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On Bugs

(Maintainers of the reportbug and bug packages cc'ed for their
 attention. Please direct replies to the mailing list only, as usual)

console-apt currently has two "release-critical" bugs against it:

     * #71763: console-apt confuses color blind users
     * #72612: console-apt: lists strange deps for libc6

The first is a quite valid criticism of the colour scheme chosen; the second
is a bug in console-apt's handling of "dependencies". Both are confusing to
the user, but aren't actually harmful. Both should probably be fixed before

They are not, however, in my opinion, a good reason to pull console-apt
from the distribution.

As such, they're not suitable for the severity "important".

I think the cause of such inflated severities (and occassionally
deflated severities: a number of important bugs actually should
be grave or critical, or at least that was the case during the freeze)
is the extremely poor definition of important, namely:

important   any other bug which makes the package unsuitable for release. 

(from reportbug)

I'd like to get this changed. I think a much, much better definition would
be as follows:

important   any other bug which is a severe violation of Debian policy
	    (violates a must directive)

This is intended to cover such things as binaries that don't have source,
binaries that don't compile from the source that's uploaded, binaries that
have bad copyright files or licensing problems, and a dozen other things.

It's fairly easy to determine if a bug is "important" or not, it's an
objective measure rather than a subjective one, and I think it matches
what we want to use "important" for (ie, removing packages that are
completely unacceptable).

One thing this means is that a lot of important bugs that aren't policy
violations will get downgraded back to normal. This doesn't mean they
should be ignored, or that there's no need for -qa folk to focus on them,
or whatever else it seems to mean at the moment. We've got almost 11,000
open, unique, non-wishlist bugs at the moment. That's a lot. Probably
unacceptably many [0].

So what would be nice is seeing lots of those fixed. Maybe we should have
some bugsquash months instead of just bugsquash weekends. At the very least
anyone with some spare time on their hands might like to help with merging
duplicate reports and sending in patches to existing easily fixed bugs.

A release goal of 8000 open bugs might be an interesting one to aim for.



[0] http://bugs.debian.org/~ajt/graph.png

Anthony Towns <aj@humbug.org.au> <http://azure.humbug.org.au/~aj/>
I don't speak for anyone save myself. GPG signed mail preferred.

  ``We reject: kings, presidents, and voting.
                 We believe in: rough consensus and working code.''
                                      -- Dave Clark

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