GeoTools : Change handling and stability keeping procedures


make trunk hacking more controlled


Andrea Aime



Keep trunk stabled like an elephant

This page represents the current plan; for discussion please check the tracker link above.


This proposal working on trunk more controlled and managed:

  • We want trunk to be be directly followed by projects such as Geoserver or uDig
  • We want to strike a balance that allows evolution, but forbids controversial changes and situations that may lead into long term instability

This proposal contains rules that should make trunk hacking more controlled and more amenable to be directly followed by projects such as Geoserver or uDig.
Rules try to strike a balance that allows evolution, but forbids controversial changes and situations that may lead into long term instability of the trunk itself.

Change Management

Significant change to the Geotools API must be subjected to the following procedure:

  • change shall be described in a wiki page listing:
    • the need to be addressed
    • the solution design
    • wheter a deprecate/remove cycle is possible/needed (it's usually impossible from GeoAPI change, it's not needed for brand new API)
    • the impact on current API, as well as a migration guide that allows to evaluate the impact of changes on the code
    • Child of Proposals page
    • a few code examples of the new API would be appreciated too
  • a jira issue pointing at the wiki page shall be created in a dedicated jira module. The issue will be used to:
    • discuss the proposal (everyone instersted in the change shall subscribe to the issue)
    • voting by PMC members

A public API change impacting multiple modules is considered to be significant, whilst a change localized in the public API of a single extension or plugin module won't be usually subjected to this process. Anyways, we trust change makers to use common sense and apply to the procedure every time they do feel it's necessary.

To avoid proposal stagnation by lack of intererst/time from other PMC member the following rules apply:

  • svn access for changes is granted within 3 days from the proposal, unless any objection is raised in the jira issue;
  • a proposal is accepted automatically within 15 days from the proposal unless objections are raised in the jira issue.

Objections shall be addressed and countdown be restarted. Of course, if the issue gets successfully voted by the PMC countdown does not apply.

If the change is successfully voted, every code example in trunk shall be modified to follow the new API. This is, again, responsibility of whoever proposed the change. Once code samples are modifed, the issue can be closed.

Full Continuous build

Trunk must be subject to a continuous build process with online tests enabled, in order to catch whichever breakage occurred as a result of hacking.

Since full builds can require significant time, a compromise can be to have two build servers, one working "continuously" with quick tests, and another one working with full build but configured to build not more often than every few hours, eventually just twice a day.

When the build is broken, the first priority or whoever broke it is to restore proper building: people hacking on trunk shall be concerned with their own work, not with trying to fix other people errors.

If a change is applied that extensive build break is foreseen, it shall be discussed and organised on the mailing list to PMC satisfaction before being undertaken. 


This proposal has been approved by the PMC:
+1 Chris Holmes
+1 Ian Turton
+1 Jody Garnett
+1 Justin Deoliveira
+1 Simone Giannecchini

Community Support:
+1 Jesse Eichar

dynamictasklist: task list macros declared inside wiki-markup macros are not supported


No files shared here yet.

Tasks / Mandate


no progress






lack mandate/funds/time


volunteer needed

A target release is also provided for each milestone.

Milestone 1


Full Continuous Build


Justin Deoliveira

Ask for volunteer hardware


Justin Deoliveira

Set up continuum for simple install


Justin Deoliveira

Set up continuum to deploy to repository



Update project procedures for continuum

Milestone 2


Test Project Procedure


Jody Garnett

Update developers guide, and tag procedure changes "pending"


Jody Garnett

Create wiki template for new proposals


Jody Garnett

Test procedure (and template) on a sample proposal



Adjust process based on feedback

Milestone 3


Publish Project Procedure

Andrea Aime


Review modified developers guide and remove "pending" tags



Included modified developers guide in 2.4.0 release

API Changes

This is a process change, no API will be harmed.

Documentation Changes


Developers Guide:

Issue Tracker:

  • Look into making a proposals component