The Percona development process adheres the following release lifecycle milestones for major new software releases:

Alpha Releases

Usually unannounced, an Alpha release is distributed internally, or only to a select external audience to be tested with non-production workloads only.

Platform Support:

All or a subset of currently supported and/or targeted platforms.

Features:

New features are being added, but not committed to for GA. Features may be removed. While some features are complete, many are still in development or being added.

Documentation:

Draft only for completed features — not viewable, with release notes internal only.

Quality:

Users can start trying out Alpha versions, but should not expect feature stability.

Support:

Internal only support.

Integration with Percona Software is not guaranteed and upgradability is not supported.

Beta Releases

Usually public, announced via our blog . To be used with non-production workloads only.

Platform Support:

All targeted platforms.

Features:

New features in this release will be included in GA. Most features are complete, some new minimal features are still being added.

Documentation:

Draft only for completed features and install/config updates, as needed — not viewable. Release notes include a cumulative list of new features, improvements, and bug fixes since the previous major version.

Quality:

Features are mostly stable, but data loss can occur; the focus is on usability and scalability.

Support:

Community support provided via Percona Community Forum  ; Bugs should be submitted via Jira .

Integration with Percona Software is not guaranteed and upgradability is not supported.

Release Candidates

As a public release, Release Candidates are announced and distributed externally, however are still intended to be tested with non-production workloads only.

Platform Support:

All targeted platforms.

Features:

Features are complete with tech preview* features identified; only bug fixes are accepted at this stage.

Documentation:

The draft is near-final and publicly viewable, with a cumulative list of new features, improvements, and bug fixes since the previous major version. Does not include bugs fixed since a previous Beta or RC release unless reported by a user.

Quality:

Features are stable; the focus is on final testing and critical issues being resolved.

Support:

Community support provided via Percona Community Forum ; Bugs should be submitted via Jira .

Integration with Percona Software is not guaranteed and upgradability is not supported.

General Availability (GA)

The final stage, a General Availability (GA) release, is announced and distributed externally and ready for production workloads. Distribution is via full packages (.rpm, .ovm, docker, .deb, etc), repositories, and marketplaces.

Platform Support:

All targeted platforms.

Features:

Features are complete and will not be removed in future versions of the same major release; may include tech preview* features.

Documentation:

Complete, integrated, and viewable, with a cumulative list of new features, improvements, and bug fixes since the previous major version. Does not include bugs fixed since a previous Beta or RC release unless reported by a user.

Quality:

Quality passed up to GA exit criteria.

Support:

Full SLA-based support, with the availability of managed services and consulting.

Integration with the latest versions of Percona Software is supported, with upgradability to future versions of the same major release.

Hotfix or Feature Builds

On occasion, we will release HotFix or Feature Build updates internally and externally. Documentation will be standalone, with support backed by Product/Engineering.

*Tech Preview Features: RC/GA releases can include features that are not yet ready for enterprise use and are not included in support via SLA (supported by product/engineering on the best effort basis). These features will be fully documented and described as a tech preview so that customers can provide feedback prior to the full release of the feature in a future GA release (or removal of the feature is deemed not useful). This functionality can change (APIs, CLIs, etc.) from tech preview to GA, however, there is no guarantee of compatibility between different tech preview versions.

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