3.7.2rc1 and 3.6.8rc1 cutoffs ahead, last 3.6.x bugfix release!

We’re reaching the end of the year and it’s time for another pair of Python 3 maintenance releases, 3.7.2 and 3.6.8, before we ring out 2018. Since there are still some open release blocker issues and I haven’t been bugging you about them, I’ve moved the code cutoff for the release candidates to this coming Friday, 12-07, by the end of the day (AOE). That gives us all another 4 days to review open issues and PRs. Please give highest attention to any release blockers you have been shepherding or reviewing. Thanks!

A reminder: as previously announced, 3.6.8 is planned to be the last bugfix release of the 3.6 series. Python 3.6.0 was released on 2016-12-23, so by the time 3.6.8 is released, 3.6.x will have been in bugfix mode almost exactly 2 years. When a new feature release is made and enters bugfix mode, our policy has long been to continue to maintain the previous bugfix branch for at least one more release and then move that branch to security fix only mode. 3.7.0 (and 3.6.6) was released nearly six months ago and, with the release of 3.6.8, there will have been two additional 3.6.x bugfix releases since then. So, barring any showstopper issues that might arise, the upcoming 3.6.8rc1 is your last chance to make bugfix changes for 3.6.x. Following the successful release of 3.6.8, only security fixes will be accepted for the 3.6 branch and future 3.6.x releases will be source-only and scheduled as needed; no further binary installers will be produced for 3.6. Refer to the Dev Guide sections and release PEPs linked below for more information.




An update: as of the planned Friday cutoff, we still had a few open issues. Since 3.6.8 is the last planned bugfix for the 3.6 branch, I would like to make sure we leave it in as good a state as possible before it moves to security-fix-only mode. Also, the Windows App Store support for 3.7.x that Steve D has been working on is in final review and it would be great to have that in the release candidate. So I’m going to extend the cutoff for 3.7.2rc1 and 3.6.8rc1 until Monday, 12-10, end of day (AOE), in other words about 30 hours from now. Thanks for all your efforts so far!

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OK, thanks to a lot of hard work by many of you, I think we are ready to start the manufacturing of 3.7.2rc1 and 3.6.8rc1.

For the 3.7 branch, as usual feel free to continue to merge the usual changes appropriate for a bugfix branch; unless otherwise marked and agreed on as a release blocker for 3.7.2 final, any new 3.7 merges will be released in 3.7.3.

For the 3.6 branch, as announced 3.6.8 is planned to be the last bugfix release for the 3.6 series; future 3.6.x releases will be as needed and contain only security fixes and source only. Of course, if any release blocker regressions show up after 3.6.8rc1, we will consider merging fixes for them. This means that, as of now, the 3.6 branch is no longer open to normal bugfixes, only security fixes and release blocker regressions fixes and only with the approval of the release manager. Therefore, as we have done with previous branches moving to security-fix mode, merges to the 3.6 branch on the cpython GitHub repo are now restricted to the release managers. If you feel a change to 3.6 is needed either because it is a release blocker regression in 3.6.8 or because it is a security issue, please ensure there is a bpo issue describing the problem, mark it as release blocker priority, and submit the necessary PR. At some point, on or after the 3.6.8 release, we will be going through the open 3.6 PRs, open PRs with the needs backport to 3.6 label, and bpo issues marked for 3.6 and updating or closing them as needed. Please do not mark new PRs with the needs backport to 3.6 label unless you feel the proposed change meets one of the criteria above.

Thanks for your help!