[PureOS] Bits frm PureOS | Buster edition

Matthias Klumpp matthias.klumpp at puri.sm
Wed Jul 10 13:28:51 PDT 2019

Hey :-)
Sorry for the delayed reply...

Am Mo., 8. Juli 2019 um 19:10 Uhr schrieb Jeremiah C. Foster
<jeremiah.foster at puri.sm>:
> On Mon, 2019-07-08 at 19:04 +0200, Matthias Klumpp wrote:
> > [...]
> > Indeed. As a matter of fact, PureOS green is already tracking
> > bullseye
> > at the moment.
> > If we want a version of PureOS based on Debian stable, that would
> > have
> > to be a new suite, otherwise we would throw all of our users out of
> > security support immediately.
> Why? Buster has security support as well.

It has, but if green is frozen our users won't get any of the updates.
All of our users will have the "green" suite only in their
sources.list currently, but that will be frozen and not receive any
more updates, just like the buster suite is frozen in Debian now.
Instead, a green-updates and maybe green-security suite needs to be
created and added to the user's sources.list if they still want to
receive updates. This is a manual step, and if our users don't know
about it, they won't receive any updates.
There are solutions to this:

A) Merge updates into the "green" suite.
This is not really supported in Laniakea (because it's usually a bad
idea ^^) and will result in us being unable to stop distribution of an
update once it's released, require users to do bigger metadata
downloads on archive updates, not allow for much access control during
updates and will make it hard for users to opt-out receiving certain
updates. I don't actually know any distribution that does this.

B) Implement some hack in a package that every "green" users installs
(apt?) to rewrite sources.list
That's also ugly but ensures every sources.list is changed - if the
script is written well and doesn't have sideeffects.

C) Keep "green" as rolling development target, create new suite with
the released, stable packages and switch PureOS deployment over to
that for new Librems
We'd need a new suite name, but other than that this would be similar
to what Ubuntu does as well. In the long run we might somehow get rid
of "green" to avoid the additional branching-off of suites when
releasing a new stable release, or alternatively embrace that step as
development model.
Making "green" an alias to the respective current development suite of
PureOS (like testing is an alias for "next Debian stable suite") is
probably the best solution in this case. That would effectively give
us a workflow like Ubuntu for making PureOS releases.

I would heavily favour C, so C >> B > A
That would be the cleanest possible cut we could do. B doesn't feel
like a great idea, but might be a compromise, A feels like the wrong
thing to do.

> > There is also the problem of us having advertised PureOS as (semi)
> > rolling so far,
> I think that we can work with marketing to positively describe the
> situation. Stability is clearly a more important goal than a rolling
> release (at least in the internal conversations I've had.)
> > and the PureOS team being completely unable to handle
> > any enterprise stuff with its current manpower.
> I don't understand this. We already do this with Green - why can't we
> continue?

We will have to track updates to our stable branch but also keep our
development branch (likely still based on testing) maintained. That is
quite a bit of effort.
We do need a development branch both for the phone team, but also for
testing new changes and adapting our code to work with the next
release of Debian, so we don't get hit with all the changes once
Bullseye is released.

> > We can just about support development of one suite, handling fixes
> > and
> > security support for two would be really really hard.
> Surely not impossible though?

Nothing is impossible ;-)
But we do need adequate manpower to handle things reliably.
With Jonas mainly working on services now, we are really short of
engineers for the OS itself.


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