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Working towards Bug Control

June 1, 2011

As a means to control the activity on bugs, Launchpad implements a sort of permissions system for who’s allowed to change certain properties of a bug. Mainly this is applied to the ‘Importance’ field of the bug as well as some values of ‘Status’ such as ‘Triaged’. This is because these are used for managing workloads and it wouldn’t be desirable for people with little experience of managing bugs to just go changing them without having a fair idea of what they were doing.

For the Ubuntu project, the team which has these permissions (amongst others) is Ubuntu Bug Control. This is a group of Ubuntu contributors who have, over a period of time demonstrated their capability at bug analysis. Joining this group is done through a merit system, whereby you have to apply and back up your application with evidence. You need to state that you’ve read the relevant documentation on bug importance, status, assigning bugs and triaging. You are also quizzed on the requirements that need to be met in order to mark a private Apport crash bug public. Then you need to give a commentary on your ‘best’  five bugs, explaining what actions you took on them (status changes, any actions taking place around the bug such as working on a fix or discussing issues with fellow community members).

In all, the process is not too demanding for someone who has been doing this a while, so I plan to make my own application soon. I’m still working on my ‘bug resume’, since I have the slight disadvantage that a lot of the packages my team works with are private, so triaging I do there can’t be used as examples. So for a few more weeks I will do a few bugs each day and probably submit my application before the end of June.

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