Revision 5 as of 2011-11-18 14:20:12

Clear message


We have many reports that help us keep track of automatically-detectable problems in the development release (FTBFS, NBS, component-mismatches, the conflict checker, the transition tracker, etc.). These are all well and good, but they are rather disconnected from each other and in many cases do not provide very good facilities for distributing work among developers. If we want to drive these reports consistently to zero, some time spent on infrastructure would be worthwhile. What can we do to improve matters?

Release Note

This is not a user-visible specification.

Current state

We have lots of tools for tracking problems in the development release. Many have difficult to parse output:


General work

As general principles, reports should be better connected to each other; they should live in (or be linked to from) one place; and they should be easily perusable.

A previous attempt at attacking this problem was in the form of the weather report (old, new; the new version has rather less detail). This was intended as a release management dashboard. Release management and the +1 maintenance team have different goals here in terms of the level of detail required, and it seems unlikely that first-pass work will be able to accommodate both in a single tool.

Ideally, we would like to have a consolidated report listing packages with problems, rather than having to work through multiple reports. A good base for this would appear to be Daniel Holbach's Harvest tool, which already supports taking input from many data sources and limiting to only the ones you happen to be interested in, and also allows marking items as irrelevant. We will extend this to meet our needs, adding data sources as we go along; for example, links to NBS data could be improved, and it needs to list build failures from test rebuilds. Editing (adding comments) appeared to be broken when we tested it at UDS, and should be fixed.

(For comparison, it's worth looking at the LP QA dashboard.)

Specific tools


This section should describe a plan of action (the "how") to implement the changes discussed. Could include subsections like:

UI Changes

Should cover changes required to the UI, or specific UI that is required to implement this

Code Changes

Code changes should include an overview of what needs to change, and in some cases even the specific details.



  • data migration, if any
  • redirects from old URLs to new ones, if any
  • how users will be pointed to the new way of doing things, if necessary.

Test/Demo Plan

It's important that we are able to test new features, and demonstrate them to users. Use this section to describe a short plan that anybody can follow that demonstrates the feature is working. This can then be used during testing, and to show off after release. Please add an entry to for tracking test coverage.

This need not be added or completed until the specification is nearing beta.

Unresolved issues

This should highlight any issues that should be addressed in further specifications, and not problems with the specification itself; since any specification with problems cannot be approved.

BoF agenda and discussion

Use this section to take notes during the BoF; if you keep it in the approved spec, use it for summarising what was discussed and note any options that were rejected. - want to keep generally static,  needs to be styled a bit.
 * merge with ?

Automatic upgrade testing
 * QA is taking over mvo's automatic upgrade testing
 * repurpose antimony (after CD building moves to new machine) as lintian(?) and piuparts runner

Lintian instance - useful to keep unpacked?  consider doing so?