Increasing Apport's Package Coverage

Brian Murray brian at
Fri Jul 3 23:54:12 BST 2009

At the UDS for Karmic Koala the Ubuntu QA team discussed increasing the
number of packages that have an apport hook.  The goal being to receive
higher quality bug reports and reduce the amount of bug ping-pong
necessary.  While one could write an apport hook for any package we
decided to identify the packages that might benefit the most from one.
This was done by taking a sample of the 1000 most recent bug reports
filed and determining which packages received the top 20% of bug reports
by volume.  Attached you'll find the data from the end of June.  For
example the linked data looks like:

None: 181
linux - hook exists: 37
firefox-3.0 - hook exists: 35
pidgin: 24

The key is the package name with 'hook exists' appended if the package
has an apport hook and the value being the quantity of bug reports.
'None' refers to bug reports filed about no specific package.  The
specification[1] contains the same statistics for the end of May and
April.  Any of the packages that appear in these lists are great targets
for an apport package hook.  

You don't need to be an Ubuntu developer to write a package hook either
- it just takes some knowledge of python and the target package.
Examples of the hooks are located on every Ubuntu system in
/usr/share/apport/package-hooks/ and additional information regarding
writing them can be found at  Testing your hook is as
simple as adding an appropriately named file to the package-hooks
directory and executing 'ubuntu-bug -p' and the package name.  You can
then review the attached files in the resulting apport dialog box, but
please don't actually file the bug!  

If you do write a hook and can't get it added to the package yourself
feel free to report a bug about the package missing a hook, add the hook
as a patch and subscribe me to the bug report.


Brian Murray                                       
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None: 181
linux - hook exists: 37
firefox-3.0 - hook exists: 35
pidgin: 24
evolution: 22
nautilus: 19
xorg - hook exists: 16
empathy: 14
rhythmbox: 14
alsa-driver - hook exists: 14
update-manager: 13
totem: 12 12
xserver-xorg-video-intel - hook exists: 10
sun-java6: 9
gnome-power-manager - hook exists: 8
grub2: 7
compiz - hook exists: 7
thunderbird: 7
ubiquity - hook exists: 6
network-manager - hook exists: 5
byobu: 5
gnome-terminal: 5
gnome-utils: 5
usplash - hook exists: 4
linux-meta: 4
kdepim: 4
firefox: 4
kvm - hook exists: 4
fglrx-installer - hook exists: 4
kompozer: 4
ekiga: 4
meta-gnome2: 4
vm-builder: 4
kdebase: 4
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