Draft Project Graduation Checklist Draft

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Draft copy of Project_Graduation_Checklist. The official copy of this document lives at http://www.osgeo.org/incubator/process/project_graduation_checklist.html.

Document Status

IncCom Document Number: X

Version: 2.0-RC1

Last Updated: January 2012.

Status: Draft


The purpose of this checklist is to determine whether an Incubator Project produces quality products, remains true to its stated licence and is sustainable. Satisfying this checklist is a pre-requisite for graduation.

A project should have institutionalized the processes in this list or provide justification why the process is not used.

Terms and Definitions

A member of the Incubation Committee chosen to assist a Project through the Incubation Process.
Institutionalized Process 
A documented process which which addresses a need and is actively in use. It typically takes months before a process becomes institutionalized. A more detailed definition of institutionalization is found in the Capability Maturity Model (CMMI) - "Generic Goal 2: Institutionalize a Managed Process"


Intellectual Property and License

We need to ensure that project owns or otherwise has obtained the ability to release the project code by completing the following steps:

  1. The project code, documentation and data has been adequately vetted to assure it is all properly licensed as per a provenance review.
  2. All code contributors have agreed to abide by the project's license policy, and this agreement has been documented and archived.
  3. The project has checked for inappropriate use of trademark or patents and the results of such checks have been documented.
  4. The project has the ability to shut off downloads if a blocking legal issue is found.


  1. The project has code under configuration management. Eg, subversion, git.
  2. The project uses an issue tracker and keeps the status of the issue tracker up to date>.
  3. The project has documented its management processes. This is typically done within a Developers Guide or Project Management Plan.
    • The project has a suitable governance policy ensuring decisions are made, documented and adhered to. This typically means a Project Management Committee has been established with a process for adding new members. A robust Project Management Committee will typically draw upon developers, users and key stakeholders from multiple organisations as there will be a greater variety of technical visions and the project is more resilient to a sponsor leaving.
    • The project uses public communication channels for decision making to maintain transparency. E.g. archived email list(s), archived IRC channel(s), public issue tracker.


  1. The project has user documentation:
    • Including sufficient detail to guide a new user through performing the core functionality provided by the application.
  2. The project has developer documentation:
    • Including checkout and build instructions.
    • Including commented code, ideally published for developer use. Examples: javadocs for Java applications, or Sphinx documentation for Python applications.
    • Providing sufficient detail for an experience programmer to contribute patches or a new module in accordance with the project's programming conventions.

Release Procedure

In order to maintain a consistent level of quality, the project should follow defined release and testing processes.

  1. The project follows a defined release process:
    • Which includes execution of the testing process before releasing a stable release.
  2. The project follows a documented testing process:
    • Ideally, this includes both automated and manual testing
    • Ideally this includes documentation conformance to set quality goals, such as reporting Percentage Code Coverage of Unit Tests.
  3. Release and testing processes provide sufficient detail for an experienced programmer to follow.


The OSGeo Foundation is made up of a number of committees, projects and local chapters. This section gathers up information these groups have requested from OSGeo projects.


The OSGeo Board holds ultimate responsibility for all OSGeo activities. The Board requests:

  1. A project provide a Project Officer as a contract point:
    • The Project Officer should be listed at: Project Officer
    • This person is established when the incubation committee recommends the project for graduation
    • Your community can change the project officer as needed (just add an agenda item to the next board meeting so they can recognise the change of officer).


Access to OSGeo's Marketing_Committee and associated Marketing_Pipeline is one of the key benefits of joining the OSGeo foundation. The Marketing Committee requests:

  1. Marketing artefacts have been created about the project in line with the incubation criteria listed in the OSGeo Marketing Committee's Marketing Artefacts. This lists the documentation requirements for OSGeo-Live. Marketing Artefacts include:
    • Application Overview
    • Application Quick Start
    • Logo
    • Graphical Image
  2. Ideally, stable version(s) of executable applications are bundled with appropriate distributions, (In most cases, this will at least include OSGeo-Live, but may also include DebianGIS, UbuntuGIS, and/or osgeo4w ms4w, etc.)


Projects do not exist in isolation; and are expected to communicate and collaborate on key issues. As an example the PostGIS release procedure asks that the release be checked with MapServer, GeoServer and others.


The System Administration Committee is available to help infrastructure and facilities. Information for this committee is collected as part of the Project Status Template. The following should be set up:

A project may optionally request SAC help to make use of: