[vbox-dev] Two changes in patch releases' API?

Tiago Espinha tiago at espinha.pt
Thu Dec 5 12:03:42 GMT 2013

Hi everyone,

I'm doing a study in (web) APIs and the API provided by VirtualBox is
part of my analysis.

What brings me to this mailing list is two questions where the
VirtualBox developers can greatly help me with:
- One of the things I noticed was how Oracle advertises that minor
version releases can push API changes. Is there a reason for this
deviation from the more traditional "semantic versioning" where API
breaking changes are saved for major releases (c.f.

- Another thing that I noticed was that from version 3.0.0 to 3.0.2 as
well as from version 4.0.2 to 4.0.4 there were also breaking changes.
Seeing as these are patch releases, what was the reasoning to push
these changes? Was there perhaps a security concern? Was it merely an
overlook where changes were mistakenly pushed to the final release?

Any help with either of these questions is greatly appreciated!

As a side note, please understand that I'm not trying to point fingers
but rather trying to understand what was the reason for these two points!


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