Why Community Edition is always behind Enterprise Edition?

I started looking into Couchbase Server very recently and to see if I can use it in my project or not I ran a number of tests. My project is relatively small and of course I downloaded and setup Couchbase Community Edition (4.0).
While testing and playing with Couchbase I found a few potential problems which I posted here on forums. When people tried to help me with suggestions they also asked me to try more recent versions 4.1 (only Enterprise for the moment) and 4.5 (Beta for Community and Enterprise), same suggestions I saw in other threads for people who are using Community Edition.
I did try the newer versions to confirm found issues, but then I was thinking, what’s the point for me in doing it, isn’t it just a waste of time? I mean, even if these problems have been fixed in the recent versions, does it make any difference for me, I still can not use them in production. If anything it only gives me a frustration to hear something like: “your problem has been fixed in 4.5, which will be released soon, in Q2, but the Community Edition will be available in Q4”.
Isn’t it the community members who find and report most of problems in the product? Wouldn’t Couchbase be more stable and competitive if the Community Edition was released at the same time as Enterprise?
I do understand when an enterprise product comes with more features and full product support, but who would pay you to just get bug fixes? It’s a very strange policy Couchbase has in my opinion.

Any comments from Couchbase representatives, maybe?

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Hi @dmitryb,
I understand how the policy is effecting you. Part of the enterprise edition attraction is to get 24x7 support. Enterprise customer who are funding the project get the latest fixes early and quickly including maintenance patches, service packs and more. There are also feature differences around tooling, performance, security and HA with enterprise edition.
Obviously I and other here want the community edition to be useful to the larger community but it is always tricky how we manage this balance between the 2 editions. I am at cihan@couchbase.com and open to suggestions if you have other CE/EE models you like out there. Could you send me your suggestions here or over a private email if that is your preference.

i would like to oppose you a little bit. I’m also new to Couchbase, and, first of all, i think that this is a perfect product (probably, except N1QL for 4.0/4.1.X; but that’s an immaturity problem).
Now, imagine that you need to make a perfect software. Money, people and time are what you need. And the order is exact like i told: money, people, time.
Community is a part of “people” component; it is very important, but it’s just a part (there are also developers, testers, paid subcribers). And (imho), Couchbase is not going to be more stable and competitive if the Community Edition is released at the same time as Enterprise. Just because “money” component problems come into play: when you share everything you have, one day you will have nothing to share at all.

Of course, there are a lot of different counter-examples, but my answer for all counter-examples is just one: “and why are you still here” ? And seems like we both know why :wink: The “perfect product” is just a “result of used complex strategy”. And (in this particular case) i do trust chosen strategy and do not ready to trust a theoretical approach.

P.S. And “there is no abstract justice in the world”. If you make any contribution with no contract, then expect nothing. “Disturbed feel of justice” is a usual thing, but not in a case of “free community contribution”.

Hehe, I think you took it too far calling Couchbase a “perfect product”. :))
I have to say, I do like what I read about it and Couchbase does stand out from other NoSQL solutions as a feature rich and well designed product. This is basically the reason “I’m here” as you said, testing the product for my use cases. And what I see is that although some features look cool on the paper they’re very much immature, as you mentioned yourself. This is of course understandable, considering how young the product is comparing to much more stable and robust RDBMS (I think about all NoSQL products as being still very young).
I should say right away, that I’m not one of the people who think that every peace of software should be free. And of course, I was not suggesting to “share everything you have” as you put it. Quite opposite, I said I do understand when EE comes with extra features, full product support and maybe even trainings, this is pretty much how everyone is doing it. I was specifically pointing to the decision to keep CE so much behind EE which I don’t really appreciate, as to me it does affect the product’s quality.

Just think about it, there is a new 4.5 Beta available now. Of course, the more people download and try it, the more problems they find, as there are bugs even in perfect products as Couchbase. ;-p Some people could even take the risk and put it into production, thus testing it under real, high load. But what’s the point for people who are using CE in doing it? They won’t be able to use the new version in production for another half a year or so. For them this turns out to be just a waste of time.

Of course, Couchbase needs some monetization formula, I just think that keeping CE behind EE is not the best way of doing it.

@dmitryb and @egrep, thanks to both of you for the feedback. CE does eventually ship in a few months after EE (about 6 months). If you have other models you like on EE ce differentiation, I am happy to hear about those.
The point is we want to make CE useful to community who’d like to run moderate size production env and should be able to go to EE when they are ready to pay or leave EE for CE when they no longer want to be EE customers without changing any app code.
I also wanted to remind both of you that we also have open source edition - you can always compile your own version at any time. github.com/couchbase

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I also wanted to remind both of you that we also have open source edition - you can always compile your own version at any time. github.com/couchbase

I do use src-based builds. And @dmitryb, recommend this for you too.


If you have other models you like on EE ce differentiation, I am happy to hear about those.

  1. Release often, for example, make a special build each month (EE-monthly). Include only “most important bug fixes” for such releases (if you wanna play democracy, you could even make a “vote to fill bug quota for this month”, for example: according to JIRA there are 100 open bugs, and community could vote for 10 “most wished” to be closed for next EE-monthly). There will be a lot of “known bugs” for such releases, but that is normal.
  2. Delay exactly 3 months between CE-monthly and EE-monthly.
  3. Delay exactly 6 months between CE-major and EE-major.

Main benefit: community has well-known estimated time for “most awaited bugfixes” (3 months sliding window), therefore, there is a chance to “almost make a planning for CE-based production”.

Terms “EE-monthly” and “CE-monthly” were used to illustrate the idea of “expected silding window for releases with ability to affect on included bugfixes”.


The benefit of Couchbase is that it is open source. If you would like to use the lastest build of Couchbase you can build from source ,not including EE only features. Go to https://github.com/couchbase from here you can compile and build all the parts that make up Couchbase and run the lastest build.

Things you’ll want to do before deploying the builds into production:

  • QA Testing
  • Performance Test
  • Debug

This way you can get the benefit of Couchbase 4.5.x without waiting.

Thanks for all the suggestions. Wanted to let you all know that CE for 4.1 is coming soon. We will consider the options above for future releases.

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I am building from source. To get the latest 4.5 version, I need to use watson right?
Or it’s better to use the 4.5 beta manifest?

You want something after beta. The 4.5 GA release candidate. Not sure what the manifest name is.

Also each binary release also contain its manifest at /opt/couchbase/manifest.xml

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Hi folks, wanted to update the thread since this was a recent discussion on the 4.1 CE date - we have a bit of a traffic jam and we are working on pushing out 4.1 CE soon but it will be few more weeks to get this out. I apologize for the delay.

FYI Community Edition for 4.1 has shipped today: http://blog.couchbase.com/2016/july/couchbase-server-4.1.0-community-edition-is-available


seems like CB-dev-teams are ready for a blast of error messages about 4.1.X :wink:

Be nice, @egrep.


I try, even if it’s hard sometimes :wink:
But in fact, 4.1.0 CE’s out is really a great advantage for those, who used 4.0.0 CE.

Something like “4.1.0. A ray of light in the CE-world !” :wink:


Very happy to hear you guys already are liking 4.1 CE.

@cihangirb if there is any schedule where we can track when the next CE will be released (some page or roadmap)?