Public bug reported:

The canonical-server team is requesting a feature freeze exception for
acceptance of a transition of the PHP stack to PHP 7.3 from 7.2.

Ubuntu has been on PHP 7.2 since 18.04.  Updating to PHP 7.3 in eoan
will give people ample time to test and update dependent packages prior
to starting the LTS.

All the version dependent PHP packages on the transitions page[1] have
been verified to build with no changes[2].  There are no new
dependencies, no dependency version changes, and no patches needing
applied apart from the php-defaults switch itself.

However, Mysql is also currently undergoing a transition to Mysql 8.0,
and recommendation from Foundations team is to fully complete the Mysql
transition, and don't cross the streams.  While this transition is
nearly completed, few days remain before FF, so it is likely the start
of the PHP transition needs delayed until after Feature Freeze.

The PHP uploads have already been staged in a PPA[2] and tested in LXD.
Next step is to start package uploads, which can begin as soon as the
Mysql8 transition is complete; current estimates suggest late August
(Aug 26th?), possibly sooner.

Uploads would occur in phases, as follows:

0.  php-defaults

1.  php-apcu php-msgpack php-propro

2.  php-apcu-bc php-igbinary php-imagick

3.  php-raphf       php-memcache    php-pinba       php-smbclient php-uuid      
    owfs            php-cassandra   php-geoip       php-ps        php-solr      
    php-amqp        php-ds          php-geos        php-lua       php-mongodb   
    php-excimer     php-gmagick     php-luasandbox  php-oauth     php-stomp     
    php-gnupg       php-mailparse   php-rrd         php-yac       php-yaml      

4.  php-redis       php-memcached   libguestfs      php-ast       php-facedetect
    php-pecl-http   mapserver       remctl          sassphp       
    wikidiff2       php-horde-lz4   php-gearman     tideways      xdebug

In theory, each phase can be completed within a day, but will depend on
Launchpad build loads and perhaps mysql8 related issues, which may
require additional days.  Thus, total time for transition is estimated
to be 1-2 weeks.

A worksheet for tracking the transition progress is available to team
members here, including initial findings from local dep8 testing:

7.3 is an incremental release over 7.2, and what's shown in the
changelog seems mainly refinements and enhancements, so breakage from
the upgrade itself is not expected; this seems to be borne out from
results of rebuilds and testing so far.  Debian has been carrying 7.3
for a while and Eoan has already sync'd/merged fixes for issues they've
found.  Thus PHP 7.3 itself seems low risk for Eoan.

But since the PHP 7.3 stack and Mysql8.0 stack have not been tested in
combination yet, this seems like a potential area for problems to crop
up.  For example, Mysql8 deprecates mysql_install_db, which affects at
least php7.*.  But if problems do arise, it would be valuable to tackle
them now while the Mysql8 transition experience is fresh.

Having this transition completed in Eoan will leave us in a good spot
going into 20.04.


** Affects: php-defaults (Ubuntu)
     Importance: Undecided
         Status: New

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  [FFe] PHP 7.3 transition

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