How to make a Gammapy release

This page contains step-by-step instructions how to make a Gammapy release.


We have structured the procedure in three phases:

  1. “Pre release” – on a day (or several days) before making the release
  2. “Make release” – on the day of making the release (tag the stable version and make source release on PyPI)
  3. “Post release” – on the day when announcing the release (ideally only two or three days after making the release)

The purpose of writing the procedure down explicitly is to make it easy for anyone to make a release (as opposed to one or a few people with secret knowledge how to do it). It’s also good to not have to remember this stuff, and to avoid errors or forgotten steps.

Note that we currently don’t do bugfix releases, i.e. making a release is always simple in the sense that you just need to create a branch off of master. Making bugfix releases would be more difficult and involve identifying commits with bug fixes and backporting those to the stable branches.

In these notes we’ll use the Gammapy 0.14 release as an example.

Pre release

Steps to prepare for the release (e.g. a week before) to check that things are in order:

  1. Check the issue (example: ) and milestone (example: ) for the release. Try to get developers to finish up their PRs, try to help fix bugs, and postpone non-critical issues to the next release.

  2. Do these extra checks and clean up any warnings / errors that come up:

    make polish
    make pylint
    make flake8
  3. Check external HTML links from the docs (see here).

  4. Check that the travis-ci build is working.

    Links are at

  5. Check that the changelog is complete, by going through the list of Github issues for the release milestone.

Make release

Steps for the day of the release:

  1. Update the dataset index file by running make dataset-index and copy it over to gammapy-0.14-data-index.json in the webpage repo.
  2. Copy over notebooks.yaml to gammapy-0.14-tutorials.yml and adapt the links contained in the file to point to
  3. Copy the script index file from the last release to gammapy-0.14-scripts.yml and add new examples by hand if needed.
  4. Copy the environment file from the last release to gammapy-0.14-environment.yml and adapt dependency versions as required.
  5. Mention release on the front page and on the news page of the Gammapy webpage (update index.html and news.html in the gammapy webpage repo).
  6. Update the version number in docs/getting-started.rst
  7. Follow the instructions how to release an Astropy affiliated package here.
  8. Checkout the git tag v0.14 and build the release documentation and publish it in gammapy-docs Github repository Adapt stable/index.html to point to v0.14 in the gammapy docs repo.
  9. Update the Gammapy conda-forge package at
  10. Encourage the Gammapy developers to try out the new stable version (update and run tests) via the Github issue for the release and wait a day or two for feedback.

Post release

Steps for the day to announce the release:

  1. Send release announcement to the Gammapy mailing list and on Gammapy Slack (using the version you drafted in ).

  2. If it’s a big release with important new features or fixes, also send the release announcement to the following mailing lists (decide on a case by case basis, if it’s relevant to the group of people):

  3. Make sure the release milestone and issue is closed on Github

  4. Update these release notes with any useful infos / steps that you learned while making the release (ideally try to script / automate the task or check, e.g. as a make release-check-xyz target.

  5. Open a milestone and issue for the next release (and possibly also a milestone for the release after, so that low-priority issues can already be moved there) Find a release manager for the next release, assign the release issue to her / him, and ideally put a tentative date (to help developers plan their time for the coming weeks and months).

  6. Start working on the next release. :-)