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Compare and Contrast

Bug reporting in Fogbugz (the tracker we use at work) is very simple. There aren't many fields and you can't customize it much. QA are sometimes frustrated by this but on the whole most people agree that Fogbugz got instant and widespread buy in precisely because it was simple and has been a great success. Joel himself summarizes the principal like so:

People add so many fields to their bug databases to capture everything they think might be important that entering a bug is like applying to Harvard. End result: people don't enter bugs, which is much, much worse than not capturing all that information.


So far so groovy.

The other day I spotted what I consider to be a bug in Firefox, the posterchild Open Source browser.

Being the good citizen I am, I thought I'd report it so I went to the Firefox Bug Reporting Page.

Are they having a laugh? Have you seen the steps I am expected to go to before a I register a bug?



  1. Use the latest nightly build of Firefox with a new profile

  2. Check if you can reproduce the bug in Mozilla (Application Suite)

  3. Check if the bug is already filed

  4. Finally, read the official Bug Writing Guidelines




Even if I jumped through these hoops, I know for a fact that when I get to make the report I would be presented with Bugzilla which is, to all intents and purposes, the anti-fogbugz.

It's like they don't want to know about these things. Even in Open Source land, a bug is not the user's fault. If you want to know about it then you might want to treat them gently, cause chances are you are catching them at the point when they are least disposed to be charitable to you.

My issue remains unreported.

Comments

Phil Ringnalda said…
bug 285836, "Clear Cookies Now should be cancelled...," no?

I wish I knew of something vaguely similar to Moz running something other than Bugzilla to see how it compares.

It's hard to file bugs on Mozilla, and it gets 100-200 filed a day, of which 50% are clear and certain duplicates or non-bugs, and another 25% will never get past the "not enough information" stage. What I wonder is whether the bugs that don't get filed have that same breakdown, or better, or worse.
Gareth said…
Thanks for the link to that bug although some of the comments leave me less than hopefull that it will be fixed.

I always found Sourceforge's bugtracker to be simple and effective, so such things do exist for open source projects.