Release schedules

Thanks again for this idea of listening to the community. I’m not sure if this is appropriate for the category but I figured I would add it here since it’s discouraging as a community member.

As far as I can tell, there doesn’t seem to be a clear schedule for new releases. This makes planning difficult. There are features related to ActiveStorage, namely public URLs and setting service by model/attachment, that I really could use. I see they’re in the codebase and I can assume they will ship in 6.1 if they meet the standard for inclusion. I can make a decision on whether to build a workaround in the projects I’m working on or hold off on that and work on something else until the release of 6.1. Unfortunately, I can’t find a ballpark figure of when 6.1 will be released so I can’t really make those kind of decisions. Will 6.1 be released next month? 3 months from now? 6 months from now? A year from now?

Don’t get me wrong: I’m incredibly thankful for Rails, I actually really love it. I totally get that you have no obligation to make sure I meet my timelines or provide any level of support and I don’t want to put more work on anyone. At the same time, a goal for a release date that is relatively closely adhered to would be incredibly helpful.

To be clear, I get that setting a release date once at the beginning of a version cycle is not going to be perfect. Adjusting it as a release nears might be necessary. I personally have zero problem at the idea of release dates slipping by a month or two; this is collaborative process, a lot of volunteers who have tons of different activities, etc. But some sort of release schedule would really improve our planning.

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The best way to think about the release planning is to look at the past. We usually try to push out a release in advance of RailsConf, and we would have done so with 6.1 this year, if it hadn’t been for the pandemic. In addition to that yearly release, we often manage to squeeze out at least a point release in between, but not always. So yeah, every 6-12 months is a good basic heuristic! :v:

Also, the 6.1 release is going into beta any moment now. So should have the final in maybe a month or two. But the beta is already lovely.

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That’s helpful! Is there a way to make the timeline clearer to folks?

I totally get in FOSS that projects can have very different view on releases. Some projects have really strict timelines, others are super fuzzy or non-existent. I don’t think Rails should be super strict but it might be worth looking at something a little firmer.

This is related to Fixes taking too long to be released.

Like I said in that thread I do want to define a schedule calendar. As we usually plan to release a version ahead of RailsConf every year and RailsConf is usually in May we can say for example that we will release approximately every June.

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