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Re: [debbugs-tracker] Processed: close 3931

From: Bob Proulx
Subject: Re: [debbugs-tracker] Processed: close 3931
Date: Sun, 29 Jan 2012 15:10:41 -0700
User-agent: Mutt/1.5.21 (2010-09-15)

Drew Adams wrote:
> One problem is that, when a bug is closed like that, the only way (AFAICT) of
> responding to the close message (as limited as it is, it is still the only
> message about the closing) is to hit Reply (All).

First let me say that I sent a message to the bug and all involved
just a moment ago asking for clarification.  But separate from that
message let's talk here about the bug tracking system.

Regardless of what headers exist on that notice you can still generate
a message manually and mail it off to the bug.  It isn't necessary to
only use a reply or response from an existing mail message.  The BTS
is simply operating on email.  It is more than okay to simply send in

For reference about 'close' the documentation says:

  close bugnumber [ fixed-version ] (deprecated)

    Close bug report #bugnumber. 

    A notification is sent to the user who reported the bug, but (in
    contrast to mailing address@hidden) the text of the
    mail which caused the bug to be closed is not included in that
    notification.  The maintainer who closes a report needs to ensure,
    probably by sending a separate message, that the user who reported
    the bug knows why it is being closed.  The use of this command is
    therefore deprecated.  See the developer's information about how to
    close a bug properly.

So I am in perfect agreement that there needs to be additional
communication when a 'close' is used.

One BTS implementation bug with using the bugnumber-done method is
that there is a bug where if two people both close a bug then the
second one's message is lost.  It goes to the bug log but isn't
forwarded to the project mailing list.  (I forget the bug number on
this.)  Therefore some people, myself included, have taken to using
'close' instead to avoid that problem.  But I always send email
communicating what is happening along with it.

> And that's not helpful, not only for the good reasons you cite, but in
> particular because the user's reply does not go into the bug-report thread.

If you wish to add additional information to it you may do so at any
time.  Anyone may.  Simply send email to the address@hidden
address, address@hidden in your case.  That will both log the
new message to the bug log and also it will forward the message to the
project's bug mailing list.

To reinforce this point, sending to the bug log (aka with an
address@hidden address) *will* send to the project's bug
mailing list too.

Your message to the bug log *did* show up to the mailing list:

A good use reference for the BTS is here:

Note also that it isn't necessary to re-send the same message multiple
times as you have done.  You can look in the bug log and see that
message #39 has the same content as message #36.  This is minor but as
long as we are talking I will note it.

> Somehow, the user needs to know how to and think to write a
> response, perhaps citing that close message, not via Reply or Reply
> All, but to the original bug list AND change the subject line to
> reflect the original.  That is not the way the user participates in
> the bug-thread dialog otherwise.

I am not in disagreement.  But as a user of the system I have no
ability to change it.  I will therefore leave this issue to others.

> IOW, communicating bug closing using a different subject line and
> different cc destinations does not help users to communicate a
> response concerning the closure.

There are a lot of compromises made in the implementation.  But it is
better than anything we have used previously.

> That's what I encountered, and it is no doubt why my reply went to
> the wrong lists and (more importantly as far as this bug is
> concerned) NOT to the right list, which is the bug thread.

Maybe it was the right list because we are having this discussion?  :-)

> Closure and the reasons for closure are part of the communication
> between users and developers.  They belong to the bug thread (as
> well as, perhaps some control thread - dunno).

Yes!  We are in violent, I say again, we are in *violent*, agreement.

I realize you are frustrated.  But pointing the flamethrower my
direction isn't pleasant for me.  I am simply here volunteering time
trying to help.

> And users should have an easy way to respond to developers
> concerning the closure.  My response to this closing is a case in
> point: I'm asking whether the bug was actually fixed.

And that was a perfectly reasonable question!  However I was trying to
say that help-debbugs wasn't the right place to be asking it and
trying very hard to provide useful education about how the BTS
operated.  This seems to be upsetting to you and if so I am sorry for
it but that is just the way it is.

On the topic of helping to operate the BTS all you need to do to add
information to a bug and to have that message also sent to the bug
mailing list is to send it to address@hidden where it will
be logged to the bug and also sent to the mailing list.  There is no
need to CC help-debbugs when doing that.


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