Release Process

2020-02-19

Release Process

Branch updates

Before every release candidate

Before every major and minor release

  • Update bips.md to account for changes since the last release (don't forget to bump the version number on the first line).
  • Update version in configure.ac (don't forget to set CLIENT_VERSION_RC to 0).
  • Write release notes (see "Write the release notes" below).

Before every major release

Before branch-off

  • Update hardcoded seeds, see this pull request for an example.
  • Update src/chainparams.cpp m_assumed_blockchain_size and m_assumed_chain_state_size with the current size plus some overhead (see this for information on how to calculate them).
  • Update src/chainparams.cpp chainTxData with statistics about the transaction count and rate. Use the output of the RPC getchaintxstats, see this pull request for an example. Reviewers can verify the results by running getchaintxstats <window_block_count> <window_last_block_hash> with the window_block_count and window_last_block_hash from your output.
  • Update src/chainparams.cpp nMinimumChainWork with information from the getblockchaininfo rpc.
  • Update src/chainparams.cpp defaultAssumeValid with information from the getblockhash rpc.
    • The selected value must not be orphaned so it may be useful to set the value two blocks back from the tip.
    • Testnet should be set some tens of thousands back from the tip due to reorgs there.
    • This update should be reviewed with a reindex-chainstate with assumevalid=0 to catch any defect that causes rejection of blocks in the past history.
  • Clear the release notes and move them to the wiki (see "Write the release notes" below).

After branch-off (on master)

  • Update the version of contrib/gitian-descriptors/*.yml.

After branch-off (on the major release branch)

  • Update the versions.
  • Create a pinned meta-issue for testing the release candidate (see this issue for an example) and provide a link to it in the release announcements where useful.

Before final release

  • Merge the release notes from the wiki into the branch.
  • Ensure the "Needs release note" label is removed from all relevant pull requests and issues.

Building

First time / New builders

If you're using the automated script (found in contrib/gitian-build.py), then at this point you should run it with the "--setup" command. Otherwise ignore this.

Check out the source code in the following directory hierarchy.

cd /path/to/your/toplevel/build
git clone https://github.com/bitcoin-core/gitian.sigs.git
git clone https://github.com/bitcoin-core/bitcoin-detached-sigs.git
git clone https://github.com/devrandom/gitian-builder.git
git clone https://github.com/bitcoin/bitcoin.git

Write the release notes

Open a draft of the release notes for collaborative editing at https://github.com/bitcoin-core/bitcoin-devwiki/wiki.

For the period during which the notes are being edited on the wiki, the version on the branch should be wiped and replaced with a link to the wiki which should be used for all announcements until -final.

Write the release notes. git shortlog helps a lot, for example:

git shortlog --no-merges v(current version, e.g. 0.19.2)..v(new version, e.g. 0.20.0)

(or ping @wumpus on IRC, he has specific tooling to generate the list of merged pulls and sort them into categories based on labels).

Generate list of authors:

git log --format='- %aN' v(current version, e.g. 0.20.0)..v(new version, e.g. 0.20.1) | sort -fiu

Tag the version (or release candidate) in git:

git tag -s v(new version, e.g. 0.20.0)

Setup and perform Gitian builds

If you're using the automated script (found in contrib/gitian-build.py), then at this point you should run it with the "--build" command. Otherwise ignore this.

Setup Gitian descriptors:

pushd ./bitcoin
export SIGNER="(your Gitian key, ie bluematt, sipa, etc)"
export VERSION=(new version, e.g. 0.20.0)
git fetch
git checkout v${VERSION}
popd

Ensure your gitian.sigs are up-to-date if you wish to gverify your builds against other Gitian signatures.

pushd ./gitian.sigs
git pull
popd

Ensure gitian-builder is up-to-date:

pushd ./gitian-builder
git pull
popd

Fetch and create inputs: (first time, or when dependency versions change)

pushd ./gitian-builder
mkdir -p inputs
wget -O inputs/osslsigncode-2.0.tar.gz https://github.com/mtrojnar/osslsigncode/archive/2.0.tar.gz
echo '5a60e0a4b3e0b4d655317b2f12a810211c50242138322b16e7e01c6fbb89d92f inputs/osslsigncode-2.0.tar.gz' | sha256sum -c
popd

Create the macOS SDK tarball, see the macdeploy instructions for details, and copy it into the inputs directory.

Optional: Seed the Gitian sources cache and offline git repositories

NOTE: Gitian is sometimes unable to download files. If you have errors, try the step below.

By default, Gitian will fetch source files as needed. To cache them ahead of time, make sure you have checked out the tag you want to build in bitcoin, then:

pushd ./gitian-builder
make -C ../bitcoin/depends download SOURCES_PATH=`pwd`/cache/common
popd

Only missing files will be fetched, so this is safe to re-run for each build.

NOTE: Offline builds must use the --url flag to ensure Gitian fetches only from local URLs. For example:

pushd ./gitian-builder
./bin/gbuild --url bitcoin=/path/to/bitcoin,signature=/path/to/sigs {rest of arguments}
popd

The gbuild invocations below DO NOT DO THIS by default.

Build and sign Bitcoin Core for Linux, Windows, and macOS:

pushd ./gitian-builder
./bin/gbuild --num-make 2 --memory 3000 --commit bitcoin=v${VERSION} ../bitcoin/contrib/gitian-descriptors/gitian-linux.yml
./bin/gsign --signer "$SIGNER" --release ${VERSION}-linux --destination ../gitian.sigs/ ../bitcoin/contrib/gitian-descriptors/gitian-linux.yml
mv build/out/bitcoin-*.tar.gz build/out/src/bitcoin-*.tar.gz ../

./bin/gbuild --num-make 2 --memory 3000 --commit bitcoin=v${VERSION} ../bitcoin/contrib/gitian-descriptors/gitian-win.yml
./bin/gsign --signer "$SIGNER" --release ${VERSION}-win-unsigned --destination ../gitian.sigs/ ../bitcoin/contrib/gitian-descriptors/gitian-win.yml
mv build/out/bitcoin-*-win-unsigned.tar.gz inputs/bitcoin-win-unsigned.tar.gz
mv build/out/bitcoin-*.zip build/out/bitcoin-*.exe ../

./bin/gbuild --num-make 2 --memory 3000 --commit bitcoin=v${VERSION} ../bitcoin/contrib/gitian-descriptors/gitian-osx.yml
./bin/gsign --signer "$SIGNER" --release ${VERSION}-osx-unsigned --destination ../gitian.sigs/ ../bitcoin/contrib/gitian-descriptors/gitian-osx.yml
mv build/out/bitcoin-*-osx-unsigned.tar.gz inputs/bitcoin-osx-unsigned.tar.gz
mv build/out/bitcoin-*.tar.gz build/out/bitcoin-*.dmg ../
popd

Build output expected:

  1. source tarball (bitcoin-${VERSION}.tar.gz)
  2. linux 32-bit and 64-bit dist tarballs (bitcoin-${VERSION}-linux[32|64].tar.gz)
  3. windows 32-bit and 64-bit unsigned installers and dist zips (bitcoin-${VERSION}-win[32|64]-setup-unsigned.exe, bitcoin-${VERSION}-win[32|64].zip)
  4. macOS unsigned installer and dist tarball (bitcoin-${VERSION}-osx-unsigned.dmg, bitcoin-${VERSION}-osx64.tar.gz)
  5. Gitian signatures (in gitian.sigs/${VERSION}-<linux|{win,osx}-unsigned>/(your Gitian key)/)

Verify other gitian builders signatures to your own. (Optional)

Add other gitian builders keys to your gpg keyring, and/or refresh keys: See ../bitcoin/contrib/gitian-keys/README.md.

Verify the signatures

pushd ./gitian-builder
./bin/gverify -v -d ../gitian.sigs/ -r ${VERSION}-linux ../bitcoin/contrib/gitian-descriptors/gitian-linux.yml
./bin/gverify -v -d ../gitian.sigs/ -r ${VERSION}-win-unsigned ../bitcoin/contrib/gitian-descriptors/gitian-win.yml
./bin/gverify -v -d ../gitian.sigs/ -r ${VERSION}-osx-unsigned ../bitcoin/contrib/gitian-descriptors/gitian-osx.yml
popd

Next steps:

Commit your signature to gitian.sigs:

pushd gitian.sigs
git add ${VERSION}-linux/"${SIGNER}"
git add ${VERSION}-win-unsigned/"${SIGNER}"
git add ${VERSION}-osx-unsigned/"${SIGNER}"
git commit -m "Add ${VERSION} unsigned sigs for ${SIGNER}"
git push  # Assuming you can push to the gitian.sigs tree
popd

Codesigner only: Create Windows/macOS detached signatures: - Only one person handles codesigning. Everyone else should skip to the next step. - Only once the Windows/macOS builds each have 3 matching signatures may they be signed with their respective release keys.

Codesigner only: Sign the macOS binary:

transfer bitcoin-osx-unsigned.tar.gz to macOS for signing
tar xf bitcoin-osx-unsigned.tar.gz
./detached-sig-create.sh -s "Key ID"
Enter the keychain password and authorize the signature
Move signature-osx.tar.gz back to the gitian host

Codesigner only: Sign the windows binaries:

tar xf bitcoin-win-unsigned.tar.gz
./detached-sig-create.sh -key /path/to/codesign.key
Enter the passphrase for the key when prompted
signature-win.tar.gz will be created

Codesigner only: Commit the detached codesign payloads:

cd ~/bitcoin-detached-sigs
checkout the appropriate branch for this release series
rm -rf *
tar xf signature-osx.tar.gz
tar xf signature-win.tar.gz
git add -a
git commit -m "point to ${VERSION}"
git tag -s v${VERSION} HEAD
git push the current branch and new tag

Non-codesigners: wait for Windows/macOS detached signatures:

  • Once the Windows/macOS builds each have 3 matching signatures, they will be signed with their respective release keys.
  • Detached signatures will then be committed to the bitcoin-detached-sigs repository, which can be combined with the unsigned apps to create signed binaries.

Create (and optionally verify) the signed macOS binary:

pushd ./gitian-builder
./bin/gbuild -i --commit signature=v${VERSION} ../bitcoin/contrib/gitian-descriptors/gitian-osx-signer.yml
./bin/gsign --signer "$SIGNER" --release ${VERSION}-osx-signed --destination ../gitian.sigs/ ../bitcoin/contrib/gitian-descriptors/gitian-osx-signer.yml
./bin/gverify -v -d ../gitian.sigs/ -r ${VERSION}-osx-signed ../bitcoin/contrib/gitian-descriptors/gitian-osx-signer.yml
mv build/out/bitcoin-osx-signed.dmg ../bitcoin-${VERSION}-osx.dmg
popd

Create (and optionally verify) the signed Windows binaries:

pushd ./gitian-builder
./bin/gbuild -i --commit signature=v${VERSION} ../bitcoin/contrib/gitian-descriptors/gitian-win-signer.yml
./bin/gsign --signer "$SIGNER" --release ${VERSION}-win-signed --destination ../gitian.sigs/ ../bitcoin/contrib/gitian-descriptors/gitian-win-signer.yml
./bin/gverify -v -d ../gitian.sigs/ -r ${VERSION}-win-signed ../bitcoin/contrib/gitian-descriptors/gitian-win-signer.yml
mv build/out/bitcoin-*win64-setup.exe ../bitcoin-${VERSION}-win64-setup.exe
popd

Commit your signature for the signed macOS/Windows binaries:

pushd gitian.sigs
git add ${VERSION}-osx-signed/"${SIGNER}"
git add ${VERSION}-win-signed/"${SIGNER}"
git commit -m "Add ${SIGNER} ${VERSION} signed binaries signatures"
git push  # Assuming you can push to the gitian.sigs tree
popd

After 3 or more people have gitian-built and their results match:

  • Create SHA256SUMS.asc for the builds, and GPG-sign it:
sha256sum * > SHA256SUMS

The list of files should be:

bitcoin-${VERSION}-aarch64-linux-gnu.tar.gz
bitcoin-${VERSION}-arm-linux-gnueabihf.tar.gz
bitcoin-${VERSION}-riscv64-linux-gnu.tar.gz
bitcoin-${VERSION}-x86_64-linux-gnu.tar.gz
bitcoin-${VERSION}-osx64.tar.gz
bitcoin-${VERSION}-osx.dmg
bitcoin-${VERSION}.tar.gz
bitcoin-${VERSION}-win64-setup.exe
bitcoin-${VERSION}-win64.zip

The *-debug* files generated by the gitian build contain debug symbols for troubleshooting by developers. It is assumed that anyone that is interested in debugging can run gitian to generate the files for themselves. To avoid end-user confusion about which file to pick, as well as save storage space do not upload these to the bitcoin.org server, nor put them in the torrent.

  • GPG-sign it, delete the unsigned file:
gpg --digest-algo sha256 --clearsign SHA256SUMS # outputs SHA256SUMS.asc
rm SHA256SUMS

(the digest algorithm is forced to sha256 to avoid confusion of the Hash: header that GPG adds with the SHA256 used for the files) Note: check that SHA256SUMS itself doesn't end up in SHA256SUMS, which is a spurious/nonsensical entry.

  • Upload zips and installers, as well as SHA256SUMS.asc from last step, to the bitcoin.org server into /var/www/bin/bitcoin-core-${VERSION}

  • A .torrent will appear in the directory after a few minutes. Optionally help seed this torrent. To get the magnet: URI use:
transmission-show -m <torrent file>

Insert the magnet URI into the announcement sent to mailing lists. This permits people without access to bitcoin.org to download the binary distribution. Also put it into the optional_magnetlink: slot in the YAML file for bitcoin.org (see below for bitcoin.org update instructions).

Additional information

How to calculate m_assumed_blockchain_size and m_assumed_chain_state_size

Both variables are used as a guideline for how much space the user needs on their drive in total, not just strictly for the blockchain. Note that all values should be taken from a fully synced node and have an overhead of 5-10% added on top of its base value.

To calculate m_assumed_blockchain_size: - For mainnet -> Take the size of the data directory, excluding /regtest and /testnet3 directories. - For testnet -> Take the size of the /testnet3 directory.

To calculate m_assumed_chain_state_size: - For mainnet -> Take the size of the /chainstate directory. - For testnet -> Take the size of the /testnet3/chainstate directory.

Notes: - When taking the size for m_assumed_blockchain_size, there's no need to exclude the /chainstate directory since it's a guideline value and an overhead will be added anyway. - The expected overhead for growth may change over time, so it may not be the same value as last release; pay attention to that when changing the variables.