[asterisk-dev] Unstable releases lately

Russell Bryant russell at digium.com
Mon Jan 14 10:53:13 CST 2008

Bob wrote:
> This fails to answer what the release process is.
> I'm actually offering some test facilities here if I knew what to test.

If only it were that easy.  Test facilities are not the issue.  Knowing what to 
test is.  There is no obvious answer to that question given that Asterisk is a 
generic telephony toolkit, not necessarily intended for any specific purpose.

Testing of anything is useful.  Specifically, testing of the things that matter 
most to you makes the most sense.

> I was under the impression that kpfleming made all of the svn additions to
> the release tags at svn.digium. It only makes sense that there would be a
> central location for this resource. I was not implying that it was his
> decision. I was implying that he has a big red button on his desk that says
> release that he pushes when certain factors were present.

Actually, the button is on my desk.  :)  It's more orange than red, though ...

> I actually do have a factual basis and that is simply a very noticeable
> increase in my customer support tickets. Digium's paid support must be
> booming. My free support is. My current advice is to roll back to 1.4.13 and
> see if that fixes your problems. The topics that lead off the list are the
> PRI deadlocks and the SIP bugs that are labeled DTMF in mantis. Sorry if I
> cannot divulge my support numbers, but all that one needs to do is to check
> out many of the asterisk support forums to confirm this.

Open source releases have nothing to do with Digium's paid support.  Digium only 
offers support for the commercial version of Asterisk (Business Edition).  ABE 
is where all of our company test resources are focused.  While it is the same 
code, plus some closed-source modules due to licensing of 3rd party software or 
patents, ABE releases stay intentionally behind a bit, so that we have time for 
testing and so forth.

Also, I would encourage you to read the ChangeLogs to look for mentions of 
issues that you have seen.  If you had read the ChangeLog, you would know who 
makes the releases ...

> I'm neither a contributor nor a seller of asterisk. I provide support to my
> customers as a common courtesy. I support Linux and BSD as well by
> association.
> How does the tag become a branch? Who approves it? I cannot test the 1.4
> branch every day. I have 3 or 4 people on hand that can test release
> candidates. Where are they?

I approve releases.  We make them when the branch seems to be in a good state. 
That is, we have not introduced any invasive bug fixes very recently, and there 
have not been any new serious bug reports reported against it recently.

The 1.4 branch is always a release candidate, by definition.  When we make 
changes to 1.4, they are only for bug fixes.  Of course, sometimes those fixes 
introduce regressions, and we fix them as soon as we find them or as they are 
reported.  There are a ton of people that run the code straight from the 1.4 
branch.  Some update constantly, daily, weekly, whatever, and are very good 
about reporting their issues.

Russell Bryant
Senior Software Engineer
Open Source Team Lead
Digium, Inc.

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