RELENG question

Matthew Seaman m.seaman at
Wed Jul 21 01:11:24 PDT 2004

On Wed, Jul 21, 2004 at 10:37:42AM +0300, Nikos Vassiliadis wrote:

> I need a confirmation/correction about this. Is RELENG-4 and RELENG-4-10 the same thing,
> since the latest stable is 4.10? if i got this right, RELENG-4-10 will be used to stay explicitly
> with 4.10-? and RELENG-4 will be used to update to the latest 4.X-STABLE. All security fixes
> and critical updates are in RELENG-4 too. Are these correct?

No -- RELENG_4 and RELENG_4_10 are quite different things.  And note
that it's RELENG_4 not RELENG-4.

RELENG_4_10 is the cvs branch corresponding to 4.10-RELEASE-pN.
That's a code branch which is relatively static, receiving only
security patches and serious errata (which is different to 4.9-RELEASE
and earlier, which only got security fixes).  A RELEASE version is
intended for production use where downtime is complete anathema.

RELENG_4 is the cvs branch corresponding to 4.10-STABLE.  That's a
*development* branch, where new code and support for new devices will
be introduced.  Note that we call it '4.10-STABLE' simply because 4.10
was the last RELEASE branch created.  Generally as you track 4-STABLE
over time, that version number will be incremented about every four
months.  However, 4.10 might well be the last release from the 4.x
series, withthe creation of the RELENG_5 branch that's planned to
occur simultaneously with the release of 5.3.

A 4.10-STABLE release is called 'STABLE' because that's how it's meant
to run: stably.  FreeBSD STABLE versions have an enviable track record
at achieving just that.  It has been achieved only by careful testing
of all code in the 'CURRENT' or HEAD branch of CVS before MFC (Merge
From Current) into the STABLE branch.  RELENG_4 gets all of the
security fixes and errata that are applied to RELENG_4_10, although
they might occur in a slightly different form: eg. an upgrade of a
component software system to a new version rather than a minimal set
of patches to do no more than fix a particular flaw.



Dr Matthew J Seaman MA, D.Phil.                       26 The Paddocks
                                                      Savill Way
PGP:         Marlow
Tel: +44 1628 476614                                  Bucks., SL7 1TH UK
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