What makes a good Bugreport?

Among the suggestions from my last blog were "what makes a good bugreport, and how about some feedback". I'll start with feedback first...

I'm currently about 90% through implementing an auto-email system so you will be mailed when your submitted bugreport is dealt with in some manner. These will be fairly basic in their responses, and no doubt there will be disagreements about our assessments of your bugreports and your own assessment .

Some things of note about this, and the bug reporting system in general:

  • The system relies on your account email address being accurate. Well duh, but you'd be suprised how many people forget to update their email addresses.

  • We have had some issue recently with the login to the bug reporting site, and side effect is that the bug reports do not always pick up you account name as being the submitter, and instead use the default system label. We're still working on this one, and will be implementing a new login system soon.

So what makes a good bugreport, and how bad is bad? Well, a good bugreport has a description and a set of reproduction steps that assumes the reader knows nothing of Eve. Suprised? This is because most people start writing at the point the error occured, and do not include the steps leading up to it.

As an example, we normally get this: "I clicked the button and the client crashed." Which submit button? Where? eh? What we would like is this: "I was creating a jin mei male character, and when I selected the last option in the character creation process the client crashed."

I have been asked a few times to give real examples of good and bad bugreports. After searching for a whole 30 seconds, I found multiple examples of each... Here is an example of an unusable bugreport we received:

  • Title: Crash to desktop

    Description: Game crashed to desktop.

    Reproduction Steps: Happens all the time.

So your client crashed. For this to be any use to us, we would need the following:

  • an exact description of exactly what you were doing at the time, eg undocking, jumping, shooting npc's, whatever
  • a copy of the dxdiag report for the computer this occured on
  • and any .dmp file created by the crash.

If it happens all the time, a logserver file would also be useful. You can submit multiple files on a bug report by either zip'ing or rar'ing the files. There is a limit of 2mb on file uploads though, so if you are including screenshots, convert them to jpg or png. As it is, this bugreport has been closed due to lack of information.

Now a good bugreport...

  • Title: POS Ignoring Standings

    Description: Basically my friend - has a +10 standing to my corporation. She tried to warp to my (XXXX) POS and was instantly destroyed.
    This was even though the settings were as follows:
    Attack If Standing is below 1.5
    Attack if at war
    Considering she is +10 to my corporation and still in the newbie corp there is no reason her ship should have been destroyed.

    Reproduction Steps:
    1. Set corp standings to +10 on the character
    2. Set POS settings to:

    • Attack if standing is below 1.5
    • Attack if at war 3. Have the character warp to POS
      4. Enjoy the fireworks

Also attached was zip file with a pair of logs and a screenshot of the POS settings. As you can see this gives us plenty of information to work with, and tells us exactly where to look for an error.

A basic explanation of what makes a good bugreport can be found on the forums here, written by Valar. If you are having any problems with creating a bugreport, several of the QA members and bughunters can be found on the Coldfront IRC network in the channel #eve-chaos.

Well, I think thats everything for now. Why do I never have any pretty pictures to post?