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Eclipse Vhant

Tuesday, October 24, 2023 - 12:40 by Wayne Beaton
This proposal is in the Project Proposal Phase (as defined in the Eclipse Development Process) and is written to declare its intent and scope. We solicit additional participation and input from the community. Please login and add your feedback in the comments section.
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Proposal State

The Bylaws of the Eclipse Foundation, define the Eclipse Foundation Development Process (EDP) as: "the document that describes how the Committers, Members, the Board of Directors, other participants in the community, and the Eclipse Management Organization (the "EMO") lead, influence, and collaborate with Eclipse Projects to achieve the Purposes", describe the maintenance of the EDP as a responsibility of the EMO and Architecture Council, and make the Eclipse Foundation Board of Directors responsible for approving changes.

The first release of the EDP was pushed to the Eclipse Foundation's servers in November 2005. Since that date, the EDP has undergone numerous updates. Development of the EDP has followed a generally closed process (notwithstanding input from the Eclipse Foundation Architecture Council); while we can argue that the process has been generally transparent, it has been neither open nor meritocratic. With this proposal, we intend to bring the development of future versions of the EDP under the EDP itself.

The Eclipse Foundation Specification Process (EFSP) extends the EDP to describe the process by which specifiations are created in open source. The EFSP was first released in 2018 and, like the EDP, has since undergone several revisions following a generally closed (selectively inclusive) process. Updates to the EFSP follow a somewhat different process form the EDP, relying on the Executive Director to convene a committee to engage in the work of gathering requirements and authoring a new draft.

We believe that using an Eclipse open source project to build the EDP and EFSP is consistent with the EDP, the Bylaws of the Eclipse Foundation, and the Eclipse Foundation's IP Policy. That is, we believe that we can operate this project in an open, transparent, and meritocratic manner as required by the EDP. More specifically, by our interpretation, there is no limitation expressed in the bylaws that prevents contributors or committers who do not represent the EMO or Architecture Council from participating in the project.

In practice, we expect that the EMO and Architecture Council will be the primary contributors to the development of the EDP. Regardless of the affiliations of the developers who contribute content, reponsibility to decide what releases of the project (if any) are adopted by the Eclipse Foundation rests with the EMO, Architecture Council, and the Board of DIrectors. That is, like any other Eclipse open source projects, the committers will decide what and when to release; but it is not necessarily the case that every release will be adopted by the Eclipse Foundation.

Likewise, the EFSP itself defines how new versions of the EFSP are created, but that definition does not prevent other contributors or committers representing other interests from participating. In practice, we expect that the EMO will be the primary contributors to the development of the EFSP, but the committee defined in by the EFSP will be the primary source of requirements and responsibile for selecting releases that will be presented to the Board of Directors for their approval and adoption by the Eclipse Foundation.

Developers who establish a pattern of contribution to this project would be good candidates to join the project as a committer, and likely also be good candidates to join the Architecture Council.


Eclipse Vhant produces and evolves the Eclipse Foundation Development Process and Eclipse Foundation Specification Process, along with companion documents and resources.

All modifications to the EDP or EFSP must be consistent with each other, and with all Governance Documents and Processes of the Eclipse Foundation, especially the Bylaws of the Eclipse Foundation and the Intellectual Property Policy of the Eclipse Foundation.

Why Here?

It seemed weird to consider having this hosted by the Apache Foundation.

Project Scheduling

We will make the initial contribution available immediately after the project is provisioned.

The first release as an official Eclipse Foundation project, for which we will target delivering the Eclipse Foundation Board of Directors for their approval in early 2024, will translate the documents into British English with no substantive changes. This version will then form the foundation for future enhancements.


The Eclipse Foundation Development Process (EDP) is the foundational goverance document for Eclipse projects and committers. It describes the manner in which we do open source software. The EDP does not prescribe any particular development methodology; it is more concerned with the larger-scale aspects of open source project lifecycle, including such things as reviews, processes for running votes and elections, bringing new committers onto a project, etc.

The Eclipse Foundation Specification Process (EFSP) extends the EDP to describe the process by which specifiations are created in open source.

The Eclipse Vhant project maintains the Eclipse Foundation Development Process, the Eclipse Foundation Specification Process, the Standard Top-Level Project Charter, and related resources.

Initial Contribution

The existing Git repositories containing the source for the EDP and EFSP on Eclipse Foundation GitLab will form the initial contribution. Prior to submitting the initial contribution, we will move the source for the Standard Top-Level Project charter to the EDP repository. We will additionally move the source for the Eclipse Project Handbook to this project (which will require a restructuring review with the Eclipse Dash project).

Source Repository Type