Introducing time wasters

Volker Simonis volker.simonis at
Thu Sep 20 14:17:00 UTC 2018

Hi Roman,

maybe there's a little misunderstanding here? As I understand it, If
you open a bug and I flag it as "timewaster", that doesn't mean that I
think fixing that bug would be a waste of time nor does it mean that I
pretend my time is more valuable than yours. It only means that I lost
a lot of time searching for a similar problem and in the end I
detected that you already found it and there's already a bug for it.
In some sense the flag can be seen as a frequency counter for how
often a problem occurs.

Let's face it - there are still plenty of bugs in the OpenJDK. And I
think it is reasonable to open a JBS issue every time we detect a bug
(e.g. every time the HotSpot crashes with an hs_err file) even if we
can't fix it right away. If such bugs only occur once in a decade, it
may be reasonable to not fix them with a high priority. But if several
developers have invested some efforts in diagnosing them, it may be
useful to somehow flag that. Also, some issues may only occur in the
debug version (e.g. assertions) and of course such issues will have
lower priority than issues in the product version. But still they can
lead to failed test runs which require manual and time consuming
analysis. Both these examples are candidates for the 'timewaster' tag,
because they have the potential to consume a lot of developer time
without really impacting customers.

So for me this tag can be useful if used in a responsible way.


On Thu, Sep 20, 2018 at 2:26 PM Roman Kennke <roman at> wrote:
> > I read it as a joke. I did double-check the calendar and it's not April
> > 1 yet.
> +1
> This, or I'm a bit irritated.
> I'd rather use tags and information based on technical merits, and not
> on subjective experience of somebody. It's a matter of attitude whether
> you view a bug as 'waste of time' or as something that you work your way
> through it. It's a matter of communication. What sends a better message?
> - Tagging a bug with 'timewaster'
> - Asking politely for more information?
> To me, 'timewaster' tag sends a message 'my time is somehow more
> valueable than yours'. It would really piss me off if I'd file a bug,
> and then, for some reason, somebody would tag it 'timewaster'. Yeah, not
> everybody is perfect, not everybody does file bugs as we want them
> (check for dupes, attach all possible logs, etc etc), but that is part
> of life, isn't it? If somebody files a bug, there's probably a good
> reason for it, and our task is to take it seriously. At least, that's
> how I see it.
> I don't think we should do that in an open source project. It's just not
> how I want to work. There's got to be more sensible ways to communicate.
> Roman
> > --Sean
> >
> > On 9/20/18 12:39 AM, Philip Race wrote:
> >> Who is 'we' ?
> >>
> >> Where was this discussed, proposed, and adopted ?
> >>
> >> -phil.
> >>
> >> On 9/19/18, 5:04 PM, jesper.wilhelmsson at wrote:
> >>> Hi,
> >>>
> >>> As an experiment we are introducing a new label in JBS, timewaster.
> >>> The label is used to tag bugs that for some reason is wasting
> >>> engineering time. This could for instance be a bug that occurs
> >>> frequently in our testing and causes many engineers to investigate
> >>> the failure in different test runs just to realize it's the same
> >>> issue as have been seen before, or worse, don't realize it is a known
> >>> issue and files a duplicate bug in JBS. Bugs that cause tests to fail
> >>> without a proper explanation may also be considered time wasters
> >>> since several engineers risk to investigate the failures just to
> >>> realize there is no information to be found. There are other cases as
> >>> well and there is some flexibility in the definition. If you see an
> >>> issue that have been wasting your time, feel free to add an
> >>> explanation to why you think it's a time waster and add the label.
> >>>
> >>> The fact that a bug is wasting engineering time should be taken into
> >>> account when a bug is triaged. A time waster has higher urgency than
> >>> other bugs. This is not really reflected in the priority of a bug so
> >>> the priority is not necessarily changed due to the higher urgency.
> >>> When triaging a time waster, or when adding the label after a bug
> >>> already has been triaged, it's recommended to notify the developers
> >>> that work on the affected component, e.g. by sending an email to the
> >>> proper mailing list and make sure the bug is assigned to someone.
> >>>
> >>> If you have a time waster assigned to you, please consider fixing it
> >>> asap. If you chose to not work on the issue, you should at least be
> >>> aware that you are choosing to waste more engineering time and others
> >>> will be affected by this choice.
> >>>
> >>> To see currently open time wasters use the JBS filter Time wasters:
> >>>
> >>>
> >>> Thanks,
> >>> /Jesper
> >>>
> >

More information about the jdk-dev mailing list