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From: Thomas Witt (witt_at_[hidden])
Date: 2007-06-06 13:10:41


David Abrahams wrote:
> on Mon Jun 04 2007, "Gennadiy Rozental" <> wrote:
>>> As an example on how bad things are: I would like to merge changes for
>>> 1.34.1 one at a time so that I can identify the change that broke
>>> something. With the current turn-around time, even when the system works
>>> as designed, this is impossible unless we aim for a X-mas release date.
>> IMO, this is not a responsibility of release manger *whatsoever*. Release
>> manager have to release only the staff that is already tested. No testing,
>> no merging. If I want my changes to be released I will invest time into
>> making sure they passed all the tests.

This argument is bogus. Eventually somebody has to decide what goes in and what does not.
Whether it's going in a release ready branch or a release does not matter. Both need
oversight and to some degree coordination. That function has to be centralized it can't be
done by single developers. Whether we call that person release manager or not is of little
importance to me.

In case of a point release it has to be the release manager that coordinates patches.

> I agree that testing and merging should be taken off the table as
> concerns for the release manager.

Let me add a little detail here. It's not the testing and merging as such that is a big
burden. Currently merging works pretty well for me. I control the workload by simply
asking people to apply *approved* patches for me. I think for a point release the release
manager always needs control over what is merged. This part of the job can't be taken off
the table.

The problem with testing is not monitoring test results. The problem is managing the
testing itself. I.e. making sure tests run as needed, making sure only the "right" people
submit release tests, debugging bogus results, monitoring the reporting, in case of a
genuine regression tracking it to a specific change. These things need to be taken off the
table. Most of this can be achieved by fixing the regression test system.

> IIUC, Beman's proposal does that.

I think the proposed ideas are worthwhile pursuing, after we dealt with the core problem.
Under the assumption of a working regression test system the proposal makes a lot of
sense, we just have to make that assumption hold. Currently it does not.


Thomas Witt

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