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Release Process

ESO and the ESO Helm Chart have two distinct lifecycles and can be released independently. Helm Chart releases are named external-secrets-x.y.z.

The external-secrets project is released on a as-needed basis. Feel free to open a issue to request a release.

Release ESO

When doing a release it's best to start with with the "Create Release" issue template, it has a checklist to go over.

⚠️ Note: when releasing multiple versions, make sure to first release the "old" version, then the newer version. Otherwise the latest documentation will point to the older version. Also avoid to release both versions at the same time to avoid race conditions in the CI pipeline (updating docs, GitHub Release, helm chart release).

  1. Run Create Release Action to create a new release, pass in the desired version number to release.
    1. choose the right branch to execute the action: use main when creating a new release. Use release-x.y when you want to bump a LTS release.
    2. ⚠️ make sure that CI on the relevant branch has completed the docker build/push jobs. Otherwise an old image will be promoted.
  2. GitHub Release, Changelog will be created by the release.yml workflow which also promotes the container image.
  3. update Helm Chart, see below
  4. update OLM bundle, see helm-operator docs

Release Helm Chart

  1. Update version and/or appVersion in Chart.yaml and run make helm.update.appversion helm.test.update helm.test
  2. push to branch and open pr
  3. run /ok-to-test-managed commands for all cloud providers
  4. merge PR if everyhing is green
  5. CI picks up the new chart version and creates a new GitHub Release for it
  6. create/merge into release branch
    1. on a minor release: create a new branch release-x.y
    2. on a patch release: merge main into release-x.y

Release OLM Bundle

In order to make the latest release available to we need to create a bundle and open a PR in the community-operators repository.

To create a bundle first increment the VERSION in the Makefile as described above. Then run the following commands in the root of the repository:

# clone repo
git clone
cd external-secrets-helm-operator

# bump version
export VERSION=x.y.z
sed -i "s/^VERSION ?= .*/VERSION ?= ${VERSION}/" Makefile

# prep release
make prepare-stable-release ATTACH_IMAGE_DIGESTS=0

Check the generated files in the bundle/ directory. If they look good add & commit them, open a PR against this repository. You can always use the page to preview the generated CSV.

git status
git add .
git commit -s -m "chore: bump version xyz"
git push

Once the PR is merged and the image build job on main has completed, we need create a pull request against both community-operators repositories. There's a make target that does the heavy lifting for you:

make attach-image-digests
make bundle-operatorhub

This command will add/commit/push and open pull requests in the respective repositories.