Bugzilla administration policies

Francois Gouget fgouget at free.fr
Tue Oct 11 05:48:06 CDT 2005

On Tue, 11 Oct 2005, Molle Bestefich wrote:
> It's mainly a user interface thing.  Freetext keywords seem like this
> really weird feature, which is not clearly represented in the UI, and
> where the consequences of entering a particular keyword is not
> especially clear.  I think that noone likes to use it (feel free to
> correct me).

I don't share your aversion for keywords. As for them not being clearly 
represented in the GUI, at least when a bug has a keyword, the keyword 
is clearly visible in the 'Keywords:' field, whereas when it is 
associated to a meta-bug all you see is a cryptic dependency on bug 967 
or some such.

Also the Bugzilla keywords are not freetext. More on this below.

> Metabugs are much more clear.  There's a descriptive text and
> discussion page for the metabug, where people can discuss which bugs
> really belong there, or whether this and that bug is related, or which
> bugs are most critical and needs to be prioritized.

There is a page which describes each keyword. To get to it simply click 
on the 'Keywords:' label in any bug:


Note: On this page you can see how many bugs are related to each 
keyword. Simply click on the bug count and you get all the bugs for that 

> Keywords are also prone to spelling mistakes.  Enter "shell23" instead
> of "shell32", noone will find the bug.

No. As I said above the Bugzilla keywords are not freetext. Type 
'shell23' and all you will get is the following error message:
(on a violently red background to be sure you notice it<g>)

    shell23 is not a known keyword. The legal keyword names are listed

Metabugs on the other hand are prone to typos. Say I type '976' instead 
of '967', Bugzilla won't issue an error message. And if I don't follow 
the link to make sure I typed right I will not notice the mistake. As 
you mentioned such a simple typo will prevent people from finding the 

And since components might be a better match than keywords for some 
tasks, I will just mention that like keywords they are not freetext, 
they are clearly displayed in the GUI, and have a page describing them 

Francois Gouget         fgouget at free.fr        http://fgouget.free.fr/
  Advice is what we ask for when we already know the answer but wish we didn't
                                  -- Eric Jong

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