Fedora is a big project, and it’s hard to keep up with everything that goes on. This series highlights interesting events in five different areas every week. Here are the five events for January 16th, 2015:
Fedora 22 Release Date Plan
The Fedora Engineering Steering Committee (FESCo) works with the Fedora Program Manager to plan the schedule for each Fedora release. The schedule for Fedora 22 has been approved, with a target date of May 19th. (A week and two days past Mother’s Day.)
We have also made a decision to plan this release primarily around the schedule rather than feature submissions. We can’t promise that the release won’t slip, but we’re aiming to keep the schedule on track by deferring features that seem too big to attempt this spring. (Once features are accepted, our release will still be based on a balance of quality and time, rather than strictly focused on either time or absolute perfection. Joe Brockmeier further discussed this an earlier Fedora Magazine article.)
Fedora 22 Deadlines Coming Up Fast!
A consequence of this fairly aggressive schedule is that this cycle is already well underway, with some important milestones already looming. Particularly, the proposal submission deadline for system-wide changes is this coming Tuesday, January 20th.
If you feel like this is too soon, or if your change seems unlikely to be done by the next checkpoint (February 24th, when all changes should be substantially complete and ready to test), consider submitting your proposal for Fedora 23. The set of Fedora 22 packages branches off from Rawhide (the Fedora development tree) on February 10th, so development on bigger changes can be done in parallel. The next release will be in October, so if a 9-month timeframe seems more appropriate, consider making that your target.
No Mass Rebuild for F22
At Wednesday’s FESCo meeting, we wrestled with some of the hard problems that actually sticking to a schedule more strictly brings — even if we allow room to slip, it means deferring more complicated changes for later. And, specifically this time around, it means we’re planning to avoid a mass rebuild — a process where release engineering rebuilds every package into the distribution so it’s recreated with current compilers, system-wide defaults, and so on.
This takes about 40 hours of computer time, but realistically also takes a good deal of human time after to clean up any problems the changes introduced. And, it’s not just a one-time thing: every proposed change needs a contingency plan, which is activated if we decide it can’t make the release. If that plan requires its own mass-rebuild to put things back how they were, that’s additional time risk. So, in order to hit the planned schedule, we’re asking only for changes which don’t require a rebuild.
The intention is that this more strict approach will also mean that Fedora 23 will be delivered early this fall — rather than running up into the end-of-year holidays as we’ve done the last couple of releases. We’ll do mass rebuilds as necessary in Rawhide and shake out the bugs early, so these features can make it into 23 without running into the same thing.
I know this is a little painful for people who wanted to get features in for F22 and might not be able to with this restriction — thanks for being understanding!
Elections: FESCo and Env & Stacks
We have two important community elections coming up, with nomination periods open now (and until the end of the day Monday, UTC — be aware that that means early evening in the US).
These openings are for FESCo (the Fedora Engineering Steering Committee mentioned above) and for the Environments and Stacks Working Group, an important committee charged with figuring out how to get different language runtimes and application stacks running on Fedora in a more modular and flexible way.
If you’re interested in helping Fedora in this way, please take a look at the elections page and add your name to the list of nominees.
Goodbye to Fedora 19 (Schrödinger’s Cat is no more)
And one final note in case you missed it: Fedora 19 has reached its end of life. That means that we aren’t providing any further updates, even security fixes. If you’re still on F19, please update. The new release is awesome, so you won’t regret it.