The value of solid bug reports

Note: This is an old post in a blog with a lot of posts. The world has changed, technologies have changed, and I've changed. It's likely this is out of date and not representative. Let me know if you think this is something that needs updating.

I admit that "solid bug report" is vague and probably different depending on the nature of the bug being reported. However, the amount of time it takes to research and fix a bug that has a well-written bug report vs. the time it takes to research and fix a bug that has a craptastic bug report is orders of magnitude in difference. In some cases, the latter bug report doesn't shed any light on the issue at all and thus won't result in a fix in any amount of time.

Anyhow, many many many thanks to Joey Hess to submitted a bug report in the Debian bug system (passed on to me by Norbert) regarding a problem with static rendering. He provided a wealth of information including his whole setup via subversion. He gets ten gold stars.

On a side note while I'm kvetching, I dislike bug reports that include a patch but don't specify what the problem is and why the patch is a good fix for the problem. It seems silly... you'd think I could look at the patch and work backwards to figure out what the issue is, but that is rarely the case. Often people who are providing the patches don't really understand what's going on at that point in the code and they've created a patch that "makes the problem go away for them" which is really different than "fixes the problem".

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