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Pre-Release Checklist

In order to ensure that releases are high-quality and easy for users to pick up and run with, it's important to ensure consistency. The basic idea is that we need to make sure there are no reported regressions from previous releases (don't go backwards), ensure all of the new code is quality (passing unit tests in supported browsers), update the docs (README, version.txt etc), build/distribute the tarball and then make the appropriate announcements (forums, IRC, etc).

These are the things that need to happen so that they don't live in someone's very-fallible head (cough Wes).

No Regression Bugs

We shouldn't break things that used to work between releases. That undermines user confidence and makes it hard to build momentum of positive improvement since it becomes an equation with both positive and negatives which will be weighted differently for different people. That doesn't mean we can't make backwards-incompatible changes, but it does mean that anything that might be backwards incompatible needs to be very explicitly planned for.

This can generally be verified by running through the issue tracker and making sure no new bugs have been reported that didn't exist in prior versions. If there has been, that issue needs to be addressed before a new release should be cut. Bugs that are a result of running WYM in a new browser (new Chrome or Firefox release, for example) don't count as regression bugs for this purpose, but should be given high priority otherwise.

Passing Tests

All releases should have 100% passing unit tests in 100% of supported browsers. They should also pass all of the continuous integration criteria as defined by the jobs on http://jenkins.wymeditor.org, which means passing jslint and any other static analysis checks.

The person doing the release is responsible for running the unit tests in all supported browsers before cutting a release tarball.

Update Documentation

It's important that users can be confident that the documentation distributed with WYMeditor is up to date so that it can be trusted. As of December 2011, we have a long way to go in this area, but at the very least we need to keep the documenation bundled with the source accurate.

Checklist:

  • Bump the version number in version.txt.
  • Ensure all changes since the last version are noted in section specifically for this release inside CHANGELOG.md. Users upgraded from a specific version should be able to easily see what changes might effect them.
  • If this release makes a transition from alpha to beta or beta to stable, consolidate point alpha/beta CHANGELOG.md entries in to a unified section for this release. For a major release, also flesh out highlights and examples that are most important.
  • Set a date for the release in CHANGELOG.md.
  • In the Quick Start section of README.md, update the Version xxxx link to point to the appropriate version and the appropriate github download target. The tar.gz should be named in the format wymeditor-<version>.tar.gz.
  • Review the README.md for any changes that might be necessary as a result of changes in this release.

Build and Distribute the Archive

Any user should be able to follow the instructions in the readme to make their own archive, but it's important to include an archive in a known place for ease of use.

  • Follow the README.md instructions to create the tar.gz archive.
  • Tag the current version in git using Semantic Versioning and push the tag to github.
  • Navigate to the WYMeditor Downloads page on github and upload the archive. The archive you upload should be named according to the wymeditor-<version>.tar.gz format to ensure the appropriate download URL.

Tell the World

If a new release is cut in the forest when nobody is there, does it make a sound? A new release isn't much good if nobody knows about it.

  • Make a new sticky thread on the WYMeditor Forums announcing the new release with the title Version <version> released. Highlight any major changes, link to the changelog and download and maybe comment on plans for the next release.
  • Un-sticky any old forum threads.
  • Tweet out the good news to @wymeditor.
  • Call your mother.
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