This page contains information about the workflows and procedures a release coordinator is concerned with. It is assumed that you are familiar with the general workflow for ATLAS Offline software development as summarised in the Workflow Quick Reference. Having an overview of the tasks of the software review shifters as well as knowing basics of git is also helpful.
Before accepting new MRs, you should check the status of the latest nightly. The first priority of a release coordinator should be to make sure that the release is in good shape, and obviously existing problems should usually be fixed before adding more MRs (though as release coordinator you should always feel free to use your judgement).
The status of the nightly builds can be checked in two places:
The latter contains information on ART build jobs and other detailed information for the different build steps. Information on the nightly (and CI) build infrastructure are available on this twiki page.
For each nightly build check:
Any problem seen in the unit tests will very likely also affect the CI jobs. To help the review shifters and other developers please mark any relevant Jira tickets with the “CI” label. This will make the issue appear on the CI Status Board.
First check on Jenkins if the nightly finished or it is still ongoing. If it is still ongoing and it is already afternoon check that it is not stuck on something. Just by checking the console log file should give you a good idea if the nightly is progressing (select the nightly you are interested in and then click on the “Console” icon).
If the nightly finished and the status of the build is a Blue ball - the nightly should be available on CVMFS.
If the nightly finished and the Status is Red ball - the build failed for some reason. Now you need to identify the exact reason. Every nightly is executing the following steps so while investigating check the steps one by one and see where there is a problem:
The logfile is copied under: /cvmfs/atlas-nightlies.cern.ch/repo/sw/master/2018-07-15T2059/master__Athena__x86_64-slc6-gcc62-dbg__2018-07-15T2059__1531720274.ayum.log
All the information can be found inside the “Console” log file for the given nightly.
Note that issues with git and copying the RPMs to EOS are IT infrastructure related issues. If there were git problems you can restart the nightly. If there were RPM to EOS copy problems check with Atlas.Release to redo the copy.
In git, different releases are represented by different branches of the
atlas/athena git repository. One
subtle point is that what code we build from the branch is controlled
by the project specific scripts that live in the
of the branch (e.g., here
main branch). You are, however, the release coordinator
for all projects built from a branch.
Upon creation, merge requests will be tagged automatically by the CI system with a label indicating their target branch. In addition, the CI system also adds a label indicating the stage and result of the software review process. Changes approved by the software review shifters are labeled as review-approved. Therefore, you should be able to select all ready-to-be-accepted merge requests from the GitLab merge request overview page. Simply filter the list of merge requests by selecting review-approved and your release branch name from the dropdown menu for labels.
Full rebuilds need to be triggered after updates where an incremental rebuild may not catch all changes properly, such as a LCG version update. Such updates should be performed in late evenings, with advance notification emailed to ATLAS robot to provide CI system administrators enough time to schedule cleaning local disks of build machines (to ensure builds are from scratch).
The CI job state is depicted by a small icon on the right (e.g. green checkmark for passed, red cross for failed, blue circle for running). This status sometimes does not get updated correctly (e.g. a CI job is indicated as still running while it has already finished). Therefore, please do not rely on this icon. If in doubt, check the discussion tab of this MR for the latest CI summary comment from the ATLAS robot.
Before accepting any merge request, please have a quick look at the description and the discussion on GitLab merge request page. They may contain some more detailed information about the nature of this merge request and possibly also the relation with other merge requests (e.g. dependencies between MRs). You should also make sure that all discussions were resolved.
Once you are sure that you want to merge these changes into your release, you can accept the merge request by pushing the green “Merge” button.
Please do not use the command line merging procedure as described on GitLab.
Due to the fact that updates of the CI pipeline status has been found unreliable in the past, release coordinators are discouraged from using the “Merge When Pipeline Succeeds” feature.
If you want to undo the changes introduced by an (already accepted) merge request, you have to go the GitLab webpage for this merge request. There is an orange button labeled Revert. Clicking on this button opens a new dialog where you should choose the target branch to be the same as the target branch of the initial merge request. Please leave the checkbox “Open a new merge request” checked. Confirm the settings by clicking on the green Revert button. This will open a new merge request undoing the changes introduced by the faulty merge request and the usual CI jobs and the review process start automatically.
As of the time of writing, the policy for output-changing merge requests (i.e. MRs that change controlled output formats, and indicated by labels, e.g.
Run3-XXX-output-changed) on main is that such MRs should not be accepted without explicit approval from Reconstruction and/or Software Coordinators.
offline-sw-review-approvedlabel should be added by those persons.
Once you are satisfied as the release coordinator that a nightly release is good enough to be deployed to the production CVMFS server then you need to do the following steps:
These steps are described in the following sections.
See here for instructions on how to setup tunnelling using browser plugins.
Log in with username “jobrest”. If you do not know the password, ask Alex Undrus.
Click “Build with parameters” on the left hand sidebar. Fill in the details on the screen where:
ondemandand so on
Repeat the above steps for any other platforms you may need (e.g. the
dbg builds typically
have slightly different timestamps).
There are two ways to publish a release, manually or using the prepare_release_notes.py script. The recommended approach is to use the script (since this automates a lot of the process), but please note that it requires a GitLab token (see here, for instructions on how to create one: please note that at minimum your token needs to have an API ‘scope’ or permissions) in order to work optimally. Both approaches are described below.
Run the following commands to publish the release (making sure to add your gitlab API token instead of
lsetup git lsetup gitlab git clone ssh://firstname.lastname@example.org:7999/atlas/athena.git cd athena ./Build/AtlasBuildScripts/prepare_release_notes.py release/23.0.42 nightly/23.0/2023-04-02T2101 -t YOUR_GITLAB_API_TOKEN_HERE
Always use the latest version of the script from the
mainbranch even when building releases from other branches.
The script will ask if you want to let it build the release for you. If you choose yes (which you should!), it will ask you for the associated JIRA ticket and a short description. This description is NOT the release notes (the script will make these for you), but rather a high-level summary of the purpose of the release e.g.
This is the latest build of the Tier-0 data taking branch that fixes rare crashes seen for high pt muons.
If you did NOT let the script make the release, then you will need to follow the relevant instructions in the next section.
The script will now create the release tag, make the release in gitlab and fill in the detailed release notes.
You should now skip the next section and go straight to Update the release candidate number.
Assuming you chose not to use the recommended approach above, you will need to do the following steps manually.
Create a new tag for the release in the
main repository. Enter the
Tag name, which should always be
release/A.B.X[.Y], i.e., the actual numbered release version; the
should be the nightly build tag that is being used, which has the
In case you have built multiple platforms for the same release use the nightly stamp of the primary platform (e.g.
gcc11-opt). In practice this should not matter as the nightly tags for different platforms should all point to the same git commit if started around the same time.
You can also create the tag locally in any clone of the repository and push it to
atlas/athena. It is not recommended unless you really know what you are doing.
Then enter an informative message about the reason for deploying this particular release that will be useful to others (do not put the full release notes into the commit message, this is done in separate step below). An example might be the following:
Even if you are publishing the release manually, we still recommend that you generate the release notes using the prepare_release_notes.py script with the following parameters: the tag of the release you are building, the tag of the nightly used to build it. Even without a token, the script can generate the release notes for you (just a slightly less informative version).
lsetup git lsetup gitlab git clone ssh://email@example.com:7999/atlas/athena.git cd athena ./Build/AtlasBuildScripts/prepare_release_notes.py release/23.0.42 nightly/23.0/2023-04-02T2101 # Release notes generated in 'release_notes.md'
Always use the latest version of the script from the
mainbranch even when building releases from other branches.
Next you have to create the release manually:
Release title: same as tag name (e.g.
Release date: today’s date
Release notes: copy the
You will now need to Update the release candidate number, as described below.
Finally, now that a nightly has been promoted to a numbered release
the release candidate number needs to be updated to be the next number
in the release series for this branch + project. The easiest way to do this
is via the “Web IDE” editor in GitLab itself. Navigate to the correct
branch and project
version.txt file and select “Open in Web IDE”:
In the following navigate to all
version.txt files that need updating
and increment the release number. Once done create a single commit on
the release branch with all updates:
All Projects (except
AthAnalysis) should be kept in sync. So if, for example, you update the version of
23.0.43you should also update
Only people with push rights to the branch can do this directly. You should have these rights as a release coordinator, otherwise you need to make a merge request.
Alternatively, you can do it entirely on the command in your local athena checkout:
git fetch upstream git checkout upstream/BRANCH # e.g. main, 23.0, ... grep "" Projects/*/version.txt # show all project versions old=23.0.4 new=23.0.5 && git grep -l $old Projects/*/version.txt | xargs sed -i s/$old/$new/ git diff # verify the changes git commit -a -m "Bump project versions to $new" git push upstream
After the release has been built, please announce the release by sending out an email:
mailto: firstname.lastname@example.org, hn-atlas-recoIntegration@cern.ch, email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org, hn-atlas-releaseKitAnnounce@cern.ch subject: Release Athena,23.0.42 Dear all, This is to let you know that the release Athena,23.0.42 has been built from the nightly Athena,main,2023-04-02T2101 and is in the process of being distributed to CVMFS. The JIRA ticket can be found here: https://its.cern.ch/jira/browse/ATLINFR-4208 The release notes are available at: https://gitlab.cern.ch/atlas/athena/-/releases/release%252F23.0.42 Regards, myName
As of writing, changes to the
23.0 release branch are manually merged (~daily) into
main release coordinator. To avoid having to manually resolve known conflicts (e.g.
each time, we use a custom merge driver.
The “driver” called “ours” needs to be setup once in the user’s
git config --global merge.ours.driver true
true is the shell-builtin that does nothing, i.e. no actions will be taken for files
that use the “ours” merge driver. The configuration of the merge driver is done via
Since we do not want to impose these drivers on all users, they are kept in a separate file
in the repository and enabled on a per-command basis:
# in your atlas/athena clone: git fetch upstream git checkout -b "sweep_23.0_main_`date +%Y-%m-%d`" upstream/main git -c core.attributesFile=SweepRule/attributes merge upstream/23.0 # resolve remaining conflicts git commit git push origin ./Build/AtlasBuildScripts/prepare_release_notes.py --sweep -t YOUR_GITLAB_API_TOKEN_HERE
The last step creates the MR diff (
release_notes.md) and should be used as the
merge request description. The script will prompt if a pre-filled Draft MR should be created in GitLab.
In case you had to apply conflict resolutions, you may want to amend the appropriate lines
(or remove entire lines if you rejected some commits).
The GitLab token
(which must have at least API ‘scope’ or permission) is optional but is required to decorate the MRs with the domain labels and to allow the script to create the MR on your behalf.
When creating the merge request do not squash the commits.
If you were to put the
core.attributeFilessetting into your
.gitconfigfile, the merge driver would be used for all your git commands and could have undesired side effects.
As a release coordinator you can apply updates to the
attributes file directly in
main branch. If updates require wider discussion considering making a proper merge request
and tag the relevant people.
Useful commands for resolving conflicts:
git merge --abortto abort the merge
git reset --hard upstream/mainto start over with current branch
git [-n] revert HASHto revert a specific commit [without creating commit]
git checkout --ours FILEto keep version from
23.0) followed by
git add FILEto mark conflict as resolved
For emergencies the following procedure can be used to launch an on-demand release build. This would mainly be used in case a patch is required to an older version of the nightly branch. The procedure is very similar to building/deploying a regular nightly build, except that the release is being built from a fixed git tag.
git fetch upstream --tags git checkout -b 23.0.29-patches release/23.0.29
In case there is already a patch release for this branch point, simply re-use the existing branch.
184.108.40.206, etc.). In case you have been re-using a branch in step 1, check the list of already existing tags via
git tag -l 'release/23.0.29.*'. This step has to be done before building the release.
git push upstream 23.0.29-patches
release/220.127.116.11). Make sure to explain in the “Release notes” which changes went into this tag.
gcc112(needs to match the compiler used in the nightly)
3.24.3(>= regular nightly)
ondemandbuild results on NICOS and note the datestamp of the build.
2023-05-16T2101). You can also find this datestamp in the console output of the Jenkins job from step 2.
To set up a production branch, first make the base release (as above) so there is a clear branching point, and so the release numbering makes sense. Next, make a branch from this release, naming it descriptively e.g. 22.0-mc20. Another acceptable option would be to name it after the base release e.g.
You should then setup permissions for this this branch allowing only the branch managers to push and merge (look for
Protected branches under
Repository Settings) and have a look at other protected branches for examples).
Next, it is very important to update the release candidate version (recall that in order to make make a release from a nightly, the nightly needs to know the release it will become) e.g. if you branched from
22.0.41, you should immediately change the
version.txt in all relevant projects (i.e. all, except
Finally, do not forget to update the README.md with details about the new branch (ideally in all branches, but certainly in the branch and
In productions branches we will need to make patch or point releases, e.g. 18.104.22.168
The procedure should be exactly the same as above, namely:
The CI compiles code-changes in the MRs incrementally. Occasionally, the build nodes end up in a bad state and need full rebuilds to recover. Updates to the externals frequently create this problem. This can be achieved by scheduling the
clean-build-dir jobs on
atlas-sit-ci.cern.ch after logging in via SSO. The ongoing CI jobs will be allowed to complete before the cleanup. All newcoming CI jobs will be waiting in the queue until the
clean-build-dir jobs are completed on all slave nodes.
Locate the job
clean-build-dir and select Build with Parameters. The default parameters should be fine:
Please announce the clean-up of the CI nodes outside of the regular weekly cleanup on the MR shifters mattermost channel at the link.
The following sections contains brief information about how to update the LCG layer version and/or the TDAQ/TDAQ-COMMON version in a Athena release in gitlab.
The LCG layer version is configured in the
build_externals.sh or in rare cases the
CMakeLists.txt files in the
subdirectories - see the gitlab directory Projects. Set the two variables
LCG_VERSION_POSTFIX accordingly. There are a few exceptions: not all Projects use LCG like e.g.
AnalysisBase or only use
LCG_VERSION_NUMBER like e.g.
Edit all the typically 7 relevant files by hand or use the following one-liner for are search-and-replace in your local git area before creating the MR:
cd athena/Projects git grep -l 'b_ATLAS_9' | xargs sed -i 's/b_ATLAS_9/b_ATLAS_11/g'
Here are two example merge requests that update only a LCG layer or a combination of the LCG layer + TDAQ/TDAQ-COMMON:
LCG_102b_ATLAS_11in MR 59722.
LCG_102b_ATLAS_2and TDAQ/TDAQ-COMMON version
09-05-00in MR 58081 + fix for DetCommon in MR 59092.
In the MR description please add a list of the updated packages and their versions and a link to the relevant SPI jira ticket like e.g. https://sft.its.cern.ch/jira/browse/SPI-2277.
Please add the gitlab labels
full-unit-tests and the label
RC Attention Required with a small written reminder in the MR text to the current release coordinator to trigger a CI nodes clean-up after the MR has been merged.
The TDAQ and TDAQ-COMMON versions are configured in the
CMakeLists.txt files in the
subdirectories and are set by the two variables
TDAQ_VERSION. Not all Projects actually have a TDAQ and/or TDAQ-COMMON configuration since they don’t depend on them.
Here is one example merge request that updates only TDAQ/TDAQ-COMMON:
10-00-00in MR 59665.
Please add the same gitlab labels as mentioned in the previous section.
Occasionally a MR will change either the digest output, and/or the pool file output (
ESD/AOD/HITs etc). If so, the reference files will need to be updated before the CI can succeed. The procedure is explained on the Frozen Tier0 Policy twiki, but briefly:
/eos/atlas/atlascerngroupdisk/data-art/grid-input/WorkflowReferences/) and then replicated to cvmfs (
/cvmfs/atlas-nightlies.cern.ch/repo/data/data-art/WorkflowReferences/). To update these, you will need to increment (i.e. change
to_vN+1``, and then commit) the reference version in WorkflowTestRunner/python/References.py, and copy new reference pool files to approproately versioned directories in
There is now a script available to take care of this for you, which just needs to be passed the URL to the MR CI summary page (which you find by scrolling through a MR and looking for a link labelled “Full details available on this CI monitor view”). It is suggested you run first in –test-run mode, to make sure everything is fine e.g.
update_ci_reference_files.py --test-run https://bigpanda.cern.ch/ciview/?rel=MR-62281-2023-11-10-14-55
Please note that in order for
References.py and the digest summaries to be updated, you will need have the MR of the branch checked out. The script will explain, but it will involve steps like:
$ git remote add <MR_AUTHOR> <URL_TO_FORK> $ git fetch <MR_AUTHOR> $ git switch -c <MR_BRANCH> <MR_AUTHOR>/<MR_BRANCH> $ git rebase upstream/main
The script will also give you the link to the Jenkins job which copies files from EOS to CVMFS. Since the MR will not succeed until the reference files are on CVMFS, you may want to trigger it manually.
Have a look at this presentation for more details on the script.