[Bug 1] Re: Microsoft has a majority market share

Mark Shuttleworth mark at canonical.com
Sat Mar 1 12:53:10 UTC 2008

Adrian R Goalby wrote:
> I get the impression (whether right or wrong) that nothing is fixed in
> Ubuntu, it just inherits fixes from upstream, Debian or security alerts.
A quick look in the bug database suggests there are 155,000 bugs ever 
reported against Ubuntu, and 46,000 marked fixed. That's from a team of 
30 full time engineers and about 100 committed volunteers, an amazing 
effort by people who care about Ubuntu.

We do try to work closely with both upstream and Debian. In a 
collaborative ecosystem like the free software world, it is most 
efficient if each team is an expert in their field and there are really 
excellent tools for collaboration. This way, work happens where people 
are best suited to it, but good work is not trapped in one community, it 
spreads quickly throughout the ecosystem.

Each upstream has people totally focused on that one component - they 
know more about it than anyone else. The piece of the puzzle that we 
most care about is the integration of those components into a coherent 
role. We see our contribution to the free software ecosystem primarily 
in providing a *release platform* on a predictable basis, against which 
folks can do development and deployment. It makes much more sense for us 
to specialize in that piece, because we have a real competence for it, 
and it requires generalists which is how I would describe our community 
and team. A bug reported against Inkscape in Ubuntu is very likely to be 
something that affects other communities and so needs to be looked at 
upstream, where the expertise in that codebase resides. Of course, 
Ubuntu users and developers will try to assess if the bug relates to 
packaging, in which case it is probably best analyzed by Ubuntu or 
Debian developers, depending on who did that work.

In case you think Ubuntu doesn't make any contribution to those upstream 
projects and Debian, I would urge you to look at the relevant bug 
trackers, and search for patches contributed by Ubuntu developers. A 
huge amount of code is produced during the integration and testing part 
of building Ubuntu, and most of that flows to upstream and/or Debian. 
Though it isn't always well received, we do make a huge effort to 
cultivate a culture of work passing upstream.

I don't mean to ask you to change your opinion, only to point out that 
one could draw different conclusions from a look at the actual data. And 
if you are willing to return the favour of Ubuntu, you might want to 
join the Ubuntu Bug Squad at https://edge.launchpad.net/~bugsquad and 
triage a few bugs a day.


Microsoft has a majority market share
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