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From Rory O'Farrell <ofarr...@iol.ie>
Subject Re: Idea: Public beta program for AOO 4.1?
Date Wed, 12 Jun 2013 18:22:40 GMT
On Wed, 12 Jun 2013 13:35:23 -0400
Rob Weir <robweir@apache.org> wrote:

> Something to consider for AOO 4.1 is the value of a broad public beta
> program to solicit early feedback on builds.  This could be a good
> complement to our formal QA efforts.
> 
> A beta program could be set up like this:
> 
> 1) After feature freeze, and after smoke tests pass on the 3 major
> platforms, we have a build that has the new code, and doesn't have any
> known horrible defects.
> 
> 2) Immediately create a special Release Candidate for the beta,
> English only, or maybe a combination install with 5 major languages.
> 
> 3) Vote on the release of the beta via the normal 72-hour PMC vote.
> Focus on the formal release checks around license, notice, etc.
> 
> 4) Distribute via SourceForge and/or Apache mirrors.  No need to
> preserve older betas.  We'd only keep the most recent one.
> 
> I just want to make sure that we're all aware this option is
> available.  We can do something that gives wider public exposure than
> a dev snapshot build, but is less than a final version.  The key thing
> is to meet the formal requirements of an Apache release, but set user
> expectations that it is a beta.
> 
> Regards,

A very major problem is that relatively inexperienced user _will_ download and use a beta,
disregarding any warnings about it being a beta.  They will increase the support workload,
as faults may be due to their inexperience, not to shortcomings in the beta, and certainly
the stress level for support staff as they are hassled to try to obtain recovery of "the most
important file this load of **** has ruined on me". 

-- 
Rory O'Farrell <ofarrwrk@iol.ie>

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