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From Shawn Heisey <apa...@elyograg.org>
Subject Re: Query: 3.5.x version as alpha
Date Wed, 22 Feb 2017 18:18:10 GMT
On 2/20/2017 2:19 AM, Deepti Sharma S wrote:
> Can anyone confirm, is there any specific reason in the naming
> convention in this release and to make it as "alpha". As per my
> understanding Alpha means its beta release and not recommended to use
> in production, however as per below mail it seems many customers using
> the alpha version, so there is no harm to use this version.

The developers have decided that the 3.5 branch is currently alpha. 
This is a different designation than beta.  Here's how I interpret the
stages of public software releases, from the point of view of the
developers, but others may see them differently:

Alpha:  We've got the code finished, we think it works, now we want to
find out whether it works for other people.

Beta:  We fixed problems that brave people helped us find in the alpha
releases.  The latest build works for everyone who's tried it so far,
now we want to get it out to a wider audience that can really pound on
it and see whether it's bulletproof.

Stable: All the problems found during alpha and beta have been fixed,
the software seems to perform well under heavy usage, and now it's ready
for everyone.

Information available on this list indicates that the current plan is
that version 3.5.3 will be beta, and there is no scheduled release
date.  For 3.4.x, there was only one beta release before it changed to
stable, but there's no guarantee that history will repeat itself.  The
release version numbers did not contain the text "alpha" or "beta" for
the 3.4 releases -- that is new this time.

It looks like this project typically has a very slow release cycle.  The
3.5 branch has been in alpha for two and a half years, significantly
longer than 3.4 was in that state.  The last 3.5 release was July of
last year, and the previous release was nearly a year before that.  If
any show-stopper issues had been discovered, it is likely that there
would have been more frequent releases.    If somebody chooses to run
mission-critical systems on 3.5, they do so at their own risk ... but
the risk is probably low.


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