[ocaml-platform] Is it taking too long for OCaml software to become 4.03-compatible? Would release process changes help?

Yotam Barnoy yotambarnoy at gmail.com
Thu Jun 30 14:32:03 BST 2016

I've also been bitten by this issue with 4.03. Specifically, Merlin
took about 2 weeks post-release to be ready, making it much harder to
program in 4.03, and I had a dependency chain that needed OASIS to

I don't think we can avoid having a specialized pre-release period for
getting the packages up and running. I noticed many of these breakages
before 4.03 was released, but package authors aren't responsive to a
pre-release breakage.

It's important to prioritize though -- those packages that have the
most reverse-dependencies and the ones that are most popular, should
be the highest priorities to fix. OPAM has this info, and just as the
https://opam.ocaml.org/packages/index-popularity.html page shows the
most popular packages, I think it should pull their build-state for
the latest OCAML release version and highlight them if they're broken.
Speaking of which, it would be nice if the opam webpage also had a
'sort by reverse dependencies' list.

One schedule that perhaps could work would be to have a
pre-platform-release month. Within this month, package authors would
have the first 2 weeks to fix their packages. After these 2 weeks,
there would be a rallying cry to fix packages sorted by priority
(highest reverse-dependencies & highest popularity), and the entire
community would be mobilized to help in the effort. Once a
"sufficient" number of the highest priority packages are fixed, the
full release can take place, but the work can be ongoing.


On Thu, Jun 30, 2016 at 9:17 AM, Daniel Bünzli
<daniel.buenzli at erratique.ch> wrote:
> Le jeudi, 30 juin 2016 à 13:58, Fabrice Le Fessant a écrit :
>> You can ask this kind of diligence from sub-contractors, not from open-source contributors, especially when a package is maintained only by one developer on his/her sparetime.
> I'm not asking anything. I'm only commenting on the fact that Sylvain said that the time response was not long. It wasn't indeed but release time is not the right time point to consider. The right time point to consider is the rc betas.
>> Or if you think these components are key to the infrastructure, why not move their development to github.com/ocaml/ (http://github.com/ocaml/) with a larger team of maintainers, as it was done for OPAM ?
> I personally don't care as I'm not interested in oasis. But many other programmer seem to use it so it's a pre-requesite for them to be able to work in a given release and if this doesn't happen during the betas then we get less testing. Regarding oasis' development model I'll let users of oasis decide on what is best them.
> Best,
> Daniel
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