X.Org "Katamari" Releases Are Officially Dead

Written by Michael Larabel in X.Org on 24 February 2019 at 04:19 PM EST. 27 Comments
It shouldn't come as a surprise with X11R7.7 being the last "katamari" release and it having debuted back in 2012, but no further "bundled" releases of X.Org are planned.

The X11R7.x releases served as "full" releases of all the X.Org sources since the source tree was modularized last decade. But they don't hold much value these days with Linux distributions (and other operating systems) staying up to date with packaging all of the X.Org components individually and keeping them up-to-date.

X11R7.7 was released in June 2012 and even shortly after that release we knew X11R7.8 or another katamari release wouldn't be coming anytime soon. Since then there hasn't been any coordination for getting out a new katamari release and now it's pretty much set in stone that the concept is dead. It took resources getting these releases out the door with little return/use compared to the modularized, independent releases happening these days and xorg-server marching to its own beat. With upstream X.Org already being short-staffed as is, there isn't much value in trying to do another katamari release. That's also compounded by many of the X11 libraries not frequently seeing new releases these days due to their mature state, more development efforts going into Wayland, the release cadence of xorg-server slowing down, etc.

Alan Coopersmith who has previously served as a katamari release organizer while working for Sun/Oracle has spelled it out today that katamari releases are no more, should anyone still be thinking otherwise. "I come not to praise the Katamari, but to bury it..."
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