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A guide to submitting good bug/error reports

Introduction

I am deeply indebted to Simon Tatham's excellent "How to Report Bugs Effectively" - most of this is in the form of direct quotations, or a condensation of what he has so aptly written. I have taken some rewording liberties to expand the focus of his work, and remove personal references, as well. I appreciate Simon's permission to adapt his work here.

"it doesn't work"

Give the creators of the tool a little credit for some basic intelligence: if the program really didn't work at all, they would probably have noticed. Since they haven't noticed, it must be working for them. Therefore, either you are doing something differently from them, or your environment is different from theirs. They need information; providing this information is the purpose of a bug report. More information is almost always better than less.

Many programs, particularly free ones, publish their list of known bugs. Check this to see if the bug you've just found is already known or not. If it's already known, it isn't worth reporting again as a new bug . However, if you think you have more information than the report in the bug list, you might want to contact the developers anyway to add to the bug report. The new information you have may enable them to fix the bug more easily/sooner.

Specific developers / companies / groups have particular ways they like bugs to be reported. If the tool comes with its own set of bug-reporting guidelines, read and follow them!

"show me", or "show me how to show myself"

One of the very best ways you can report a bug is by showing it directly to the developer - either in person, or via a remote support session (like webex). Demonstrate the exact thing that goes wrong. Let them watch you run the software, watch how you interact with the software, and watch what the software does in response to your inputs.

They [should] know that software like the back of their hand: which parts they trust, and which parts are most likely to have faults. Intuitively, they know what to watch for. By the time the software does something obviously wrong, they may well have already noticed something subtly wrong earlier which might give them a clue. They can observe [almost]everything the system does during the test run, and they can pick out the important bits for themselves.

This may not be enough. They may decide they need more information, and ask you to show them the same thing again. They may ask you to talk them through the procedure, so that they can reproduce the bug for themselves as many times as they want. They might try varying the procedure a few times, to see whether the problem occurs in only one case or in a family of related cases. If you're unlucky, they may need to sit down for a couple of hours with a set of development tools and really start investigating. But the most important thing is to have the programmer looking at the computer when it goes wrong. Once they can see the problem happening, they can usually take it from there and start trying to fix it.

Questions & Answers

where we get a research paper on Nano chemistry....?
Maira Reply
what are the products of Nano chemistry?
Maira Reply
There are lots of products of nano chemistry... Like nano coatings.....carbon fiber.. And lots of others..
learn
Even nanotechnology is pretty much all about chemistry... Its the chemistry on quantum or atomic level
learn
Google
da
no nanotechnology is also a part of physics and maths it requires angle formulas and some pressure regarding concepts
Bhagvanji
Preparation and Applications of Nanomaterial for Drug Delivery
Hafiz Reply
revolt
da
Application of nanotechnology in medicine
what is variations in raman spectra for nanomaterials
Jyoti Reply
I only see partial conversation and what's the question here!
Crow Reply
what about nanotechnology for water purification
RAW Reply
please someone correct me if I'm wrong but I think one can use nanoparticles, specially silver nanoparticles for water treatment.
Damian
yes that's correct
Professor
I think
Professor
Nasa has use it in the 60's, copper as water purification in the moon travel.
Alexandre
nanocopper obvius
Alexandre
what is the stm
Brian Reply
is there industrial application of fullrenes. What is the method to prepare fullrene on large scale.?
Rafiq
industrial application...? mmm I think on the medical side as drug carrier, but you should go deeper on your research, I may be wrong
Damian
How we are making nano material?
LITNING Reply
what is a peer
LITNING Reply
What is meant by 'nano scale'?
LITNING Reply
What is STMs full form?
LITNING
scanning tunneling microscope
Sahil
how nano science is used for hydrophobicity
Santosh
Do u think that Graphene and Fullrene fiber can be used to make Air Plane body structure the lightest and strongest. Rafiq
Rafiq
what is differents between GO and RGO?
Mahi
what is simplest way to understand the applications of nano robots used to detect the cancer affected cell of human body.? How this robot is carried to required site of body cell.? what will be the carrier material and how can be detected that correct delivery of drug is done Rafiq
Rafiq
if virus is killing to make ARTIFICIAL DNA OF GRAPHENE FOR KILLED THE VIRUS .THIS IS OUR ASSUMPTION
Anam
analytical skills graphene is prepared to kill any type viruses .
Anam
Any one who tell me about Preparation and application of Nanomaterial for drug Delivery
Hafiz
what is Nano technology ?
Bob Reply
write examples of Nano molecule?
Bob
The nanotechnology is as new science, to scale nanometric
brayan
nanotechnology is the study, desing, synthesis, manipulation and application of materials and functional systems through control of matter at nanoscale
Damian
Is there any normative that regulates the use of silver nanoparticles?
Damian Reply
what king of growth are you checking .?
Renato
What fields keep nano created devices from performing or assimulating ? Magnetic fields ? Are do they assimilate ?
Stoney Reply
why we need to study biomolecules, molecular biology in nanotechnology?
Adin Reply
?
Kyle
yes I'm doing my masters in nanotechnology, we are being studying all these domains as well..
Adin
why?
Adin
what school?
Kyle
biomolecules are e building blocks of every organics and inorganic materials.
Joe
how did you get the value of 2000N.What calculations are needed to arrive at it
Smarajit Reply
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Source:  OpenStax, Debugging and supporting software systems. OpenStax CNX. Aug 29, 2011 Download for free at http://cnx.org/content/col11350/1.2
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