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Node.js Release Working Group
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README.md

Node.js Release Working Group

Release schedule

Release Status Codename Initial Release Active LTS Start Maintenance Start End-of-life
10.x Active LTS Dubnium 2018-04-24 2018-10-30 2020-05-19 April 2021
12.x Active LTS Erbium 2019-04-23 2019-10-21 2020-10-20 April 2022
13.x Current 2019-10-22 - - June 2020
14.x Current 2020-04-21 2020-10-20 2021-10-19 April 2023
15.x Pending 2020-10-21 - - June 2021

Dates are subject to change.

LTS Schedule

The Release schedule is available also as a JSON file.

Release Phases

There are three phases that a Node.js release can be in: 'Current', 'Active Long Term Support (LTS)', and 'Maintenance'. Odd-numbered release lines are not promoted to LTS - they will not go through the 'Active LTS' or 'Maintenance' phases.

  • Current - Should incorporate most of the non-major (non-breaking) changes that land on nodejs/node master branch.
  • Active LTS - New features, bug fixes, and updates that have been audited by the LTS team and have been determined to be appropriate and stable for the release line.
  • Maintenance - Critical bug fixes and security updates. New features may be added at the discretion of the LTS team - typically only in cases where the new feature supports migration to later release lines.

Changes required for critical security and bug fixes may lead to semver-major changes landing within a release stream, such situations will be rare and will land as semver-minor.

The term 'supported release lines' will be used to refer to all release lines that are not End-of-Life.

End-of-Life Releases

Release Status Codename Initial Release Active LTS Start Maintenance LTS Start End-of-life
v0.10.x End-of-Life - 2013-03-11 - 2015-10-01 2016-10-31
v0.12.x End-of-Life - 2015-02-06 - 2016-04-01 2016-12-31
4.x End-of-Life Argon 2015-09-08 2015-10-01 2017-04-01 2018-04-30
5.x End-of-Life 2015-10-29 - 2016-06-30
6.x End-of-Life Boron 2016-04-26 2016-10-18 2018-04-30 2019-04-30
7.x End-of-Life 2016-10-25 - 2017-06-30
8.x End-of-Life Carbon 2017-05-30 2017-10-31 2019-01-01 2019-12-31
9.x End-of-Life 2017-10-01 - 2018-06-30
11.x End-of-Life 2018-10-23 - 2019-06-01

Mandate

The Release working group's purpose is:

  • Management/execution of the release and support process for all releases.

Its responsibilities are:

  • Define the release process.
  • Define the content of releases.
  • Generate and create releases.
  • Test Releases.
  • Manage the LTS and Current branches including backporting changes to these branches.
  • Define the policy for what gets backported to release streams.

The Release working group is structured into teams and membership in the working group does not automatically result in membership in these teams. These teams are:

  • Releasers team
  • LTS team
  • CITGM team

The releasers team is entrusted with the secrets and CI access to be able build and sign releases. Additions to the releasers team must be approved by the TSC following the process outlined in GOVERNANCE.md.

The Long Term Support (LTS) team manages the process/content of LTS releases and the required backporting for these releases. Additions to the LTS team needs sign off from the rest of the LTS team.

The Canary in the Gold Mine (CITGM) team maintains CITGM as one of the key sanity checks for releases. This team maintains the CITGM repository and works to keep CITGM builds running and passing regularly. This also includes maintaining the CI jobs in collaboration with the Build Working Group.

Release Plan

New semver-major releases of Node.js are branched from master every six months. New even-numbered versions are released in April and odd-numbered versions in October.

In coordination with a new odd-numbered major release, the previous even-numbered major version will transition to Long Term Support. The transition to Long Term Support will happen in a semver-minor release and can happen either before or after the new major version is released.

Every even (LTS) major version will be actively maintained for 12 months from the date it enters LTS coverage. Following those 12 months of active support, the major version will transition into "maintenance" mode for 18 months. Prior to Node.js 12 the active period was 18 months and the maintenance period 12 months. See Releases Phases for details of which changes are expected to land during each release phase.

The exact date that a release will be moved to LTS, moved between LTS modes, or deprecated will be chosen no later than the first day of the month it is to change. If the release team plans to change the release date, it will be done with no less than 14 days notice.

All LTS releases will be assigned a codename. A list of expected upcoming codenames is available in CODENAMES.md.

LTS Staging Branches

Every LTS major version has two branches in the GitHub repository: a release branch and a staging branch. The release branch is used to cut new releases. Only members of the @nodejs/releasers team should land commits onto release branches. The staging branch is used to land cherry-picked or backported commits from master that need to be included in a future release. Only members of @nodejs/backporters should land commits onto staging branches.

For example, for Node.js v4, there is a v4.x branch and a v4.x-staging branch. When commits land in master that must be cherry-picked for a future Node.js v4 release, those must be landed into the v4.x-staging branch. When commits are backported for a future Node.js v4 release, those must come in the form of pull requests opened against the v4.x-staging branch. Commits are only landed in the v4.x branch when a new v4.x release is being prepared.

Generally, changes are expected to live in a Current release for at least 2 weeks before being backported. It is possible for a commit to land earlier at the discretion of the Release working group.

The working group members are the union of the LTS, Releasers and CITGM team members listed below.

LTS Team members

Backporters team

Releasers team

CITGM team

Emeritus

LTS team

Releasers team

CITGM team

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