[kwlug-disc] definition of debian's "stable"?

Robert P. J. Day rpjday at crashcourse.ca
Sun Aug 16 13:12:26 EDT 2009

On Sun, 16 Aug 2009, Eric Gerlach wrote:

> On Sun, Aug 16, 2009 at 12:59:50PM -0400, Robert P. J. Day wrote:
> > On Sun, 16 Aug 2009, L.D. Paniak wrote:
> >   that seems fairly adamant that, once you install a new "stable"
> > release, the *only* updates/upgrades you will see are
> > security-related.  no big fixes or performance upgrades.  or am i
> > misreading that?  or does a 5.0.1 or 5.0.2 "release" represent a new
> > release that *does* incorporate bug fixes?
> I believe this is true.  Bug fixes, other than security, are allowed
> in point releases.  Typically, major versions of packages are not
> allowed, though.  The fixes usually have to be backported to the
> current version in stable.
> I'm not a DD, but that's the impression I get.

  ok, i'm starting to feel better that people are only *mostly* sure
about their answers.  :-)  reading from here again:


"2.2 Are there package upgrades in `stable'?

No new functionality is added to the stable release. Once a Debian
version is released and tagged `stable' it will only get security
updates. That is, only packages for which a security vulnerability has
been found after the release will be upgraded. All the security
updates are served through security.debian.org.

Security updates serve one purpose: to supply a fix for a security
vulnerability. They are not a method for sneaking additional changes
into the stable release without going through normal point release
procedure. Consequently, fixes for packages with security issues will
not upgrade the software. The Debian Security Team will backport the
necessary fixes to the version of the software distributed in `stable'

  the impression i get is that

1) if you're targeting the "stable" release, the *only* upgrades
you'll normally get are strictly security-related, not bug fixes.

2) eventually, once enough useful big fixes *do* accumulate, a new
"point release" comes out (5.0.1, 5.0.2?) which *will* allow
non-security-related issues to be addressed.  but this will still fall
under the "stable" release name, right?

  that differs from what i'm used to under fedora, which allows
packages to be upgraded arbitrarily for any defensible reason.


Robert P. J. Day                               Waterloo, Ontario, CANADA

        Linux Consulting, Training and Annoying Kernel Pedantry.

Web page:                                          http://crashcourse.ca
Twitter:                                       http://twitter.com/rpjday

More information about the kwlug-disc mailing list