Update on bug system for OpenJDK (web-discuss)

Andrew Haley aph at redhat.com
Wed May 25 10:30:55 UTC 2011

On 05/25/2011 11:08 AM, Stephen Colebourne wrote:
> On 24 May 2011 23:36, Dr Andrew John Hughes <gnu_andrew at member.fsf.org> wrote:
>> * Bugzilla is criticised for needing code modifications to achieve
>> some features, but was this necessary for JIRA, it would not be
>> possible.  It's not ideal that required features aren't available as
>> is, but Bugzilla being FOSS means any required feature can be added.
>> This is not possible with JIRA and is a major pro in choosing Bugzilla
>> IMHO. What happens if JIRA is chosen and a feature is needed down the
>> line that is not available?  What choices do we have to implement it,
>> given we can't modify the code?
> OpenJDK isn't an open source project, its a project producing open
> source. Grasping that essential truth means that having a tool that
> can be altered is irrelevant, as there will be an owner (eg Oracle)
> that will be able to manage the proprietary system and pay for changes
> to it as and when necessary.

Will they?  That sounds like an unjustified assumption.

> What you shoud be asking for is open/free *data* from the bug tracking
> system (via a free to use API). If the data submitted to the bug
> system is privately owned by Oracle then you have an impediment to
> forking. The actual system the data resides in is pretty much
> irrelevant. (ie. with open data, you could write a tool to mirror JIRA
> into a Bugzilla instance and use Bugzilla if you really wanted to)

That's true.  The legal ownership of the data also matters.

>> * The interfaces to these tools is going to matter a lot for people
>> reporting bugs.  Personally, the few times I've found someone using
>> JIRA (which is fairly rare), navigating its interface has been a
>> nightmare for me.  Bugzilla, on the other hand, is used on many FOSS
>> projects, including distros like Fedora, so users will be used to this
>> interface.
> Every time I've had to use Bugzilla I've been amazed at how stone age
> it is (looking now, it has improved a little, but its still poor). Not
> that JIRA is perfect - the recent changes added far too much white
> space and blandness, making the UI harder to use (are you listening
> Atlassian?). Our views are not important however, what matters is
> usability by "real world" users that don't write open source.

I don't believe that.  The usability of the bug database by developers
is critical.


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