The 2015 Revision of the Eclipse Development Process

The Eclipse Foundation Board of Directors approved a new revision to the Eclipse Development Process in its meeting on November 2/2015. It took effect—replacing all previous versions—on December 2/2015. This is a minor revision that primarily updates the document to reflect the evolving reality of how our open source projects operate. We made, for example, some changes to the section on reviews to reduce wordiness and reflect the lighter weight process that we’ve adopted over the past few years. We have also generalized the use of the term “frameworks and tools” to “frameworks and applications” to acknowledge the fact that our project teams are creating deliverables that expand on our traditional focus on tools.

Perhaps the most potentially controversial change in the formal of “Freedom of Action” as a principle of the Eclipse Development Process. This addition formalizes the implied requirement that project teams engage in practices that ensure the continued viability of the project, independent from the continued availability of external resources and services, or continued participation on any single individual, organization, or group. This effectively formalizes the requirement that project teams must use only those resources that have been approved by the Eclipse Foundation for critical project operations.

Finally, we’ve decided to change how we mentor new projects. New projects now only require a single mentor from the Eclipse Architecture Council (where they had previously required two). To ensure that new projects have access to the information and resources that they need to be successful, we’ve set up new mailing list,, that incubating project team members can join to participate more directly with each other and mentors from the Eclipse Architecture Council. Participation in this list is optional, but encouraged for all committers working on projects in the Incubation Phase. Please do feel free to subscribe to the list even if your project is not in the Incubation Phase: this list provides an excellent opportunity to share hard-earned wisdom and generally make our projects stronger.

Note that there is both a list of issues that were addressed in this revision at the bottom of the document and a link to a “diff” document should you be interested in gaining a more complete picture of all of the changes.

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