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Anonymous Bug Reports Suck

Hugin is becoming more popular by the day. With an average of more than 150 downloads per day and an estimated install base of more than 15.000 for my latest Windows installer alone.

With popularity comes mass, and we need critical mass. It is in the mass that we’ll find the next generation of tester, builders, coder. That’s what Open Source is about.

Many new users have become active and when they find the inevitable bugs, they give feedback. Good. Most of them post the bug reports to the bug tracker. Very good. Often these bugs are specific to the use case and can not be identified without user help.

But we need user’s help beyond simply stating “hey, there’s a bug!”. We need some basic information pertaining the environment in which hugin is used, and also which version of hugin and helper applications. Everything evolves so fast. And sometimes we need specific information, such as the camera make and model, the pre-process through which the images have gone, the project files, etc. Without this information, the developers can’t really do much about the bug report, because the often don’t have enough indication where to look at. And when they need more information, they need to contact the bug reporter.

Unfortunately some bug reporters omit the critically important step to register with Sourceforge and post their bug reports anonymously. 26 such bug reports in Hugin’s bug tracker are anonymous. How can the developers contact them to get more information about the bug?

Please, do the things right – register with Sourceforge – it is free and in ten years I have not had a single instance of spam. Or at least, write in the bug report how we can contact you. Thanks.

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