Planning Council/Cross Project Teams/Aggregation

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   John Arthorne (Platform) 
   Thomas Hallgren (Buckminster) 
   David Williams (WTP)

Statement of Problem

The current "Helios Builder", has many strong points, but some weaknesses as well:

  • It is not truly reproducible. There are two sources of input, specification (.build) files from cvs, and project's repositories. We only have control over the CVS part, (it can be tagged, etc.) but Projects can change their repo at any time (either on purpose, or accidentally). This change in repo can cause the build to fail or it might still succeed, but be a different set of bits than previous runs.
  • The current build "builds" feature/product/and plugins (branding and capabilities). Ideally, we would only aggregate, and not compile anything. bug 299344
  • The current builder/aggregator "fails" if anything is wrong. Even if it is only a leaf node. At times, this requires tweaking the "build model" to get the build operational again, while waiting for the leaf node to correct itself. It would be better if the build tried to "work" even if some components were in error, so that tests, etc., (that don't depend on leaf node in repo) can get started.
  • When the build fails (due to conflicting dependencies, etc.) it is hard to figure out the root of the problem, without a p2 trained eye.
  • requires frequent "intervention" to add/remove projects in model file (
  • The +0, +1, +2 categories are an approximate categorization.
  • There is unspecified trade-offs between being "strict" vs. being "lax". For example, in .build files, projects can specify version="" and the highest version in the repo will be fetched or mirrored. But, there's no guarantee that the repo has been updated yet, so in some cases, it might appear to have "built", but is still using a lower than expected version.
  • There are some steps in the process that require "hand editing" (or, at least, running scripts that are not P2 API), for example versioning categories, changing mirror URLs, and creating and updating composite repository).
  • Should we migrate to improved aggregation tools (e.g. see B3 Aggregator). And if so, how and when.