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Subject: Re: [boost] [V1.46][Spirit] request for late minute changes to release branch
From: Vladimir Prus (vladimir_at_[hidden])
Date: 2011-01-25 16:52:55

On Tuesday, January 25, 2011 11:37:18 Eric Niebler wrote:

> > It seems to me that Hartmut was acting in good faith, and therefore
> > we should be talking about how to improve process (e.g. publishing
> > your mobile number on, and I'm not kidding), rather then
> > threatening to start a revert war or apply technical measures to
> > prevent commits.
> If it's OK to ignore the release procedures and the judgment of the
> release managers, why have release managers at all? It's not a
> rhetorical question.

Well, most of the time release manager is doing roughly what an
adminstrative assistant does in an office -- helping everybody do
things and making sure every i is dotted. Of course, there are times
when there's a judgement call to be made, and it's surely required
that at the end, release manager can enforce a decision.

But, enforcing a decision should be an exception, and every time the
process somehow breaks, it's better to think how to improve it, so
that the next time, there's no need to enforce anything.

In this case, the problem was a combination of (i) perceived chances of
having beta released really soon now with code that seemed undesirable,
and (ii) failure to have closure on the discussion with release managers
before that supposed deadline.

(i) Can be improved by:
- Communicating when the actual deadlines are. In particular, this is only
a beta, and this change could be done before actual release. It's also
unlikely that Beman would roll the beta before even having breakfast ;-)
- Actually implementing protocol for filing "I think this really should be fixed"
bugs. Note that apparently, we failed to check the list of show-stopper bugs
again this time.

(ii) Can be improved by providing out-of-band contacts of release managers
to Boost developers.


Vladimir Prus
Mentor Graphics
+7 (812) 677-68-40

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