Xen Project Release Features/Definitions

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The definitions in this document primarily refer to the information in Xen Project Release Features or its archived version.

Definition of Support Labels

Each status value besides a or corresponds to levels of security support, testing, stability, etc., as in the following subsections. Note that format in Xen Project Release Features typically follows the following convention

  • [footnote] [support label]
  • [footnote] [support label]

If no support label is specified besides a , the feature is normally considered Supported unless otherwise specified.

Experimental

   Functional completeness: No
   Functional stability: Here be dragons
   Interface stability: Not stable
   Security supported: No

Tech Preview

   Functional completeness: Yes
   Functional stability: Quirky
   Interface stability: Provisionally stable
   Security supported: No

Supported

   Functional completeness: Yes
   Functional stability: Normal
   Interface stability: Yes
   Security supported: Yes

Deprecated

   Functional completeness: Yes
   Functional stability: Quirky
   Interface stability: No (as in, may disappear the next release)
   Security supported: Yes

All of these may appear in modified form via footnotes.

Definition of the status label interpretation tags

Functionally complete

Does it behave like a fully functional feature? Yes =

Does it work on all expected platforms, or does it only work for a very specific sub-case? No =

Does it have a sensible UI, or do you have to have a deep understanding of the internals to get it to work properly? No =

Functional stability

What is the risk of it exhibiting bugs?

General answers to the above:

  • Here be dragons
Pretty likely to still crash / fail to work.
Not recommended unless you like life on the bleeding edge.
  • Quirky
Mostly works but may have odd behavior here and there.
Recommended for playing around or for non-production use cases.
  • Normal
Ready for production use

Interface stability

If I build a system based on the current interfaces, will they still work when I upgrade to the next version?

  • Not stable
Interface is still in the early stages and still fairly likely to be broken in future updates.
  • Provisionally stable
We're not yet promising backwards compatibility, but we think this is probably the final form of the interface.
It may still require some tweaks.
  • Stable
We will try very hard to avoid breaking backwards compatibility, and to fix any regressions that are reported.

Security supported

Will XSAs be issued if security-related bugs are discovered in the functionality?

If "no", anyone who finds a security-related bug in the feature will be advised to post it publicly to the Xen Project mailing lists (or contact another security response team, if a relevant one exists).

Bugs found after the end of Security-Support-Until in the Release Support section will receive an XSA if they also affect newer, security-supported, versions of Xen.

However, the Xen Project will not provide official fixes or non-security-supported versions.

Interaction with other features

Not all features interact well with all other features. Some features are only for HVM guests; some don't work with migration, &c.

External security support

The Xen Project security team provides security support for Xen Project projects.

We also provide security support for Xen-related code in Linux, which is an external project but doesn't have its own security process.

External projects that provide their own security support for Xen-related features are listed below.