# last updated: 2024-05-20


The AlmaLinux Engineering Steering Committee (ALESCo), is a self-governing body made of active contributors to the project that will guide the technical direction of the AlmaLinux distribution. Participation in the meetings, discussions around potential changes, and other needs will be open to the AlmaLinux community, unless prevented for specific reasons (for example: an embargoed security patch). This committee was formed by vote of the 32nd meeting (opens new window) of the AlmaLinux OS Foundation board, May 8th of 2024.

# How to participate

Adding your voice to the ALESCo discussions is the easiest way to participate! You can show up to a meeting, add a vote or perspective to a change discussion, or ask or answer questions in chat! Not every participant needs to be a member of ALESCo, but if you do, we will soon have a way for you to express your interest.

Where we chat

We use the AlmaLinux mattermost for most communication.

~alesco on chat.almalinux.org (opens new window)

Where and when we meet

Meeting times have yet to be decided, but they will eventually be listed on events.almalinux.org (opens new window) in the ALESCo topic.

# Activities, projects, and deliverables

Dubbed “air traffic control” for all engineering matters, ALESCo will ensure AlmaLinux’s robustness, reliability, and sustainability while working collaboratively with and overseeing technical decisions in relevant Special Interest Groups (SIGs). The committee will hold five key responsibilities:

  • Technical oversight for the operating system
  • Transparency in engineering decisions
  • Ensuring Long-Term Stability Focus
  • Release Management
  • SIG support

# Help wanted

As the committee gets its feet under it, this section will be expanded to include more information. Initially, this committee's responsibilities will be defining a collection of processes:

  • how the AlmaLinux project accepts requests for changes from the community
  • what changes the project is willing to consider
  • how the project solicits feedback from the greater AlmaLinux community about the changes it considers
  • how community members express interest in joining ALESCo

# Committee members

The foundation board appointed the initial committee members, but the rest of the management of the members will be done by the committee itself. Current members:

# Accepted Proposal

This proposal was a collaboration between the foundation board and many community members, and now acts as the governing document for this committee. Adjustments to this governing document require board approval.

# AlmaLinux Engineering Steering Committee (ALESCo)

co-authored by: Jonathan Wright, Infrastructure Lead; Cody Robertson, Infrastructure Team

# Mission Statement:

The AlmaLinux Engineering Steering Committee (ALESCo) is dedicated to guiding the technical direction of the AlmaLinux distribution on a day-to-day basis within the guidelines set forth by the board, ensuring its robustness, reliability, sustainability, and relevance in the open-source ecosystem. ALESCo will work collaboratively with, and oversee relevant technical-focused Special Interest Groups (SIGs) to achieve these goals. It is "air traffic control" for engineering matters.

# Tasks and Responsibilities:

  1. Policy Oversight: Create and maintain policies on the management of technical aspects of the AlmaLinux project. Its primary purpose is to be a policy-making group for when the need arises; for example, to lay out a clear framework for when we would deviate from upstream to provide a CVE or bug-fix patch early.  Examples:
    1. Change Proposals: Evaluate and approve new features or changes proposed for inclusion in AlmaLinux or relating to AlmaLinux's technical and engineering operations.
    2. Package and Software Decisions: Supervise the inclusion, updating, and maintenance of software packages in the AlmaLinux repositories and ultimately decide which packages are added and removed from AlmaLinux.
  2. Conflict Mediation: Act as a final arbiter in technical disputes related to AlmaLinux's operations within the community, ensuring decisions align with the project's best interests.
  3. Long-Term Stability Focus: Prioritize the unique needs of users by ensuring enterprise-grade stability, compatibility, and long-term support in ALESCo's decisions. This includes a commitment to rigorous testing of updates, maintaining consistent software packages and configurations, emphasizing security, and providing comprehensive documentation to support deployments at all scales.
  4. Release Management: Oversee the release cycle of AlmaLinux to meet the needs and expectations of our users per our mission statement.
  5. SIG Liaisons: Each technical SIG needs to ensure ALESCo is aware of its plans and actions. To address this, if an ALESCo member is not actively participating in the SIG, it should work with the SIG to ensure a liaison attends ALESCo meetings.

# Policies:

  1. Transparency: All meetings, decisions, and discussions will be public, ensuring transparency and community involvement. ALESCo members must publicly disclose their employer and any conflicts of interest, and maintain this disclosure in the wiki, updating it as necessary for accuracy.
  2. Appointments: The first ALESCo members are to be appointed by the Board of Directors.  After the initial appointment, the membership of ALESCo will manage itself - adding members or filling vacancies as deemed necessary by vote of the current members. ALESCo members are expected to have and maintain relevant knowledge and understanding of the technical aspects surrounding AlmaLinux as well as the greater enterprise Linux and open source ecosystems to allow them to make informed decisions in policy creation and voting.
  3. Term Duration: ALESCo members are appointed with no set term. Every 6 months, at the time of chair election within ALESCo, each member is to be asked if they intend to continue serving or choose to step down.
  4. Meeting Frequency: ALESCo will meet regularly, no less than once per month.
  5. Decision Making: Decisions will be made based on a majority vote. In case of a tie, the chairperson (or a designated member) will have the deciding vote.
  6. Quorum: A quorum is defined as 50% of members +1 with a minimum quorum always being at least four (4) members. A quorum is required for any votes.
  7. Dissolution: At a point where the ALESCo is no longer functioning for the good of the AlmaLinux community, the board reserves the right to dissolve the committee and reform it with new members.

# Chair:

  1. The position of the chair will rotate among the elected members of ALESCo on a semi-annual basis- a 6-month term. This ensures diverse leadership and prevents a single point of prolonged control, fostering a more inclusive decision-making process.
  2. To ensure a smooth transition, the outgoing chair will work closely with the incoming chair, facilitating knowledge transfer and operational continuity.
  3. The chair will be elected by members of ALESCo.
  4. The chair cannot serve more than 2 consecutive terms (1 year) as chair.
  5. The chair's primary responsibility is coordinating and facilitating meetings. The chair holds no special powers outside of what is defined in this document.

# Acknowledgements:

We would like to thank the following people for their contribution to this proposal in the form of feedback and ideas:

  • Alex Iribarren; CERN
  • benny Vasquez; Chair, AlmaLinux Board of Directors
  • Brian Farrell; Hawk Host, Inc.
  • Daniel Pearson; KnownHost, LLC