Re: [Tails-dev] RM sprint report, November 2020

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Author: Zen Fu
To: intrigeri, The Tails public development discussion list
Subject: Re: [Tails-dev] RM sprint report, November 2020
Bravo, and thanks for the work and the report!

Please let us know how you evaluate the results of these efforts once
you've tested it. :-)


intrigeri <intrigeri@???> writes:

> Hi,
> earlier this month, the Release Managers team had a 4-days sprint
> focused on streamlining our release process. This need was identified
> about a year ago, when we learned we had to switch to a 4-weeks
> release cycle.
> anonym is currently (and bravely) using the — mostly untested so far —
> output of our work for 4.13. Fingers crossed! We'll see how much we've
> improved things in practice, and from there we'll be able to identify
> what the next biggest problems are.
> Here's what we did during that sprint.
> We started by going through the entire release process doc, trying to
> keep our minds open, and looking for issues such as:
>  - Do we really need to do this? Is the benefit worth it?
>  - Do we really need to do this _during the release process_?
>  - Could we automate this?
>  - Does this cause unreasonable stress?
>  - How do we follow this doc in practice? e.g. undocumented tricks
>    that every RM is using for convenience's sake,
>    but in a slightly different manner

> Then we fixed most of the issues we had identified:
>  - Streamlined RM configuration and environment management (!245)
>  - Streamlined UDF signing to avoid typing a passphrase dozens of time
>    (and the stress that goes with mistyping)
>  - Triaged our manual test suite, dropped lots of tests with
>    unreasonably high cost/benefit ratio
>  - Automated Tor Browser WebRTC tests (#10264)
>  - Updated plans to automate remaining manual tests
>  - Moved long shell snippets to scripts, so that commands can always
>    be copied'n'pasted as-is and work the same regardless of what
>    interactive shell, and shell configuration, the RM is using (!234).
>  - Automated custom APT repo operations so the release process
>    can directly call the relevant scripts, instead of the RM having to
>    constantly go back'n'forth between the release process doc and
>    the custom APT repo doc (!236)
>  - Moved to build-time the check for installing custom VeraCrypt package
>  - Moved to GitLab CI the check for APT snapshots expiration date
>  - Automated:
>     - removing UDFs for never released versions (!239)
>     - generating email to manual testers (!237)
>  - Cleaned up cruft in our custom APT repo, wrote tooling to automate it,
>    and set up a process to do this regularly

> Finally, we filed issues for remaining problems that we know how to
> fix, but that are currently blocked by other work:
>  - Regularly import updated PO files from Transifex
>  - Regularly merge master branch into stable → devel

> Cheers!
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