Query on risks about beta feature in 6.x

Composite Aggregation is launched in 6.x which is highly useful for our use case but its in beta. What is the risk associated with using a beta feature esp. Composite Aggregation in Production? What are the chances that it would not be supported in future versions?

There are a few reasons why we'd label a feature beta:

  • We try really hard to make sure most features don't break on you without sufficient warning. With beta features, we may suspect (or know) that the API may change in potentially backwards-incompatible ways pretty suddenly. So watch out and make sure to test thoroughly before/when upgrading.
  • We're pretty proud of our testing infrastructure and habits. With beta features, they have tests written, but may have known bugs and/or possibly not enough tests to make us super comfortable with customers running it in production.
  • We suspect (or know) that the feature has significant gaps in functionality which we'd expect to hear "angry" feedback on if we were to imply it were fully baked.

We don't recommend using beta features in production because we wouldn't plan to issue hotfixes, for example, for something gone awry with a beta feature. We have customers that pay us for support contracts and this is something we'd warn them of with beta features.

Beta features are intended to be promoted eventually -- once we've closed gaps in testing, feedback, and/or features. We use a labels ("experimental" or "research") for features which we still aren't sure if we'll be promoting.

If you're interested in using a beta feature, be extra cautious with tests (including during upgrades), make sure to take snapshots in case you need to revert, keep an eye on our GitHub for known issues, and have a backup plan in case there's something that we can't/won't address quickly. If you're a commercial customer, know that beta features are ineligible for "severity 1" issues for these reasons.

Hope that helps!

Thank you Shane - this definitely helps

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