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Concretization of the Contao release cycle
by Leo Feyer
In the last team call, we have decided to concretize the Contao release cycle regarding the difference between the release types (major and minor) as well as the release dates. This is a supplement to the existing Contao release cycle.
Major or minor
Basically, both major and minor releases include new features, whereas bugfix releases only fix defects. Whether a feature release is a major or a minor version, however, was not crystal clear in the past.
In the future, we will therefore follow the Symfony release principle: If a feature is not backwards compatible, it has to wait for the next major version. Otherwise it can be included in the next minor version.
With this we want to avoid having a large number of incompatible extensions or websites which do not work anymore after a minor update – whereby customized templates or minor CSS adjustments do not count as function failures.
Besides a clear backwards compatiblilty regulation, we also want to increase planning security for administrators and therefore set fixed release dates. From now on, there will be a Contao feature release every six months: one in May and one in November. Bugfix releases keep being published as required.
The life cycle of a feature release then looks as follows: a 4 months development phase followed by a 2 months test phase (Beta and RC). All features which cannot be completed during the development phase or do not run stable at the end of it, will be moved to the next feature release automatically.
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