Edgy "Crash Reports"?

Matthew Paul Thomas mpt at canonical.com
Fri Oct 6 02:14:22 BST 2006

Hash: SHA1

On Oct 6, 2006, at 5:34 AM, Loïc Minier wrote:
> On Thu, Oct 05, 2006, Sebastien Bacher wrote:
>> Another issue is the bug load. I just had a look on bugzilla.gnome, 
>> and they got over 1000 ubuntu crasher in a week (xml-rpc bug-buddy 
>> makes really easy to sent the crasher bug, just click on the "send" 
>> button). We already have difficulties to cope with the number of bugs 
>> we get at the moment what would happen if we add that extra load?
> ...
> Perhaps stack traces should be handled /very/ differently from bug 
> reports?

Of course. Inviting people to report bugs from individual crashes won't 
even scale to tens of millions of users, let alone hundreds of 
millions. (Martin's apport bug patterns are nifty, but giving 
non-developers a link to a Launchpad bug report won't scale to hundreds 
of millions of users either; it will result in those bug reports 
turning into unhelpful whinefests.)

> Whenever I get a bug buddy popup, I remember that day where
> the quality feedback agent of Thunderbird fired for me; when I tried 
> to check the state of my crash, I went to:
>     <http://talkback-public.mozilla.org/>
> And at some point I realized Mozilla folks were really dealing with 
> *mass* crashing reports:
> <http://talkback-public.mozilla.org/reports/firefox/FF1507/index.html>
> Now this is what I call industrialized!  It presumably saves them a 
> lot of time too, as the top 5 crashers represent 38% of the crash 
> reports.

Similarly, Microsoft have found that 20% of known bugs cause 80% of 
errors, and 1% of bugs cause 50% of errors. (Before the catcalls start, 
this is in all Windows software, not just Microsoft's.)

> ...
> Perhaps the crash reports should be directed to a special part of 
> launchpad, which wouldn't make each of them a bug?
> ...

This needn't be part of Launchpad, just as Talkback isn't a part of 
Bugzilla. Crashes could be logged in a separate system, with developers 
analyzing them and reporting the most common bugs in Launchpad as they 
have time. (We do this for errors that occur with Launchpad itself.) 
Crash reports older than a few months could also be expunged from the 
system, whereas this isn't practical for bug reports.

If you write a spec for doing this for Ubuntu, please subscribe me. :-)

- --
Matthew Paul Thomas
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