Hello, everyone. I am in need of help choosing a problem reporting
and management system. I respect the work done by all the groups I’m
contacting, and I intend to contact more. I appreciate all responses.
The following text is my complete current status. You can find the
HTML version of it at http://mmmgood.via.net. You may prefer the
formatting of the HTML version; it’s easier to read.
I look forward to hearing from you.
Criteria for Problem Reporting Systems
+ all software involved (interface, main system,
database, etc) must be GPL-compatible unless that
seriously hinders practical selection
+ must have an excellent developer support community,
willing and able to actively accept change requests
and patches. very important.
+ not exclusively oriented on software development.
configurable for all general problem-reporting tasks
+ integrate with source code repository – “what patch
is associated with this bugfix?”
+ integrate with billing system
o lets people buy support
o lets us farm out support
* user interfaces
+ maybe command line (probably through RDBMS)
+ maybe open standard application like tcl/tk
+ email interface
+ easy enough to use, operable by external parties and
the random public
* database interface options
+ database-neutral (maybe perl-based for DBI)
+ SQL RDBMS
o preferably PostgreSQL because of entirely free
o will consider MySQL, due to not entirely free
+ interface configuration template, for adding new
categories, items, actions, etc
+ dependancy support between tasks
All candidates from the list at
, that are at all like free or open source software, will be
* GNATS (http://sourceware.cygnus.com/gnats/), gnatsweb
006.html), and wwwgnats
+ fully GPL
+ customizable enough for non-software p.r.'s
+ our developers already have experience with 3.x –
have added credit card support – see
+ its use is depended upon by its own developers –
ideal developer support community
+ all imagined user interfaces, with multiple choices
for www. Do I have the current wwwgnats, as listed
above? I need help in choosing between wwwgnats and
+ no RDBMS in 3.x, and I’m not sure about its inclusion
in the future of 4.0
+ well-proven and -understood in general
+ evolving from an older internal structure. arcane
installation and setup. rather unwieldy to new GNATS
+ I definately need to know the status on the future of
4.0, which is already a usable beta with a CVS
checkin every few days at Cygnus. I’m currently
working on installing it.
* Bugzilla (http://www.mozilla.org/bugs)
+ GPL-incompatible to the point of severe moral
compromise, according to
states that MPL software can’t link with GPL
software. Alternate viewpoints on this issue are
welcome, as that page is currently my only guide.
+ has inter-item dependancy support
+ massively tested, proven, scalable, stable, etc
+ author support for Bugzilla is barely stated on web
site, and seems to be discouraged.
+ in summary, Bugzilla has major technological
advantages, and major practical disadvantages. It
appears to completely rock.
* Request Tracker http://www.fsck.com/projects/rt/
+ fully GPL
+ uses MySQL, with alleged near future intentions for
+ all necessary user interfaces, with multiple choices
of implementations for some. very smart-looking and
complete www interface.
+ the rate of its support is uncertain. Seems to be a
small developer base, maybe one person, according to
web site. Maturity of product is uncertain to me.
+ under investigation
* Front Track
+ unix support lags severely and support is very
expensive. Not a good choice.
+ very good inteface as a Linux/GTK app and www.
+ no email interface
+ purported by author to exist as a subset of GNATS,
where the use of GNATS is recommended if more
functionality is desired. Probably not a good choice
* Jitterbug / Caretracker
+ Can’t locate the Linuxcare modifications, called
Caretracker. Major recent modifications to
Linuxcare’s web site. No response yet from
Caretracker maintainer David Sifry. Can’t locate any
relevant web sites or mailing lists.
Due to several months of combined team experience with GNATS,
ideal developer community support, and alleged future
features, it is currently a favorite even if it needs
modifications for our ideal use. However, I’d really like to
know that RDBMS support is a near reality, or else that there
will be an easy forward compatibility path with it in the
future. Also we’d like it to be database-neutral, such as with
Request Tracker and Caretracker (if I could find it) look very
interesting. But can their developers compare to the proven
ambition of GNATS? Problem report systems are very complex and
integral, stressing all infrastructural components and
standards that it’s based on, all the way down to the OS.
What is up with the MPL?
Our team will contribute to any changes that we’d need on any
P.R. system. Please send (or carbon copy) direct advice to
“Don’t expect your own messiah; this neverworld which you desire is
only in your mind.” – http://www.dreamtheater.net/songb4.htm#IV5
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