The main idea is that the WebKitGTK+ release schedule is (almost perfectly aligned with the GNOME release schedule. We do one stable release every 6 months, at the same time than the stable GNOME release. There's a number of reasons for this, but the main ones are:
- We generally agree with the idea of time-based releases.
- Many of us work on upstream GNOME modules, some of them using WebKit, so it's natural to choose the GNOME schedule. The GNOME schedule can be found at http://www.gnome.org/start/unstable.
- On top of that, some modules that we maintain are closely tied to WebKit (Epiphany in particular) and developed together with it, so it's extremely convenient to release all these modules at the same time.
So this is what you can expect in terms of releases:
- One unstable, preview release, of WebKitGTK+ with each GNOME unstable release until the UI freeze. These will generally be in the form 1.X.1, 1.X.2, 1.X.3, etc. X is an odd number.
- At UI freeze (which is about one month before the release), we'll branch and start to stabilize the code as much as possible. The first release of this branch will be in the form 1.X.90, to signify that we are approaching the end of the cycle. This is exactly what GNOME does, and we'll do the same to avoid potential confusion for downstream.
- A stable release, of the form 1.X+1.0 at the same time than the GNOME stable release. Further maintenance releases will happen from that branch as needed, starting with 1.X+1.1. At the same time, we'll start a new cycle with unstable releases from trunk (which kept advancing since the moment we branched).
- Our stable releases are generally maintained until the next one isout, although exceptions could be made if distributions request it. We'd appreciate help on this matter though!
- Unless otherwise stated, and in exceptional situations, WebKitGTK+ has been API and ABI stable since 1.0. When breakage has happened it has been very minor and usually because of circumstances beyond our control. During the unstable series new API may shift as necessary though.