[CentOS-devel] Re: testing / qa process

Fri Oct 20 12:52:34 UTC 2006
Johnny Hughes <mailing-lists at hughesjr.com>

On Thu, 2006-10-19 at 18:30 -0400, R P Herrold wrote:
> > Karanbir Singh wrote as to:
> >> The strategy to release testable rpms to dev.centos.org
> On Fri, 13 Oct 2006, Rex Dieter wrote:
> > Instead of blocking on (lack-of) feedback, I'd suggest 
> > considering something like:
> > 1.  Put pkgs in "testing"
> > 2.  If no bugs reported after X days/weeks, move out of 
> > testing
> >
> > At least this way nothing gets perpetually stalled in testing.
> Yikes.  To torture the truism, 'An absence of evidence is not 
> evidence of an absence' of problems.
> Not to put too fine a point on it, but how is automatic 
> promotion out of 'testing' into a chain _desireable_ in an 
> enterprise oriented operating environment?
> Clearly some so called 'admin's' will clearly implicitly trust 
> anything (ie., look at the constant traffic into mailing lists 
> for distributions where 'yum' is an available updater with 
> horrific collections of random archives enabled).  Why take 
> the reputational risk here?
> It may be proper for Red Hat's Fedora, as it has evolved (the 
> firestorms I see regularly erupt on fedora-devel make me doubt 
> this, but ... those participating there without an @redhat.com 
> available to them are all volunteers), but not here.  Putting 
> aside stability or security issues, something as simple as 
> added support load makes me want to avoid anything with an 
> 'official' CentOS addon status.  The 'Enemies of Carlotta' 
> missed conflict thread I saw today reaffirms my doubt that 
> auto-promotion works based on _assumed_ safety.
> My solution, as to my archive of packagings, is simple -- Very 
> general SRPM's exist, and a person who cannot solve a build 
> environment and BuildRequires, (which is documented at my 
> site, along with several other sites which I have contributed 
> to over the years) is probably not going to use my packagings.
> When I get a report, I address it.  I do not undertake to 
> warrant to any anonymous FTP user, any ongoing (nor even 
> present) security, functionality, or other pedigree to the 
> packagings.  Indeed, I have marked certain unsafe ones as I 
> have re-encountered them.  This makes the maintenance load 
> manageable.
> I have worked on outlines thinking through some of the issues, 
> on building a trustable, and 'vetted' submitted package 
> infrastructure a couple of times.  All of the plans fall apart 
> on the relatively low reward for testing compared with the 
> rather high and ongoing load of doing it 'right' and safely.
> Before the divergence of cAos and CentOS we were discussing 
> these matters:
>  	http://www.herrold.com/caos/QA-requirements.txt
> and earlier, before Red Hat's takeover of fedora.us, I had 
> posted this into fedora.us's former mailing lists (the former 
> mailing list host: videl.ics.hawaii.edu no longer responds) :
>  	http://www.owlriver.com/projects/packaging/fedora-flow.txt
> [That latter document provoked Warren for what I considered 
> irrational reasons.]
> In part CentOS works because it has limited itself to being a
> relatively strict rebuild effort.


All that is true ... and for the [base] and [updates] repos I would 100%
agree with you.

(As in ... we would not put anything in there that is not 100% vetted,
tested, etc.)

However, I disagree concerning the extras and centosplus repos.

These are NOT core packages, there are warnings all over the place
stating that, and they are one of the things that distinguishes CentOS
from the other rebuild projects.  They are "OPT IN" items that have been
tested by enterprise users and CentOS Admins and they are important to
CentOS users ... at least the ones I know :)

I understand that people can hire consultants or admins who can build
these things themselves, however I think that the CentOS project is
greatly enhanced as a community project when we provide things like:

Horde, the cenotsplus kernel, maybe the Web Application Stack, etc.

We have had NO ISSUES to date with bad quality items in any of the
repos ... and I think everyone understands that the optional CentOS
repos are a cut above most others where EL3/4 compatibility and
enterprise readiness is concerned.

That is what we are trying to continue to produce.

We certainly do not want to do that to the detriment of the base and
updates repo ... nor will anything in the testing repos be put in either
base or updates.

Johnny Hughes
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