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SubjectRe: Cleanup of Kernel Bugzilla
On Sun, Jun 29, 2014 at 10:09:35PM -0400, Nick Krause wrote:
> If that is true , it may be a good idea to get me or someone to write
> a text file like maintainers that
> is used to keep track of open bugs by subsystem in the main kernel directory.

Kindly please reread my message below, because I'm not sure you've
fully absorbed what I am saying, and so your reply doesn't seem to

If you want to do it, feel free to try to maintain such a list. You
can even keep it in a wiki someplace. However, it's not something
which is generally viewed as adding a huge amount of value, so just as
it wouldn't be fair to try to pressure you to try to do this work,
it's also not going to be particularly fair to ask other developers to
try to help you in this work. Well, you can ask, but if they say no,
you need to respect that.

Given that it's not clear that the list is going to be of much value
or be kept up to date (in fact, historical evidence regarding such
tracking files, whether it is for a deprecation schedule or anything
else is that it will very quickly go out of date), it's probably not a
good reason to try to maintain it inside the kernel source. It will
just invite people who expect it to be up to date to kvetch and whine
on the kernel mailing list.

Best regards,

- Ted

> On Sun, Jun 29, 2014 at 5:32 PM, Theodore Ts'o <> wrote:
> > On Sun, Jun 29, 2014 at 09:21:46AM +0200, Levente Kurusa wrote:
> >>
> >> I think that is because they are relatively young and they are generally
> >> used for one direct purpose. The kernel has to make sure it works in a lot
> >> of different situations and hence a lot of different bugs arise.
> >
> > There are a huge number of bugs which are hardware specific --- and
> > worse, fixing it for one hardware device can often cause problems for
> > others.
> >
> >> >With the linux kernel not only doesn't anything exist, the project
> >> >itself is so bloody hard right, kernel programming, most of the
> >> >bugzilla bugs I can barely understand let alone even begin to deduce
> >> >what is going on. Now given that the list itself isn't maintained
> >> >makes things extremely hard.
> >>
> >> There are still methods to extract various unresolved bugs from the
> >> bugzilla though. Look in any subsystem you find delicious and then
> >> just sort the bugs by the date they were modified. This will yield
> >> a list of nice fresh bugs along with some recently fixed bugs.
> >
> > Or, try to find your own bugs. Grab the development kernel, and see
> > if it breaks on your system. If it does, and it was working on the
> > last stable kernel, then you can use "git bisect" to try to find the
> > point where things broke, and report the problem, and perhaps try to
> > figure out why it didn't work. This can be a huge benefit for
> > developers who can't test their changes on every single hardware
> > configuration out there, so this sort of early testing of either daily
> > linux-next, or the mainline linux tree right after the merge window,
> > is a great way to learn about kernel programming.
> >
> > Because of the focus on "no new regressions", testing the bleeding
> > edge development kernels so we can fix problems before they get
> > released to civilians is not only important, but often means that the
> > bugs that are still open are the ones which are incredibly hard to
> > reproduce, or which require very specialized hardware. So it's very
> > likely that they won't be the bugs that are best suited for people who
> > are just getting started on kernel development. Basically, for the
> > most part, if they were easy, they would have been fixed already. :-)
> >
> >> I brought this up as well on the Kernel Summit list. There wasn't any
> >> feedback on this :-), I guess there are some maintainers who care about
> >> bugzilla, but the rest (and the majority probably) does not care.
> >
> > If you ("you" being the generic you) are someone who likes grooming
> > the bug tracking systems, you can certainly start to try to figure out
> > which bugs are no longer relevant, and then work with someone like
> > Alan so they can get closed out. Over time, as you become trusted to
> > have good judgement over bugs, various subsystem maintainers may be
> > willing to give you admin bits to close bugs directly. (And by the
> > way, that's something else important to note --- it's good to
> > specialize; the kernel is huge, so focusing on a single subsystem is a
> > good way to more quickly build up expertise, and for developers for
> > that subsystem to get to know you and to trust your judgement and your
> > skills.)
> >
> > However, you may find that unless you're someone who tends to be a bit
> > obsessive-compulsive, that grooming the bugzilla doesn't really
> > provide much in the way of real benefit to kernel development, and so
> > don't provide you with much satisfaction.
> >
> > After all, we don't have any direct management oversight over
> > developers for the upstream kernel. So tracking things so that
> > policies such as "all P1 bugs must be updated every day" can be
> > enforced, or to keep lists of which bugs have been opened for the
> > longest time so that people can have long interminable meetings about
> > why a short-staffed team has so many bugs open, are things which are
> > much more applicable for pointy-haired engineering managers who can
> > boss engineers around and tell them to work on a particular bugs or
> > else they will get a bad rating at the next performance review. But
> > for a volunteer project, keeping track of bugs is something that has
> > benefits which are much more indirect. If as a result, you don't find
> > bug grooming to be very satisfying, there's no shame in moving on to
> > some other form of kernel contributions that *do* give you more
> > satisfaction.
> >
> > Best regards,
> >
> > - Ted

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