[Ksummit-discuss] Maintainer's Summit Agenda Planning

Julia Lawall julia.lawall at lip6.fr
Wed Oct 25 04:21:04 UTC 2017

On Tue, 24 Oct 2017, Kees Cook wrote:

> On Tue, Oct 24, 2017 at 4:41 PM, Joe Perches <joe at perches.com> wrote:
> > On Tue, 2017-10-24 at 16:03 -0700, Kees Cook wrote:
> >> On Fri, Oct 6, 2017 at 8:27 AM, James Bottomley
> >> <James.Bottomley at hansenpartnership.com> wrote:
> >> > On Thu, 2017-10-05 at 15:20 -0400, Theodore Ts'o wrote:
> >> > > Appendix: Other topics that were brought up
> >> > > [...]
> >> > > Developing across multiple areas of the kernel
> >> >
> >> > I've got a couple of extra possibilities
> >> > [...]
> >> > 2) Trivial patches (again).
> >>
> >> Given that the "trivial patches" topic's discussion ended up boiling
> >> down to a discussion about developing across multiple areas of the
> >> kernel, maybe we should make space for a "tree-wide changes"
> >> discussion? Even after the earlier thread about it, I tripped all over
> >> this in the last couple months while doing timer conversions, so I
> >> would at least have some more strong opinions on the subject. ;)
> >
> > It's a ripe area (like months old limburger cheese) for discussion.
> >
> > There's currently no good way to do tree-wide changes.
> Some things stand out for me:
> 1) I would like a standard way to distinguish patch submissions
> between "please ack this (it's going into my tree)" and "please apply
> this to your tree." I have tried post-"---"-line notes, cover letter
> notes, etc, and maintainers still miss it. It can sometimes be very
> disruptive (to both me and the maintainer) to have a maintainer take a
> patch out of the middle of a series that was intending to land via a
> different tree. Would "[ACK-PLEASE][PATCH]" be sufficient? Or
> "[MY-TREE]" or something?

Nothing is going into my tree, since I don't have one.  Most changes I do
are independent, so I hope that the recipient of the patch will take it.
I only send such patches to the maintainers of the patch, with the cover
letter CCd to some superset of all relevant mailing lists.  I don't really
know what to do with dependent patches.  Sending all patches to the union
of all maintainers can lead to a huge CC list.  In that case, I would have
to hope that someone who step up to pick up the patch, perhaps the person
who is maintaining the dependency part, or when someone asked for the
change, the person whoc asked for it in the first place.

> 2) When you have a 200+ patch series, it is outrageously difficult to
> figure out where to send things. The MAINTAINERS file is at best an
> approximation. I use a subset of the get_maintainer output plus my own
> parsing of MAINTAINERS to try to organize patches. The results tend to
> be somewhat okay, but there are still bouncing addresses, or MIA
> maintainers. And then a patch isn't met with silence, it might get met
> with an "Ack", but no attention from a committer. Having a
> representation of the "tree" of maintainership would be much more
> helpful. In other words, for every section with an "M:" line, also
> something "U:" ("upstream"?) that indicates either another section or
> a person that is the "upstream" for that maintainer. This would allow
> for a sane set of "Cc"s not based on git log guessing, and provide an
> obvious "escalation" path in the face of silence (or uncommitted
> Acks).

I send things to maintainers and mailing lists only.  My hypothesis is
that the things affected by treewide canges are typically not things that
other developers feel a strong ownership of.

> 8) Whatever the results of this, I'd really like to get _something_
> documented as an adjunct to the SubmittingPatches document. Maybe
> named TreewideChanges or MultiSubsystemChanges or something. I'm happy
> to DO this documentation, I just want to have consensus on the ways to
> do things, and then I can point maintainers to the document to explain
> why I did something the way I did.

Documentation would indeed be very helpful.

Another question is how a patch series should be cut up?  Some people have
complained about it being cut up by file, if the changes are all going
into the same tree.  And of course there are complaints if files from two
trees are mixed into a single patch.  I normally cut them up by unique set
of maintainers, but sometimes quite different files get put into a single
patch, or files that are very similar get split between different patches
just because there is one extra maintainer on one of them.  Would it be
better to follow the T: entry in MAINTAINERS, if there is one?  That
information doesn't seem to be complete.


More information about the Ksummit-discuss mailing list