Now that Salt 3001 Sodium is live, we’d like to express our gratitude to all community members who contributed to this release and highlight what we’ve accomplished. It goes without saying that this has been a challenging 3 months. COVID-19 forced us to completely reconfigure how to handle events, postpone SaltConf EU, and adapt to new ways of working. As the dust was settling from that, notification of the CVE arrived and we had to get on that with urgency. We again had to reconfigure priorities to create, release, and share the patch and verification tool. 

In spite of those challenges, we grew and became more collaborative as a community. We had 141 contributors to Neon and 204 for Sodium. At the beginning of Sodium, we had 900 items in the PR port-to-master backlog. We now have 250 items in that backlog with plans to address them during the next release cycle. The Open Core team burned down about 40% of the PR port to master backlog during the Sodium release cycle. Of course, this could’ve only been accomplished with the work from the community. 

The Sodium release cycle includes 594 PRs merged. It also includes the 3000.1 release and the patches for CVE-2020-11652 and CVE-2020-11651. Some interesting or major contributions included: an MSI Installer for Windows, the switch to pycryptodomx/pycyptopdome on all supported platforms, and 80 documentation corrections and/or additions. We completed major foundational work for the future of Tornado, Salt-SSH, and the move to support only Python3. We also laid the groundwork for updating deprecation warnings, removals, and the initial implementation of towncrier. 

Ultimately, and thanks to everyone’s contributions and passion for excellence, the Salt open project continues to deliver growing value to all its users. Salt is a leader in infrastructure management with ambition to be the platform of choice for all operations teams working to automate their diverse environments. Our vision as a community is powered by our combined determination to always improve and meet the high standards we set for ourselves.

A word on our Community by Cassandra Faris:

The Sodium release included several community-focused deliverables. These were: make it easier to find Salt community information; implement consistent communication processes; and create additional opportunities for contributors to learn and contribute. We revamped the SaltStack Community Website, updated the Community Events Calendar, and created a Community Wiki. The majority of our contributors get their information from Slack, IRC, or the Google Group. While we were regularly updating Slack, IRC and Google users were missing out on announcements and important updates. This is no longer the case. Finally, we had several virtual user group meetings and began streaming R&D, triage, Open Hours, and test clinics on our newly-created Twitch stream.  Throughout the Sodium release, the number of people attending Open Hours, Working Groups, and user groups increased consistently. Without your participation and feedback, we wouldn’t have seen that growth.

My favorite part of this release has been watching the community and core team collaborate to make several improvements. When people requested a Formulas Working Group, we worked together to create one. During the CVE, community members stepped up to create a website for exploit news, and test and share patch information. As a result of the CVE, people suggested a Security Announcements RSS feed. The feed is live and available here. When Slack removed support for the IRC bridge, our community created and implemented a new one. Several community members volunteered to speak at the Salt user groups. Thanks to everyone’s topic suggestions and willingness to speak up in Open Hours, they’ve become a forum to discuss issues and work on creating solutions. 

Looking Forward

We have some exciting things planned for Magnesium including a broader variety of user group talk topics, a PR merge jam, and a documentation jam. I’ll share more details about those events soon. 

Once again, I’m grateful to everyone who contributed to this Salt 3001 release! It wouldn’t have been a success without your feedback, skills, participation, and willingness to share your knowledge. Thank you!