Start release process for Octave 6.4.0

In yesterday’s online developer meeting, we decided to release Octave 6.4.0 before starting the release cycle for Octave 7.

We currently plan to merge the default to the stable branch possibly at some time in November. So, the first Octave 7 can be released around the end of this year or early 2022.

There were not many major changes on the stable branch since the release of Octave 6.3.0. Nevertheless, it is probably a good idea to keep the stable branch on Octave 6.x during a few weeks after a possible release.

It might also be a good idea to make a release candidate before the actual release.

That means that a “good” release date for Octave 6.4.0 would probably be some time during October.

Are there any changes that should be made before we start the release process?

I didn’t think of it yesterday. But ISTR that a new release of sparsersb was mentioned in some bug reports. I didn’t see any official announcement. (I might have missed it.) But it might be nice to update MXE Octave to that newer version before the release.

There is a project own mailing-list and it was announced on NA-Digest, probably both channels are not actively monitored by all Octave developers :sweat:

Afaict, both of these announcements are for a new version of librsb. Was a new version of sparsersb announced somewhere, too?

My bad, reliable package announcements are available from the list (sorted by date)

As the sparsersb-package and librsb come as bundle, maybe both should be updated.

I already updated librsb on the release branch of MXE Octave after it was announced.
I was still waiting for an “official” announcement for the new version of sparsersb. But I am unsure where that would be done now that the mailing lists are mostly dead.

Is the Octave packages list a reliable source for package updates? I noticed that the package was exchanged after it was first updated on that list…

Probably you have to contact the package maintainer directly.

As reliable as can be with the Octave Forge heritage. You can audit any changes if you please. The mentioned step happend as requested by the package maintainer. A full fleshed Octave Forge release was not worth the effort and Octave Packages just has to reflect this change :sweat:

A possible solution to avoid this in the future would be to wait with updating the index until the package maintainer finishes releasing their package.
That still leaves the question when the release process has finished.
This is probably not when the maintainer opens a release request on SourceForge.
A possible alternative would be when that request is closed.
A maybe better alternative would be to leave it in the hands of the maintainer and to let them announce the new version.
Maybe those announcements could happen in this forum?

I updated sparsersb in the release branch of MXE Octave to version 1.0.9 here:
mxe-octave: e64718a362e6

I’m not the person in charge of the translations, but I got an e-mail with this update

Hi Rik,

Please see information at https://github.com/flathub/org.octave.Octave/issues/184#issuecomment-922377247

Below are the Hungarian translations for the `desktop` and `appdata` files.

Thank you

Óvári


https://hg.savannah.gnu.org/hgweb/octave/file/d603f1229301/etc/icons/org.octave.Octave.desktop.in

Comment=Interactive programming environment for numerical computations
Comment[hu]=Interaktív programozási környezet számszerű számításokhoz

https://hg.savannah.gnu.org/hgweb/octave/file/d603f1229301/etc/icons/org.octave.Octave.appdata.xml

  <summary>Interactive programming environment for numerical computations</summary>
  <summary xml:lang="hu">Interaktív programozási környezet számszerű számításokhoz</summary>

  <description>
    <p>
      GNU Octave is a high-level interpreted language, primarily intended for
      numerical computations. It provides capabilities for the numerical
      solution of linear and nonlinear problems, and for performing other
      numerical experiments. It also provides extensive graphics capabilities
      for data visualization and manipulation. Octave is normally used through
      its interactive command line interface, but it can also be used to write
      non-interactive programs. The Octave language is quite similar to
      Matlab so that most programs are easily portable.
    </p>
    <p xml:lang="hu">
      A GNU Octave egy magas szintű értelmezett nyelv, elsősorban numerikus
      számításokhoz. Képességeket biztosít a lineáris és nemlineáris problémák
      numerikus megoldására, valamint egyéb numerikus kísérletek elvégzésére.
      Ezenkívül kiterjedt grafikus képességeket biztosít az adatok
      megjelenítéséhez és manipulálásához. Az Octave-t általában az interaktív
      parancssori felületen keresztül használják, de nem interaktív programok
      írására is használható. Az Octave nyelv nagyon hasonló a Matlabhoz, így
      a legtöbb program könnyen hordozható.
    </p>
  </description>

This change could probably be applied to the stable branch ahead of the 6.4 release.

Additional message:



Hi Rik,

Here are the Hungarian translation of the Comment for the .desktop file.
Comment=Interactive programming environment for numerical computations

Comment[hu]=Interaktív programozási környezet számszerű számításokhoz

Can you please add Hungarian to https://hg.savannah.gnu.org/hgweb/octave/file/d603f1229301/etc/icons/org.octave.Octave.desktop.in ?

Thank you

Óvári

https://github.com/flathub/org.octave.Octave/issues/184#issuecomment-922377247

WOW!
When I joined here, it was v5 and now it is going to be v7! So fast! :star_struck:

I was also contacted by this person, followed up a little more and have a more complete translation here.

I pushed a change to the stable branch adding the Hungarian strings to the project description files here:
octave: fe2c64849660 (gnu.org)

I updated the NEWS file on the stable branch here:
octave: 53a8566aa3df (gnu.org)

This time, I did these changes on Linux. I hope that’ll work out better than the last few times I tried to update that file…

I also pushed a change to MXE Octave preparing the README.html file for the release of Octave 6.4.0:
mxe-octave: 05a486e7e873

Afaict, we are ready for a release candidate.

@jwe: Could you please start that process when you come around to it?

I haven’t touched any version or release dates in the repository. In the past, you often pushed those changes together with tagging the release or release candidate in one go.

Since this release will contain only a dozen changes or so, it would also be ok with me to skip the release candidate this time and immediately do a final release.
What do you think?

Yes, it would probably be OK to just make the release and if there is a problem, make another one.

I didn’t recall the timeline for the update of OpenBLAS in MXE Octave correctly.
There might still be an issue with our build rule for OpenBLAS:
bug #61246, matrix inversions give wrong results (inv, lu, mldivide)

If you didn’t start the release process yet, could you please hold it in case this has an easy fix?

For once, my chronic procrastination pays off! :grinning:

If it would help, I could also make a release candidate for testing.

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@jwe: Could you please prepare a release candidate for Octave 6.4?