As some of you might have noticed, the process of releasing and registering packages in METADATA has changed over last months. We have experimented with making the process more automatic such that new versions can be released faster and with less labor involved in the process. I’ve given some advice to the new process in individual PRs but there hasn’t been any announcements of what has changed. This is the purpose of this post.
The way things work now is that new releases are merged automatically every half hour provided that
- The release is made with Attobot
- METADATA Travis tests pass
- CIBot reverse dependency tests pass
- No comments have been posted after the latest Attobot comment
- No labels have been attached
For new package registrations, the same rules apply but furthermore they have to stay open for three days. As a consequence of the automated process, you are now even more strongly encouraged to use Attobot for releases. Otherwise, the release process will typically be slower since the release will require actions from a METADATA maintainer.
As part of the transition to the more automated process, it is now expected that the package maintainers are active in identifying issues with their PRs by reading the logs. Once the issue has been identified, the author should update the PR, see https://github.com/attobot/attobot#updatingdeleting-a-release, (and not create a new tag). Hence in general, METADATA maintainers won’t comment on (or merge) PRs with failing tests. If you are unable to identify why tests are failing then please leave a comment in the issue and we’ll try to help you.
Sometimes the CIBot tests takes time to finish. There can be several reasons for this. Most often it is simply because many packages have been released within a short period so there is a queue. For packages with many reverse dependencies, there will be a lot of packages to tests. Sometimes, the tests won’t finish because one of the packages hangs (we are working on adding a time limit). Finally, it sometimes, but rarely, happens that the process that handles the webhooks fails. If that happens, it requires actions from one of the CIBot maintainers. If you think the CIBot tests are taking too long then please leave a comment but remember that your comment will disable the automatic merging mechanism so please wait at least six hours.
Some packages can’t be tested by CIBot, e.g. if it depends on proprietary solvers of if the package requires special setup of the CI system. Such packages can be marked as untestable and the CIBot tests will be skipped. Please leave a comment in the PR if the package can’t be tested by CIBot. When possible, it is best to organize your tests such that CIBot is able to test your package since the reverse dependency testing often detects breaking changes.
Some packages require special setup when run through CI. In particular, some packages with Python dependencies need certain Python packages to be installed. CIBot uses
Conda when installing
PyCall so it is possible to install Python packages via
Conda conditionally on the environment variable
CI=true. As an example of how this can be done see https://github.com/tkf/IPython.jl/blob/6b4b7995b8d02dbd68f1a7fca95996a440fc988c/test/runtests.jl#L3-L5.
Finally, CIBot no longer has any issues with project files. There was a period when CIBot couldn’t handle project files and I therefore asked people to delete project files from packages. This is no longer the case. However, the General registry is still based on METADATA which is again based on the
REQUIRE file. CIBot is based on the General registry so project (or manifest) files will not affect the reverse dependency testing. Once we transition to releasing directly to General, see https://github.com/JuliaLang/Pkg.jl/issues/849, the
REQUIRE file will no longer be needed.
Feel free to ask any questions.