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ADR Creation Process

  1. Copy the adr-template.md file. Use the following filename pattern: adr-next_number-title.md
  2. Create a draft Pull Request if you want to get an early feedback.
  3. Make sure the context and a solution is clear and well documented.
  4. Add an entry to a list in the README file.
  5. Create a Pull Request to propose a new ADR.

ADR life cycle

ADR creation is an iterative process. Instead of trying to solve all decisions in a single ADR pull request, we MUST firstly understand the problem and collect feedback through a GitHub Issue.

  1. Every proposal SHOULD start with a new GitHub Issue or be a result of existing Issues. The Issue should contain just a brief proposal summary.

  2. Once the motivation is validated, a GitHub Pull Request (PR) is created with a new document based on the adr-template.md.

  3. An ADR doesn't have to arrive to main with an accepted status in a single PR. If the motivation is clear and the solution is sound, we SHOULD be able to merge it and keep a proposed status. It's preferable to have an iterative approach rather than long, not merged Pull Requests.

  4. If a proposed ADR is merged, then it should clearly document outstanding issues either in ADR document notes or in a GitHub Issue.

  5. The PR SHOULD always be merged. In the case of a faulty ADR, we still prefer to merge it with a rejected status. The only time the ADR SHOULD NOT be merged is if the author abandons it.

  6. Merged ADRs SHOULD NOT be pruned.

ADR status

Status has two components:

{CONSENSUS STATUS} {IMPLEMENTATION STATUS}

IMPLEMENTATION STATUS is either Implemented or Not Implemented.

Consensus Status

DRAFT -> PROPOSED -> LAST CALL yyyy-mm-dd -> ACCEPTED | REJECTED -> SUPERSEDED by ADR-xxx
\ |
\ |
v v
ABANDONED
  • DRAFT: [optional] an ADR which is work in progress, not being ready for a general review. This is to present an early work and get an early feedback in a Draft Pull Request form.
  • PROPOSED: an ADR covering a full solution architecture and still in the review - project stakeholders haven't reached an agreed yet.
  • LAST CALL <date for the last call>: [optional] clear notify that we are close to accept updates. Changing a status to LAST CALL means that social consensus (of Cosmos SDK maintainers) has been reached and we still want to give it a time to let the community react or analyze.
  • ACCEPTED: ADR which will represent a currently implemented or to be implemented architecture design.
  • REJECTED: ADR can go from PROPOSED or ACCEPTED to rejected if the consensus among project stakeholders will decide so.
  • SUPERSEEDED by ADR-xxx: ADR which has been superseded by a new ADR.
  • ABANDONED: the ADR is no longer pursued by the original authors.

Language used in ADR

  • The context/background should be written in the present tense.
  • Avoid using a first, personal form.