[nova][all][ptg] Summary: Same-Company Approvals

Morgan Fainberg morgan.fainberg at gmail.com
Sun May 5 01:19:48 UTC 2019

On Sat, May 4, 2019, 16:48 Eric Fried <openstack at fried.cc> wrote:

> (NB: I tagged [all] because it would be interesting to know where other
> teams stand on this issue.)
> Etherpad: https://etherpad.openstack.org/p/nova-ptg-train-governance
> Summary:
> - There is a (currently unwritten? at least for Nova) rule that a patch
> should not be approved exclusively by cores from the same company. This
> is rife with nuance, including but not limited to:
>   - Usually (but not always) relevant when the patch was proposed by
> member of same company
>   - N/A for trivial things like typo fixes
> - The issue is:
>   - Should the rule be abolished? and/or
>   - Should the rule be written down?
> Consensus (not unanimous):
> - The rule should not be abolished. There are cases where both the
> impetus and the subject matter expertise for a patch all reside within
> one company. In such cases, at least one core from another company
> should still be engaged and provide a "procedural +2" - much like cores
> proxy SME +1s when there's no core with deep expertise.
> - If there is reasonable justification for bending the rules (e.g. typo
> fixes as noted above, some piece of work clearly not related to the
> company's interest, unwedging the gate, etc.) said justification should
> be clearly documented in review commentary.
> - The rule should not be documented (this email notwithstanding). This
> would either encourage loopholing or turn into a huge detailed legal
> tome that nobody will read. It would also *require* enforcement, which
> is difficult and awkward. Overall, we should be able to trust cores to
> act in good faith and in the appropriate spirit.
> efried
> .

Keystone used to have the same policy outlined in this email (with much of
the same nuance and exceptions). Without going into crazy details (as the
contributor and core numbers went down), we opted to really lean on "Overall,
we should be able to trust cores to act in good faith". We abolished the
rule and the cores always ask for outside input when the familiarity lies
outside of the team. We often also pull in cores more familiar with the
code sometimes ending up with 3x+2s before we workflow the patch.

Personally <non-core/non-leadership hat> I don't like the "this is an
unwritten rule and it shouldn't be documented"; if documenting and
enforcement of the rule elicits worry of gaming the system or being a dense
some not read, in my mind (and experience) the rule may not be worth
having. I voice my opinion with the caveat that every team is different. If
the rule works, and helps the team (Nova in this case) feel more confident
in the management of code, the rule has a place to live on. What works for
one team doesn't always work for another.

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