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Stefpet

Bug Tracking System

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I''m working in a small company (it''s rapidly growing) as a programmer. We''re using Visual Studio and Sourcesafe for version control. However, we haven''t found a good way to handle bugs, or rather how to report bugs and follow them up. A bug tracking system (or incident management as some like to call it) which fits into our system. We would like both developers and betatesters to use it. That means that people who is not within the development environment (Visual Studio) should be able to report a bug into the system. How have you other guys solved this (working in teams) so that both developers and other people (within the company) may report bugs. Developing a web-application may be an idea, but if there''s already a good working system for this, that would be even nicer. The problems we''re experiencing now is that, for example, some bugs are sent via mail (from the guy in the room next to the developer room), sometimes someone comes in and tell someone in the development team about something they "feel" is a bug and it gets noted in a file or on paper. And so on... it''s very easy to any reported bugs get''s lost, it''s hard to follow them up, and so on. Thanks in advance for any comments.

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Well, what we did at the last company I worked at, there was a form that everyone used whenever they found a bug, it included the current and build date, circumstances, name of whoever found the bug, possible causes, urgency, which department needs to take care of it, etc.. at the end of the day, the bug sheets would be sorted and distributed among the department heads, who would then distribute them within their department. The bugs would also be tracked in a spreadsheet or whatever, with the status, urgency etc and posted on the wall every once in a while.. then whenever a bug was fixed, whoever was responsible for it would update the status.

-goltrpoat


--
Float like a butterfly, bite like a crocodile.

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How about taking a couple of hours to knock up a little Visual Basic (or Visual C++, if you''re a masochist ) program which is basically just a form with several standard boxes to fill in. One could be the general type of issue (eg. graphics, networking, logic, plot/story, etc) so that there is a higher chance that it will go to the right person first. Then a big text box for a good description of the issue. Another consideration might be a choice of 3 ''priority'' settings, the top one being a ''showstopper'' bug that needs fixing now, and the bottom one being something that doesn''t actually need fixing for the game to work, but it would be nice if it was. There would also be a box to enter the bug-reporter''s name, or it would be auto-generated once the tool is installed. When done, the reporter presses submit. What you do with it then is up to you: you could saved it out in CSV format and mail it to some central source, having 1 person responsible for entering it into the database. Or you could write a little extra into the app and have it add it to a database over the network, so that anyone can browse it. I''m sure you could extend this system to suit your specific needs.

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Writing an entire customized application is an idea, but it feels a little like reinventing the wheel (and that''s what we''re trying to avoid).

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Application? This would be more of an accessory And you could probably get something efficient done in less than a day... it is surely more convenient than paper, and if you need a hard copy it would be easy to print out the output file, I''m sure.

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Definitely purchase a web-based bug tracking system so that anyone can post bugs/check bug reports from anywhere...

It will probably cost a few grand...

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My company (also a small company) tracks all bugs in a Microsoft Access Database shared across the network, allowing anyone to open the database (which comes up with an Access Form to allow them to enter the data (edit boxes, combo boxes, submit button, etc)). This works great as it''s a real easy way to keep track of bugs and nothing ever gets "lost". Of course, you have to have someone on your team that knows a lot about MS Access to build the form they enter data into.

However you enter the data, I''d definately suggest keeping it all in a database, whether Access, SQL Server, Oracle, or whatever.

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A web-based bug tracking system should be REALLY easy to make for anyone with half a brain, an NT Server (with Active Server), and a copy of MS Access...... you can pretty much cut and paste code from the IIS documentation (or from 4guysfromrolla.com) if you don''t feel the need to actually learn ASP. I routinely get ASP database access up and running in under a day - and they really do offer the best of both worlds: web access, but MS Access for serious data manipulation

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