@jackyalciné

Got an app idea or need some coding done? I can help! Learn more about how you & I can work together.

Bugzilla: Work in Progress

This was a post about me exploring the development platform of Bugzilla.

:book: projects :bookmark: bugzilla, projects :clock7: :clock10: updated :clock3: about 3 minutes

I personally love Bugzilla. It’s a true example of tried and true software and it gets the job done. It follows UNIX ideologies down to the bone. But it’s showing its age. It’s not really designed for the new Web 3.0 out of the box (and that’s with good reason, it’s more on functionality).

This still isn’t good. Most modern sites you’d interact with use a lot of AJAX or a modern MVC framework throughout the platform. This is something I was hoping to see for Bugzilla as future releases came about.

From this point forward, I’ll be referring to the latest release of Bugzilla, version 4.2.3, if memory serves me right.

Web Stack

I mentioned in my first post a few extensions that could help enhance Bugzilla to become a really amazing bug tracking tool. But the first thing that has to be done is quite hard to point out. I’m not quite sure and I have to do a bit of research, but the minimum version of Perl is going to play a huge role on what can be done here.

I only bring attention to this largely out of the lack of simplicity when it comes to starting up an instance of Bugzilla. It’s not intuitive at all in my opinion. This is speaking from a PHP/Zend and Ruby on Rails background so I’m used to just starting a script in the console and having a web server being kicked up just for that application. Bugzilla requires that it’s run via another web server, relinquishing that potential to make life a bit easier. Something like this, implementing a web server, or rather, web application stack under Bugzilla is something that the core team has to approve on. It’s definitely something that could lead to a forking of a project, though.

Extension Management

With most extensible software, there’s typically a means of going into the server and maintaining the extensions currently loaded and being used. Bugzilla’s system for building extensions is beyond simple, it’s like shit easy to understand and go about doing. The only issue with that is that it has to be done via the console, another pet peeve when you’re not by the console at the moment. This provoked me to consider building out a extension that does just that. The lives of sysadmins everywhere might get a bit easier.

OAuth and OpenID

The name might say it all to a lot of people. Having to create yet another account on yet another platform becomes annoying. I personally feel so, at least. This one still requires a bit of research and testing, though. I haven’t had much success with Net::OpenID::Consumer. For now, I’m going to move to a full OAuth solution for now and see if anyone wants to help with the OpenID support.

Theme Management

Now, the big one. THEMES. I feel like you attempt to re-theme the entire monster (gentle) that is Bugzilla, you’d spend a long weekend doing so. Either we could work on making something like Persona for Firefox or even a simple tarball to be hosted and extracted would be awesome. Again, it provides amazing design opportunities for those who want to make such an awesome tool even more awesome.

Threads and Comments

Okay. Bugzilla’s comments system is cool. Not great, and it’s a useful tool. But it leaves so much more to be done. A bug tracking system of Bugzilla’s potential with integration into VCS systems, IRC and other tools, the commenting system should be awesome as well. I did have a few ideas for it, but again, purely optimistic. Formatting support for commenting could be incorporated, but in order for changes like this to occur without messing up too much with core Bugzilla, the commenting tool would have to be re-factored.

Closing Notes

Well, I’m just looking forward to working more and more this year on Bugzilla. I see a lot of potential for the tool and I plan to push the use of it in more open source projects in the future.