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From Grant Ingersoll <>
Subject Re: Back Compatibility
Date Fri, 18 Jan 2008 02:41:31 GMT

On Jan 17, 2008, at 9:30 PM, DM Smith wrote:

> On Jan 17, 2008, at 7:57 PM, robert engels wrote:
>> If they are " no longer actively developing the portion of the code  
>> that's broken, aren't seeking the new feature, etc", and they stay  
>> back on old versions... isn't that exactly what we want? They can  
>> stay on the old version, and new application development uses the  
>> newer version.
>> It would be different if it was a core JRE interface or similar -  
>> this is an optional jar.
>> Part of what always made Windows so fragile is that as it evolved  
>> they tried to maintain backward compatibility - making working with  
>> the old/new code and fixing bugs almost impossible. The bloat  
>> became impossible to deal with.
>> I bet, if you did a poll of all Lucene users, you would find a  
>> majority of them still only run 1.4.3, or maybe 1.9. Even with 2.0,  
>> 2.3, or 3.0, that is still going to be the case.
> I found that upgrading from 1.4.3 (our first version) to 1.9, to  
> 2.0, ... 2.2 and even 2.3 rc was painless.
> The deprecations in 1.9 gave clear guidance on how to do the  
> upgrade. Very easy to do. And with Lucene's robust test suite, I had  
> great confidence that it would work without much testing.

And I don't think this would change at all with what I am proposing.   
We still would be giving clear guidance, we would just be saying it's  
going to happen in 1 year, not 2 to 6.

> Going forward was simply a matter of dropping in the new jar and  
> enjoying the improved performance.
> The forward compatibility of the actual index was a great boon.
> So, while one may not be actively developing code, dropping in a new  
> jar and getting huge performance gains is a great plus.

But even going from 2.2. to 2.3, you get even bigger gains by doing  
some work and actually taking the time to update your Analysis  
process, reuse tokens, etc.


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