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Hi :)

Ok, so we are back to "business ready" meaning "old".  Again.  Is that what it means in Ubuntu?

LTS was first noticeably used in Ubuntu.  Bug-patches and bug-fixes are back-ported to the latest 
LTS as a top priority, before being ported to any of the non-LTS releases.  This is a bit different 
from tier 1 support contracts.  
Regards from
Tom :)  

--- On Tue, 5/6/12, Charles-H. Schulz <> wrote:

From: Charles-H. Schulz <>
Subject: Re: [libreoffice-marketing] Of "business ready use" and bugs in LibreOffice and a 
LibreOffice LTS
Date: Tuesday, 5 June, 2012, 14:12

Hello Marc,

Le Mon, 04 Jun 2012 20:51:10 -0400,
Marc Paré <> a écrit :

Watching some of us discussing these items on our lists is at times a 
little disconcerting but perhaps a necessary evil. Thanks to all of
you for keeping calm over this even when the discussions got a little

I find myself wishing to add my opinion to the discussion. I have no 
problems with any of the number of bugs/regressions with any
versions, as I know that these are actively being worked out by our
devs. I understand that we have only been a distinct foundation/group
for over a year and that the bug reporting/process is still being
refined quite actively by our devs. I also have no problem with
having two branches available for users, nor do I have any problems
with offering users our newest version on the website on the
downloads page. Users can decide themselves if they would like to
upgrade to the newest version once they get their notices through the
LibreOffice update notices.

We should update our FAQ and perhaps detail the use of the download
page as well as our philosophy behind the use of our two branch
system. I am sure that this would be enough to clear up any questions
regarding this topic.

Re: LibreOffice for business use:

Having taken part on software acquisition committees in the
educational field here is what I do know of multiple installation at
large institutions. Large organizations DO usually pre-test software
before doing large installations both for bugs and for installation 
compatibility on their systems. For example, at my school board, some 
school(s) may be designated as test-sites to help with software QA in 
real-time use before it is accepted board-wide. Deciding to install a 
suite such as LibreOffice would normally take 1 year before getting
the confirmation from our IT staff AND only after being fully tested.

However, one of the most important aspect of software acquisition and 
installation at large institutions is that of the "long term support" 
(LTS) of that particular package. One of the drawbacks of our rapid 
system development, is that the term of support for each version is
so short. Although the rapid development does bring on advantages by
way of new options to LibreOffice, it also presents disadvantages by
forcing these institutions to upgrade on shorter terms that they can
manage. My school board will upgrade major software packages every
3-4 years, but, will update this software whenever an update is
available (with bugfixes). However, software updates will also go
through the normal pre-test before being sent through the networks.

So, if we are to join in on the very competitive wordprocessing
market of large institutions/companies, in my opinion, the winner(s)
will be those who can develop LTS versions of their software
packages. The question remains as to how long a term would have a
version of LibreOffice LTS. We would have to consult with our devs
who are experienced in large-scale installations at institutions or
even consult with various institutions to really get a good grasp as
to what would be considered a reasonable LTS-term. Again, I suspect
the result will most likely favour a 3-4 year term as being a
reasonable term.

Re: branches available to users

If we are to offer users any "official branches", we could offer
users a LibreOffice LTS (being used by large-scale institutions) AND
our newest branch(es). We would certainly encourage our users to
download our newest branch and continue our road to incremental
updates rather than full replacement installation updates for the
most recent branch(es) (this is what I believe Italo made reference
to in a prior email). users would still have the option to download
our previous branch(es) if they wished to do so.

This would then require LibreOffice devs to manage the LibreOffice
LTS version with a closer eye to bug-fixes or regressions fixes (if
any) but also still allow for the rapid development of our newest

Thank you for bringing that up, it's an interesting discussion. Here's
what I think reading your message. You're asking in fact two questions.
One of which might already have been answered by a few of our corporate
* LTS obviously means long term support. Both "support" and "long term"
  deserve careful consideration. I will in this email first focus on
  the term "support". If we speak of support, we must think of a
  support provider. In this case, does this mean we should think -as
  TDF, as a project- of providing professional support to users
  (obviously for a fee)? I don't think it's your idea, but I thought I
  would highlight the implications of such a matter.
* Have we studied what some of the existing support/service providers
  on LibreOffice already offer? I am not so sure but I'm under the
  impression that you can order support (and in this case a "LTS" kind
  of support) from Suse and Canonical (there are others) on one
  specific version of LibreOffice. That is, these vendors have one
  reference version of LibreOffice, say the 3.4.5, and they provide
  support and services on it making it their de facto LTS version. 

Back to your suggestion: do you mean we should relabel the older branch
"LTS", knowing that each of our releases in one branch really works
like a "service pack"? If we had the ability to provide incremental
updates (we will one day) we would have the feelings we have two
versions, and sometimes "maintenance updates". So at some point, say
the 3.5.4, we label it LTS, because we're close to open a new branch,
the 3.6, and we can suggest service providers to base their support
offers on this one for the time being. Did I get you right?


Charles-H. Schulz 
Co-founder & Director, The Document Foundation,
Zimmerstr. 69, 10117 Berlin, Germany
Rechtsfähige Stiftung des bürgerlichen Rechts
Legal details:
Mobile Number: +33 (0)6 98 65 54 24.

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