Question about "what to do if mantainer is absent"

Kevin Fenzi kevin at
Wed May 15 15:43:26 UTC 2013

On Tue, 14 May 2013 20:56:59 -0500
Michael Catanzaro <mike.catanzaro at> wrote:

> Well I mean, someone actually has to press the OK button, or the
> change doesn't happen. Sometimes that can cause delays, at least for
> big undermanned projects (GNOME in openSUSE isn't too popular). But
> usually it works really well.


> I doubt that model would be accepted in Fedora, though. Different
> cultures.

I'm not opposed to making things easier for patches or others to help,
I'm just wanting to try and do it in a way that doesn't cause a pile of
communications issues. ;) 

> Yes, but I usually just want to submit the one fix and not co-maintain
> -- we all help out as we're able. :)

Sure. Understood. 

> Plus I mainly use GNOME programs, and GNOME maintainership in Fedora
> seems to be something of an exclusive cabel anyway (can't complain --
> Fedora has the best GNOME, period).

I don't really think this is the case... gnome folks in my experience
seem happy to get help.


> Yes, but that doesn't work well when the person assigned to your bug
> has 800 other bugs to deal with. I count four people with that many.

Sure, but note that doesn't tell the whole story. 
I consider myself very responsive in bugzilla, and I have 312 open
bugs. :) The vast majority of them are abrt bugs where I asked the
submitter what they were doing and if they can duplicate it, and never
got an answer. After that are a lot of bugs where the solution is not
easy/clear or I am waiting on more info from reporters. 

Several things that can help filter this mass of stuff: 

1. If your bug has a patch and is very easy/clear fix, mark it easyfix:

2. Make it clear that there is a patch attached for the issue. Either
add '[PATCH]' to the subject or something similar. 

> And Red Hat Bugzilla is actually the *best* open source bugzilla I
> use, very clean and well-organized, and seems to work great when
> maintainers have few packages, but this is slightly broken.

Well, it could be better for sure. :) 

> I've seen "this program is completely broken, here's an 8-line patch"
> sit for two months; "this program segfaults, here is an upstream
> patch" sit about that long; "this package is missing one essential
> Requires" sit for three. The big name GNOME packagers are awesome,
> but not enough to deal with that many bugs, that many emails. But 20
> pull requests where all that needs to be done is press OK... that's
> more manageable.

Perhaps. If you get 20 pull requests you still need to examine them.
You also might get pull requests that do things that are not what you
want, especially if they are larger amounts of code. 

> (That's not the only solution, of course; more Bugzilla-foo would work
> just as well. Emails to this list of unreviewed patches more than two
> weeks old, for example.)

Yeah, there's things we could try and do for sure. 

> Just dumping thoughts. Happy Tuesday!


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