Python 3.13 beta 1: before or after PyCon US

For the Python 3.13 release schedule, an important question has come up: should beta 1 be scheduled for before or after PyCon US?

Since we started the yearly release cadance, we usually cut beta 1 in early-ish May. PyCon US 2024 is May 17-19, with the sprints May 20-23. Cutting right after PyCon US, or at the sprints, isn’t realistic – too much going on, too many tired people (mostly me). So 3.13 has to be cut either before PyCon US (say, May 7), or a few weeks after (say, June 4).

For reference, previous beta 1 dates: May 22 for 3.12 (a few weeks after PyCon US), May 8 for 3.11 (the week after PyCon US), May 5 for 3.10 (the week before (virtual) PyCon US), May 18 for 3.9 (four weeks after (virtual) PyCon US). (Earlier releases aren’t on the yearly cadance.)

The downside of cutting beta 1 before the sprints is that you can’t use the sprints to finish your new feature. The upside of cutting beta 1 before the sprints is that people don’t try to finish their new features and squeeze them in during/right after the sprints. The downside of waiting until after the sprints is that we’re compressing the beta period, possibly pushing more bug discovery into the release candidate period. PyCon US is also just a very busy and exhausting time.

One of the reasons to delay until after PyCon US is that the Core Dev sprint that ended with Python 3.6 beta 1 being cut (in September 2016) was considered a very good idea. I think a Core Dev sprint is very different from a PyCon US sprint.

In case it isn’t clear – I’m more inclined to schedule beta 1 in early May. Here’s my proposed schedule:

- 3.13.0 alpha 1: Tuesday, 2023-10-17
- 3.13.0 alpha 2: Tuesday, 2023-11-21
- 3.13.0 alpha 3: Tuesday, 2023-12-19
- 3.13.0 alpha 4: Tuesday, 2024-01-16
- 3.13.0 alpha 5: Tuesday, 2024-02-13
- 3.13.0 alpha 6: Tuesday, 2024-03-12
- 3.13.0 alpha 7: Tuesday, 2024-04-09
- 3.13.0 beta 1: Tuesday, 2024-05-07
  (No new features beyond this point.)
- 3.13.0 beta 2: Tuesday, 2024-05-28
- 3.13.0 beta 3: Tuesday, 2024-06-18
- 3.13.0 beta 4: Tuesday, 2024-07-16
- 3.13.0 candidate 1: Tuesday, 2024-07-30
- 3.13.0 candidate 2: Tuesday, 2024-09-03
- 3.13.0 final: Tuesday, 2024-10-01

Do people feel strongly that beta 1 should be cut after the PyCon US sprint, so that they can try and make bugs finish features during the sprint, rather than try and fix bugs?

  • Before PyCon US
  • After PyCon US

0 voters

I have no dog in this fight, but it seems to me that if PyCon US dates are relatively static (May-June timeframe?) that you’d be better off shifting the general release schedule (not just for 3.13) to avoid this sort of conflict in the future. Just a thought…


The release date in early October is fixed to synchronize with other peoples release dates that follow.

I like the idea of finishing things off for the beta at PyCon sprints. It can be difficult to find enough time to complete some projects outside of PyCon, but that’s generally been a good way for me to block out time to concentrate on Python. And when the inevitable implementation questions come up, it’s really great to be able to just walk up to someone and ask [1].

  1. I know, not everyone is able to go to PyCon sprints ↩︎

1 Like

To close the loop on this: I’ve submitted PEP 719, the 3.13 release schedule, using the dates I proposed. Delaying beta 1 until after PyCon US just leaves us with far less time for the actual beta-testing.


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