I'm trying to understand how the TeXLive release cycle works, but I'm unable to find exact information during my research. I hope someone here can point me in the right direction. Here's what I learned so far:
Last week I read somewhere that "TeXLive 2019 has been released", so did a full TeXLive 2019 install using the
install-tl script. Today I ran
tlmgr update --all and it installed 28 updates.
What this tells me (correct me if I'm wrong):
- When a release is released, it is not finished, but its packages will still be updated. Bugs will (hopefully) be fixed, features might be added or removed.
- A sentence like "I compiled it with TeXLive 2019 and got the following error: ..." is meaningless, because a TeXLive 2019 installation could have different package versions, bugs, and features, depending on the last time it was updated. (Note: this is not a hypothetical thing. A colleague got confused because our central TL 2017 install behaved different from his outdated Ubuntu TL 2017 install, which was still called TeXLive 2017).
So this leads to the following questions:
- If a release does not constitute specific versions of specific packages, then what is the difference between the current TeXLive release and the last one?
- Is a release considered 'finished' at one point, so that I can install it and be confident that it doesn't change anymore? In other words, is it possible to reason about the feature set of "TeXLive 2019-final" or similar, like in my example above? (cf. this mail)