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Bug Tracker being decommissioned

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After many years of diligent service @Connall's Bug Tracker increasingly difficult to maintain and fix up whenever an important forum upgrade comes down the pipe.

 

As such, soon we'll be powering the old girl down - for now we'll continue with bugs being reported in build threads and then transferring over to our internal system, but if needs be we'll look into other options for a replacement or a new section of the forum.

 

If you see activity in the tracker today, things being closed off or cancelled, then that's me and @Pandorea going through it to make sure we've stripped the meat from its bones, before consigning it to oblivion. If we've marked it as a duplicate, or fixed or... anything really it doesn't mean it's actually being scrapped or has actually been fixed. We're just marking what's already known in the internal system in green.

 

Good night, sweet Bug Tracker.

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15 minutes ago, Fenris_Wolf said:

Hope you find a replacement for it, reporting them in a forum thread is less then ideal.

 

Yeah, it's not an ideal situation - but the forum needs the upgrade so it's something we have to do for now.

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On 9.05.2018 at 3:42 PM, Batsphinx said:

 

Yeah, it's not an ideal situation - but the forum needs the upgrade so it's something we have to do for now.

 

I suggest making a system that requires:

 

1. Putting repro steps to make your life easier.

2. Build number.

3. Ticking SP/MP or both.

4. Mods installed: yes/no, if yes - which ones.

etc. etc.

 

The more tick boxes and drop-down menus the better.

The less "type information here" the better.

Edited by Geras

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2 hours ago, Fenris_Wolf said:

clicking 'yes' should generate a popup reminding people not to report bugs unless they confirm it exists in the base game...in which case specifying what mods you have installed becomes irreverent :lol:

 

Good point.

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15 hours ago, Fenris_Wolf said:

clicking 'yes' should generate a popup reminding people not to report bugs unless they confirm it exists in the base game...in which case specifying what mods you have installed becomes irreverent :lol:

 

Then watch as people don't confirm it's in the base game and put it on the tracker anyway. :-P

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3 minutes ago, Connall said:

 

Then watch as people don't confirm it's in the base game and put it on the tracker anyway. :-P

Or feel so overwhelmed by the questionnaire that they don't submit bugs at all.

 

Sigh.  

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How about implementing a way to report errors or crashes straight to the game devs via a background running buit-in system that will pop-up and say something along the lines of: "The game has encountered a crash or mutiple errors where found. Would you like to send this report to the devs?" With an 'OK' button. A prompt I guess is the proper way to say it.

 

The system would automatically grab the error logs that ocurred and send them to... idk a error logging server? I've seen this system be used by devs like Ubisoft, Gaijin, and even old Minecraft. But of course I would assume this would take money and a lot of programming work to get something like this done.

 

Just thought I'd share some suggestions.

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58 minutes ago, EnigmaGrey said:

Or feel so overwhelmed by the questionnaire that they don't submit bugs at all.

 

Sigh.  

 

Or make a very useful post, such as :

 

"IT DOESN'T WORK ...?!!!!!"

 

"Severe lag ! Plz fix this ASAP"

 

"NPC ARE NOT WORKING ! I CAN NEVER SEE THEM AND I EXPLORED EVERY PART OF THE MAP !!"

 

I think I enjoyed myself way too much on this one :-D

 

 

 

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1 hour ago, Capt.Motty said:

How about implementing a way to report errors or crashes straight to the game devs via a background running buit-in system that will pop-up and say something along the lines of: "The game has encountered a crash or mutiple errors where found. Would you like to send this report to the devs?" With an 'OK' button. A prompt I guess is the proper way to say it.

 

The system would automatically grab the error logs that ocurred and send them to... idk a error logging server? I've seen this system be used by devs like Ubisoft, Gaijin, and even old Minecraft. But of course I would assume this would take money and a lot of programming work to get something like this done.

 

Just thought I'd share some suggestions.

Oh, I'd love that. Some people have a great deal of trouble getting the various console outputs (err_pid in the install directory, server_, coop_, and console files in the user directory) and often don't know that if they re-launch the game, the useful information for a crash will be lost. There's also issues with getting things like the specific version of a graphics card or the model of a CPU that many users have issue with -- sometimes they're well hidden. Having some analytics (the amount of people playing each branch .etc) would be wonderful for making decisions.

 

The main downside is then you have to debug the reporter, prevent the upload of malicious files, get people's permission, and the game has to be loaded in such a way that the reporter won't crash with the game itself.  (The last one isn't necessarily that hard, since the game does dump files to specific locations and you could simply monitor them instead of the game itself.)


It could happen some day.

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1 hour ago, Connall said:

Then watch as people don't confirm it's in the base game and put it on the tracker anyway. :-P

Ya...people never read. Maybe silently reject all submissions while 'yes' is still checked? lol

 

1 hour ago, Capt.Motty said:

How about implementing a way to report errors or crashes straight to the game devs via a background running buit-in system that will pop-up and say something along the lines of: "The game has encountered a crash or mutiple errors where found. Would you like to send this report to the devs?" With an 'OK' button. A prompt I guess is the proper way to say it.

While a good idea, again we come back to the mod issue where some create tons of errors or possible crashes, potentially flooding the system with stuff that aren't the devs responsibilities.  As well as the possibility of having to weed through multiple reports for already known bugs.  The backend would need to be able to automatically categorize the reports, and group identical ones so the team doesn't get overloaded.

It also doesn't remove the requirement for a proper tracker...not all bugs generate errors, some are quite silent.  Most of the times I've used the tracker have been for non-error bugs.

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If people don't want to read a short questionnaire the quality of their bugs logged would be questionable anyway.

Only people who care log bugs anyway, I don't think that a couple of short menus to pick an option from would be very annoying. 

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@Batsphinx You mentioned having an internal system – did you consider re-using it for the public bug reports? You don't even have to make the internal part public, I was recently contributing bug reports from Baldur's Gate: Enhanced Edition to Beamdog through their system – https://support.baldursgate.com/issues – they are using Redmine set up the way that the internal bugs are visible only for those with appropriate rights (only the developers) and they attach intel bug # to public bugs when assigned, see for example https://support.baldursgate.com/issues/20465 (the Internal report #21201 is linked, but it's only clickable link for the developers – you can go to https://support.baldursgate.com/issues/21201 only to see prompt to log in and 403 error if you aren't in the group).

 

They also have subprojects for various games – (in case of PZ you could have separate bugs for the game itself, development tools, map website, wiki, website, forums… – there's huge possibilities to set ip up easier to use) – WineHQ does something similar in their Bugzilla and so does other open source projects.

 

Also, instead of doing forms you can get away with a plain text but giving example people have to follow when reporting bugs, some issue tracking even allow to fill the bug field automatically, for example when reporting bugs on Arch Linux's bug tracker you automatically get this filled:

Quote

 

Description:


Additional info:
* package version(s)
* config and/or log files etc.


Steps to reproduce:

 

You could probably also mandate attaching console output in case of errors, or give detailed instructions how to find it.

 

I find dedicated bug reporting systems much useful than other means anyway – the previous bug tracking plugin had its issues as well, AFAIR I couldn't easily look for my bugs from the profile – the main benefit being ability to use existing forum account.

 

The current bug report section can stay as it is, at least it being a simple forum is easy enough to grasp, maybe just with a template on what to include to report bugs proper so they can be easily carried by team to external internal (lol) solution just like you do now, for those that prefer forums for reporting bugs anyway. The problem is duplication of work and confusion where to report bugs, but keep in mind there are bug reports scattered around other topic as well, Steam/GOG forums (especially for those that don't have forum account here) or discord that will have to get aggregated and reported properly anyway. Alternatively at one point you can just redirect people to external issue tracker to fill proper bug report with detailed instructions on how to do that, as that's the thing I see mostly being done.

 

Right now after discord chat with @nasKo and realizing the old bugs are gone I was suggested to use the report function of the forum to report threads with solved bugs to close, which could work for simple forums without worrying about extensions preventing updates – it would just be good to write instructions for it somewhere visible :).

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Just now, Faalagorn said:

@Batsphinx You mentioned having an internal system – did you consider re-using it for the public bug reports? You don't even have to make the internal part public, I was recently contributing bug reports from Baldur's Gate: Enhanced Edition to Beamdog through their system – https://support.baldursgate.com/issues – they are using Redmine set up the way that the internal bugs are visible only for those with appropriate rights (only the developers) and they attach intel bug # to public bugs when assigned, see for example https://support.baldursgate.com/issues/20465 (the Internal report #21201 is linked, but it's only clickable link for the developers – you can go to https://support.baldursgate.com/issues/21201 only to see prompt to log in and 403 error if you aren't in the group).

 

The current system we use is on a per user basis system that's not really built to be open up for public bug collection, that we couldn't do this easily with the current setup. We would need to figure something else out.

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4 minutes ago, Connall said:

 

The current system we use is on a per user basis system that's not really built to be open up for public bug collection, that we couldn't do this easily with the current setup. We would need to figure something else out.

I'll just use the forum for reporting the bugs now anyway, it's not really far worse from the old one for me, though keep in mind I may report something already reported before, if they are in the internal tracker since I sadly took a break for the past year from the forums and I barely remember what I had reported :P.

 

If the internal system is not easy to adjust, then it's understandable, but guess it always better if anything can be done to easy up bug reporting for both users and developers, that's why I was throwing ideas – but in the end, it all matters what works the best for you :). In any case, if any more information should be attached to the reports that makes it easier for you to pressess bugs, let me know I'll gladly adjust (that includes minor errors, such as typos – not only the crashes).

 

And in the case some yet another issue tracker arise, consider something that works with suggestions as well – would certainly make it easier to use it to mark implemented suggestions for example from the minor suggestion thread.

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2 hours ago, Faalagorn said:

I'll just use the forum for reporting the bugs now anyway, it's not really far worse from the old one for me, though keep in mind I may report something already reported before, if they are in the internal tracker since I sadly took a break for the past year from the forums and I barely remember what I had reported :P.

 

If the internal system is not easy to adjust, then it's understandable, but guess it always better if anything can be done to easy up bug reporting for both users and developers, that's why I was throwing ideas – but in the end, it all matters what works the best for you :). In any case, if any more information should be attached to the reports that makes it easier for you to pressess bugs, let me know I'll gladly adjust (that includes minor errors, such as typos – not only the crashes).

 

And in the case some yet another issue tracker arise, consider something that works with suggestions as well – would certainly make it easier to use it to mark implemented suggestions for example from the minor suggestion thread.

Please stop reporting issues to be closed.

 

This is just a forum.

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1 minute ago, EnigmaGrey said:

Please stop reporting issues to be closed.

 

This is just a forum.

Sorry – was concerned about it as well, but that's the actual order I got from @nasKo on Discord, guess there's been some confusion ^^;. I have to admit I originally thought that's the old issue tracker (was absent from the forum and the form in the past year and the bug tracker link posted to the same place) and before realizing on Discord the old system is gone and finally finding this thread, just thought the closed issues were gone, that's why I asked about closing fixed reports and what's the best way about it on Discord.

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9 hours ago, Faalagorn said:

Sorry – was concerned about it as well, but that's the actual order I got from @nasKo on Discord, guess there's been some confusion ^^;. I have to admit I originally thought that's the old issue tracker (was absent from the forum and the form in the past year and the bug tracker link posted to the same place) and before realizing on Discord the old system is gone and finally finding this thread, just thought the closed issues were gone, that's why I asked about closing fixed reports and what's the best way about it on Discord.

The old bug tracker still allowed you to communicate on the issue and let users tell you if it started happening again. That's not possible when using the forum. Instead,  the only way to "close" a thread would be to lock, hide, or delete it, meaning there can no longer be any feedback about the issue.

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10 hours ago, EnigmaGrey said:

The old bug tracker still allowed you to communicate on the issue and let users tell you if it started happening again. That's not possible when using the forum. Instead,  the only way to "close" a thread would be to lock, hide, or delete it, meaning there can no longer be any feedback about the issue.

Guess mods can still open closed topic and even add/merge info to it if needed, but I get your feeling. Originally I was worried about the unsolved bugs being lost in the bunch of the ones that were solved, thinking it's the only bug tracker available, but upon reading in this thread that there's an internal one where the actual bug reports are re-added, this may not be that much of a problem,

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59 minutes ago, Faalagorn said:

Guess mods can still open closed topic and even add/merge info to it if needed, but I get your feeling. Originally I was worried about the unsolved bugs being lost in the bunch of the ones that were solved, thinking it's the only bug tracker available, but upon reading in this thread that there's an internal one where the actual bug reports are re-added, this may not be that much of a problem,

Yes, mainly Sasha and I go through the Steam/Reddit/GoG/Discord posts each day and add any interesting suggestions/bugs to our own internal task/bug tracker.  Other devs, testers, and staff members can also contribute. So it's less "publicly organized and managed bug tracker" and more "easy to find/communicate about issues" forum at this point. It's part of the reason there was little pressure to continue the old tracker: it stopped being necessary.

 

Though I do miss being able to mark issues as "fixed in X" or "fix released." Aside from that, it's worked out really well this year, in terms of scheduling and releases.

 

 

 

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