Wednesday, 11 March 2015

Re: Ease of enabling -proposed

On Wed, Mar 11, 2015 at 10:32:02AM -0700, Brian Murray wrote:
> […]
> Evan suggested removing the "Pre-released updates ($release-proposed)"
> checkbox from software-properties-gtk, thereby preventing accidental
> enabling of it.
> I think this should definitely be done for the development release of
> Ubuntu. I also think it would be a good idea for Stable Releases given
> that there is no indication in software-properties what any of the
> pockets are for and given that packages in -proposed are not regularly
> cleaned up so may contain packages which have either failed verification
> or not had the bug fix verified.

A few years ago, I started (& then stopped) implementing support for
marking -proposed as "NotAutomatic" within Launchpad.

If we had this, users would no longer be offered updates to proposed
unless they instruct apt to install packages from there explicitly. I
think this is most worthwhile for the development release, where
upgraders from stable releases can continue to have -proposed enabled
without doing any harm to their system. It then probably (IMO) wouldn't
matter too much if the checkbox is there or not in the development
release. The -security and -backports checkboxes are similarly strange
in the development release, but I don't think they've been confusing in
practice - you just expect them to not give you any packages until the
release turns stable.

Similar to you, I'm unsure about the benefit for stable releases. There
are probably cases where users struggling with bugs, or just trying to
verify them, appreciate being able to get proposed updates easily. Both
enabling NotAutomatic and removing the UI would make this harder. I'm
not sure about the tradeoff here.

If this is a line of thought worth carrying on with, I could probably
recreate some brain state from back then and try to finish the feature.


Iain Lane [ ]
Debian Developer [ ]
Ubuntu Developer [ ]