Semantic Versioning, also known as SemVer, is a versioning scheme used for software projects to convey information about the compatibility, features, and changes in different releases of the software. It follows a specific format: `..`.
1. Major Version (`<major>`): The major version indicates significant changes that may introduce breaking changes or major updates to the software. This typically includes backward-incompatible changes, major new features, or significant architectural changes.
2. Minor Version (`<minor>`): The minor version represents backward-compatible additions or enhancements to the software. It includes new features or functionalities that are added without breaking existing functionality.
3. Patch Version (`<patch>`): The patch version indicates backward-compatible bug fixes, patches, or small updates that do not introduce any new features. These updates generally address issues, bugs, or security vulnerabilities in the software.
Here are some examples of semantic versioning:
- Version `1.0.0`: This is the initial release of the software, indicating that it has reached the stable state. Typically, the major version starts at `1` for the first stable release.
- Version `1.2.3`: This version indicates that there have been backward-compatible feature additions or enhancements (`1`) since the last release, along with backward-compatible bug fixes or patches (`2`), and minor bug fixes or small updates (`3`).
- Version `2.0.0`: This version signifies a major release that introduces backward-incompatible changes or major updates to the software.
Semantic Versioning helps developers and users understand the impact of updates and changes in software versions. It provides a consistent and standardized way to communicate the compatibility and significance of different releases, allowing developers to manage dependencies, handle upgrades, and ensure compatibility across projects.
It is worth noting that semantic versioning is not limited to software projects only. It can also be applied to libraries, APIs, frameworks, or any other project that follows a versioning scheme.