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Firefox 38.0.5 Post-mortem

Summary: we did a 38.0.5 release to match a marketing / PR campaign. To make sure that builds are well tested, we used the beta channel (but building from the mozilla-release repo). We also pushed a what's new for 40.

Many of the points have been discussed during the previous Post Mortem meeting:


  • (sylvestre) major release out of the schedule should be avoided at all cost

Infrastructure that broke because of the extra release numbering

  • updates weren't available for Firefox 38.0.5 build3 on the beta-cdntest channel.. . it turns out that 38.0.5 has broken yet another assumption in our release automation which caused it not to prepare updates on the beta channel and test channels. (5/22)
    • This delayed the build of 39 beta 1
  • (sylvestre) What's new on dev edition / aurora didn't work (never before attempted - new feature)
  • buildbot (?) was expecting win64 builds for past versions, but they didn't exist, so the build failed (Not sure that a bug was filed here)
  • (KaiRo) Socorro crash-stats needed a specific exception to recognize that a 3-part version can be shipped to the beta channel as an RC. Took us 5 days of delay until it was fixed until we did get data from those RCs. See bug 1156961.
  • (KaiRo) Because we are doing intermediate releases like this and trying to ship features so fast, the quality of the product suffers, in this case esp. of 39, which has a shorter cycle of beta testing and we know we need multiple weeks to react to data and get data from reactions again.
  • Pocket integration quality
    • rushing
    • not enough time for testing, user testing and debug
  • (lmandel) AMD crash required that we skip a 39 beta release. We really need an answer for the AMD crash. (But we already know this.)
    • we had many occurrences of this bug (38.0 b2, b5, b8 & b9 affected)
  • (lmandel) Delay of 39 beta resulted in external press inquiries. Just so that people are aware that those outside of Mozilla notice these changes.
  • (elan) We did it! Even with all of the items listed above! Thank you!
  • (sylvestre) Extra hours, extra stress
    • Impacted Releng, QE, developer, project management, web team, relman, etc
    • A lot of people worked during week end and late

(Ritu) Reduced the 39 Beta cycle by over 2 weeks which is a huge impact on release stability and quality!

Post Mortem on Friday as well. Survey:

Friday @ 1PM in Program Management