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15 June 2010, 16:33

Code freeze for Debian 6.0 Squeeze expected in August

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Debian Logo As announced by Adam Barrat of the Debian Release Team on the project's mailing list on Monday, the Debian developers are now only waiting until all the changes to the distribution caused by the update to Python 2.6 have been integrated. They plan to freeze Debian 6.0, code named "Squeeze", immediately afterwards.

By that time – Barrat estimates that it will be the end of August – the developers also plan to complete the ongoing conversion work caused by updating the Glibc to the Embedded Glibc as well as the updates to GNOME 2.30 and KDE 4.4.3. Further modifications are also required due to the introduction of Startup, Debian's own, Upstart-based SysV-Init variant.

Once Squeeze has been frozen, the Debian developers will focus exclusively on bug fixes and system stability, but no further new features or program versions will be integrated. Based on Debian 4.0 "Etch" having been released approximately four months after its freeze, the developers initially scheduled four months for completing Debian 5.0 "Lenny", but had to postpone by another four months because by the scheduled date, the distribution still contained too many critical flaws. However, assuming four months between the freeze and the final release, Debian 6.0 could be out just before the end of the year.

Even now, Squeeze is already more than half a year behind the Debian project's original schedule. With Debian 6.0, the developers planned to switch to a fixed release cycle such as those used for many other Linux distributions. According to their schedule, Squeeze was supposed to be frozen in December 2009 and released in March 2010. However, at the end of November 2009, Steve McIntyre, who was Debian project leader at the time, announced that the code freeze would be postponed until March and the final release until August. In early February 2010, the Release Team sounded the alarm because the number of critical bugs was still far too great for a version freeze in March and announced that a final release in summer 2010 was unlikely.

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