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Re: Proposed stable release of GNU findutils: opinions?

From: James Youngman
Subject: Re: Proposed stable release of GNU findutils: opinions?
Date: Wed, 23 Dec 2015 17:45:41 +0000

On Sun, Dec 20, 2015 at 5:30 PM, Andreas Metzler <address@hidden> wrote:
> On 2015-12-18 James Youngman <address@hidden> wrote:
>> I'm considering making a stable release (i.e. 4.6.0) of GNU findutils
>> in the next few days, essentially identical to the recent 4.5.15
>> release, with a version number change.
>> What are your thoughts on this?   Clearly there are a number of open
>> bug reports on the bug tracker.  However, many bug-fixes have occurred
>> across the 4.5.x series, and so perhaps the benefit of the bug fixes
>> in the proposed 4.6.0 release outweighs the downside of making a
>> stable release with known bugs.
>> What do you think?   If you don't think we should make a stable
>> release without addressing one of the bugs in the bug tracker, would
>> you like to volunteer to work on the issue you identified?
> Hello,
> the status quo, with a very old stable release and a slowly moving
> unstable one clearly does not work.

This is, I agree, the outcome.  But it is not the plan.   There are
constraints on my time, and I don't get to spend nearly as much time
on findutils as I would like.  I believe that with contribution from
more volunteers - and by this I mean people making the needed source,
test and documentation changes[1] - we could go faster.

> A number of Linux distros (e.g. Opensuse and Fedora) have already
> moved to 4.5.x. We at Debian are still at 4.4.
> I would consider the outdated gnulib in 4.5.15 a release-blocker, it
> fails with perl 5.22 and I guess the build-error on ppc64el
> https://buildd.debian.org/status/logs.php?pkg=findutils&ver=4.5.15-1&arch=ppc64el
> is also gnulib related.

This should be fixed by the release of findutils-4.5.16, which
happened a few minutes ago.

That was previously blocked by the fact that I wasn't able to
successfully import and build that version of gnulib.   The problem
turned out to be that that version of gnulib was incompatible with
gettext version 0.18.x, which was what I was using.   But the error
messages didn't make this clear.

I had asked for help on that a couple of times, without getting any.
So the problem was only resolved after my development system's
distribution (Debian, fwiw) moved to gettext 0.19.


[1] those changes would of course need to be made via the normal GNU
copyright assignment process, which can be a one-time thing for those
who prefer that option.

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