Wine developer frustration (was Re: ntdll: Improve stub of NtQueryEaFile.)

Tom Wickline twickline at
Mon Jun 15 23:50:02 CDT 2015

Wow a nice little flame war and everyone is trying their best to be nice.
That takes the fun out of a flame war people!

Disclaimer,  all opinions are mine and in NO way shape or form the opinion
of WineHQ.  I encourage anyone here to swiftly correct any mistake that I
might make,  my opinion isn't a mistake BTW.

Disclaimer #2 if the work FUCK offends you then stop reading here.

Is Alexandre an ASSHOLE?

Absolutely not, if anyone would think this then they have never met the man
in person!  He is actually one of the nicest people that I've ever met.

Is their really a AJ rank?

Yes, and I have the highest all-time score, and this is the secret and It's
simple.  You write a patch it gets rejected, you tweak the patch same
treatment.  What the fuck??  Is what your saying, if not screaming!  The
secret is to pester the shit out of him,  asking questions and keep
submitting alterations.  You will get it right or he will fix your fuck ups
in the hopes that you will leave him the hell alone.

This shows determination,  persistence,  a willingness to make a thousand
fuck ups in the hopes you will one day figure out what your doing and get
it right once.

Why am I the highest scorer?  Everything I submitted got accepted after I
drove him to madness.  :)

My point is, "I" believe persistence and a willingness to stick the process
out goes a very long way on the AJ rank.

Should their be multiple people with commit rights?

I think NO,  It's just a entrance to a rabbit hole.

Will patches get overlooked?

Yes, It's just that simple...

Now to what this thread, overly nice flame war is about...

Should winehq acknowledge and to a degree work with wine-staging ???

That's really what ALL of this is about isn't it?

I personally like the idea of wine-staging as a holding que for the best of
the passed over patches. Not to mention the project is becoming popular and
has a growing user base.

I believe the project should be seen as a asset to winehq

The problem is you can't scrape winehq patches rebrand them and then submit
them thinking they will be accepted a second time around. It's just not
that simple...

"I" believe the patches need to be reviewed, cut into small chunks, and the
submitter knowing your going to need persistence and the attitude of FUCK
YOU... I'm not going anywhere until this shit is fixed and accepted.

So the question is still open,  is wine-staging seen as a asset or a
thorn?  Can everyone play nice together at this party?

I believe so, It's just a matter of getting everything out in the open,
everyone cursing allot, finding solutions, then kiss and make up..

Can someone pass the chips please

On Jun 16, 2015 4:29 AM, "Jeremy White" <jwhite at> wrote:

> > I'll try to respond to this email with my recollections, and my sense of
> > the problem, and see if we can think of any constructive way to improve.
> This is a long email; I'm trying to put down as much of the history as I
> recall, in an attempt to have it in written, archived format.  I'm also
> trying to express my understanding of the current points of pain.
> Disclaimer:  these are my opinions, not those of Alexandre.  I ascribe
> motivations to him that I think are essentially correct, but I rely on
> him to correct me where I've got it wrong.
> First, we always seem to agree that Alexandre is fscking smart; that he
> is better qualified than anyone we know to judge what comprises good
> code, and what will work well with Wine.
> Further, we generally settle in to accepting the 'benevolent
> dictatorship'; that it is efficient to have him as the sole maintainer,
> and that he is sufficiently smart, and his (!Julliard)Rank is
> sufficiently high that we trust him to do it well.
> Second, we often explore whether or not Alexandre has a bandwidth
> problem; that is, if he just had more free time, could he respond more
> ably.  (The "he's not an asshole, he's just swamped" theory <grin>). He
> assures us time and time again that is not the case - that he handles
> the work load okay, and he is just an asshole <truly evil grin> [1].
> As a subset, we often talk about whether or not there are tools that
> would better help him; the current patch page is, as far as we know,
> sufficient for him, although he could really use a stronger WineTestBot.
> Then, in addition to that, Alexandre was burned badly in the early days
> of Wine by taking in patches that were useful to a user, but were poorly
> formed.  Those patches often went on to cause later problems in Wine,
> and promises that "I'll fix it later" often didn't materialize.  By
> contrast, having the nagging state of:  "This is ridiculous!  There is a
> patch *here* that fixes *obviously important problem* there, why the
> hell isn't it in Wine" has, through the years, served to eventually get
> the right patches into Wine.  (One famous example was the xinput2 patch
> set, and the current pulse and command stream patches are also clear
> cases of this phenomenon).
> Further, it is getting increasingly rare that a valuable patch is
> isolated.  He has much more relaxed standards for accepting code into
> obscure_and_completely_unimplemented.dll than for accepting wine server
> or ntdll changes.  And changes to key areas have a nasty habit of
> causing subtle problems elsewhere, or in the future.
> Thus, he has a fairly strong incentive to hold out for the very best
> code he can get, and history has proven that if he holds out for higher
> quality code, he can eventually get it into Wine.
> Next, as Alexandre has recently articulated in this thread, he has a
> process he likes Wine contributors to follow to establish trust with
> him, and a persons trust (humorously known as JulliardRank) is
> absolutely critical to his acceptance of his patch.
> He has some personality quirks; he is clearly striving to hold the world
> record in information density; trying to use the fewest words possible
> (where as I strive for the opposite <grin>).  That sometimes comes
> across as rude or abrupt, and is (usually) not intended as such.  He's
> also generally content with the 'bug-me-if-I-dropped-your-patch' method,
> which often surprises people.
> I think Alexandre also has a hard time understanding some people's
> mental gaps; what is obvious to him, or something he thinks should be
> obvious to you, will not become obvious to you, no matter how long you
> stare at his words (or lack of words :-/).
> And then, rightly or wrongly, the amount of energy Alexandre is willing
> to spend on someones patch is inversely proportional to their trust
> rank.  Gradually, over time, if you cannot improve that rank, he is
> willing to to invest less and less in helping you get that patch in.
> That's frustrating, because he is often the only real gatekeeper.  There
> is no appeals process, and often no other developer has constructive
> advice to offer.
> I think Michael touched on the most frustrating possible outcome:  to be
> a developer, with evidence that you're smart and capable in your own
> right, with a patch that you worked day and night on *that solves a real
> problem*.  Now this patch looks right to you, even after hours of study,
> and it clearly solves a user problem, and it passes the regression
> tests.  Then you send it in...and it's ignored, or it is rejected
> because Alexandre 'is not convinced'.
> It hurts; it pisses you off; you feel trapped with no way forward.  That
> sucks.
> Of course, there are two divergent narratives:  one is that of a good,
> valuable developer, being wrongly discouraged.  The second is a
> developer trying to help, but not really able or willing to spend the
> time to create quality code.  We want to invest time in the first
> developer, but not necessarily the second, and it's very difficult to
> distinguish between the two.  (And there are sub cases; a one shot
> developer who finds + fixes a bug, throws us her patch, but then doesn't
> want to bother hanging around to see the patch through.  It's probably
> useful to capture the knowledge in that patch, and maybe even have a
> different developer respin it and get it in, much as Alexandre is
> resistant to that).
> We have, several times in the past, resolved to try to have ambassadors
> to help newbies.  People to try to help new contributors navigate this
> process, and to feel encouraged to have the patience and gumption to see
> their patch through.  I think there is value in that effort, but it
> clearly has not been enough, given the current frustration levels.
> The only other thing on this topic that I can recall is that there are
> parts of the process that were obvious to Alexandre, and not always to
> others.  The concept of JulliardRank; the concept that bugging him about
> patches is perfectly fine.  But I believe that all of that was 'fixed'
> by amending the Wiki.  It may be that it's not as 'fixed' as we'd like :-/.
> At any rate, sorry for the long email; just trying to be complete.
> If I've misunderstood frustrations or points of pain, or if there are
> ideas for changes, please chime in.
> Cheers,
> Jeremy
> [1]  The dirty secret, as much as he will insist otherwise, is that he's
> actually a pretty nice guy.  The level of vitriol on the Wine mailing
> list is a fraction of that produced on many other projects, and I think
> Alexandre really does not like hurting peoples feelings.  But the point
> is that he's willing to be the asshole if that's what it takes to ensure
> the best result for Wine.  If you think about it, that's a pretty
> gracious gift.
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