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Description The Community Relations Undertakers project handles developer retirement, both when developers announce their retirement as well as due to developer inactivity.
Project email
Last elected: 2019/06/15
(and inherited member(s))
Parent Project Gentoo Community Relations
Project listing

The Developer Relations Undertakers project handles developer retirement, both when developers announce their retirement as well as due to developer inactivity.

Sending mail

You can automate sending mail using send-email script from undertaker-scripts.

Whenever sending mail on behalf of Undertakers, please remember to:

  • CC the alternative e-mail addresses of the developer (found in LDAP)
  • CC
  • set Reply-To to

If you forget to do that or the user skips the alias in his reply, please forward the mail to the alias for archiving purposes.

Checking activity

This section does not specify a policy. It is merely a handy list of sources which Undertakers can consult while looking for specific signs of activity. Activity in any of the listed areas by itself does not preclude retirement, and lack of activity in any of them does not imply retirement. Every case is considered individually.

Steps to retire a developer

Prior to inactivity retirement

  1. If the developer is inactive for more than two months:
    • Send the First Mail asking the developer to consider removing themself from packages they are uninterested in maintaining and/or update their project roles. Packages no longer in the developer's care should be announced as unmaintained to the mailing list and re-assigned to until another developer or proxy-maintainer steps up and take care of them.
    • Find the developer's bug:
      • If the developer predates recruitment bugs (there was no recruitment bug), open a new bug.
      • Change Summary to:
        • Developers with gentoo.git commit access: Packages reassignment: Full Name (nickname).
        • Developers without gentoo.git commit access: Status update: Full Name (nickname).
      • Reassign the bug to (Retirement Admin).
      • Change Status Whiteboard to first-mail-sent: yy-mm-dd.
      • Make sure the developer and relevant teams are CC'ed on the bug.
      • Set Alias bug field to nickname.
      • Once situation is clarified, close the bug as FIXED/WONTFIX.
    • After two weeks of no response consider reassignment of the packages.
      • Remember to reassign bugs to new maintainer after changing metadata.xml maintainer field.
  2. After four months from the first e-mail, if you still believe the developer is inactive:
    • Reopen the Packages reassignment bug:
      • Change Summary to Retire: Full Name (nickname).
      • Change Status Whiteboard to second-mail-sent: yy-mm-dd.
    • Send the Second Mail.
    • Wait a minimum of one month, to give the developer adequate time to respond on the bug or to the mail.
  3. After one month from the second e-mail, if you still believe the developer is inactive:
    • Send the Third Mail.
    • Don't forget to change Status Whiteboard to third-mail-sent and to update the date there.
    • Wait another month.
  4. Close the bug if the developer is still considered active
  5. If the developer doesn't respond within six months since the first mail or is otherwise still considered inactive:

Retirement procedure

Retirement procedure looks like this:

  • Change the Status Whiteboard to infra-retire: yyyy-mm-dd.
  • CC, (when you find DEV in Contributors list, left column at,
  • Clean up any metadata.xml the developer in question might be mentioned in. Using simple python script.
  • Remove the developer from all the teams of which they are still a member of on the Project:Gentoo page, and set developer status to Is active: No on the developer's wiki user page.
  • Search for all NEW and REOPEN bugs assigned to the retired developer on Gentoo Bugzilla and reassign them to the remaining package maintainers (or maintainer-needed). Information to whom reassign can be obtained from metadata.xml file of that package.
  • Wait for Infrastructure, Planet and Forums admins to retire developer in question before proceeding further.
  • Remove access to #gentoo-dev (access is either removed completely or changed to voice depending on whether they ask for it or they're still considered active and helpful in the channel). Ask a freenode staffer (#gentoo-groupcontacts channel) to reset the cloak to a non-gentoo one.

Close the bug once all of the above steps are finished!

Status tracking for retirement bugs

- Packages reassignment
- Bugs
- IRC cloak
- Infra
- Wiki
- Forum
- Planet

Pending retirements

Click here to see all the pending retirements.

Undertaker scripts

The following scripts are currently available in undertaker-scripts repository to help automating the work of Undertakers:

  • to find developers who haven't committed in N days (and don't have retirement bug open); 4 months, by default;
  • to scan open retirement bugs and report those for which action is overdue,
  • along with mail templates to help sending e-mails on behalf of Undertakers.

What will happen with your mail address after retiring?

Your mail will be forwarded to the non-gentoo email address on file in LDAP, for a period of one month per year as developer, rounded up, min 1 month, max 6 months.

If no non-gentoo email address is on file, or the address on file bounces, the mail may be stored or discarded for up to the same time, at the discretion of infra.

This page is based on a document formerly found on our main website
The following people contributed to the original document: Bryan Østergaard, rane, Markos Chandras (Hwoarang), Pacho Ramos (Pacho)
They are listed here because wiki history does not allow for any external attribution. If you edit the wiki article, please do not add yourself here; your contributions are recorded on each article's associated history page.