[openssl-project] What's a new feature, vs what's a fix?

Richard Levitte levitte at openssl.org
Sun Jan 21 07:40:56 UTC 2018

This may need being rehashed, as it seems we don't have a concensus.

Our versioning policy stipulates that released versions of OpenSSL
should only be updated with fixes, that new features should go into
new releases (right now, 1.1.1 will be the next new release, while
1.1.0 has already been released and is only updated).

The question that keeps coming up, through comments like the attached,
is "what do we mean by 'new feature'".  I have been surprised at times
by what others have considered a 'new feature', and obviously, I can
surprise as well.

I think that it's clear to every one that added APIs is a new feature.

I think that it's clear to every one that added new functions is a new
feature...  most of the times (the exception is when a fairly obvious
function is missing in a newly released API).

But then we have other items where it's not quite as clear, and
opinions seems to differ, such as:

- is a new config target a new feature?  I think that most of us have
  agreed that it is, but am not entirely sure everyone sees it that

- is a new config option a new feature?  I have argued that it is, but
  am not at all sure we have a consensus.

- is a new C macro to indicate if a certain feature is desirable or
  not a new feature?  I actually have no clue, which is also the
  reason I raised the question in the PR.
  A side question is why this was coded as a direct C macro
  configuration and not as our other config options, and in that case,
  why we should consider it differently from the usual config options.


Richard Levitte         levitte at openssl.org
OpenSSL Project         http://www.openssl.org/~levitte/

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