On 2006-03-29 22:16-0500 hbabcockos1@... wrote:
> 1. Version number? 5.5.4?
This depends mostly on what naming convention you want to use during the
time that you will be the release manager. The 5.5.3 tarball has been
downloaded more than 6000 times (a new record) with very few bugs found by
all those users. So although it has been advertised as one of a series of
development releases leading up to our next stable release of 5.6.0, in
fact, it already is a stable release (or at least as stable as anything that
we have released before). However, if you want to stick with the current
advertised convention, then calling the next (presumably stable) release
5.6.0 is the correct thing to do.
> 2. What versions of autotools should I use? As I recall there were some
> issues with this last time around. I'm going to build plplot on a Debian
> box, if that makes any difference.
After 5.5.3, Geoffrey had problems replicating results I obtained on my
system, and it turned out to be due to version inconsistencies between
patched Debian autotools (used both on my system and for the release
tarball) and his autotools versions. I want to avoid such misunderstandings
in the future so I think from now on we should use versions everybody has
access to. Thus, I recommend using the latest unpatched stable autotools
versions released from http://ftp.gnu.org/gnu/. Currently, those are
http://ftp.gnu.org/gnu/libtool/libtool-1.5.22.tar.gz. I haven't built these
particular versions, but in the past when I have done builds from previous
versions it was completely straightforward. You simply have to build and
install in the order autoconf, automake, then libtool, use a common install
prefix for all of them, and make sure that $prefix/bin was (first) on your
PATH so there is no interference with the build and install process from the
installed distro versions of the autotools. (Better yet, to really make
sure there is no interference, purge the installed distro versions from your
system before building the autotools.) You could use the default /usr/local
for $prefix, but I prefer a special install prefix (e.g.,
/usr/local/autotools) unique to the autotools.
If you could please save the output of cf/bootstrap.sh (which completely
describes the autotools versions used) in the release notes, then there will
be no ambiguity about what autotools versions were used to create the
release tarball, and it should be straightforward for any developer to
replicate the release tarball from the cvs version of date.
> 3. What has changed that we haven't documented? Besides a new driver
> (wxwidgets), have there been other changes that should make it into the
> release notes / documentation?
It has been so long since the last release, I doubt anybody can remember.
Part of the release process is to generate a ChangeLog automatically from
the cvs commit messages. For example, I used to do this with the cvs2cl -l
"-d< today" --stdout > ChangeLog.test command, although there may be a
better method to do that now that Rafael or Tom Duck (the two release
managers after me) can recommend. Anyhow, I would scan through the
automatically generated ChangeLog to see what has been done in detail since
5.5.3, then do a grand summary (in a sentence or so per important change) in
Hope these responses to your questions help and good luck with the release.
Alan W. Irwin
Astronomical research affiliation with Department of Physics and Astronomy,
University of Victoria (astrowww.phys.uvic.ca).
Programming affiliations with the FreeEOS equation-of-state implementation
for stellar interiors (freeeos.sf.net); PLplot scientific plotting software
package (plplot.org); the Yorick front-end to PLplot (yplot.sf.net); the
Loads of Linux Links project (loll.sf.net); and the Linux Brochure Project