Are we the reason Apple isn't helping us?

Charles Davis cdavis at
Sun Mar 11 16:10:14 CDT 2012

Sorry about the really long email, but I didn't want to flood your inboxes with 5 separate responses.

On Mar 11, 2012, at 12:15 AM, Jerome Leclanche wrote:
> On Sun, Mar 11, 2012 at 4:33 AM, Charles Davis <cdavis at> wrote:
>> Hi,
>> An Apple developer recently contacted me directly about the Wine64 radar (number 9269783). What's interesting about his response, however, is that he put in an aside to berate us for our etiquette. I am convinced that at least this developer sees us as rude, hateful creatures now, and he cited a particular bug (29922) that he filed and even offered to fix as an example. Gee, I wonder why that might be? (Hint: Look at the "To:" field.)
>> In your defense, I realize that Vitaliy's behavior is not representative of Wine developers as a whole, and that Jeremy's behavior wasn't exactly golden, either. I also realize that there really is no build breakage resulting from the bug, because we don't include any Objective-C headers. He was convinced that there could have been breakage, however. You--AJ, I'm talking to you in particular--did not adequately explain to him why this didn't break the build. Instead, you--Vitaliy in particular--practically yelled at him--for trying to help! By this point, he's likely told his colleagues at Apple about his experience. With guys like Vitaliy developing Wine, is it any wonder Apple doesn't want to help? Are we, the developers, the real reason Apple isn't contributing? For that matter, are we the real reason more people *in general* aren't contributing?
>> At the very least, we should be more welcoming of help, even from Apple. We need it. Maybe not to fix trivial non-bugs like 29922, but to make Wine a better alternative to Windows--on Mac, Linux, or anywhere. But as long as people like Vitaliy are yelling at potential contributors, we won't get much help beyond what we've got at CodeWeavers.
>> Just my two bits.
>> Chip
> There are a thousand bugs where I would agree with you, but Jeremy's second post was "I don't plan on submitting patches to you frequently enough to make it worth my time to read your policies and subscribe to your lists.". That's not "trying to help", it's self-entitled behaviour. 
True. But my original point--that Vitaliy was unnecessarily rude to our guest--stands.
> I do think there is unnecessary rudeness floating around bugzilla in general though. It sometimes feel like some people's motto is to close as many bugs invalid as they can, without even giving the user a chance to explain themselves better. I've especially seen some non-native English speakers filing very weird bugs and being yelled at "read this massive rules page" when they could barely understand five words.
> Now I realise some people's time is limited, unpaid, etc. But that's just it -- no one (to my knowledge) is forced to take care of those users. I'm personally doing bugzilla maintenance because it's fun for me to see a project evolve; if I see an user that annoys me personally, I just leave it and I know someone else (eg. Austin) will take care of them... if not, silence is better than rudeness.
I agree wholeheartedly.

On Mar 11, 2012, at 9:01 AM, Henri Verbeet wrote:
> While I'm inclined to agree on the general point that some of the
> replies on bugzilla aren't the most tactful or effective way to get a
> point across, I don't think it has a whole lot to do with Apple
> helping Wine or not. I know that at CodeWeavers we've filed a fair
> amount of bugs in the Apple bug tracker, often with detailed
> descriptions and test cases to reproduce them. Most of the time those
> just get (very politely, true) ignored. My impression is that the
> reasons are mostly political, but that's of course something that's
> hard to substantiate.
I suspect you are right. In fact, I know that when Steve Jobs came back to Apple, one of the first things he did was to convince Microsoft to invest money in them. So, I don't know if that's true today, but I know that at one point Microsoft owned a sizable chunk of Apple. If it is still true, I suspect that is the major reason Apple chooses not to help more.

On Mar 11, 2012, at 11:50 AM, Ralph Little wrote:
> The Wine developers know nothing about me and my experience. I have attempted to demonstrate that, although I lack much time, I am prepared to put some effort into helping where I can in my small way. There are many like me. In have tried to be cordial and respectful on wine-devel. In return I have had nothing but courtesy, helpful assistance and general goodwill in answer.
I know that most Wine developers are generally nice and helpful. I even explained that to Jeremy in a PM. The problem is that a few sour developers go and ruin it for everyone.
> There is a right way of entering into these things and a wrong way. The Wine crew, as far as I know, know nothing of this supposed Apple developer.

> He has not demonstrated his experience or trustworthyness or knowledge of the Wine product to any level.
I would say otherwise. He is the maintainer of the Wine port in MacPorts (, an Apple-sanctioned project to bring various FOSS projects to Mac OS X. He is also the only X11 developer working on Mac support, and, since Wine is such an important use case for XQuartz (X11 on Mac OS), he runs the Wine test suite against XQuartz often.
>  Jeremy expects that as a stranger the Wine team should take his word at face value that he submitted a needed fix and that it sufficiently corrected the problem without doing even the *minimum* of effort to convince them.
The problem was that he couldn't--we couldn't. Let's just say if we did tell you, and you're not ADC members, we'd get in a lot of trouble with Apple. You can guess from that what this concerns.
> I have read the bug issue in question, and from the outset, he was disrespectful and downright combative and dismissive of all of the Wine teams procedures. Despite that, the responses on the bug tracker from the Wine team where measured and non-escalatory. A slightly different approach would have yielded a substantially different result. A humble request for assistance in knowing the proper channel and aid in getting the change properly submitted would, I feel, have had a far greater acceptance of what he was after.
That wasn't my understanding. Yes, he was combative, but so was Vitaliy. Let me recap this for you according to my understanding of what happened:

Jeremy: Here's a problem, and a patch to fix it.
Wine developers: Follow the rules or you'll get no sympathy.
Jeremy: I don't have time for that!
Wine developers:We don't see any problem. Tell us more.
Jeremy: I can't.
Vitaliy: Then we can't take your patch, even if it is right.
Jeremy: You'll have to take my patch on faith.
Vitaliy: Go to hell! Screw you! I'm banning you!
Jeremy: Screw you, too! I'm outta here!

If you ask me, both Jeremy and Vitaliy were very childish and rude about this whole misunderstanding. I agree that Jeremy not taking the time to read the rules was wrong and selfish, but Vitaliy didn't exactly help by letting his short temper get the best of him.

> I agree that sometimes the responses on the bug tracker can be curt to the point of rudeness, but mostly that is down to the impersonal nature of the medium.
> Jeremy obviously thought that the change was important enough that he should take the time to submit it in the first place. A little bit of natural humility and expressing a more willing sentiment would have gone a long way to helping his cause.
True, just as a little humility on our part would go a long way towards patching up relations with potential contributors.

On Mar 11, 2012, at 10:06 AM, Vitaliy Margolen wrote:

> First of all that me address your subject:
> I really doubt Apple will ever help Wine, regardless what happens on our bugzilla. 
I beg to disagree. Apple will help if it's in their best interest--which I suspect it clearly isn't right now (see above).
> Apple have pretty specific predisposition to open source and they sure won't change it because of one unsuccessful bug report.
> When everyone, including AJ telling the person "what you reporting is not an error from our POV, unless you can come up with a broken application, a test program/code, or any other proof on a contrary we deem such bugs invalid." This was the rule of our bugzilla for years. I hope this does not require yet another explanation why.
It doesn't. The problem was that he couldn't explain it (see above).
> And one last thing, all I did is to stop an endless reopening of that bug. If you think there is/was another way to make Jeremy understand why that bug was invalid lets hear it.
"Invalid" doesn't mean "not present". He already understands why it's invalid, but that doesn't change the fact that he can't publicly tell you why the bug exists.

On Mar 11, 2012, at 12:52 PM, Dan Kegel wrote:

> Vitaliy wrote:
>> Can you show me exactly where did I yell at him? Or where I wasn't polite enough
> I think it was
> where you wrote
> "Would bugzilla admin please remove / ban this user?
> Jeremy, you've been told by the only person who commits stuff to Wine -
> Everything working fine, there is nothing to fix.
> Period, conversation over. If you reopen this bug it will be an indication to
> bad your user record."
> There ought to be some wiggle room granted people who work at
> important neighboring projects who are unable for whatever
> reason to follow Wine's usual conventions; at the very least,
> we shouldn't actively drive them away like that.


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