QNX bug database?

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John Nagle

QNX bug database?

Post by John Nagle » Mon Jul 26, 2004 7:45 pm

QNX has a button marked "report bug". But not much happens
when you push it. It used tp send an E-mail somewhere, which
was not acknowledged. There was no option for "attach core file",
or "attach copy of system configuration". Or even a way to
specify which component failed.

Then it got worse. As of today, pressing "Report Bug"
generates an HTML 404 error.

Nor is there a publicly visible QNX defect database. There's
no good way to refer to known problems by defect ID. In the real
time world, users need to know about bugs BEFORE they discover
them the hard way.

Both of those problems should be fixed, preferably in an integrated
way. Press "report bug", attach the relevant info with a few mouse
clicks, and your bug goes into the database. Anyone can look at it.
QSSL people can close bugs; other registered users can comment.

Yes, it might be embarassing to QSSL at times. But having a
"Report Bug" button that doesn't work is more embarassing.
Visualize a Wind River sales rep demoing that feature.

John Nagle
Team Overbot

Garry

Re: QNX bug database?

Post by Garry » Mon Jul 26, 2004 7:45 pm

John Nagle wrote:
QNX has a button marked "report bug". But not much happens
when you push it. It used tp send an E-mail somewhere, which
was not acknowledged. There was no option for "attach core file",
or "attach copy of system configuration". Or even a way to
specify which component failed.

Then it got worse. As of today, pressing "Report Bug"
generates an HTML 404 error.

Nor is there a publicly visible QNX defect database. There's
no good way to refer to known problems by defect ID. In the real
time world, users need to know about bugs BEFORE they discover
them the hard way.

Both of those problems should be fixed, preferably in an integrated
way. Press "report bug", attach the relevant info with a few mouse
clicks, and your bug goes into the database. Anyone can look at it.
QSSL people can close bugs; other registered users can comment.

Yes, it might be embarassing to QSSL at times. But having a
"Report Bug" button that doesn't work is more embarassing.
Visualize a Wind River sales rep demoing that feature.

John Nagle
Team Overbot
I hear that, I've got quite a few problems that look like bugs to me, it
would be good to have a direct route to QSS so that you knew the bugs
were getting looked at.

I understand QSS is not going to want a public database of everything
that is wrong with their product (who does?), but we definitely need a
good way to report problems.

Garry

Igor Kovalenko

Re: QNX bug database?

Post by Igor Kovalenko » Tue Jul 27, 2004 5:23 am

They give access to GNATS to their silver/gold support plan customers.
Unfortunately, it's usefulness is undermined by the fact that you can only
see the bugs submitted by yourself (your own group).

At some point they had a glitch that allowed to see all the PRs. There was
about 4000+. I had fun reading ;)

-- igor

John Nagle wrote:
QNX has a button marked "report bug". But not much happens
when you push it. It used tp send an E-mail somewhere, which
was not acknowledged. There was no option for "attach core file",
or "attach copy of system configuration". Or even a way to
specify which component failed.

Then it got worse. As of today, pressing "Report Bug"
generates an HTML 404 error.

Nor is there a publicly visible QNX defect database. There's
no good way to refer to known problems by defect ID. In the real
time world, users need to know about bugs BEFORE they discover
them the hard way.

Both of those problems should be fixed, preferably in an integrated
way. Press "report bug", attach the relevant info with a few mouse
clicks, and your bug goes into the database. Anyone can look at it.
QSSL people can close bugs; other registered users can comment.

Yes, it might be embarassing to QSSL at times. But having a
"Report Bug" button that doesn't work is more embarassing.
Visualize a Wind River sales rep demoing that feature.

John Nagle
Team Overbot

Bill Caroselli

Re: QNX bug database?

Post by Bill Caroselli » Tue Jul 27, 2004 12:40 pm

Garry <asdf34sdg@sdfasdf3.com> wrote:

G > I hear that, I've got quite a few problems that look like bugs to me, it
G > would be good to have a direct route to QSS so that you knew the bugs
G > were getting looked at.

G > I understand QSS is not going to want a public database of everything
G > that is wrong with their product (who does?), but we definitely need a
G > good way to report problems.

G > Garry

I've been using QNX for about 17 years. To me the best place to report a
bug is right here. Or at least the "right here du jour". Here's why:

Many bugs aren't bugs but a misunderstnading of how to use the program.

Most problems are actually resolved by another user who's "been there,
done that" and can tell you how to work around it.

QSSL is like anyone else. The squeeky week gets the grease. But if the
wheel squeeks in the forest and no one else is there to read about it,
does it make any noise? (Or is that a mixed metaphore?)

Colin Burgess

Re: QNX bug database?

Post by Colin Burgess » Tue Jul 27, 2004 1:23 pm

Bill Caroselli wrote:
Garry <asdf34sdg@sdfasdf3.com> wrote:

G > I hear that, I've got quite a few problems that look like bugs to me, it
G > would be good to have a direct route to QSS so that you knew the bugs
G > were getting looked at.

G > I understand QSS is not going to want a public database of everything
G > that is wrong with their product (who does?), but we definitely need a
G > good way to report problems.

G > Garry

I've been using QNX for about 17 years. To me the best place to report a
bug is right here. Or at least the "right here du jour". Here's why:

Many bugs aren't bugs but a misunderstnading of how to use the program.

Most problems are actually resolved by another user who's "been there,
done that" and can tell you how to work around it.

QSSL is like anyone else. The squeeky week gets the grease. But if the
wheel squeeks in the forest and no one else is there to read about it,
does it make any noise? (Or is that a mixed metaphore?)
You can't pollute the forest with oil, anyways... ;v)

Garry

Re: QNX bug database?

Post by Garry » Wed Jul 28, 2004 9:12 am

Bill Caroselli wrote:
Garry <asdf34sdg@sdfasdf3.com> wrote:

G > I hear that, I've got quite a few problems that look like bugs to me, it
G > would be good to have a direct route to QSS so that you knew the bugs
G > were getting looked at.

G > I understand QSS is not going to want a public database of everything
G > that is wrong with their product (who does?), but we definitely need a
G > good way to report problems.

G > Garry

I've been using QNX for about 17 years. To me the best place to report a
bug is right here. Or at least the "right here du jour". Here's why:

Many bugs aren't bugs but a misunderstnading of how to use the program.
Fair comment, but some of my problems were not present in 6.2.1 and are
in 6.3, and my biggest problem right now (with PtOSContainer) has been
looked at by a QSS staffer and accepted as bug in 6.2.1, but I'm afraid
it's still present in 6.3. I will post about my latest and greatest
problems though.
Most problems are actually resolved by another user who's "been there,
done that" and can tell you how to work around it.
You are quite correct, generally speaking the help I've had from the
community has been quite exceptional.
QSSL is like anyone else. The squeeky week gets the grease. But if the
wheel squeeks in the forest and no one else is there to read about it,
does it make any noise? (Or is that a mixed metaphore?)
Maybe, but as a non-paying user (believe me, I'd *LOVE* to give QSS say
$200 for a desktop package, with the right to develop commercial desktop
apps) I don't think my opinions carry much weight compared to a
commercial client.

Cheers

John Nagle

Re: QNX bug database?

Post by John Nagle » Wed Jul 28, 2004 5:23 pm

Bill Caroselli wrote:
Many bugs aren't bugs but a misunderstnading of how to use the program.
We call that "vendor in denial".

If it doesn't perform to spec, it's broken.

Microsoft can sometimes get away with that; they're a monopoly.
QSSL can't.

John Nagle
Team Overbot

John Nagle

Re: QNX bug database?

Post by John Nagle » Wed Jul 28, 2004 5:28 pm

Igor Kovalenko wrote:
They give access to GNATS to their silver/gold support plan customers.
Unfortunately, it's usefulness is undermined by the fact that you can only
see the bugs submitted by yourself (your own group).

At some point they had a glitch that allowed to see all the PRs. There was
about 4000+. I had fun reading ;)

-- igor
Exactly. And did any customers ever leave QNX because they
could see the bug database?

Typically, keeping bugs secret is something sales management
wants. It's a control-the-customer thing. But it doesn't really
help sales. It just makes life easier for the sales force, because
they like to talk about what they want to talk about, instead
of listening to the customer. It's a mindset that must be
resisted by management above the sales level.

Required reading for upper management: "A Complaint is a Gift",
by Barlow and Moller. For every customer who complains, you lost
ten customers who didn't.

John Nagle
Team Overbot

Bill Caroselli

Re: QNX bug database?

Post by Bill Caroselli » Wed Jul 28, 2004 6:04 pm

John Nagle <nagle@downside.com> wrote:
JN > Bill Caroselli wrote:
Many bugs aren't bugs but a misunderstnading of how to use the program.
JN > We call that "vendor in denial".

JN > If it doesn't perform to spec, it's broken.

JN > Microsoft can sometimes get away with that; they're a monopoly.
JN > QSSL can't.


Well I agree to a degree. But there truely have been many times I
*assumed* that I knew what the hell I was doing and something didn't
work. Then, when I asked, someone said "Did you turn on blagh-blagh
in the config file?" And all of a sudden, the bug was fixed!

I know that we've also been going round on QNX on the desktop. That
assumes that all users will be happy adopting standards that QSSL sets.
But the fact is that QNX gets used by us nerds. I'm not happy with
anything unless it's just the way I like it. And I'm sure that your very
similar. I'm sure that my desktop system isn't configured anything like
yours. I'm not wrong. You might not even be wrong either. We're just
different.

Software is configurable. That's a good thing. It enables me and you to
use the same software very differently. It's just impossible for someone
to document every possible way that someone might want to configure their
system. A little bit of smarts at install/configuration time goes a long way.
And when it falls short, just ask a question here!

John Nagle

Re: QNX bug database?

Post by John Nagle » Thu Jul 29, 2004 4:48 am

Bill Caroselli wrote:
John Nagle <nagle@downside.com> wrote:
JN > Bill Caroselli wrote:


Many bugs aren't bugs but a misunderstnading of how to use the program.


JN > We call that "vendor in denial".

JN > If it doesn't perform to spec, it's broken.

JN > Microsoft can sometimes get away with that; they're a monopoly.
JN > QSSL can't.


Well I agree to a degree. But there truely have been many times I
*assumed* that I knew what the hell I was doing and something didn't
work. Then, when I asked, someone said "Did you turn on blagh-blagh
in the config file?" And all of a sudden, the bug was fixed!
My general position is that if it crashes, the program is broken.
If it gives some halfway reasonable error message when misconfigured,
the program may not be broken. If the documentation doesn't mention
that message and the message isn't self-explanatory, the documentation
is broken.

Having worked in the aerospace and automotive industries, where you
don't get to blame the user, I tend to view real-time software in
the same light.

John Nagle
Team Overbot

Robert Muil

Re: QNX bug database?

Post by Robert Muil » Thu Jul 29, 2004 6:08 am

I like your point.

However: I don't understand people referring to Microsoft as a monopoly. The
medium we are communicating in confirms that, by definition, they are not.

Robert.

"John Nagle" <nagle@downside.com> wrote in message
news:ce8jds$ppf$1@inn.qnx.com...
Bill Caroselli wrote:

Many bugs aren't bugs but a misunderstnading of how to use the program.

We call that "vendor in denial".

If it doesn't perform to spec, it's broken.

Microsoft can sometimes get away with that; they're a monopoly.
QSSL can't.

John Nagle
Team Overbot

Armin Steinhoff

Re: QNX bug database?

Post by Armin Steinhoff » Thu Jul 29, 2004 10:15 am

Robert Muil wrote:
I like your point.

However: I don't understand people referring to Microsoft as a monopoly. The
medium we are communicating in confirms that, by definition, they are not.
M$Soft controls the PC platform with a market share of 99%.

This isn't a monopoly ?


Regards

Armin
Robert.

"John Nagle" <nagle@downside.com> wrote in message
news:ce8jds$ppf$1@inn.qnx.com...

Bill Caroselli wrote:


Many bugs aren't bugs but a misunderstnading of how to use the program.

We call that "vendor in denial".

If it doesn't perform to spec, it's broken.

Microsoft can sometimes get away with that; they're a monopoly.
QSSL can't.

John Nagle
Team Overbot


Bill Caroselli

Re: QNX bug database?

Post by Bill Caroselli » Thu Jul 29, 2004 2:35 pm

Garry <asdf34sdg@sdfasdf3.com> wrote:
G > Bill Caroselli wrote:
QSSL is like anyone else. The squeeky week gets the grease. But if the
wheel squeeks in the forest and no one else is there to read about it,
does it make any noise? (Or is that a mixed metaphore?)
G > Maybe, but as a non-paying user (believe me, I'd *LOVE* to give QSS say
G > $200 for a desktop package, with the right to develop commercial desktop
G > apps) I don't think my opinions carry much weight compared to a
G > commercial client.


You'd be surprised. I AM a paying client. We paid for the commercial
package and the support plan. I have access to the Paying Customer News
Groups but I post here much more often. Things posted here get much more
visibility. Even if someone else can't solve my problem, then can often
raise their hand and say "Me Too"!

Bill Caroselli

Re: QNX bug database?

Post by Bill Caroselli » Thu Jul 29, 2004 2:41 pm

John Nagle <nagle@downside.com> wrote:

JN > My general position is that if it crashes, the program is broken.
JN > If it gives some halfway reasonable error message when misconfigured,
JN > the program may not be broken. If the documentation doesn't mention
JN > that message and the message isn't self-explanatory, the documentation
JN > is broken.

JN > Having worked in the aerospace and automotive industries, where you
JN > don't get to blame the user, I tend to view real-time software in
JN > the same light.

Point well taken.

I belive that WE are the implementers. We are therefore responsible for
achieving that status. This status, BTW, is what I call "Applience Status".

You don't have to read the manual to use a micro-wave oven (well, not for
the more basic features) and you never have to reboot it. It just works
the way you assumed it would. That's applience status.

Adam Mallory

Re: QNX bug database?

Post by Adam Mallory » Thu Jul 29, 2004 4:10 pm

Bill Caroselli wrote:
You don't have to read the manual to use a micro-wave oven (well, not for
the more basic features) and you never have to reboot it. It just works
the way you assumed it would. That's applience status.
That's specious reasoning.

You're assuming a certain level of functionality attached to the
appliance as well as a level of functionality used. I know of a few
people who still can't program the clock on their microwave (let alone
their VCR) and don't use the advanced features for defrost etc.

So the mantra 'it just works' is a narrow scope statement as it's based
on your own experience. You haven't encountered a microwave irradiate
you outside of spec or explode etc, but it does happen.

Even further, the concept of a simple appliance is changing. I doubt
this mantra of 'applience status' (sic) holds true for the 'Internet
connected fridge' (http://www.electricnews.net/news.html?code=8631787).

I can't wait for the toaster and microwave to follow suite. ;)

--
Cheers,
Adam

QNX Software Systems Ltd.
[ amallory@qnx.com ]
---------------------------------------------------
With a PC, I always felt limited by the software available.
On Unix, I am limited only by my knowledge.
--Peter J. Schoenster <pschon@baste.magibox.net>

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