This will be the first article I’ve written in a while which is related to new-techie-business setup. The reason is simply that I did all my setup before Christmas, and have just been beavering away working since then.
However, as I mentioned a few days ago, I’ve now got to the end of my “experimental” phase, and my code is settling down into a proper portfolio of products. There are lots of bugs which need tracking, before things reach saleable quality.
For those non-techies reading, bug tracking may seem an obscure thing, but it’s very important. Programming is hard – sufficiently hard that it’s impossible not to make mistakes. Hence, for any given project, perhaps half the total programming time is just spent fixing bugs you made in the other half. It rather depends on your development methodology, but either way, you need a system to track your bugs.
My requirements for my bug tracking system were:
- Undergoing active development
- Can import and export bugs in some sensible format
The first bug-tracking system I looked at, Bugzilla, fitted the bill, so I just went with that. I am not aware of any other open source bug tracking systems but I expect they exist – and I suspect some of the commercial ones are free for small-scale use (which would be a good policy for the creators, because once you’ve picked a system it’s hard to change).
I was pleasantly surprised to find out that my shared-hosting server at my ISP contained all the required dependencies to get Bugzilla running straight away. So I now have it running on an “intranet” part of the Macrobug website.
I also want to give Mylar a go, to integrate Bugzilla into Eclipse. I’ve only heard good things about it.
Meanwhile, I’m still coming up with that list of bugs to put into Bugzilla. Right now I’ve only thought of 96 things – which I’m sure will easily double, but it’s still less than the 500 or so I was estimating. Which is nice. Many of them will take several days to fix, though, so it’s still a while before I have a polished product.