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Instructions to create pretest or release tarballs.

-*- coding: utf-8 -*-

-- originally written by Gerd Moellmann, amended by Francesco Potort
with the initial help of Eli Zaretskii

Steps to take before starting on the first pretest in any release sequence:
0. The release branch (e.g. emacs-25) should already have been made
and you should use it for all that follows. Diffs from this
branch should be going to the emacs-diffs mailing list.
1. Decide on versions of automake and autoconf, and ensure you will
have them available for the duration of the release process.
2. Consider increasing the value of the variable
'customize-changed-options-previous-release' in cus-edit.el to
refer to a newer version of Emacs. (This is probably needed only
when preparing the first pretest for a major Emacs release.)
Commit cus-edit.el if changed.
3. Remove any old pretests from ftp://alpha.gnu.org/gnu/emacs/pretest.
You can use 'gnupload --delete' (see below for more gnupload details).
General steps (for each step, check for possible errors):
1. git pull # fetch from the repository
git status # check for locally modified files
Ensure that you have a clean, unmodified state.
If you switched in-place from another branch to the release branch,
there could be inappropriate generated ignored files left over.
You might want to use "git status --ignored" to check for such files,
or some form of "git clean -x". It's probably simpler and safer to
make a new working directory exclusively for the release branch.
2. Regenerate the etc/AUTHORS file:
M-: (require 'authors) RET
M-x authors RET
(This first updates the current versioned ChangeLog.N)
If there is an "*Authors Errors*" buffer, address the issues.
If there was a ChangeLog typo, fix the relevant entry.
If a file was deleted or renamed, consider adding an appropriate
entry to authors-ignored-files, authors-valid-file-names, or
If necessary, repeat 'C-u M-x authors' after making those changes.
Save the "*Authors*" buffer as etc/AUTHORS.
Check the diff looks reasonable. Maybe add entries to
authors-ambiguous-files or authors-aliases, and repeat.
Commit any fixes to authors.el.
3. Set the version number (M-x load-file RET admin/admin.el RET, then
M-x set-version RET). For a pretest, start at version .90. After
.99, use .990 (so that it sorts).
The final pretest should be a release candidate. Set the version
number to that of the actual release. Pick a date about a week
from now when you intend to make the release. Use M-x
add-release-logs to add entries to etc/HISTORY and the ChangeLog
file. It's best not to commit these files until the release is
actually made. Merge the entries from (unversioned) ChangeLog
into the top of the current versioned ChangeLog.N and commit that
along with etc/HISTORY. Then you can tag that commit as the
Name the tar file as emacs-XX.Y-rc1.tar. If all goes well in the
following week, you can simply rename the file and use it for the
actual release. If you need another release candidate, remember
to adjust the ChangeLog and etc/HISTORY entries.
If you need to change only a file(s) that cannot possibly affect
the build (README, ChangeLog, NEWS, etc.) then rather than doing
an entirely new build, it is better to unpack the existing
tarfile, modify the file(s), and tar it back up again.
Never replace an existing tarfile! If you need to fix something,
always upload it with a different name.
4. autoreconf -i -I m4 --force
make bootstrap
make -C etc/refcards
make -C etc/refcards clean
5. Copy lisp/loaddefs.el to lisp/ldefs-boot.el.
Commit ChangeLog.N, etc/AUTHORS, lisp/ldefs-boot.el, and the
files changed by M-x set-version.
If someone else made a commit between step 1 and now,
you need to repeat from step 4 onwards. (You can commit the files
from step 2 and 3 earlier to reduce the chance of this.)
6. ./make-dist --snapshot --no-compress
Check the contents of the new tar with admin/diff-tar-files
against the previous release (if this is the first pretest) or the
previous pretest. If you did not make the previous pretest
yourself, find it at <ftp://alpha.gnu.org/gnu/emacs/pretest>.
Releases are of course at <ftp://ftp.gnu.org/pub/gnu/emacs/>.
If this is the first pretest of a major release, just comparing
with the previous release may overlook many new files. You can try
something like 'find . | sort' in a clean repository, and compare the
results against the new tar contents.
7. tar -xf emacs-NEW.tar; cd emacs-NEW
./configure --prefix=/tmp/emacs && make && make install
Use 'script' or M-x compile to save the compilation log in
compile-NEW.log and compare it against an old one. The easiest way
to do that is to visit the old log in Emacs, change the version
number of the old Emacs to __, do the same with the new log and do
M-x ediff. Especially check that Info files aren't built, and that
no autotools (autoconf etc) run.
8. cd EMACS_ROOT_DIR && git tag -a TAG && git push origin tag TAG
TAG is emacs-XX.Y.ZZ for a pretest, emacs-XX.Y for a release.
9. Decide what compression schemes to offer.
For a release, at least gz and xz:
gzip --best -c emacs-NEW.tar > emacs-NEW.tar.gz
xz -c emacs-NEW.tar > emacs-NEW.tar.xz
For pretests, just xz is probably fine (saves bandwidth).
Now you should upload the files to the GNU ftp server. In order to
do that, you must be registered as an Emacs maintainer and have your
GPG key acknowledged by the ftp people. For instructions, see
The simplest method to upload is to use the gnulib
<http://www.gnu.org/s/gnulib/> script "build-aux/gnupload":
For a pretest:
gnupload [--user your@gpg.key.email] --to alpha.gnu.org:emacs/pretest \
FILE.gz FILE.xz ...
For a release:
gnupload [--user your@gpg.key.email] --to ftp.gnu.org:emacs \
FILE.gz FILE.xz ...
You only need the --user part if you have multiple GPG keys and do
not want to use the default.
Obviously, if you do not have a fast uplink, be prepared for the
upload to take a while.

If you prefer to do it yourself rather than use gnupload:

For each FILE, create a detached GPG binary signature and a
clearsigned directive file like this:
gpg -b FILE
echo directory: emacs/pretest > FILE.directive (for a pretest)
echo directory: emacs > FILE.directive (for a release)
gpg --clearsign FILE.directive
Upload by anonymous ftp to ftp://ftp-upload.gnu.org/ the files FILE,
FILE.sig, FILE.directive.asc.
For a release, place the files in the /incoming/ftp directory.
For a pretest, place the files in /incoming/alpha instead, so that
they appear on ftp://alpha.gnu.org/.
10. After five minutes, verify that the files are visible at
ftp://alpha.gnu.org/gnu/emacs/pretest/ for a pretest, or
ftp://ftp.gnu.org/gnu/emacs/ for a release.
Download them and check the signatures. Check they build.
11. Send an announcement to: emacs-devel, and bcc: info-gnu-emacs@gnu.org.
For a pretest, also bcc: platform-testers@gnu.org.
For a release, also bcc: info-gnu@gnu.org.
(The reason for using bcc: is to make it less likely that people
will followup on the wrong list.)
See the info-gnu-emacs mailing list archives for the form
of past announcements. The first pretest announcement, and the
release announcement, should have more detail.
12. After a release, update the Emacs pages as below.
As soon as possible after a release, the Emacs web pages should be updated.
Anyone with write access to the Emacs code repository can do this.
For instructions, see <http://savannah.gnu.org/cvs/?group=emacs>.
Changes go live more or less as soon as they are committed.
The pages to update are:
emacs.html (for a new major release, a more thorough update is needed)
add the new NEWS file as news/NEWS.xx.y
Use M-x make-manuals from admin/admin.el to regenerate the html
manuals in manual/. If there are new manuals, add appropriate index
pages in manual/ and add them to manual/index.html. In the
manual/html_node directory, delete any old manual pages that are no
longer present.
Tar up the generated html_node/emacs/ and elisp/ directories and update
the files manual/elisp.html_node.tar.gz and emacs.html_node.tar.gz.
Use M-x make-manuals-dist from from admin/admin.el to update the
manual/texi/ tarfiles.
Add compressed copies of the main info pages from the tarfile to manual/info/.
Update the refcards/pdf/ and ps/ directories, and also
refcards/emacs-refcards.tar.gz (use make -C etc/refcards pdf ps dist).
Browsing <http://web.cvs.savannah.gnu.org/viewvc/?root=emacs> is one
way to check for any files that still need updating.