File: COMMITTERS.md

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Committing changes to Strings
====

We would like to make it easier for community members to contribute to strings
using pull requests, even if it makes the task of reviewing and committing
these changes a little harder.  Pull requests are only ever based on a single
branch. As a result contributors should target their changes at the master branch.
This makes the process of contributing a little easier for the contributor since 
they don't need to concern themselves with the question, "What branch do I base my changes
on?"  This is already called out in the [CONTRIBUTING.md](http://goo.gl/XRH2J).

Therefore, it is the responsibility of the committer to re-base the change set
on the appropriate branch which should receive the contribution.

It is also the responsibility of the committer to review the change set in an
effort to make sure the end users must opt-in to new behavior that is
incompatible with previous behavior.  We employ the use of [feature
flags](http://stackoverflow.com/questions/7707383/what-is-a-feature-flag) as
the primary way to achieve this user opt-in behavior.  Finally, it is the
responsibility of the committer to make sure the `master` branch
is clean and working at all times.  Clean means that dead code is not
allowed, everything needs to be usable in some manner at all points in time.

The rest of this document addresses the concerns of the committer.  This
document will help guide the committer decide which branch to base, or re-base
a contribution on top of.  This document also describes our branch management
strategy, which is closely related to the decision of what branch to commit
changes into.

Terminology
====

Many of these terms have more than one meaning.  For the purposes of this
document, the following terms refer to specific things.

**contributor** - A person who makes a change to strings and submits a change
set in the form of a pull request.

**change set** - A set of discrete patches which combined together form a
contribution.  A change set takes the form of Git commits and is submitted to
strings in the form of a pull request.

**committer** - A person responsible for reviewing a pull request and then
making the decision what base branch to merge the change set into.

**base branch** - A branch in Git that contains an active history of changes
and will eventually be released using semantic version guidelines.  The branch
named `master` will always exist as a base branch.

**master branch** - The branch where new functionality that and bug fixes are
merged.

**security** - Where critical security fixes are merged.  These change sets
will then be merged into release branches independently from one another. (i.e.
no merging up).  Please do not submit pull requests against the security branch
and instead report all security related issues to security@puppet.com as
per our security policy published at
[https://puppet.com/security/](https://puppet.com/security/).

Committer Guide
====

This section provides a guide to follow while committing change sets to strings
base branches.

How to decide what release(s) should be patched
---

This section provides a guide to help a committer decide the specific base
branch that a change set should be merged into.

The latest minor release of a major release is the only base branch that should
be patched.  These patches will be merged into `master` if they contain new
functionality and  if they fix a critical bug.  Older minor releases in a major release 
do not get patched.

Before the switch to [semantic versions](http://semver.org/) committers did not
have to think about the difference between minor and major releases.
Committing to the latest minor release of a major release is a policy intended
to limit the number of active base branches that must be managed.

Security patches are handled as a special case.  Security patches may be
applied to earlier minor releases of a major release, but the patches should
first be merged into the `security` branch.  Security patches should be merged
by Puppet Labs staff members.  Pull requests should not be submitted with the
security branch as the base branch.  Please send all security related
information or patches to security@puppet.com as per our [Security
Policy](https://puppet.com/security/).

The CI systems are configured to run against `master`.  Over time, this branch 
will refer to different versions, but its name will remain fixed to avoid having 
to update CI jobs and tasks as new versions are released.

Code review checklist
---

This section aims to provide a checklist of things to look for when reviewing a
pull request and determining if the change set should be merged into a base
branch:

 * All tests pass
 * Are there any platform gotchas? (Does a change make an assumption about
   platform specific behavior that is incompatible with other platforms?  e.g.
   Windows paths vs. POSIX paths.)
 * Is the change backwards compatible? (It should be)
 * Are there YARD docs for API changes?
 * Does the change set also require documentation changes? If so is the
   documentation being kept up to date?
 * Does the change set include clean code?  (software code that is formatted
   correctly and in an organized manner so that another coder can easily read
   or modify it.)  HINT: `git diff master --check`
 * Does the change set conform to the contributing guide?

Commit citizen guidelines:
---

This section aims to provide guidelines for being a good commit citizen by
paying attention to our automated build tools.

 * Don’t push on a broken build.  (A broken build is defined as a failing job
   in [Puppet Strings](https://jenkins.puppetlabs.com/job/platform_puppet-strings_unit-ruby_master/)
   page.)
 * Watch the build until your changes have gone through green
 * Update the ticket status and target version.  The target version field in
   our issue tracker should be updated to be the next release of Puppet.  For
   example, if the most recent release of Puppet is 3.1.1 and you merge a
   backwards compatible change set into master, then the target version should
   be 3.2.0 in the issue tracker.)
 * Ensure the pull request is closed (Hint: amend your merge commit to contain
   the string `closes #123` where 123 is the pull request number and github
   will automatically close the pull request when the branch is pushed.)

Example Procedure
====

This section helps a committer rebase and merge a contribution into the base branch.

Suppose a contributor submits a pull request based on master.  The change set
fixes a bug reported against strings 0.1.0  which is the most recently released
version of strings.

First, the committer pulls down the branch using the `hub` gem.  This tool
automates the process of adding the remote repository and creating a local
branch to track the remote branch.

    $ hub checkout https://github.com/puppetlabs/puppet-strings/pull/123
    Branch jeffmccune-pdoc-34_fix_foo_error set up to track remote branch pdoc-34-fix_foo_error from jeffmccune.
    Switched to a new branch 'jeffmccune-pdoc-34_fix_foo_error'

It's possible that more changes have been merged into master since the pull
request was submitted. In this case it may be necessary to rebase the branch
that contains the changes:

    $ git rebase upstream/master

After the branch has been checked out and rebased, the committer should ensure that
the code review check list has been completed.

Now that we have a topic branch containing the change set based on the most recent 
`master` branch, the committer merges in:

    $ git checkout master
    Switched to branch 'master'
    $ git merge --no-ff --log jeffmccune-pdoc-34_fix_foo_error
    Merge made by the 'recursive' strategy.
     foo | 0
     1 file changed, 0 insertions(+), 0 deletions(-)
     create mode 100644 foo

Once the change set has been merged into one base branch, the change set should
not be modified in order to keep the history clean, avoid "double" commits, and
preserve the usefulness of `git branch --contains`.  If there are any merge
conflicts, they are to be resolved in the merge commit itself and not by
re-writing (rebasing) the patches for one base branch, but not another.

Once the change set has been merged into `master`, the committer pushes.
Please note, the checklist should be complete at this point. It's helpful to make
sure your local branches are up to date to avoid one of the branches failing to fast
forward while the other succeeds.

    $ git push origin master:master

That's it!  The committer then updates the pull request, updates the issue in
our issue tracker, and keeps an eye on the [build
status](http://jenkins.puppetlabs.com).