me rephrase this as a question : Is EtchnHalf equal to
>>  4.0r4 or is it ??any Etch>=4.0r4 with some updated driver ?
> To someone who hasn't been following along with baited breath, this is 
> really just 4.0r4, with a funny codename. Isn't it? And there might well
> be a 4.0r5, before or even after Lenny is released?

That's how I see it - etchnhalf is a special label for 4.0r4 because
it includes additional packages and installation options. The "and" in
"etch and a half" implies that too, at least to me.

> Rereading, it seemed that in one or two of places "etch-and-a-half"
> is used almost interchangably with "4.0r4" and "2.6.24".
> I have some suggestions to address this below.
>> * In the first paragraph, the reference to "2.6.24 etch-and-a-half
>>  kernel..."  seems a bit to come from nowhere. Is it supposed to
>>  be introduced in another page ?
> Is this better/sufficient:
> ------------snip-------------------
> drivers for the X window system. Installation of these additional packages 
> is not required and will not occur by default. This update represents no 
> -change to the support of previously available packages.
> +change to the support of previously available packages. The additional
> +packages will be treated as part of the 4.0 release series and included
> +in future 4.0 point releases.
> ...
> -To allow the 2.6.24 etch-and-a-half kernel to work correctly, some other 
> -packages have been updated as well. These updates are all included in the 
> -regular point release, and thus not specific to etch-and-a-half.
> +To allow the 2.6.24 kernel to work correctly, some other packages have
> +been updated as well. The complete list of new and updated packages is
> +<fixme>here</fixme>.
> ------------snip-------------------

I changed this to:
"Some existing etch packages have been updated to add support for new
 hardware and for compatibility with the 2.6.24 kernel"

since the x driver there isn't really for compatibility with the
2.6.24 kernel, but I think it resolves the issue you describe.
I also added the list of packages inline (there's only 4). That seemed
to make this information more suited to its own section, so I moved it
under a "Updated etch packages" heading.

> Some readers may be confused by the emphasis about "updates". Is it worth
> mentioning this is a small departure from previous point release policy?
> Perhaps it's too difficult to explain concisely or not appropriate to the
> release notes.

I'm open to suggestions. Note that I've tried to use an objective
tone, intentionally avoiding things like "small change", "better
support" and "upgrade" - perhaps that would be best included in a
press release?

> Further down, how about:
> -------snip-----------
> -Installing "Etch-And-A-Half"
> -
> -There are two methods for installing the "etch-and-a-half" kernel.
> +Installing the "Etch-And-A-Half" release
> +
> +Starting from this release, there are now two methods for installing the
> +4.0 ('etch') release of Debian.
> -------snip-----------


> This section does not mention the (trivial) process for current stable
> users to upgrade to this release. Is it worth adding something like:
> -------snip-----------
> +Existing installations of Debian 4.0 can upgrade to this release by
> +the usual method: <code>aptitude update; aptitude dist-upgrade</code>.
> +

I don't want to leave the impression that the normal upgrade process
will pull in these new packages. It is true that an upgrade will pull
in the small set of existing packages that now have 2.6.24 kernel
support, but the 2.6.18 etch user won't require them.

> Limitations
> -------snip-----------
>> Finally, I would like to reuse/refactor the wiki page ??EtchAndAHalf
>> to ??list FAQ/Frequent problem, ? la ??Sarge2EtchUpgrade.
>> As usually, links to official release notes would be available at the
>> top of the page to avoid duplication of content.
>> It could be linked from DebianInstaller/BrokenThings, and/or from the
>> main release notes (since it isn't only for hardware).
> I think this refactoring would be useful. Perhaps the current state of
> the page could be saved under a different for posterity, to allow a
> clean slate to start with?

The history should be retained within the wiki, so I think it can be
refactored in-place.

> Thanks again for your work,

and thank you (and Franklin) for the review :)

> Vince

dann frazier

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