[arch-general] [arch-dev-public] Redefining [testing] and a new [staging] repo

C Anthony Risinger anthony at extof.me
Fri May 7 13:27:16 EDT 2010

On Fri, May 7, 2010 at 12:12 PM, Ray Kohler <ataraxia937 at gmail.com> wrote:
> On Fri, May 7, 2010 at 12:44 PM, Pierre Schmitz <pierre at archlinux.de> wrote:
>> Hi all,
>> here is another crazy idea I was thinking about for some days. This should
>> improve our overall package quality and simplify our work flow. The
>> problem
>> with out current [testing] repository are these:
>> * it is only used by very few people. Most of the times we don't get much
>>  feedback until packages are moved to core or extra
>> * it is often in a inconsistent state; especially during incomplete so
>>  name bump rebuilds
>> * sometimes packages are known to be broken or unstable
>> On the other side we are sometimes in need of some intermediate
>> repository. For example single people stack a pile of packages in their
>> home dirs until they can be moved to a repo at once. We have also seen
>> temporary repos like jpng to manage larger rebuilds.
>> My idea is to redefine the testing repo and introduce a new staging one.
>> (remember the good old days? ;-))
>> With the implementation of the package pooling moving packages between
>> repos can be done with nearly no overhead. So ideally
>> we should be able to use testing more often, even for a very short period
>> like a
>> day.
>> proposal for [testing]
>> * never push any known-to-be-broken packages here (for example incomplete
>>  rebuilds)
>> * candidates for core are put here
>> * ideally new builds of important/critical packages or major rebuilds can
>>  be put here to test them by a larger audience.
>> * don't put any package in here which are never meant to be moved to
>>  core/extra. (like experimental alpha software etc.)
>> proposal for [staging]
>> * this repo should only used by devs and tus
>> * it is not meant to be used on a production system
>> * it should only be enabled in a packages build environment (chroot)
>> * this could be even excluded from outbound rsync. Due to package pooling
>>  packages would still be propagated. And moving those packages to other
>>  repos will be "instantly".
>> Summing things up more packages should be passed through testing, more
>> users should be able to use testing without breaking their systems and we
>> don't have to make them reading the high traffic arch-dev-public list. We
>> also should be able to collaborate more in packaging: Dev A puts a new lib
>> into [staging] and another one can start rebuild other packages using that
>> lib. Another common use case would be large builds like KDE we usually
>> start packaging one week before release. Till now those were put into
>> users' staging dirs and the other devs had to manually download them,
>> create a local repo and install them.
>> So, what do you think about this idea?
> Even though I'm just a user, I'd like to add my support to this idea.
> I even considered proposing it myself less than a month ago. I run
> [testing], since I want to contribute to finding problems before they
> reach [core] and [extra], but I don't like having to deal with
> [testing] having rebuilds in it. I have never broken my systems by a
> bad package in [testing] but have unfortunately pulled incomplete
> rebuilds a few times now.
> I guess the point of this post is to show that there is at least one
> user who cares enough about this idea to speak up for it. I suspect
> there are others who don't run [testing] now who would begin doing so
> if this plan were implemented.

this is slightly off topic, but i thought it was worth a mention.
this is also the kind of assurance i wish to provide with tight BTRFS
integration into Arch... i think the easier the user can recover from
getting cut by "the bleeding edge", more people, maybe orders more,
would be willing to permanently use [testing] packages.  i presume the
only thing stopping people now is the inability to easily
revert/recover from anything without some degree of manual

more time using/testing and less time swearing/sobbing :)

C Anthony

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