Thunderbird by the (wall-clock) numbers

Mozilla released Thunderbird on Tuesday 26-feb-2008, at 16:40pm PST. From “Dev says go” to “release is now available to public” was just over 14days (14d 7h 45m) wall-clock time, of which Build&Release took just over 6 days (6d 4h 20m).

08:55 12feb: Dev says “go” for rc1
13:55 12feb: builds started
20:55 13feb: linux builds handed to QA
20:55 13feb: mac builds handed to QA
08:05 14feb: signed-win32 signed builds handed to QA
07:30 18feb: update snippets available on betatest update channel
15:30 19feb: QA says “go to beta”.
16:10 19feb: update snippets on beta update channel
08:45 26feb: Dev & QA says “go” for Release; Build already completed final signing, bouncer entries
09:25 26feb: mirror replication started
13:25 26feb: mirror absorption good for testing to start on releasetest channel
14:20 26feb: QA completes testing releasetest.
15:30 26feb: website changes finalized and visible. Build given “go” to make updates snippets live.
16:00 26feb: update snippets available on live update channel
16:40 26feb: release announced


1) We’re still doing Thunderbird builds manually, as we’ve not had a chance to test the Build Automation used in FF releases. It *should* work, but needs to be tested properly before we switch to using automation in production for Thunderbird. Producing Thunderbird manually explains some of the delay in producing updates above – there was a weekend in there! Now that Rick has joined MailCo, he’s starting to get up to speed, and help out. We’ll still be doing TB2.0.0.13 manually, but hope to do TB2.0.0.14 using automation. Watch this space!

2) For better or worse, we are putting all our blow-by-blow scribbles public, so the curious can read about it, warts and all, here.

3) As usual, we waited until morning to start pushing to mirrors. This was done so mirror absorption completed as QA were arriving in the office to start testing update channels. We did this because we wanted to reduce the time files were on the mirrors untested; in the past, overly excited people have post the locations of the files as “released” on public forums, even though they are not finished the last of the sanity checks. Coordinating the mirror push like this reduced that likelihood just a bit. I’m counting that wait time as “Build time” even though that might be a little unfair to the Build team.

4) Mirror absorption took 4 hours to reach good values. A little longer then usual, unclear exactly why.

take care


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