Being nice to testers - mandating debug packages

David Nielsen gnomeuser at
Fri Jan 13 16:57:28 GMT 2006

fre, 13 01 2006 kl. 11:20 -0500, skrev Phillip Susi:
> I've been thinking about this lately myself, but I don't see this being 
> of any use at all to testers.  Testers aren't going to get the debug 
> symbols and fire up gdb for a debugging session, especially on the 
> optimized binaries.  The only place I can see this being used is by a 
> developer who asks the tester to send him the core dump, then he will 
> need the correct symbols to analyze the core dump.

Testers will most certainly get the debugging packages, as long as they
know they are there - which is why I maintain a small bugfiling how-to
on the Forums btw. At least a significant amount of testers will, the
rest will be just as loud as they are now.

We already have good guides to obtaining traces on the various wikis
around important projects and it seems to be policy for developers to
link to it in bugreports if they get set to NEEDINFO.

I will readily admit that my ability to read backtraces is somewhat
limited, but how big an impact on usefulness is the optimized split
debug, they seem to be good enough for the RedHat developers at least?
Besides some bugs happen only optimized packages since GCC nor
application developers are perfect and bad behavior is to be expected
from time to time.

Even assuming your argument that testers will simply not get the debug
packages, does it then not for the sake of creating the best possible
product make sense to enforce debug build by default during at least
part of the development cycle. Crashing applications require proper
fixing and as testers of the platform we should expect it to take some
effort sometimes, at least if we want the bug to go away. Yes this will
bloat the install and cause some slowdowns but if this is clearly
explained to the users like e.g. FreeBSD does for development cycles of
their base system and kernel, I don't see a major problem, the slowdown
will go away in final release as will the extra symbols.

- David Nielsen

More information about the ubuntu-devel mailing list