SNAPSHOT acceptance

Ryan Sonnek bio photo By Ryan Sonnek

I just recently had a run-in with one of the XDoclet2 developers regarding the current hibernate plugin. Sure, the issues I have raised are “Fixed in CVS”, but the SNAPSHOT jar is still several weeks old and without the fixes. It’s not so much a problem for me personally to download and build the jar, but I am more concerned with other developers on my projects. I use maven to resolve my project dependencies so that beginning developers do not have to worry about getting out of synch. This is especially useful in a continuous integration environment when SNAPSHOT builds can be published by other developers, and automatically picked up on the next local build.

I find it confusing that in this day and age, I still hear so many developers suggest for users to “Just download the code and build from CVS.” With tools like cruisecontrol and maven around that understand SNAPSHOT software, why aren’t projects taking advantage of this!? When I look at a project and see they offer a SNAPSHOT version, I think to myself, “How nice. If I have any problems with this version, I will automatically pick up the latest changes when they are published.” So, it is very misleading when SNAPSHOT versions of projects are anything but SNAPSHOTS. I think the bottom line is that if projects are not going to keep SNAPSHOT versions of their software uptodate, I don’t think they should be using them.