[kwlug-disc] definition of debian's "stable"?
Andrew Sullivan Cant
acant at alumni.uwaterloo.ca
Sun Aug 16 14:03:52 EDT 2009
>From the Debian security FAQ:
>The most important guideline when making a new package that fixes a security problem is to make as few changes as possible. Our users and developers are relying on the exact behaviour of a release once it is made, so any change we make can possibly break someone's system. This is especially true in case of libraries: make sure you never change the Application Program Interface (API) or Application Binary Interface (ABI), no matter how small the change is.
> This means that moving to a new upstream version is not a good solution, instead the relevant changes should be backported. Generally upstream maintainers are willing to help if needed, if not the Debian security team might be able to help.
>In some cases it is not possible to backport a security fix, for example when large amounts of source code need to be modified or rewritten. If that happens it might be necessary to move to a new upstream version, but this has to be coordinated with the security team beforehand.
The security FAQ also contains more details about when a package, in part or whole, will be backported into the stable release.
IANADD (I am not a Debian Developer) :)
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