Contributing resource agent patches to Linux-HA

If you contribute a resource agent to the Linux-HA repository, we love you. If you contribute a patch to an existing resource agent, and fix an bug or add functionality, we love you too. If you persist through the constructive criticism by nitpicks like myself on the linux-ha-dev mailing list, we love you even more.

And here’s a couple of ideas for making the process easy:

  • Please please please send patches. Working in a Mercurial checkout and then using hg export or hg email makes reviewing and merging your patch a breeze.
  • If you really do not want to familiarize yourself with Mercurial, then please take your version of the RA, diff -u it against a released version, and send that diff to the mailing list. Be sure to state the exact version of the resource-agents package (cluster-agents package on Debian) that it applies to.

You see, resource agents change. All the time. This may not affect the functionality of the RA at all. We might just add auto-generation of man pages. Or change an internal interface. Or streamline some functions. Bottom line, the code changes. If you just send us your version of the RA “with all relevant changes applied,” then it’s quite likely that the RA you are changing has been modified a bit since the most recent release.

And suddenly, when we diff your version against the one in the upstream repository, we see a bunch of differences which, if applied, would roll back changes made in the meantime. And singling out which of your changes were actually meant to be applied becomes a truly tedious task for anyone who reviews your submission.

If, by contrast, you send a patch, we see only the changes you meant to apply. And even if upstream has changed in the meantime, chances are that we can wiggle your patch in with minimal fiddling.

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