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I need some advice. I am going to bundle a package of mine (lets say its named foo, currently v2.0a) with two not yet released packages (therefore both v0.1).

I am unsure which version number the “foo bundle” should get. I can think of different approaches:

  1. Let every package keep its own version number and don't use a version number for the bundle but the release date. But then I'd have to tell CTAN a version like 2012/01/27. Seems odd. And I'd have to keep track of three different version numbers (which is not too big a deal but still…)
  2. Give the whole bundle and every package the same version number, either 2.1 (which would be the next number I'd choose for foo if I didn't bundle the packages) or 3.0 since the bundling seems a large enough step for a new main version number. However, I don't really like the idea giving previously unreleased packages a number like 2.1 or 3.0 even if they are part of a bundle and not supposed to be loaded explicitly.
  3. Let every package keep it's own version number and give the bundle the number of the oldest package, namely foo. This also seems odd since the packages in the bundle are going to be updated together. Also I'd again have to keep track of three different version numbers.

I looked into the packages of different bundles but couldn't find a “preferred solution”. Most of them seem to give each package the number of the bundle (i.e. approach 2).

Do you have any suggestions? What would you do or consider the best way to proceed? If you had a similar problem: what did you do?

share|improve this question
I would choose 2.: 1. would be unusual, 3. could lead to confusion, but 2. seems to be the simplest and most safe solution for me. – Stephen Jan 27 '12 at 18:38
@Stephen That's what I tend to, too. – clemens Jan 27 '12 at 19:21
up vote 6 down vote accepted

I agree with @stephen, but would like to add the following consideration.

Version numbers are used by maintainers of distributions (like TeXLive or MikTeX) to update their collections. Often it is done automatically by scripts. Options (2) saves a lot of trouble for them. When a package does not have a version or different parts have different versions, it is not easy to decide what to update and when. One version number for the package and all its parts makes their lives easier.

share|improve this answer
That's a good point! – clemens Jan 27 '12 at 22:39
Alea iacta est: (2) it is. – clemens Jan 28 '12 at 19:50

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