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Sometimes we deliver features to customers before they are stable, to give them a working preview of functionality. For this we use the following extension statement
This violates RFC7950, but there is a real customer need for it.
Having status "experimental" may be useful. Giving more useful information to a client doesn't seem to be a bad thing.
However, I'm far less convinced that this should then bypass the semver rules. If a client is using an experimental leaf, and the definition changes, then it will still break the client.
Hence, I still think that ultimately to solve the YANG versioning issue, it is necessary to compare the old and new schemas, filter those to the subset of the schema that is being used, and then check to see what has been changed, and what the impact of those changes are.