• Help us clean up the Bug Tracker


    TriggerAu

    After the recent pre-release, 1.1 release and follow on patches we’ve finally had some time to look back at the overall bug tracker state and look for some areas for improvement.

    There are currently about a dozen tracker projects which cover the various test teams, platforms and backlogs, and while investigating the tickets that are currently open we found ourselves wondering if we should make some bigger changes at this point in time:

    • Across all the trackers there are approx. 2700 open “bugs”;
    • On top of these are 800 feedback and feature items;
    • These tickets go back to the start of the tracker (back in 2012) and as a result a lot of them were most likely fixed, but not closed out in the trackers;

    Doin’ the Maths
    Now obviously we could start at #1 (“Docking nodes get misplaced on loading certain docked vessels”- it’s already closed, I checked) and work our way through one at a time until we have checked for duplicates, retested or confirmed and followed each one through, but simple mathematics tells us this might be a problem. If we assume it takes 20ish mins to work each of these that’s 112 eight hour days of test time, and that’s if every bug report is perfect and the steps followed don’t need any communication with the reporter to ask questions, clarify, etc.

    That would be split across multiple people in reality, but it doesn’t include triage of any new bugs, or involvement in development and testing that’s underway currently or needed in the future.

    The Painful Truth
    Hopefully many of you reading this come to the same conclusion we did: With the amount of resources we have available within the team, it’s simply not the best use of time to go through all these bugs in this way -- but we do know that there are some very good reports in there that still need to be fleshed out and worked on.

    So How Do We Tackle This?
    The idea we are working towards is to tackle this in a couple of stages:

    1. We are going to mark all open the bug reports prior to a yet to be determined date as requiring clarification;
    2. When this is done we need you guys and girls to eyeball these tickets for clarification and let us know if they are still a bug and still important;
    3. After a few weeks any bugs that have not been touched will be archived away – still there but removing a lot of noise for the producers and developers to see what is key;

    By making these changes we hope to get down to the more important issues that are outstanding and get them front and center in planning and resource allocation. We’ll also be similarly tweaking a number of test and internal projects to help sharpen our focus internally as well.

    What’s Next and What Can You Do?
    We do know that this may not be a universally appreciated idea, but we do feel it’s a lot better than some of the alternatives and does give us the chance to improve as well (it’s probably better than TriggerAu’s original “Slash and Burn Festival” idea too). 

    Before we kick this off we will provide more details about what sort of info and updates will best help us to get to grips on each bug, so please keep your [electronic] ears open.

    The involvement you all have with the tracker is massive, there are very few communities as involved or interested in the state and improvement of the games they play as this one and we do truly appreciate it. I think that together we can really clean out the ancient dust bunnies from the tracker and help clarify the key issues.

    Edited by TriggerAu

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    User Feedback




    What ever we can do to help make this game a Clean and (more) Awesome game!!

    EDIT: Also...im available if help is needed :wink::wink::wink::wink:

    Edited by Tristonwilson12
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    This is an excellent idea.

    If the majority of the bug reports could be cleared it would make the tracker many orders of magnitude more valuable.

    If this is going on after I get back to civilization later this summer I'll be glad to help out.

    Happy landings!

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    Poor Danny2462 basically this post is his whole KSP bug life wasting away. Poor Danny..;.;

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    13 minutes ago, AlmostNASA said:

    Poor Danny2462 basically this post is his whole KSP bug life wasting away. Poor Danny..;.;

    Awwwww. Less bugs = less videos.

    But I have a question. Is the next update 1.1.4 or 1.2? Just wondering.

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    112 man days divided by 10 is just a shade under 3 business weeks.

    I would rebuy ksp again 5 times if you would have devs examine and approach 2700 bugs in this time, rather than the community.

    Whatever fixes the bugs i guess.

    Edited by Violent Jeb
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    6 minutes ago, Violent Jeb said:

    112 man days divided by 10 is just a shade under 3 business weeks.

    I would rebuy ksp again 5 times if you would have devs examine and fix 2400 bugs in this time, rather than the community.

    Just do that.

    112 man days if all bug reports were perfect, requiring no more than 20 minutes to reproduce, diagnose, and fix. Most of those are actually way less than so, and can't be reliably reproduced in 5 hours. Often times, those reproduced, take more to correctly diagnose. And not being one of Squad developers, I'm not hinting at how long could take to actually fix, but from experience with past ones, it takes often more than a day to fix and then check one is actually fixed for good.

    Then, who made you think there are 10 people with 8 hours or more available to test bugs? Most of times, there's only a handful (2-3). Any help from the community, who may be more successful at replicating those old bugs (if still exist) than we all, is welcome.

    We have no gain at all from all the time spent testing KSP. Notwithstanding that, I'd be curious to see you first buy other 5 copies of KSP, may be that is all we need.

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    I'd be happy to flush out the bugs and feedback I submitted.

    @TriggerAu - do I (as a bug submitter) have the permissions needed to do that?

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    Why not archive off the bugs that are not the current release and just deal with the stuff thats affecting the latest release. If its an old bug wont it raise its ugly head in the new release seems pointless to me to chase bugs for old releases 

    Edited by Virtualgenius

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    Thanks for the offers of help - it will be really beneficial

     

    6 hours ago, MOARdV said:

    I'd be happy to flush out the bugs and feedback I submitted.

    @TriggerAu - do I (as a bug submitter) have the permissions needed to do that?

    You should be able to add comments to reports without issue, also testing giving people access to set a "flag" to say - please don't archive this one.

     

    6 minutes ago, Virtualgenius said:

    Why not archive off the bugs that are not the current release and just deal with the stuff thats affecting the latest release. If its an old bug wont it raise its ugly head in the new release seems pointless to me to chase bugs for old releases 

    That is what we are trying to do, but with a little more science (couldn't resist myself :) )  - with interaction. Without rechecking them all we cant be certain what does still affect the latest release. If we prepare them for archive and people make comment on the bugs they know are still there and/or care about then we don't end up archiving items that people then will recreate.

    We did discuss possibilities quite a bit, and the idea here will be for everyone to flag the tickets that are still relevant and add some info to improve details that are a little short. I might not have been 100% clear, but we aren't asking for people to do the 20min->1 day of work on every ticket, just to help flesh out the details on tickets that are still relevant.

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    I found a bug in 1.1.2 that still appears to be in 1.1.3. Should I do anything?

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    if you can keep it in mind then when we flag the tickets for confirmation, it would be ace if you could update it then.

    There will be more detailed steps on the process once we have a date confirmed to make the changes

    17 hours ago, AlmostNASA said:

    Poor Danny2462 basically this post is his whole KSP bug life wasting away. Poor Danny..;.;

    Pretty sure Danny would find a bug no-matter what was done - its what he lives for right :)

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    @TriggerAu - a part of why the bugtracker backlog escalated to this point is probably because issues don't always get closed when they should be. For example, I submitted an issue in 1.1.2 which seemingly got fixed in 1.1.3. At least, the changelog reported the fix with pretty much the exact same wording I used to name my bug report. However, on the tracker, the report itself was never touched - it wasn't marked as being acknowledged or worked on, and it wasn't marked as complete and closed either. So it continues sitting there in the "new" status to this day.

    I will now go and try to reproduce the issue in 1.1.3, and if it works, I will close my report - or at least mark it in a way that points out that it's been fixed, if I don't have the ability to close it. But the point is, I hope the current restructuring you're doing also includes more robust processes about actually closing completed issues on the bugtracker. Else, one year down the line, you'll have exactly the same problem again...

     

    EDIT: issue #9796 can be closed, I am unable to do it myself.

    Edited by Streetwind
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    40 minutes ago, Streetwind said:

    @TriggerAu - a part of why the bugtracker backlog escalated to this point is probably because issues don't always get closed when they should be. For example, I submitted an issue in 1.1.2 which seemingly got fixed in 1.1.3. At least, the changelog reported the fix with pretty much the exact same wording I used to name my bug report. However, on the tracker, the report itself was never touched - it wasn't marked as being acknowledged or worked on, and it wasn't marked as complete and closed either. So it continues sitting there in the "new" status to this day.

    I will now go and try to reproduce the issue in 1.1.3, and if it works, I will close my report - or at least mark it in a way that points out that it's been fixed, if I don't have the ability to close it. But the point is, I hope the current restructuring you're doing also includes more robust processes about actually closing completed issues on the bugtracker. Else, one year down the line, you'll have exactly the same problem again...

     

    EDIT: issue #9796 can be closed, I am unable to do it myself.

    Thanks for the check Streetwind. We do have a process we run through usually after each release where we look at closed bugs from the test periods and close the matching bugs out of the public trackers. For example #9796 has a linked bug in the private tracker where the dev work was done, I havent gotten to that step yet, but I will put that near the top of teh list so we clean out those sort of things before we ask people for checking. 

    Good point and thanks for the reminder

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    Why does the bug tracker require my first and last names to register an account? It doesn't seem like they are shared publically, but I want to know what they are used for.

    Edited by TheDestroyer111

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    1 hour ago, TheDestroyer111 said:

    Why does the bug tracker require my first and last names to register an account? It doesn't seem like they are shared publically, but I want to know what they are used for.

    Sometimes, really good bug hunters/reporters are made part of the KSP team. To be able to let the rest of us know about their work in the weekly dev notes, they need a first name to go with the nick. The last name is used in the farewell message when people leave the team. So nothing nefarious, you can breathe easy.

    Just be glad they don't ask for middle names. I always knew I was in actual trouble whenever I was called by my middle name (or worse, all of them, very precisely pronunciated... often the first sign that I done messed up real bad :D).

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    17 minutes ago, swjr-swis said:

    Sometimes, really good bug hunters/reporters are made part of the KSP team. To be able to let the rest of us know about their work in the weekly dev notes, they need a first name to go with the nick. The last name is used in the farewell message when people leave the team. So nothing nefarious, you can breathe easy.

    Just be glad they don't ask for middle names. I always knew I was in actual trouble whenever I was called by my middle name (or worse, all of them, very precisely pronunciated... often the first sign that I done messed up real bad :D).

    You mean that if Squad thinks I am the best bug hunter, they will share my personal details? nonsense.

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    3 hours ago, TheDestroyer111 said:

    Why does the bug tracker require my first and last names to register an account? It doesn't seem like they are shared publically, but I want to know what they are used for.

    Because the bug tracker runs on Redmine, and the developers of Redmine built first name and last name as non-optional fields in the user registration page.  This isn't some nefariousness on the part of Squad, it's a limitation of the bug tracking platform.  There's no mechanism that forces you to provide your actual first name and last name, the only true requirements are a unique username and a real email address for account verification.

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    So is this something we should be doing now or is this something planned for the future and if so, how do we find out it is active?

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    Commenting on bug on bugtracker, that bug is still here and bad - is it enough to stop it being swiped under carpet?

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    3 hours ago, John FX said:

    So is this something we should be doing now or is this something planned for the future and if so, how do we find out it is active?

    We'll kick it off soon - just making sure all the permissions are right and getting a go date lined up. There will be more specifics when we hit the go button.

    1 hour ago, WildLynx said:

    Commenting on bug on bugtracker, that bug is still here and bad - is it enough to stop it being swiped under carpet?

    Would be super helpful if you could "flag" it when we kick off this process, but items that are recently updated I'll be trying to check as well

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    +1 to squad for doing this and also the particular people in squad actually managing and dealing with this not small task, and of course thanks to all of you on the forum who will be working for free for the love of the game, it`s been a long time coming and the game can only benefit from a good hard look at the bugs.

    I`ll try to do my bit.

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    Am writing the detailed instructions and testing in redmine, there will be a "Needs Clarification" status (or similar) and will have detailed instructions when its time to go :)

    We wanted to share the plans, before we started making changes

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