Hey all,

This is a quick note to highlight that in two weeks' time, the REL1_38 branch will be created for MediaWiki core and each of the extensions and skins in Wikimedia git, with some (the 'tarball') included as sub-modules of MediaWiki itself[0]. This is the first step in the release process for
MediaWiki 1.38, which should be out in late May 2022, approximately six months after MediaWiki 1.37.

The branches will reflect the code as of the last 'alpha' branch for the release, 1.38.0-wmf.26, which will be deployed to Wikimedia wikis in the week beginning 13 March 2022 for MediaWiki itself and those extensions and skins available there.

After that point, patches that land in the main development branch of MediaWiki and its bundled extensions and skins will be slated for the MediaWiki 1.39 release unless specifically backported[1].

If you are working on a new feature that you wish to land for the release, you now have a few days to finish your work and land it in the development branch; feature changes should not be backported except in an urgent case. If your work might not be complete in time, and yet should block release for everyone else, please file a task against the `mw-1.38-release` project on Phabricator.[2]

If you have tickets that are already tagged for `mw-1.38-release`, please finish them, untag them, or reach out to get them resolved in the next few weeks.

We hope to issue the first release candidate, 1.38.0-rc.0, two weeks after the branch point, and if all goes well, to release MediaWiki 1.38.0 a few weeks after that.

[0]: <https://www.mediawiki.org/wiki/Bundled_extensions_and_skins>
[1]: <https://www.mediawiki.org/wiki/Backporting_fixes>
[2]: <https://phabricator.wikimedia.org/project/board/5407/>

James D. Forrester (he/him or they/themself)