June meeting follow-up

Thanks to Warren Postma for giving a great presentation on some different bug tracking software and the benefits of integrating them with your source control software (see May meeting).

One of the things that struck me was how easy it is to include rich content (formatting, images, etc) and links to other issues and source code. The functionality goes well beyond a simple list of bugs and includes project planning, research and documentation.

Warren showed off pieces of Redmine, Github (includes issue tracking)  GitLab and Jira (makers of BitBucket), but there are lots of options available.

Here is his summary:

1. Bug tracking and Software Project Wikis (if done well) can be a huge helper to your software project success.
2. Bug tracking (if done poorly) can be a huge drain on your software project success.
3. Using the Metrics and data gathered from your bug tracking effort can help you (if you’re pragmatic) and hurt you (if you are prone to magical thinking).
4. Thinking like a Librarian (how will I find this data I’m shoving into my bug tracker, and my wiki).
5. A bug tracker needs a Wiki and a Wiki needs a bug tracker. So your app should do both.
6. Your bug tracker and wiki are better if they’re integrated with your version control system.
6. Seriously consider letting someone host your bug tracker for you, especially if you opt for something very complex to deploy and manage.
Managing your tools is not what you want to spend your day on. For this kind of tool, SaaS offerings (GitLab, JIRA, BitBucket) hosted on the public cloud are recommended.

As mentioned in the meeting, I don’t necessarily agree with his last point and prefer the idea of hosting in-house. Fortunately, most of the popular products have options to host your content for you or to have you host it yourself.

I will set up a new source control and bug tracking environment myself and see if I feel the same afterwards.

We are taking our summer break, so no meetings are scheduled for July and August. We will reconvene in September. Stay tuned for details.

Correction: Warren showed off GitLab, not GitHub. My mistake.

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3 Responses to June meeting follow-up

  1. Warren Postma says:

    One of the options I like best that I mentioned is GitLab, which is different than GitHub.

    Github is great, but there is no such thing as a private GitHub repository, so if you want to have all the features GitHub has but you want to have it hosted somewhere far away from the internet (on your own box or VM), you will want to check out GitLab:



  2. Warren Postma says:

    Well, that’s a controversial statement I made. Github does have “private” repos. They’re private but they’re still hosted at Github’s hosting site. If you want a fully private server which runs on a non-cloud private machine, you have to private host it yourself, and github doesn’t offer that as a product.

    What someone means when they say “private” is worth asking these days. Even on my own computer, if I’m running Windows 10, is ANYTHING actually “private”?


  3. Anne Zheng says:

    Attending the TDUG seminars is a great learning experience for me, thanks to the kind help from all TDUG members. In the recent TDUG meeting, senior developer Warren Postma introduced us a few powerful tracking and version control tools. I have been using GitLab and JIRA at work but only in a very limited way. BitBucket and Redmine are new tools to me. Knowing more about these tools and their useful features will certainly benefit my work.

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