Releases/Thunderbird 3.0b4/Post Mortem

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Post Mortem for the Thunderbird release of 3.0b4 (DialIn Info)

What went well

  • New Beta Release Bug Creator
    • Made filing of bugs much easier and quicker.
    • All information in one place, only quick visual check made.
  • General Process
    • Went smoothly.
    • Felt good - no real stress points.
    • Good communication.
  • String & Code Freezes
    • We had time to meet string freezes with no late checkins.
    • Code Freeze wasn't quite met, but the stabilisation period adsorbed that without delaying the start of freeze.
  • Checklist
    • Updated list was clear.

What could have gone better, and lessons learned

Leading up to the release

String Freeze

Code Freeze

  • Didn't quite meet the full code freeze, mainly due to later landing of faceted search.

Release Notes

  • Would have liked drafts posted one working day earlier - to allow a bit more checking.
  • People don't read release notes, lets hope bug 516884 does its job.


  • Need to patch sentryviewer prior to release so we can monitor uptake ourselves
  • Need to update /pub/ so mirrors will pick up the update
  • Need caution with version numbering, release automation created installers called "Thunderbird 3.0" instead of previous times "Thunderbird 3", caused bouncer typos
  • tbirdbld vs. cltbld account permissions for tagging not yet sorted out with MoCo
  • rebuilding for a single locale (zh-TW) turned out to be a much more manual process than I had hoped for, creating unnecessary delays
  • Possibly build system that should send email to drivers to confirm completion of builds.
  • Release Driver possible to do checkin for build revisions.


Overall a good release happy about :

  • community participation.
  • quality of the build.
  • Respect of schedule.

Need to improve

  • l10n spot checks as the zh-TW issue was caught by pure luck.
  • try to get more Mac/Linux testers.
  • a bit communication when things go wrong.


  • zh-TW had a broken about: box.
    • Rebuilt within en-US string as no localiser contact.
    • Tested single-locale rebuild with build automation.
    • Standard8 proposal: If something similar found in a locale in final release candidates and localiser not responding, would not publish locale. Locale would then wait until a point release.

Anything else


  • gozer: Add the extra build steps bits to the beta 4 page ready for next time.
  • gozer: File bug on incorporating automatic email on completion into the build system.
  • Standard8: Chat with gozer about checkins for build revisions.
  • _Tsk_: Investigate using mozmill to test localizations for basic issue.


rebron, dmose, _Tsk_, gozer, Standard8