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FreeBSD Release Engineering
Abstract
This article describes the release engineering process of the FreeBSD Project.
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Introduction to the FreeBSD Release Engineering Process
Development of FreeBSD has a very specific workflow. In general, all changes to the FreeBSD base system are committed to the {branchHead} branch, which reflects the top of the source tree.
After a reasonable testing period, changes can then be merged to the {branchStable} branches. The default minimum timeframe before merging to {branchStable} branches is three (3) days.
Although a general rule to wait a minimum of three days before merging from {branchHead}, there are a few special circumstances where an immediate merge may be necessary, such as a critical security fix, or a bug fix that directly inhibits the release build process.
After several months, and the number of changes in the {branchStable} branch have grown significantly, it is time to release the next version of FreeBSD. These releases have been historically referred to as "point" releases.
In between releases from the {branchStable} branches, approximately every two (2) years, a release will be cut directly from {branchHead}. These releases have been historically referred to as "dot-zero" releases.
This article will highlight the workflow and responsibilities of the {teamRe} for both "dot-zero" and "point"' releases.
The following sections of this article describe:
<<releng-prep>>
General information and preparation before starting the release cycle.
<<releng-website>>
Website Changes During the Release Cycle
<<releng-terms>>
Terminology and general information, such as the "code slush" and "code freeze", used throughout this document.
<<releng-head>>
The Release Engineering process for a "dot-zero" release.