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Streamline the naming and versioning of minor releases

Other
On our radar

When I was looking at the download page, I noticed two version naming systems are currently in use:

For the IDE, on the downloads page we see the release "tag" (eg: "Development Environment 11 - Release 12").
But then, on studio, we see the version number (eg, "11.0.406.0")

Again, with platform server and lifetime this scenario repeats: on the download page the tag, on the software the version number. This creates a bit of confusion when one is trying to understand, e.g., which version of the platform server to download.

By looking into this article detailing the version naming system and this article detailing the release lifecycle, one can reach the conclusion that the tag on the download page refers to the release life cycle (the when) and the version number details the type of changes on the release (the what).

My suggestion is first and foremost to use a single naming system both on the software and the website, to avoid confusion. But going a little bit further, I would suggest adopting a simpler system where version number is based solely on the release (which in the end is the only thing the user cares about).  If as the article I previously linked suggests, there is predictability on the release cycle, then similarly to Ubtuntu, one can even make the date part of the versioning system, naming both the release and the version after the date, and if necessary, additional numbering for minor patches.

Additionally, it would be really, really nice if we had exactly this page, but with the download links on the tables.

Thank you for your time,
Filipe

Created on 28 Jan
Comments (23)

I very much agree. And I think OutSystems agrees as well, I've heard rumours this will be fixed, though no time table set.

Changed the category to Other


Hi,

We are receiving a lot feedback regarding new Releases’ identification/naming and I can assure you that we’re working on it. You exposed the problem very well and there’s indeed a problem of consistency across all product. I’ll try to make it clear why we decide to do this change: 

  • 4 year ago we gave a semantic meaning to our version number which is described in the article you referred. At that time we release all product as a monolith with so Development Environment and Platform Server had the same number. The purpose of that semantic was to infer easily the content of new version (only fixes, new feature,... )

  • In 2017 we started launching the Development Environment independently (DE every 3  weeks and PS every 6 weeks). Here raised our problems with the version numbers because Development Environment started releasing features in every version release but we didn’t follow the semantic rules. Guess why? Because we received a lot feedback from customers struggling to understand our versioning system. Having said that, the semantic created 4 years ago only applies to Platform Server .

  • Since DE and PS don’t share  the same version number, it becomes difficult understand if a given version was DE or PS (ex: 10.0.603.0, 10.0.604.0, 10.0.606.0, 10.0.614.0). This started to be a communication problem even for us inside R&D. 

  • R&D is accelerating in order to delivery value often (ex: DE has now weekly releases ), but the old versioning model is causing many problems on our internal processes, forcing us to have over engineering processes to keep this system. 

  • With the OutSystems 11 launch where LifeTime became independent with its own lifecycle we would have the same problem (one more component to share numbers). That’s why we decided to change from O11 on how we communicate and identify new version releases. We knew that we were not able to change all products to be consistent but the starting O11 with new releases naming was an opportunity. After some research, we decided to create a naming convention that follows the industry standards: Releases, Cumulative patches and Hotfixes. With this new naming we are giving you the same information that the semantic version did. 

  • Development Environment has a weekly cadence, do we decide to name it as Release X. For LifeTime and PS both are released monthly, so we are named Release Month.Year.

  • Now we’re working to make this change consistent in all product. Since January, for LifeTime you only see the Release Name on downloads page, installer, UI and if you need to report a problem in support portal you’ll only see Release Names. 

Wrapping-up, we are aware that things are not perfect but we are working on it and you can give us an huge help on this transitional phase. Suggestions like the one you said are welcome to help us understand how can we make this less painful for you.

Adolfo 

Merged this idea with 'Have Development Environment Release # name match the download name' (created on 30 Dec 2018 11:33:14 by Scott Karabin)

If I just downloaded Development Environment Release 8, then why did I get...

DevelopmentEnvironment-11.0.203.0.exe?

Maybe the download could be...

DevelopmentEnvironment-11r8 or 11.0.08? 

That way we could remember what the latest version we downloaded was and share that info with others more clearly.  The About window from the Help menu lists the 11.x.x.x version name which is unique, but doesn't correspond to the description on the download page.



This comment was:
- originally posted on idea 'Have Development Environment Release # name match the download name' (created on 30 Dec 2018 by Scott Karabin)
- merged to idea 'Streamline the naming and versioning of minor releases' on 19 Feb 2019 15:56:20 by Ana Sequeira

Changed the category to Community




This comment was:
- originally posted on idea 'Have Development Environment Release # name match the download name' (created on 30 Dec 2018 by Scott Karabin)
- merged to idea 'Streamline the naming and versioning of minor releases' on 19 Feb 2019 15:56:20 by Ana Sequeira

Versioning seems inconsistent in several places. If you look at the Release Notes, there is a "Development Environment Release 9" but no "Development Environment Release 10" even though this was released yesterday.  For the time being, perhaps add the SS version number here? It would be 11.0.207.0 for Development Environment Release 10.

Also, SS reports that it is up to date when checking by using the help menu, even though I have 11.0.203.0 and the latest is 11.0.207.0.

Consider merging this idea with Consistent Versioning between Development Environment and Release Notes and Show SS/SC/LT version number at the new features in the what's new page.



This comment was:
- originally posted on idea 'Have Development Environment Release # name match the download name' (created on 30 Dec 2018 by Scott Karabin)
- merged to idea 'Streamline the naming and versioning of minor releases' on 19 Feb 2019 15:56:20 by Ana Sequeira
Merged this idea with 'Display version number on the download page' (created on 14 Mar 2019 01:21:40 by Tushar Panpaliya)

The service studio download page doesn't show the version I am about to download. Once you click on the download link, the version number is appended to the exe name. But it being displayed somewhere on the download page would be good. 




This comment was:
- originally posted on idea 'Display version number on the download page' (created on 14 Mar 2019 by Tushar Panpaliya)
- merged to idea 'Streamline the naming and versioning of minor releases' on 15 Mar 2019 09:12:24 by Vasco Pessanha
Merged this idea with 'Service studio change log and versions' (created on 27 Mar 2019 10:22:50 by David Cruz)

Hi,

With the new numbering versioning releases of service studio, combined with the automatic updating os service studio, is very difficult to really understand if the version that is installed on the PC is really the last one or not.

On the downloads and change log of the version we see Development Environment 11 - Release 17. On the about of service studio we see 11.0.415.0.

So there's no way to relate that release 17 is tied to version 11.0.xxx.0.

So I suggest two things:

1 - Show the version number of the release on the downloads and change log pages of the website

2 - On the About page of service studio, include the release number along side the version already present. 


Thanks



This comment was:
- originally posted on idea 'Service studio change log and versions' (created on 27 Mar 2019 by David Cruz)
- merged to idea 'Streamline the naming and versioning of minor releases' on 27 Mar 2019 10:28:32 by Vasco Pessanha
Changed the status to
On our radar


Thanks a lot for your idea!

One idea used in my company in past was to include year/week number in release number,. That gives understanding, how fresh version is even you don't know "history" of releases. (E.g. When first version 11 was released etc)

Merged this idea with 'Show life time version number on download page' (created on 08 Jan 2019 18:21:25 by Daniël Kuhlmann)

Currently there is no direct reference between the release names and numbers of life time.

For a support case you need to select a release, but in service studio a version number is shown.



In service studio it shows a version number:

clipboard_e43cb5646f1a7024328078197f340ea5a.png


Currently you figure out the version number when you download a release:




This comment was:
- originally posted on idea 'Show life time version number on download page' (created on 08 Jan 2019 by Daniël Kuhlmann)
- merged to idea 'Streamline the naming and versioning of minor releases' on 16 May 2019 08:58:27 by João Bento

Changed the category to Lifetime


Hi Daniël,


Thank you for the feedback.


As you have noticed, we are currently in the middle of reviewing our product components' versioning notation and things are not yet consistent across the board.


Until things settle down, please use the link


https://success.outsystems.com/Support/Enterprise_Customers/Upgrading/OutSystems_Release_Cycle


to map between the new and old version notations.


I know this is far from optimal, but can we consider the above page as good enough to solve your current needs? If yes, I will mark your idea as solved.



This comment was:
- originally posted on idea 'Show life time version number on download page' (created on 08 Jan 2019 by Daniël Kuhlmann)
- merged to idea 'Streamline the naming and versioning of minor releases' on 16 May 2019 08:58:27 by João Bento

Hi!

As you are in this process of revising the versioning scheme of the current 3 products:

DE - Development Environment (actually, Service Studio)

PL - Platform Server

LT - LifeTime

please also think about revising the naming for "DE - Development Environment" as, in my opinion, it also causes confusion with addressing other concepts for instance when talking about deployments like the "Development Environment" or "Testing Environment" or "Production Environment".


Why not simply call it "Service Studio - SS (not politically correct?)" or even just IDE. I think in this way it would also help make it clear.


--Tiago Bernardo

Hi Tiago,

Though I agree with the name being somewhat confusing, it's not just Service Studio, but also Integration Studio.

Hi Kilian,

True, Integration Studio is also included.

But then why not call it "Development Tools", instead of "Development Environment".

--Tiago Bernardo

I think because traditionally, they are called that: IDE = integrated development environment. Also, "development tools" is traditionally used for things like lint and sccs, not for IDEs.

Which goes back to my first comment:
"Why not simply call it "Service Studio - SS (not politically correct?)" or even just IDE".

Just call it IDE and the download would include Service Studio and Integration Studio.

--Tiago Bernardo

Hi,
The first step in the version format change is done! Today's update to Development Environment uses the new format (semantic), and it will be followed by Platform Server and LifeTime in the next few months. You can read more about it in our forum - https://www.outsystems.com/forums/discussion/50621/were-changing-how-we-version-outsystems-11-releases/#Post187886

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