Public/private bugreports

Bryce Harrington bryce at
Fri Sep 25 19:08:13 BST 2009

On Fri, Sep 25, 2009 at 01:58:17PM +0200, Klaus Doblmann wrote:
> I've been a silent follower of this list for some time now and as what
> I'm about to say affects the development of Ubuntu via bugreports I've
> decided to post it here - forgive me if I'm wrong.
> I've submitted a few bugreports of app-crashes in the last few days
> during my testing of Karmic and before submitting the bug I always look
> for duplicates - which launchpad lists. Well, it does so in _some_ cases
> but not in all. 
> When submitting an application crash the bug report is set to be
> "private" therefore if somebody else submits the same crash report, the
> previous one doesn't shop up in launchpad until after you've submitted
> the bug and it's automatically set to be a duplicate.
> This behaviour leads to many duplicate bugreports and quite a few hours
> wasted by the community spent filing these reports.
> Maybe this behaviour can be changed - or somebody can tell me the reason
> for the bugreports being marked as "private" by default?

There is a chance with crash reports that the data they submit could
include private data (passwords, etc.).  Since these bugs are
automatically filed, the reporter may not have the time (or know-how) to
determine whether it includes personal info, thus the apport developers
decided the safest approach was to file them all as private.

You're right that this then requires triagers to do some work to review
and un-privatize the bugs.  In practice (with Xorg bugs, at least) I
find it doesn't take me that much time to go through all the private bug
reports and make them public, but admittedly I don't do it as often as I
probably should.  Perhaps there is way to automate some of this work
with launchpadlib.

Meantime, don't worry at all about filing duplicate bug reports.  On the
triager end, launchpad makes managing dupe bugs (relatively) cheap.
Indeed, having a large number of dupes helps flag bug reports that need


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