App Review Board Review and Assessment

Registered by David Planella

We want to socialize how people can get their apps in Ubuntu, and we want to review how well the ARB is working.

* Which things work well?
* Which are the areas that need improvement?

Blueprint information

Jono Bacon
David Planella
David Planella
Series goal:
Accepted for oneiric
Milestone target:
milestone icon ubuntu-11.10
Started by
David Planella
Completed by
David Planella

Related branches



Work items for oneiric-alpha-1:
[mvo] Change contact address to app-review-board team to the app-review mailing list: DONE
[stgraber] Document and publish a checklist of steps for uploading apps to the live extras repository ( DONE

Work items for oneiric-alpha-2:
[allison] Discuss on the ARB mailing list: should we discuss proposals on the mailing list, vote in the tickets, and reserve (monthly) IRC meetings for higher-level topics and catchup?: DONE
[allison] Talk to the owners of the screenshot branch and find out if we can simplify the process (get permissions for for ARB to merge branch, low-permission way to copy images to live, or web interface): DONE
[dpm] Find out more about the myapps portal on d.u.c and its schedule for deployment: DONE
[dpm] Publish and article on the Ubuntu Planet explaining the role of the ARB and the workflow to get an app in Ubuntu (will wait for the release): BLOCKED

Work items:
[laney] Provide links to standard package submission process, that ARB can provide to developers: DONE

Session notes

We want to socialize how people can get their apps in Ubuntu, and we want to review how well the ARB is working.
* Which things work well?
* Which are the areas that need improvement?
Landing page for the App Review Board (with links to process):

PPA Packaging:
- Lots of handholding needed from the ARB for this cycle
- Better documentation can help
- Work this cycle on simplifying
File a bug:
- Currently manual bug submission
- New submissions assigned at an ARB meeting to a shepherd
- Down the road may be able to move to Developer Console web interface, and simplified packaging work
ARB meetings:
- Attendance has been low, need to do recruiting
- May switch new proposal adoption to mailing list, and voting on proposals to bug
- Monthly IRC meeting for checkpoint, handling other issues, work on documentation, etc
- Responsiveness of developers (delays from our side lower developer's motivation)
- Takes a month for IS to merge screenshot branch
  * If some ARB members had rights to push to the screenshot branch we could speed up part of the process

- Better documentation needed to help starting developers to learn how to develop, package, and submit
- Most pages could be on (maybe all of them could be, even the ARB specific submission info)

In need of serious streamlining - fagan
* maybe add more people to the board
* streamline submission of apps (API?)

* Questions:
  - How are security updates managed? App developers need to be responsive to security bugs, otherwise the app might be removed
  - Are there guidelines for approval/rejection of apps? Yes: guidelines and full code review for security (but only intended for small packages)

How could extras better integrate with backports?
- Should we encourage people to get their package into the next Ubuntu release, or Debian?

[dpm, 2011-06-21]:
The MyApps Portal is now live on Right now it is targeted at commercial applications, and before it can be used for Free Software, the story about reviewing applications needs to be tackled (right now it is possible for reviewers to download all commercial applications, so we should probably strengthen the permissions). The Canonical ISD hackers ( are in charge of development of the MyApps Portal.


Work Items

Dependency tree

* Blueprints in grey have been implemented.