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From John Burwell <>
Subject Package Repositories
Date Thu, 26 Nov 2015 06:52:53 GMT

A conversation emerged on a PR [1] regarding how package repositories should listed on the
downloads page [2].  This PR was prompted by a change on the page which removed reference
to the ShapeBlue repositories.  The PR proposes listing all "3rd-Party Distributions" in a
separate section in the same manner as the Apache Cassandra [3] project — clearly stating
that the package repositories are not endorsed by the community.  Objections were raised that
the<> repository is a “blessed” community repository,
and therefore, not a third party repository.  To the best of my knowledge (and my ability
to search the mailing list archives), I can not find a vote that changed the project deliverables
to include distribution packages or a particular repository for them.  Furthermore, the vote
for 4.6.0 was only for the source deliverable — not distribution packages.  As such the
packages contained in the<> repository are no more “blessed”
or endorsed than any other packages distributed by other parties.

In my opinion, favoring one 3rd-party repository over another is detrimental to the community.
 We should either list all maintained 3rd-party package repositories or we should list none
at all.   By maintained, I mean a repository that meets the following criteria:

  *   All contained packages are built from project release tags
  *   The packages contained in the repository are up-to-date with latest release tags

The only variations in the packages across “maintained” repositories should be the plugins
from the CloudStack source tree included in the package.  In order to be listed on the downloads
page, a repository must meet this definition and provide a brief description of the repository’s

Some on the PR discussion asked about the purpose and composition of the packages in the ShapeBlue
repository.  The packages in the ShapeBlue repository are noredist builds of community release
tags.  They contain no additional patches or changes.  This repository was created to provide
users with an convenient/familiar way to install the noredist build of a release.

Finally, as I have stated elsewhere, I think the project should build distribution packages
signed by the project and distributed from official package repositories.  However, we must
come to a consensus as community this change in deliverables and work out a variety of issues
(e.g. supported platforms, repository management, signing, etc) to ensure that users receive
well-tested, community voted packages.  Finally, it seems like there will be a role for 3rd-party
repositories now and in the future.  Listing all available 3rd-party repos as I propose would
be convenient for users, and ensure fairness to all contributors.



John Burwell (@john_burwell)
VP of Software Engineering, ShapeBlue
(571) 403-2411 | +44 20 3603 0542 | @ShapeBlue
53 Chandos Place, Covent Garden, London, WC2N 4HS

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