This document describes the policy for doing microrelease updates of the OpenLDAP package in Ubuntu LTS releases. The specific Ubuntu LTS releases affected by this policy are listed below.

About OpenLDAP

OpenLDAP is a Free implementation of the Lightweight Directory Access Protocol (LDAP).

Upstream release policy

After a long time releasing major updates only in the 2.4.x series, its community has revisited their release strategy in 2022 and decided to provide both long-term (LTS) and short-term releases (Feature Releases). You can read more about it here.

In summary, their LTS releases will be supported for 5 years and will be released approximately every 3 years. These are the releases this MRE document applies to; we don't intend to do MREs for Feature Releases.

Ubuntu [and OpenLDAP] releases affected by this MRE

Currently, these are the Ubuntu releases and the corresponding OpenLDAP package versions affected by this policy:

  • Jammy (22.04) [OpenLDAP 2.5.x]

The OpenLDAP 2.5.x series is upstream's first LTS release, and its inclusion in Jammy was no coincidence. Newer Ubuntu releases will likely have non-LTS OpenLDAP releases in them until our next Ubuntu LTS series is released, when we intend to ship the next OpenLDAP LTS release.


Upstream tests

The OpenLDAP software contains an extensive testsuite that is executed during build time on all supported architectures. These tests exercise different aspects of the software like remote authentication, slapadd usage, concurrency, amongst many other things.


Upstream also makes use of GitLab pipelines in order to automate the testing of new commits. At the time of this writing, these are the available pipelines:

  • build-no-threads-no-slapd

  • build-openssl-heimdal-lloadd

  • build-gnutls-mit-standalone-lloadd

The Ubuntu OpenLDAP package is compiled with GnuTLS support, so the last one is the most interesting for us. The other 2 pipelines are also indirectly valuable because they can offer data points for comparison if/when a regression is detected in the third. Another very important fact is that these pipelines use Debian stable as their base OS, which makes the results much more reliable for Ubuntu.

Calls for testing

Before every release, upstream publishes calls for testing in their mailing list. Although not everybody will publicly release their raw test results, it is common for downstream contributors to help with this. We intend to step up and also publish test results in order to make the release more stable.

As an example, some of their calls for testing can be found below:


The Debian/Ubuntu packages also carry autopkgtests. These tests currently don't exercise many features of the package, but the Server team is working towards improving them.

There are also several reverse dependencies that implement autopkgtests which indirectly exercise OpenLDAP's features, like SSSD's LDAP login tests, or Cyrus SASL's GSSAPI and shared secret mechanisms tests, python-bonsai's SASL DIGEST-MD5 tests and these will be executed on every microrelease update. These tests will be very important when determining API/ABI stability across minor LTS updates, as they have caught such issues in the past.


Preparing for the SRU

Before filing an SRU/MRE bug and kickoff the process officially, we need to perform the following actions:

  1. Merge the latest OpenLDAP LTS microrelease into our existing package, rebasing whatever delta the package may contain.
  2. Upload the resulting package to a bileto PPA, making sure that the build succeeds and that there are no autopkgtest regressions introduced.

When everything looks OK, we are ready to start the SRU process.

Requesting the SRU

As with regular MREs, the aim here is to offer bugfixes and security fixes to all supported releases. The SRU will be done using a single bug instead of individual bug reports for each fix.

We will:

  1. File an MRE bug including the rationale for the upgrade. This MRE bug will contain references to previous MREs bugs, as well as a summary of the important bugfixes present in the new microrelease. See the SRU template below for more details on how this bug will look like.
  2. Once everything is OK, upload the package to the proposed pocket (if it's a non-security upload), and, once approved, keep an eye on the excuses page and investigate any DEP8 failures.

The UbuntuServer team has been doing MREs for other packages as well (postgresql, for example). We can use an existing MRE bug as a template for the OpenLDAP MREs (for example, bug #1961127).

Testing and verification

As explained above, the testing will be done primarily using a bileto ticket, which will also run autopkgtests for all of the reverse dependencies as well as upstream's testsuite during the package build.

We will also provide a link to upstream's "call for testing" email and to the GitLab jobs that were executed when the release was cut.

SRU template

This bug tracks an update for the OpenLDAP package, version XYZ.

This update includes bugfixes only following the SRU policy exception defined at

[Major Changes]

TODO: List the major changes
TODO: list to the announce mail containing all changes

[Test Plan]

TODO: link the build log containing all tests being executed
TODO: if there are any non passing tests - explain why that is ok in this case.
TODO: link upstream's "call for testing" email
TODO: link upstream's gitlab job for this release (look here:

[Regression Potential]

Upstream tests are always executed during build-time.  There are many reverse dependencies whose dep8 tests depend on OpenLDAP so the coverage is good.  Nevertheless, there is always a risk for something to break since we are dealing with a microrelease upgrade.  Whenever a test failure is detected, we will be on top of it and make sure it doesn't affect existing users.

TODO: consider any other regression potential specific to the version being updated and list if any or list N/A.  OpenLDAP is used as a library by many other projects, so care must be taken when considering how this MRE might affect these dependencies.

OpenLDAPUpdates (last edited 2022-06-10 02:11:25 by sergiodj)