Releasing collections

Collection maintainers release all supported stable versions of the collections regularly, provided that there have been enough changes merged to release.

Preparing to release a collection

The collections under the ansible-collections organization follow semantic versioning when releasing. See Collection versioning and deprecation for details.

To prepare for a release, a collection must have:

  • A publicly available policy of releasing, versioning, and deprecation. This can be, for example, written in its README or in a dedicated pinned issue.

  • A pinned issue when its release managers inform the community about planned or completed releases. This can be combined with the release policy issue mentioned above.

  • A changelog.

  • Releases of the collection tagged in the collection’s repository.

  • CI pipelines up and running. This can be implemented by using GitHub Actions, Azure Pipelines, Zuul.

  • All CI tests running against a commit that releases the collection. If they do not pass, the collection MUST NOT be released.

See Including a collection in Ansible if you plan on adding a new collection to the Ansible package.


Your collection must pass ansible-test sanity tests. See Testing collections for details.

Collection versioning and deprecation


Collections MUST adhere to semantic versioning.

To preserve backward compatibility for users, every Ansible minor version series (5.1.x, 5.2.x, and so on) will keep the major version of a collection constant. For example, if Ansible 5.0.0 includes community.general 4.0.2, then each Ansible 5.X.x release will include the latest community.general 4.y.z release available at build time. Ansible 5.x.x will never include a community.general 5.y.x release, even if it is available. Major collection version changes will be included in the next Ansible major release (6.0.0 in this case). Ensure that the current major release of your collection included in 6.0.0 receives at least bugfixes as long as new Ansible 6.X.X releases are produced.

Since new minor releases are included, you can include new features, modules and plugins. You must make sure that you do not break backwards compatibility. See semantic versioning. for more details. This means in particular:

  • You can fix bugs in patch releases but not add new features or deprecate things.

  • You can add new features and deprecate things in minor releases, but not remove things or change behavior of existing features.

  • You can only remove things or make breaking changes in major releases.

Ensure that if a deprecation is added in a collection version that is included in 5.x.y, the removal itself will only happen in a collection version included in 7.0.0 or later. Ensure that the policy of releasing, versioning, and deprecation is announced to contributors and users in some way. For an example of how to do this, see the announcement in community.general. You could also do this in the collection README file.

Collection changelogs

Collections MUST include a changelog. To give a consistent feel for changelogs across collections and ensure changelogs exist for collections included in the ansible package, we suggest you use antsibull-changelog to maintain and generate this.

Before releasing, verify the following for your changelogs:

  • All merged pull requests since the last release, except ones related to documentation and new modules/plugins, have changelog fragments.

  • New module and plugin pull requests, except jinja2 test and filter plugins, do not need a changelog fragment, they are auto-detected by the changelog generator by their version_added value.

  • All the fragments follow the changelog entry format.

Options for releasing a collection

There are several approaches on how to release a collection. If you are not aware of which approach to use, ask in the #ansible-community IRC channel or the community Matrix channel.

This section assumes that publishing the collection is done with Zuul and that antsibull-changelog is used for the changelog.

Releasing without release branches

Use releasing without release branches when:

  • There are no prior major releases of the collection.

  • There are no breaking changes introduced since the 1.0.0 release of the collection.

See Releasing collections without release branches for details.

When there is a need to introduce breaking changes, you can switch to the next approach.

Hybrid approach

In this approach, releases for the current major version are made from the main branch, while new releases for older major versions are made from release branches for these versions.

Releasing with release branches

Use releasing with release branches when breaking changes have been introduced. This approach is usually only used by the large community collections, community.general and

See Releasing collections with release branches for details.