Archive for the ‘Mozilla’ Category

Bugzilla 5.0 moved to HTML5

A quick note to let you know that starting with Bugzilla 4.5.2, which should be released soon (a few weeks at most), it now uses the HTML5 doctype instead of the HTML 4.01 Transitional one. This means that cool new features from HTML5 can now be implemented in the coming Bugzilla 5.0. A lot of cleanup has been required to remove all obsolete HTML elements and attributes, and to move all hardcoded styles into CSS files, and to replace many <table> by <div> where appropriate. There are still many places to fix to be fully HTML5 compliant as HTML 4.01 was more lenient with some code, but we did a great jump toward the HTML5 world.

Catégories:Bugzilla, Mozilla

Bugzilla 15th anniversary

This week, Bugzilla turns 15! On September 18, 1998, Terry Weissman released Bugzilla 2.0, the first version written in Perl. A few days before, on August 25, 1998, the Bugzilla source code was committed to CVS for the first time, and was written in Tcl (Terry decided to rewrite it in Perl to attract more contributors). Since this first public release, Bugzilla changed a lot, though some of its original features are still clearly recognizable. You may wonder how Bugzilla looked like 15 years ago? Well, I’m going to tell you all.

Installing Bugzilla 2.0 wasn’t as easy as it is today. You had to manually run six(!) scripts to create DB tables and to populate them ( only replaced them in Bugzilla 2.8). The tarball was very small, only 52 KB (compared to 2.4 MB for Bugzilla 4.4), and you needed MySQL 3, Perl 5.4 and a web server. The home page was pretty…. simple:


So what do we see? A link to the search page, another link to file a new bug, and a text box to enter the ID of an existing bug. Oh, and a huge picture of an ant. You can see that there is no link to create a new account. That’s because there is no UI for that! To create an account, you had to click on "Enter a new bug", and Bugzilla would ask your credentials. As you have none, you had to click the "Forgot password" button, and Bugzilla would send you an email with your password in it. This had the side-effect to automatically create an account for you with the email address you just gave and the password included in the email you just received. This page has evolved a lot, and it now looks like this in Bugzilla 4.4:


Big icons help users to more easily find what they are looking for, and the page header and footer also make navigation through pages much easier.

Once you pass this first page, the next step is the search page:


Yes, the page says "Bugzilla 1.2", but it’s really 2.0 minus one minor string change in the parameters page (1.2 is only 70 minutes older than 2.0). As you can see, the search page is not very different from what we have today:


The product, component, bug status, resolution, severity and priority fields are still here. The main difference is that we greatly improved search capabilities of Bugzilla, and all the sections above are expandable to offer more search criteria:

query44_2 query44_3

And many new bug fields appeared, such as the target milestone, keywords, the status whiteboard, attachments and flags.

The buglist didn’t change a lot either:


Note that I had to fix the code to correctly display <table> in the bug summary. Bug summaries weren’t HTML-escaped, and so it was trivial to inject arbitrary code in the buglist. But this shouldn’t be a surprise to anyone as we had to wait 8 years for Bugzilla 2.18 to see correct HTML-escaping. :)

To file a bug, you had to first select the product…


… and then enter details of the bug report:


If these pages look familiar to you, that’s because they didn’t change a lot in the last 15 years:


The main difference is that the product description has been added to help users select the right product.


This is the simple form to report new bugs. If you click the "Show advanced fields" link, more fields are displayed. You now also have the possibility to attach a file and to set flags when reporting a new bug. Attachments and flags didn’t exist in Bugzilla 2.0. Attachments have been implemented in 1999 in Bugzilla 2.4, and flags in 2002 in Bugzilla 2.18. And you had to wait for 2006 and Bugzilla 3.0 to be able to attach files and set flags on bug creation.

Bug reports in Bugzilla 2.0 had very few fields and, of course, were not customizable:


You probably recognize knobs which have been removed in 2008 in Bugzilla 3.2 in favor of a better UI. Also, you will note that comments were all concatenated into a single comment, making it impossible to track who commented in the bug, and when.

On the backend, things have changed a lot. First of all, the number of DB tables exploded. In Bugzilla 2.0, there were only 7 tables:


In Bugzilla 4.4, there are more than 70 tables (the output is truncated):


The exact number of tables will depend on the number of custom fields. The reason for so many tables is because Bugzilla now has many new features which didn’t exist in previous releases, and admins now have the ability to edit mostly everything to customize Bugzilla as desired. In Bugzilla 2.0, everything was static:


You couldn’t customize bug statuses, resolutions, bug severities, priorities, etc… Now admins have a nice UI to edit them:


Same goes about the list of products, components and assignees:


The list was hardcoded, and you had to manually edit the DB to add/edit/remove entries. Now this can be done from the UI:


The list of parameters also increased a lot, and the ugly old UI…


… became a well organized list of tabs:


Maybe you wonder how other pages looked like in Bugzilla 2.0? Well, there are no other pages. They are all listed above. :) No preferences page, no tabular and graphical reports, and… no groups! Which means no admins, no editbugs nor canconfirm privileges, no way to restrict the visibility of bugs and comments. Frightening, isn’t it? :)

Happy birthday, Bugzilla!


Catégories:Bugzilla, Mozilla

It’s time for me to leave the Bugzilla project

"Everything that has a beginning has an end". I joined the Bugzilla project in August 2004 (already 9 years ago) and fixed more than 1600 bugs (including a few bugs in Bonsai, Doctor and Testopia). I became an official reviewer in December 2004, only 4 months after my first contribution, and reviewed patches in more than 2000 bugs. I also got approval privileges in January 2007, meaning that I had the responsibility to grant/deny approval for the last 6.5 years, and approved no less than 1500 patches to be committed into the source code. I’m also the QA manager for the Bugzilla project since July 2005 and so I am responsible to make sure Bugzilla quality is good enough before each new release. That’s a lot of work, and takes a lot of my free time and energy.

In the last few months, my free time was pretty limited and so my contributions to the project were mostly to triage new bugs, set blockers for the next releases, approve (or reject) reviewed patches, and help fixing blockers and security bugs. But now that my free time increased a bit again, I realized that my motivation to write new patches, either bug fixes or new features, and my motivation to review patches in my too long review queue are gone. And to lead a project correctly (I’m actually an assistant project lead, the project lead being justdave), you need to put time and energy into it to not be the bottleneck in the development of the application. And so without enough motivation and energy anymore it’s time for me to resign my role as assistant project lead. This means that decisions about the direction Bugzilla should take no longer belong to me. So please stop marking bugs as WONTFIX because LpSolit (me) said he didn’t agree with such or such new feature; my opinion is no longer relevant. :)

Those who know me shouldn’t be too surprised by my decision. Two years ago, I was very close from taking the same decision. The only reason I didn’t was because mkanat left the Bugzilla project to go work for Google, and it wasn’t the right time to also leave the project. So I stayed involved two additional years to help with the release of Bugzilla 4.2 and 4.4, but now it’s really time for me to say goodbye. This also means you shouldn’t ask me to review your patches anymore. Those should be addressed to another reviewer (glob, dkl, justdave). I will keep my reviewer and QA manager hats for now, but really stop asking me for review (unless it’s a security or critical bug which requires my skills).

It was a really great and fantastic experience to work with other Bugzilla developers and contributors, and I wish all the best for the future of Bugzilla. :)

Catégories:Bugzilla, Mozilla

Bugzilla 4.4 and 4.2.6 released

We released Bugzilla 4.4 and 4.2.6 a few minutes ago. Bugzilla 4.2.6 is a bugfix release, and contains no security fixes. It adds support for MySQL 5.6 and fixes a crash with Oracle.

Bugzilla 4.4 contains many new features:

  • The searching system has been improved: it allows multiple search criteria to match one field; it has improved support for flags; it has better performance, especially with complex queries.
  • The tagging system has been redesigned: the old tagging fields in the page footer are gone in favor of a Tags field in the bug itself. Tags remain private and are only visible by you. They can also be used in queries as any other field.
  • Bugzilla can now correctly identify uploaded attachments which have a MIME type of application/octet-stream.
  • You can now save tabular and graphical reports as you already do with saved searches. Previously, you had to bookmark them in your web browser.
  • You can customize columns displayed in whinemails.
  • As usual, the WebServices have been improved with several new methods.
  • The security has been improved, such as using HMAC SHA-256 to generate tokens instead of MD5.
  • etc ….

This release also means the End Of Life (EOL) of Bugzilla 3.6, which was the last series for Bugzilla 3.x. This branch is no longer supported, and any new security bug found on this branch will remain unfixed. Installations still running Bugzilla 2.x or 3.x are urged to upgrade to Bugzilla 4.4 or 4.2.6.

So, what’s next? Well, the main focus for Bugzilla 5.0 will be usability and user experience. Bugzilla sometimes (often?) looks old-fashioned because we wanted to support old browsers and browsers with JavaScript disabled. But we decided to move to a more interactive interface where JavaScript will help accomplish some tasks with less page reloads, such as submitting changes to a bug or adding an attachment. We also plan to add a new skin to Bugzilla which should look like this. Some pages will also be entirely redesigned, such as the Group Controls page to administrate access to bugs which was considered too complex for the average admin. More information will come with the release of development snapshots.

Catégories:Bugzilla, Mozilla

Bugzilla 4.4rc2 and 4.2.5 released (and also 4.0.10 and 3.6.13)

So, Bugzilla 4.4rc2 is finally here! It took us more time than expected, but the performance bugs are all fixed and we also fixed two security bugs which are described in the security advisory. Bugzilla 4.2.5, 4.0.10 and 3.6.13 also contain these two security fixes, so you should definitely upgrade.

Compared to 4.4rc1, the new release candidate contains the last feature which we wanted for 4.4: the ability to add several criteria in a query against the same field. In Bugzilla 4.2,

"Flags changed to approval+" AND "Flags changed by"

were disconnected, which means that these criteria would match all bugs which had the approval+ flag set and which had a flag changed by In Bugzilla 4.4, you can now force these two criteria to match the same field, i.e. that you only want bugs where the approval+ flag has been set by Thanks to Byron Jones (glob) for this great feature. :) Of course, this feature is not limited to flags, but works with all fields. See the release notes for more details. Also, 4.4rc2 should in most cases be much faster than 4.2 to run some complex queries. In my testing, some queries which took several minutes to complete now run in a few (tens of) seconds only. This is especially noticable with many columns displayed in the buglist. Another good reason to test it! ;)

The next release should be 4.4 final as I don’t think a 4.4rc3 is needed.

Catégories:Bugzilla, Mozilla

There will be a 2nd release candidate for Bugzilla 4.4

You may wonder what’s going on since we released Bugzilla 4.4rc1 on November 13. Well, very few bugs have been reported which seems to indicate that 4.4rc1 is pretty stable. But we also found that running some queries were very slow since Bugzilla 4.2. Bugzilla 4.2 got a major rewrite of its search code (Bugzilla::Search), where the focus was readability, maintainability and the removal of some hacks, but this new code had some severe performance impact for some queries, especially those involving subselects in MySQL. That’s why several bugs related to performance have been filed since we released 4.4rc1 and we decided that they were critical enough to fix them in the 4.4 branch rather than waiting another year to include them in Bugzilla 5.0 only. As it’s unclear if these recent changes can have negative impact on some queries, or break some other ones, we decided that a 2nd release candidate was necessary to give admins and developers some time to test the new code and give us feedback before 4.4 final. There is no ETA for 4.4rc2 yet, but it will probably be somewhere in January 2013.

If you have some queries which you consider as being very slow, I would be interested in hearing you about them: which criteria did you use, which columns are displayed in buglists, which Bugzilla installation did you use for your testing, are you logged in or logged out, etc…? Please don’t run your queries on Bugzilla 3.x or older. I’m really not interested in such old installations (and the code changed too much anyway with what we have in 4.4). In my own testing, I found that some queries which were previously timing out now run in a few seconds only. Of course, the time taken to execute these queries highly depends on the data you have in your DB and so only relative timing matters.

Catégories:Bugzilla, Mozilla

Bugzilla 4.4rc1, 4.2.4, 4.0.9 and 3.6.12 released

Last night, we released Bugzilla 4.2.4, 4.0.9 and 3.6.12 to fix several security issues. Bugzilla 4.2.4 also notably fixes some crashes with Oracle when viewing buglists. Oracle support in 4.2.4 is definitely much better than in previous 4.x or 3.x releases.

We also released the first release candidate of Bugzilla 4.4, which we expect to release near the end of the year, though it will depend on the feedback we get. If a second release candidate is needed, we will delay 4.4 final. Now is a good time to test its new features, including the new tagging system (which replaces the previous tagging system which you could see in the footer of pages), the ability to save tabular and graphical reports in the same way you can save your searches (no need to bookmark them in your browser anymore), customizable columns displayed in emails sent by the whining system, many new and updated WebService methods, real auto-detection of the MIME type of attachments uploaded to Bugzilla (currently only if the browser is unable to determine the MIME type itself, else we still trust what the browser says), etc… Do not forget to fix your Apache configuration file (httpd.conf) when upgrading as explained in the release notes, else Bugzilla 4.4 won’t work. Have fun! :)

Catégories:Bugzilla, Mozilla

Using GMail as SMTP server from Bugzilla to send email notifications is supported natively

I saw several requests about how to use GMail as server to send bugmails from Bugzilla. I also saw too many (bad) articles about how to hack Bugzilla to make it work. Most were suggesting to install 3rd-party applications and to badly hack the source code, especially when installed on Windows. Forget all that! What you must know is that Bugzilla supports GMail as SMTP server for more than a year (!), and Bugzilla 4.4rc1, which is going to be released next Tuesday, supports it natively!

When running, make sure that Net::SMTP::SSL is installed:

Checking for         Net-SMTP-SSL (v1.01)     ok: found v1.01

Then edit the following parameters (under Administration > Parameters > Email):

mail_delivery_method = SMTP
mailfrom =
smtpserver =
smtp_username =
smtp_password = your_gmail_password
smtp_ssl = on

Do not forget to save your changes, and that’s all, Bugzilla is now able to use GMail to send bugmails.

If you are running Bugzilla 4.2 or older, then you should apply this patch. That’s the patch which is now part of Bugzilla 4.4, but it also applies cleanly to all supported branches. And the good news is that the upgrade to 4.4 will run smoothly as that’s the exact same code as for 4.4. ;) Once applied, you can follow the steps above.

Catégories:Bugzilla, Mozilla

For bmo specific requests, please file bugs in the product

I see many bugs filed in the Bugzilla product related to bmo such as "please add flag tracking-firefox89", "please merge my account with my new", "please delete bug XX", "please add component X to product Y", "I need to be added to the core-security group",  etc… etc…. All these requests specific to bmo must be filed in the product. I think the name of this product is explicit enough to be understood by everybody. ;) It would be great if all users getting a email address would be informed about this distinction as they represent 95% of wrongly filed bugs (the Bugzilla product is only for bugs/requests related to the Bugzilla project itself, not the Mozilla instance). Fortunately, it’s very easy to move a bug into its correct product, but some developers are spammed uselessly.


Anyone familiar with Oracle (the DB)? I need your help!

Bugzilla installations running Oracle as their database server fail to display flags, tags and keywords in buglists. Oracle crashes with:

DBD::Oracle::db prepare failed: ORA-30482: DISTINCT option not allowed
for this function (DBD ERROR: error possibly near <*> indicator at char 313

..., group_concat(<*>T_CLOB_DELIM(DISTINCT, ', ')) tag

All the details are in bug 780053. The group_contact() function is defined in Bugzilla/DB/ The maintainer of the Oracle DB module, who was an Oracle employee, disappeared, leaving us in the dust. The code in is totally obscure to us and I have no idea how to fix it. I would like to have this bug fixed on time for Bugzilla 4.4, which should be released before the end of the year, and so I need your help as soon as possible to fix this problem. Someone already made a suggestion in the bug, but I need a second review or another sugggestion as I don’t understand anything about the cryptic internals of Oracle.

So if you are familiar with Oracle or use Oracle as your DB server, please give it a look. Many thanks! :)

Catégories:Bugzilla, Mozilla

New UI to manage products in Bugzilla

All those of you who are administrators of a Bugzilla installation already had to configure products in the past. Most of you probably found it was pretty hard to configure security correctly on these products: Entry, MemberControl, OtherControl, Canedit, editbugs, canconfirm, editcomponents. What’s all this and how do they interact with each other?

I made a proposal to rewrite this page entirely, and you can see the result here (it’s a html page). If you are a Bugzilla administrator or have privileges to edit product settings on your Bugzilla installation, please give me your feedback, ideally as a comment in the bug itself, in the worse case here as a comment. If this new UI is accepted, it will be part of Bugzilla 5.0.

Catégories:Bugzilla, Mozilla

Changes to httpd.conf required before upgrading to Bugzilla 4.3.3 (and 4.4)

I saw several admins being confused about why their Bugzilla installation stopped working after upgrading to Bugzilla 4.3.3. First of all, remember that 4.1, 4.3, 4.5, etc.. are developement releases, not stable releases! Stable releases are of the form 4.0, 4.2, 4.4, etc… Now, the reason for this specific issue is because we added  "Options -Indexes" to bugzilla/.htaccess to prevent directory browsing, but this requires that your httpd.conf configuration file allows the usage of Options in .htaccess. Till now, you probably had:

Bugzilla 4.2 and older:

<Directory /var/www/html/bugzilla>
    AddHandler cgi-script .cgi
    Options +Indexes +ExecCGI
    DirectoryIndex index.cgi
    AllowOverride Limit FileInfo Indexes

Now, you must have:

Bugzilla 4.4 and newer:

<Directory /var/www/html/bugzilla>
    AddHandler cgi-script .cgi
    Options +ExecCGI
    DirectoryIndex index.cgi index.html
    AllowOverride Limit FileInfo Indexes Options

Note that +Indexes has been removed from the Options line, that index.html has been added to DirectoryIndex (for the doc) and more importantly that we added Options to AllowOverride. This last change is the one required to make Bugzilla work again.

Catégories:Bugzilla, Mozilla

Bringing back the favicon and the colored lock in the address bar in Firefox

If you are like me and really dislike the removal of the favicon and the blue/green background for SSL connections from the address bar in Firefox 14 and newer, I recommend you install these two Firefox addons: Favicon Restorer and Site Identity Button Colors.

And you probably remember that Firefox 6 and Firefox 7 removed the http:// protocol from the URL and highlighted the domain name of the URL? If you don’t like them, you can revert these changes by setting browser.urlbar.formatting.enabled = false and browser.urlbar.trimURLs = false.

Maybe I’m the only one to think this way, but I really think improvements made to the address bar are going the wrong way.


Bugzilla 4.2.3 is very close, and Bugzilla 4.4rc1 is not too far away

I think now is a good time to give you some news about the current development of Bugzilla. First of all, we are very close from releasing Bugzilla 4.2.3 and 4.3.3. There is one blocker left which needs its patch to be reviewed, and we can start the release process. Hopefully this will happen this week. Both releases will work with Perl 5.16 (uploading attachments was broken due to a change in Perl 5.16), databases created with PostgreSQL will now be encoded with UTF8 (the encoding wasn’t enforced, and was entirely depending on how initdb created template1), Oracle will be able to display buglists again instead of crashing (unless you try to display keywords, flags or tags. I have no idea how to fix this problem, help welcome), the obsolete -moz-border-radius CSS property which was no longer understood by Firefox 13 and newer has been replaced by -border-radius (meaning that other browsers will take advantage of it too), and a regression in 4.2.2 about the keyword auto-completion feature has been fixed. There are a few more fixes included in 4.2.3, but you will read them in the release notes. :)

About 4.3.3, we can also mention that the "Browse" link in the page header and footer now correctly sorts products by classification, you can now save your tabular and graphical reports (till now, you could only save your searches), the User.get WebService method now returns your saved searches too (and only yours!), PATH_INFO is now removed by default from all URLs, graphical reports are automatically resized based on the size of your window, if you type the alias of a bug you cannot see, Bugzilla no longer tells you which bug ID has this alias (it just tells you that this alias is already in use), flags which you cannot set/edit are now hidden instead of being disabled only, there is now a "(take)" link besides the QA contact (till now, only the assignee had such a link), and we now use HMAC-SHA256 to generate tokens instead of MD5. More WebServices methods are expected before 4.4rc1; they are currently being worked on (and some patches already in the review queue).

Once Bugzilla 4.2.3 and 4.3.3 are out (hopefully this week), we will create a branch for 4.4. On the 4.4 branch, we will limit changes to new WebServices methods, bug fixes and some not too invasive patches. The plan is to release 4.4rc1 next month or the month after, and 4.4 final before the end of the year.

On the trunk, we will immediately start the development cycle for Bugzilla 4.6/5.0 (we didn’t decide its version yet, but this is not the most important part of the story). One of the main goals will be to improve its User Interface (yeah, that’s not a joke). We are currently using YUI2, and I hope that using YUI3 or jQuery (the choice isn’t made yet, see bug 453268) will help to reach this goal. We will also need feedback and suggestions from the community to improve things (this is way better than waiting for the next version to be released and start complaining at that time that you don’t like the new UI. Try to be constructive, though). We will also bump the min version of Perl from 5.8.1 to 5.10.1 so that we can use some new features implemented in 5.10.1. New contributors are always welcome! ;)

Catégories:Bugzilla, Mozilla

Testopia 2.5 released! Works with Bugzilla 4.2.1

I got an email this morning from the maintainer of Testopia to inform me that Testopia 2.5 is finally released! This is the first version to work with Bugzilla 4.2.1 (if you are still running Bugzilla 4.0.x or 4.2, upgrade to 4.2.1 first). The announcement has not be made official yet, but this should be done in the coming hours, hopefully. Meanwhile, you can already download Testopia 2.5. Note that there is no need to apply any patch anymore to make it work (which is why you need Bugzilla 4.2.1 instead of e.g. 4.2, because 4.2.1 has some changes included in it to avoid to patch the core code to make Testopia work). And if you find any problem which hasn’t been reported yet, feel free to file a new bug (bugs only, no support questions). Have fun!

UPDATE: The announcement has finally been made here.

Catégories:Bugzilla, Mozilla

How to require high code quality without discouraging new or occasional contributors?

During the week-end, I received a pertinent email from a former Bugzilla developer who replied to an email I sent to all reviewers about the pretty low activity in the Bugzilla project during the current development cycle. He argued that one of the reasons which made him go away, and which probably took some other contributors away as well, is our high code quality standards we have in this project. The point is that we deny review if submitted patches do not follow our guidelines or are poorly written compared to what we expect in our codebase. He suggested that reviewers should accept and commit lower quality patches, and file follow-up bugs to clean up the new code. I then brought this discussion on IRC with other core developers, and we realized how hard it is to define the right level of code quality. The problems are:

  • Some new features require some rewrite of some parts of the code to be easily extendable in the future and/or to reuse some existing code. These features could also be implemented without the code rewrite, which is easier to do for the contributor, but then would be harder to maintain, or would require to duplicate some existing code, which we try to avoid as much as possible. This is how Bugzilla 2.x was written, and it took us two full development cycles (Bugzilla 2.22 + 3.0) to clean up and rewrite the codebase to be able to implement new features in a reasonable way (the 2.x codebase became too ugly and complex to easily implement anything new on top of it). So the risk to accept such patches is that the codebase would become more messy again. But on the other hand, the risk is also to make contributors leave if we keep our high standards, because a rewrite is generally not something trivial nor exciting, and contributors generally do not understand why we reject a patch which does the job.
  • Accepting patches which are of lower quality and filing follow-up bugs to fix the new code before the next release seems reasonable only if the community around the project is large enough to have the manpower to do the job in the expected timeframe. The current Bugzilla team is very small, maybe 4-5 core developers + some occasional contributors helping with some not too hard bugs. This isn’t large enough to expect these follow-up bugs to be fixed promptly. But we also cannot release a new version with poor code in it, some of the reasons being security implications, performance issues, or possible regressions in some use cases. As the community is small, fixing these bugs would delay the next major release a lot, which is not a desirable effect.
  • Depending on how the submitted patch is written, it would take twice the time to review + rewrite the new code to match our standards compared to the time it would take for a core developer to write the patch himself. The lack of time being the main enemy, I personally wouldn’t want to spend more time on such or such feature because it’s not written as we would like it to be. The time spent to rewrite bad code means less time to work on other stuff.

So what’s the right threshold to not make new and occasional contributors go away without badly impacting our codebase? Which rules do other Mozilla and non-Mozilla projects use to solve this problem? Please share your experience with us. :)

Catégories:Bugzilla, Mozilla

Bugzilla 4.3.1, 4.2.1, 4.0.6 and 3.6.9 released

We released Bugzilla 4.3.1, 4.2.1, 4.0.6 and 3.6.9 a few hours ago, and they all contain 2 security fixes. All installations are highly encouraged to upgrade to these new releases. Bugzilla 3.6.9 and 4.0.6 only contain the two security fixes mentioned in the security advisory. Bugzilla 4.2.1 also contains a pretty large list of bug fixes, which makes it a good candidate to upgrade to the 4.2.x series if you didn’t upgrade to 4.2 yet. Note that Bugzilla 4.2.1 is also the first release to work with Testopia without needing to be patched first. A new release of Testopia should be available soon, which will take advantage of the improvements and new hooks available in 4.2.1.

We also released Bugzilla 4.3.1 which is the first development snapshot of the 4.4 series. I’m going to list some of the new features and improvements available:

  • A new user preference lets you decide if you should be CC’ed when someone requests something from you via a flag. For instance, requesting someone for review would automatically CC the reviewer to the bug.
  • Unset flags are now hidden by default, in bug reports.
  • Duplicates are now listed at the top of the bug report, close to the dependency lists.
  • URLs pointing to GitHub ( are now accepted in the See Also field in bug reports.
  • Personal tags can now be displayed in buglists. In Bugzilla 4.3.2, you will also be able to tag bugs from the bug reports themselves. This means the ugly box at the very bottom of every page will go away.
  • You can now hide the description displayed at the top of buglists containing all the arguments passed to the query.
  • You can now use pronouns (%reporter%, %user%, etc.) with the flag setter and requestee fields in boolean charts.
  • A new email preference has been added to get emails when the product or the component of a bug changes.
  • Bugzilla now keeps track of the last time a user used his account to access Bugzilla. This will let admins know which accounts are inactive.
  • Bugzilla now supports SSL connections to SMTP servers.
  • Target milestones can now be 64 characters long (instead of 20) to match the same limit as versions.
  • Whine emails now correctly take the sort order of buglists into account.
  • Several new WebServices methods: User.update, Product.update, Group.update, Bug.update_tags, Bugzilla.parameters (read-only), Bugzilla.last_audit_time.
  • Several existing WebServices methods have been improved to return more data.
  • The documentation is now generated using xmlto instead of jade.
  • Several performance improvements have been made when viewing large bug reports.
  • The Bugzilla source code now uses the MPL2.0 license, instead of the MPL1.1 one.

We are one month away from the freezing date for new features in Bugzilla 4.4. So if some of you really want something for 4.4, you have exactly one month left to submit patches, or find a kind developer to write the patch for you. Also note that Bugzilla 4.4 will be the last release to support Perl 5.8.x. The next major release, Bugzilla 4.6, will require Perl 5.10.1 or better.

Catégories:Bugzilla, Mozilla

Testopia 2.5 will work with Bugzilla 4.2.1 pretty decently

You probably noticed that there has been no activity related to the development of Testopia, a Bugzilla extension, for more than a year. The reason is that its maintainer, who was the single contributor to this project, had a new job and has no time to work on it anymore. Consequently, the latest version of this extension, Testopia 2.4, which was released in October 2010 (!), only works with Bugzilla 3.6, but not 4.x.

You will be happy to hear that with the help of some new contributors wanting to make Testopia work with Bugzilla 4.2, I committed several patches to the bzr repository which make it work pretty decently with Bugzilla 4.2.1 (probably also with Bugzilla 4.0.x, but I didn’t test). There is no official release yet (it should be named Testopia 2.5), but you can download updated files using bzr. Make sure to revert changes made to the core code of Bugzilla first before applying the new code.

To make things clear: I’m not the new maintainer of this extension, and I have no plan to take this role. I’m busy enough with my roles as assistant project lead + reviewer + QA lead + bug triager + developer for the Bugzilla project. I simply decided to help the new contributors who jumped in these last few days and used my commit access to the Testopia repository to commit some patches. The Testopia maintainer is still alive, and emailed me this morning. So he is still the one who will take the decision to release 2.5 when it’s ready. :)

Update: Starting with Bugzilla 4.2.1, you no longer need to patch the source code of Bugzilla to make it work with Testopia 2.5! If you are upgrading from Testopia 2.4 or older, make sure to revert the changes made to the source code first.

Catégories:Bugzilla, Mozilla

Bugzilla 4.5 will require Perl 5.10.1

This is just a quick note to let you know that once we branch for Bugzilla 4.4 in May, I will commit a patch which will make Bugzilla 4.5 and newer to require Perl 5.10.1 as a minimum. This means Bugzilla won’t support Perl 5.8.x anymore. So Bugzilla 4.4 will be the last release to support the oldish Perl 5.8.x. This new requirement is tracked in bug 655477.

Catégories:Bugzilla, Mozilla

Upgrading from Bugzilla 4.0 or older using CVS to Bugzilla 4.2 or newer using Bzr

There has been some complains these last few days on IRC and in the support mailing-list/newsgroup that admins couldn’t upgrade their Bugzilla installation to 4.2 due to the lack of a CVS mirror for this branch. As announced 3 years ago in the developers mailing-list and on b.m.o., and 1.5 years ago on the website, the Bugzilla team switched from the old CVS to the more modern Bazaar (or bzr for short) VCS. If you use our tarballs to download Bugzilla, then you don’t really care about this change, and the process to upgrade won’t change for you. If you use CVS and you wonder how to upgrade using Bzr, here is how you can do it:

  1. For now, there is no need to shut down Bugzilla. We will do this when we start the upgrade process itself. If you made changes to the Bugzilla code itself (instead of using its extension system), you will have to port these changes to the new version, else they will be lost. If you made no changes, or all changes are contained into extensions, you can jump to step 2 directly. To generate a patch with all the changes you made, go into your bugzilla/ directory and run this command:
    cvs diff -puN > patch.diff
    The file patch.diff will contain all the changes you made to your current installation.
  2. Let’s download the new version of Bugzilla into a separate directory, to not mess with the current installation. Now you will need bzr. All Linux installations have it; have a look at your package manager. For instance, Fedora 16 has bzr-2.4.2-1.fc16.i686.rpm. On Windows, you can download it from The standalone application is recommended; for instance: bzr-2.4.2-1-setup.exe. Once bzr is installed, run this command to download Bugzilla 4.2:
    bzr co bzr:// bugzilla42
    Here, bzr co means "checkout", i.e. it’s the first download of 4.2 with bzr. Then you have the URL to our Bugzilla 4.2 repository, and finally you have the name of the local directory into which to dowload the source code. If you don’t like the name bugzilla42, feel free to choose another one. :)
  3. Now go into the new bugzilla42/ directory and run the following command:
    ./ –check-modules
    The –check-modules part is important for two reasons. First of all, we didn’t copy the configuration files from the old bugzilla/ directory into the new one. The advantage to do so is to prevent Bugzilla 4.2 from finding where your DB is located and start interacting with it. Remember that we did no backup of your DB yet! :) And the second reason is that we first want to make sure that we have all the required Perl modules installed. Between major releases of Bugzilla, the requirements may change, either by requiring new Perl modules, or by requiring a newer version of an existing Perl module. If you have missing or too old Perl modules, you will have to install or upgrade them, ideally using your package manager. On Windows, ActivePerl 5.12 and newer have all the required modules available, so that’s not a problem. On Linux, only old distros may have some missing or too old Perl modules. If this happens, you can use the script which is in the same directory as to install them. The commands you need to execute are given by –check-modules itself. So open your eyes. :) Note that you don’t need to install all the optional Perl modules. The reason is that they are…. optional! Only install those which are relevant to your installation.
  4. If you made changes to your current Bugzilla installation, then you have to apply patch.diff you created at step 1 to your new installation. If you made no changes, you can jump to step 5 directly. If you are on Windows and you don’t have patch.exe, you can download it from Once downloaded, you must copy patch.exe into the Windows directory. At this point, it’s very likely that your changes will conflict with the new code, unless you are lucky or your changes are very minor. So we first check if there are conflicts or not. To do that, copy patch.diff into your new bugzilla42/ directory, and run this command from here:
    patch -p0 –dry-run < patch.diff
    –dry-run means that we made no changes to files; it was only a test. If all you get are messages such as "Hunk #1 succeeded at 79 (offset -26 lines)" or "Hunk #1 succeeded at 31 with fuzz 1 (offset 2 lines)", then you are fine. But if you get messages such as "Hunk #1 FAILED at 27" and "1 out of 2 hunks FAILED", then you are in trouble. And don’t blame the Bugzilla team and Bzr, you would get the same errors with CVS! If the conflicts are minor, you can easily fix them manually, else you probably will have to rewrite your changes directly into the new code. If you have no conflicts, you can drop the –dry-run argument and apply your patch for real:
    patch -p0 < patch.diff
  5. Now we are ready to start the upgrade process itself. The first thing to do is to shut down Bugzilla, because the DB must not be accessed by anyone but you during the upgrade process. To do that, go to Administration > Parameters > General > shutdownhtml, and add some explanation of what’s happening. For instance: "This installation is being upgraded to Bugzilla 4.2. The downtime should last approximatively 2 hours.", and click the "Save Changes" button at the bottom of the page. I recommend that you don’t leave this page during the upgrade process, because all other pages will be deactivated besides this one. At this point, when someone tries to access Bugzilla during the downtime, this message will be displayed to them instead, so that you can upgrade your installation without having some users still interacting with it.
  6. Then, and this rule applies all the time when upgrading to a newer major version: do a backup of your database! The reason is that once you start the upgrade process (i.e. when you run, there is NO way to downgrade later. So if the upgrade process fails for some reason (most of the time because someone hacked the source code or the DB schema) and you made no backup, you are lost. To backup your DB with MySQL, run the following command, where you must replace $db_user and $db_name by their value set in your bugzilla/localconfig file (by default: $db_user = bugs; $db_name = bugs):
    mysqldump -u $db_user -p $db_name > db_backup.sql
  7. Copy the whole data/ directory and the localconfig file from your old bugzilla/ directory into the new bugzilla42/ one. data/ contains your parameters in the data/params file, your local attachments in data/attachments/ as well as data for Old Charts in data/mining/. And localconfig contains all the parameters to access the DB, including its password, the name of the web server group, and some other useful configuration information. If you wrote some extensions, now is a good time to also copy them into bugzilla42/extensions/. Only copy the ones you wrote, not the existing ones such as BmpConvert, Example, OldBugMove or Voting, which are maintained by the Bugzilla team.
  8. It’s now time to upgrade your DB to work with Bugzilla 4.2. From the bugzilla42/ directory, run ./ with no arguments (so no –check-modules anymore) and let it run the upgrade process for you. As you copied the configuration and parameters files, it knows where the DB is, its password, and everything else it should know about. Depending on the size of your DB and from which version you are upgrading, this may take from a few minutes to several hours. But typically, it’s of the order of a few tens of minutes for a DB with several tens of thousands of bugs. If everything went well, the last message displayed by must be " complete" displayed in green. Else this means something went wrong at some point. If half of the messages are in red, then there is no doubt about this. ;)
  9. The upgrade is now complete, and it’s time to let your users admire this new version. Replace your old bugzilla/ directory by the new one, and re-enable Bugzilla. To do that, you must remove the text you wrote for the shutdownhtml parameter. As we replaced the old directory by the new one, the URL pointing to Bugzilla remains unchanged. You now have a fully-working bzr-based Bugzilla installation. :)


Catégories:Bugzilla, Mozilla

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