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How to Contribute


Release Committee:    Hrvoje Jasak (
SourceForge Accounts: Bernhard Gschaider (
                      Martin Beaudoin (
git Repository:       Henrik Rusche (
                      Martin Beaudoin (

1. SourceForge Access

   To make contributions to the -extend project, you should first obtain an
   account at (SourceForge will suggest a username
   of firstnamelastname, but a username of firstname_lastname may
   be a better choice.) After you obtain your account at SourceForge, you will
   still need to be granted specific access to the -extend project. Make a request
   to the "SourceForge Accounts" contact at the top of this document for access to
   the project.

2. Access to the git Repository

   For a read-only copy of the repository, use the following command:
   + git clone git://

   To obtain a copy of the repository with write access, use the following command:
   + git clone ssh://

   Also see:

3. git Commit Policies and Workflow (Introduction)

   A formal procedure for contributions has been established for the project with
   regard to branching and commits in the git repository. The workflow proposed
   by Hrv Jasak and Henrik Rusche for contributing to the git repository is described
   in the following document:

   The article listed above should be considered mandatory reading material
   for those planning to make contributions to the repository. Some links about
   the general usage of GIT can be found in Section 8. 

   Please do not hesitate to ask one of the "git Repository" contacts at the top
   of this document if you are not sure about specific operation relative to the git

4. git Commit Policies and Workflow (User Perspective)

   The document listed in Section 3 above from provides an excellent conceptual
   description of the policies that will be used for the -extend repository. More
   detailed instructions for users who wish to make contributions are spelled out in
   this section.

   Before making any commits to the git repository, be sure to configure git with your
   username and e-mail address, which helps to ensure that you receive proper credit
   in the git repository for work you contribute.

   The author's name and e-mail address can be provided to git using commands such
   as these:

   + git config --global "John Doe"
   + git config --global

   Afterwards, the provided information will be contained in a file named .gitconfig
   in the user's home directory.

   All contributions to the project repository will be contained in a new feature branch
   created by the contributor. The recommended way of creating branches is to create one
   branch for each new specific fix or feature using a command such as this:

   + git checkout -b my-feature-branch

   Feature branches should be named after the fix or feature that they contain,
   *not* named after the author. There may be more than one author, after all, and 
   this information is recorded in the commit anyway. As an example, a bug fix
   to the mesquite package should be committed to a branch named "hotfix/mesquite".

   Carefully organized commits and branches, clear commit messages, and well-chosen
   branch names will make it easier for the release committee to review and merge
   each contribution. 
   When you have a feature branch that is ready to be merged, push it to the server
   using a command such as this:

   + git push origin my-feature-branch

   Next, notify the "Release Committee" point-of-contact listed at the top of this
   document that the feature branch has been pushed to the server and is ready to be
   merged. A release committee member will review your contribution, merge your
   branch, and then delete the branch from the server, as it is no longer needed once
   it has been merged.

   If you need to delete the branch from the server or are requested to do so, the proper
   command is

   + git push origin :my-feature-branch

   To delete the same branch from your local repository requires the command

   + git branch -d my-feature-branch

   Finally, to clean your local repository of tracking branches that have been deleted
   from the server requires the command

   + git remote prune origin

5. git Commit Policies and Workflow (Committee Perspective)

   The -extend project "release committee" (initially comprised of Hrv Jasak) will be
   solely responsible for merging user contributions into the master and nextRelease branches.

   User contributions will be contained in feature branches, with a new feature branch for
   each new fix or feature, as described in Section 4 above.

   The feature branches provided by users will be merged by the release committee
   into an integration branch called "nextRelease", and then both the local
   and remote copy of the feature branch will be deleted. The merge will be performed 
   using a "git merge --no-ff" command, which forces the creation of a merge commit
   even in the case where the merge could be accomplished by fast-forward.
   Note that the automated test loop will be run off of this integration branch.

   When the next release is ready, the release committee will merge the
   integration branch into the master branch, again using a "git merge --no-ff" command.
   Consistent with the proposed workflow, the master branch will only contain releases
   and hotfixes.

   Note that hotfixes should be branched off of the master branch and should be merged
   twice - once into the integration branch and once into the master branch - in order to 
   guarantee that a merge of the integration branch into the master branch can be
   accomplished by a fast-forward.

6. Specific Usage Instructions

   In case you find out that something that should be a hotfix ended up in
   your local feature branch, follow the steps below to ensure that the hotfix is
   properly committed to the integration and master branches:

   a. Single out the SHA-1 of the commit that contains the hotfix (e.g. 13e5d2f)

   c. Create a new hotfix branch; e.g.

      + git checkout master
      + git checkout -b hotfix/my-hotfix-topic

   b. Single out the commit and base it on the master branch; e.g.

      # The fix is in a single commit, but localBranch has advanced
      + git cherry-pick commitID


      # The fix is small, but the commit contains other changes
      + git checkout localBranch file
      + git commit

   d. Contact the "Release Committee" point-of-contact at the top of this document
      and request that the hotfix be merged into the integration and master branches.

7. Acknowledgements & Copyright

   Your authorship is tracked by the version control system (git). You may also document
   your authorship in the header of the files. Furthermore, the release committee will
   update the list of contributors in the README file with every release.

8. Background Reading on git