Dear developers,

Given the recent announcement that the powerpc architecture would be dropped
from the upcoming Debian release[1], there has been a good deal of
discussion about the future of this architecture in Ubuntu as well,
including a session at last month's Ubuntu Online Summit[2] and several
discussions during Technical Board meetings.

Unlike the ppc64el architecture, there is no longer upstream support for the
32-bit, big-endian powerpc architecture; so its continuation in Ubuntu would
be dependent on identifying a community of contributors willing to invest in
keeping this port in working order, to carry it forward without it
negatively impacting Ubuntu development as a whole.

We thank the Linux PowerPC community for their support of Ubuntu over the
years.  However, efforts since UOS to identify participants for such
community support going forward have led to the inevitable conclusion that
the powerpc port in Ubuntu has reached the end of its useful lifespan.

The Technical Board has therefore determined that the powerpc port should
not be included in the Ubuntu 17.04 (zesty) release.  In support of this,
powerpc will be dropped as an architecture in zesty as of Feature Freeze[3].

The powerpc architecture will continue to be supported as part of existing
stable releases.  Since powerpc is included in Ubuntu 16.04 LTS, security
updates for existing packages can be expected until April 2021.  We believe
this should provide users of Ubuntu powerpc adequate time to plan a
migration off of this architecture.

On behalf of the Technical Board,
Steve Langasek                   Give me a lever long enough and a Free OS
Debian Developer                   to set it on, and I can move the world.
Ubuntu Developer                                                     


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