Re: Does the bug tracker actually work?

Telsa Gwynne <> writes:

> On Sat, Aug 05, 2000 at 02:22:27AM +0200 or thereabouts, Martin Baulig wrote:
> > This'd also be a good occasion to get rid of all this old crap.
> > Btw. does Bugzilla has any way to kick of stupid users ?
> > I just spend over half an hour deleting really stupid bug reports in GTop
> > and are kind of annoyed because of this. [snip]
> > There must be some way to automatically filter out all "it crashed" and other
> > crap and just let real bugs go into the bug tracker.  
> See, here's the problem with an integrated desktop environment that you
> make easy to use. People unfamiliar with it (aka "stupid users") will 
> use it :)
> I remember exactly when people started complaining about these bugs all
> the time. It was when bug-buddy came out. But the thing is, those apps
> were behaving like that all along. The people bug-buddy drew out of
> the woodwork were the people trying to use GNOME who didn't hang out
> on irc, mailing lists, or whatever. They were the people trying it
> at home who had no connections to places they might find more info.
> The people whom you just weren't hearing from. 
> Filtering out the "it crashed" reports from people whose first experience 
> of GNOME is that they were using something, it crashed and they got a 
> "report this and help GNOME?" option, however much it saves you from 
> "it just crashed" reports, will not change the fact that the apps did 
> indeed "just crash".

Yes. But also no.

Of course, we shouldn't be discarding bug reports if there is
any hope that we can get information out of them 

But when the bug report is:

Package: general
Severity: normal

>Class: sw-bug
Distribution: Red Hat Linux release 6.2 (Zoot)
System: Linux 2.2.14-12 i686 unknown
C library: glibc-2.1.3-15
C compiler: egcs-2.91.66
glib: 1.2.6
GTK+: 1.2.6
ORBit: ORBit 0.5.0
gnome-libs: gnome-libs 1.0.55
gnome-core: gnome-core-1.0.55-12

Debugging information:
Core was generated by `./a.out'.
Program terminated with signal 11, Segmentation fault.
#0  0x4006b081 in ?? ()
#0  0x4006b081 in ?? ()
#1  0x4006d8ca in ?? ()
#2  0x80484eb in ?? ()
#3  0x400349cb in ?? ()
#0  0x4006b081 in ?? ()

Or is a segfault  from netscape-communicator, or is a backtrace
without symbols where we aren't even told the application name.
Then there is no recourse but to discard the bug. There is
no useful extractable information, and it just takes up time
that could be spent dealing with useful bugs.

Bugs of this sort are probably close to _half_ of the bug reports
we get.

> GNOME is so very integrated that it took me ages to work out what
> was what. Bugs in gnome-terminal are a great example: do they go
> under gnome-terminal? Under gnome-core, which is where gnome-terminal
> comes from? Or under zvt or gnome-libs? If it's to do with preferences
> getting messed, is it gnome-terminal, or is it in fact session management,
> and where the hell do you enter that? Your first time user is not
> going to know what any of these are: and finding out is hard. 
> I don't think it's fair to describe all these reports as "crap";
> and I am trying hard not to take the "stupid user" comment personally. 
> I know you put a lot of time and effort into Gnome, Martin, and I am 
> very grateful for it. But "stupid user" is uncalled for.

Actually, you very much should _not_ take these remarks personally,
since your bug reports are a model of helpfulness... the 
information we mostly need is some sort of description of what
the user was doing.

The real problem is not "stupid user" - but "stupid bug buddy
author allowed people to submit bug reports without entering
a description of the problem." (Sorry Jacob - I know you've fixed
this, but most of these bug reports are coming from older versions
of bug-buddy.)


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