Make a new release

The efforts to automate the release process are tracked in

When to tag a new release

Various Osmocom projects depend on others. As soon as a feature is added to one Osmocom project that is needed for another dependent project to compile, we should tag at least a minor-revision bump in the depended-upon project and require it in the depending project's To illustrate, let's look at this example:

Among others, openbsc depends on the libraries built from libosmocore, for example libosmogsm.
As soon as the libosmogsm library gets a new feature used by openbsc, like something was added to
gsm_utils.h, we shall
  • tag a release in libosmocore; say if the previous version was 0.1.2, make it at least 0.1.3.
  • and in openbsc, require libosmogsm >= 0.1.3 in

How to tag a new release

The revision to tag must be merged to the public, upstream master branch.

Find out the git hash for the revision you want to tag.

Find out the next open version number. Take care: look at all of these:
  • git tag -l
  • debian/changelog
    For example, the changelog may contain versions that were forgotten to be tagged.

Now, make a GPG-signed tag of that git hash with the next open version number.

Say, for example, the git hash is 012342abcdefg and the next open version is 0.1.3:

git tag -s 0.1.3 012342abcdefg -m "release 0.1.3" 

(If gpg complains, see GPG: Have a matching user id.)

Verify that git picks up the new version tag:

$ git describe

For your local build, nothing will change until you delete the .version file
and completely rebuild:

rm .version
autoreconf -fi
cat .version

This should show the same as git describe.

When you're convinced that all is in order, push the new tag:

git push origin 0.1.3

If anything went wrong, you can delete the tag (locally) by

git tag -d 0.1.3

and, if you've already pushed it, by
git push --delete origin 0.1.3

Make a Release

Commit changes:
  • cleanup TODO-RELEASE file if not empty, bumping API versions accordingly (see comments in TODO-RELEASE)
  • update debian/changelog using "gbp dch" command

TODO: more detailed description of necessary release steps:
create, sign, publish tarball?

GPG: Have a matching user id

By default, git tag -s takes your author information to lookup the secret GPG key to sign a tag with.
If the author+email do not exactly match one of the key's @uid@s, you will get this error:

gpg: signing failed: secret key not available

Verify: say, your author+email info in your git config says "John Doe <>", try

gpg --list-secret-keys "John Doe <>" 

If this fails, GPG won't find the right key automatically.

Ways to resolve:

  • Use git tag -u <key-id>
  • Edit your secret key to add a uid that matches your author information
    gpg --edit-key
    gpg> adduid
    # enter details to match the git author
    gpg> save