How To Maintain a Repository#


Maintaining a repository requires more than just doing the tasks outlined here. This page outlines the things that are easy to write down and follow. It does not include advice on other important aspects of being a good maintainer, such as being a good steward of the codebase, and being a supportive leader in the community. This and many other activities that a maintainer is expected to do involve critical thinking and an understanding of the specifics of the codebase you maintain.

Congratulations on becoming the maintainer of a repository in the Open edX Platform! As outlined in OEP-55 this is a big responsibility and we’re excited to help you fulfill it.

Your repository may be brand new or it may have been around for a while. In either case, this document will help you review the repository and help you make the changes needed to meet the current standards of the platform.

GitHub Issues is Enabled#

GitHub Issues should be enabled on your repository. This is how issues will be reported against your repository.


Go to your repository on GitHub. If you see an issues tab, you don’t need to do anything else. If you don’t see an issues tab then see the Fix Section for what to do.


Go to the Settings Tab for the repository you maintain and check the “Issues” box in the general settings.

A catalog-info.yaml File Exists#

We use backstage to help developers get a quick overview of all the things they own and their status.


  • Check to see if there is a catalog-info.yaml file at the root of your repository.

  • Ensure that the file is up-to-date. Especially the name of the maintainer.


If the file exists, check to make sure the data is up-to-date and correct. If you don’t have a catalog-info.yaml file, see How To Add a Catalog File

Python Dependency Update Automation is Enabled#


If your repository contains python code, .github/workflows/upgrade-python-requirements.yml should exist and be a copy of the python upgrade workflow template. You should also see successful runs of the Upgrade Python Requirements workflow in the Actions tab of your repo.

For frontend repos, the XXX workflow(s) should exist.


If the file doesn’t exist, or the workflow runs are failing, go through How To Enable Python Upgrade Automation.

Javascript Dependency Update Automation is Enabled#


If your repository contains javascript code, renovate.json should exist and be a copy of the reference renovate.json in frontend-template-application. You should also see auto-generated dependency update PRs show up in the repository.


If renovate.json doesn’t exist or you don’t see any PRs being generated, follow How To Enable Javascript Upgrade Automation.

A Well-Formed README Exists#


Check that your README.rst exists and has all the sections defined in the README specification.


Update your readme until it meets the above specification.

Your CCs are Aligned With Your Expectations as Maintainer#

A repo that you take on may already have other CCs that have merge rights on it. You should review which CCs have write access to your repo on the CCs Wiki Page. You should communicate with your CCs and ensure that you are aligned with them on the architectural goals of the repo, especially if there are particular kinds of changes that you as the maintainer would like to have more input on.


Sometimes github teams are used to group multiple repos together and the CCs wiki lists the team instead of each individual repo. The teams that are used for access should be listed at the top of the wiki page.

You can also make an Axim Request to get a snapshot of the what users and teams currently have access to your repo if you need more details or have questions.

For any new CCs that might get added to your repo, you will have the opportunity to vote on their nomination and decide whether they should get access. See the CC nomination process documentation for more details.

For any CCs that you believe are not fulfilling their role properly you may opt to initiate the CC removal process as outlined in OEP-54


Your repository is now up to Maintainers standards! Now you’re ready to begin your journey as a maintainer of your repo. Visit the Ongoing Maintainer’s Tasks page to learn more about what’s expected of you (and your team, if applicable).