04 Jan 2011
It's been a few weeks since my last post (the reality of having a skeleton crew for the Christmas Holidays), so I thought I would fire out the latest internal goals we have set for ourselves, so people know where we stand with forward momentum.
These goals are not promises. They are dreams with deadlines (and Gantt charts). But we are very new to the workings of LassoSoft, and trying to balance various new skills and talents to achieve new-found lift-off.
Our current plan is simple.
8.6b This week(ish)
We plan to release a Beta version of 8.6. for Mac OSX 10.5-6 and CentOS 5.5 (based on the obvious popularity of these two systems from our survey results). These installers will be BETA only, with a 90-day-Eval key, as a baseline for those individuals who wish to test the new installers and see if the new OSes resolve any current issues.
8.6 Final (first weekish in Febish) Codename "Valentine"
We plan to release a "Production Version" of 8.6 in early February. This will have many of the smaller bugs fixed which have currently been identified and crushed, as well as - in a best case scenario - as many of the "Mission-Critical Six" we have identified which can be solved in this short a timeline;
7333 Apache 2.2 Connector consuming 100% CPU
7328 Zombie process
7327 Administrator notification
7325 Lasso consumes memory
7324 Lasso does not automatically restart after crash
7323 DNS Deafness
The biggest issue is reproducing the bugs (we haven't been able to reproduce any yet on our own, after a few weeks of fiddling), so we have inserted a new process for trying to evaluate them as of yesterday;
1) From community feedback on a specific bug, we are setting up conditions and trying to emulate the issues on "raw installations". We will do everything we reasonably can to address the issue ourselves.
2) Should this fail, we are going to go directly to key affected users and request time on their production machines (if possible) to see if we can catch a glimpse of what is going on there.
3) Should this fail, we are going to request help from LassoTalk and the community at large.
4) Should this fail, we are going to ask for volunteers (probably from the key infected players) who can help us find the issue.
If this process fails, we will have to "park" the bug until further notice. Expect more in coming weeks from LassoSoft on individual bugs - we really want to kill these ones in particular. We will be "triaging" these bugs for several releases over the next few months - let's hope we get them all in quick succession.*
We have also been working on two other sides of the bug world, as discussed some time ago. One, we spent most of December cleaning up thousands of bug/issue/question requests in the support/bugs system and trying to boil them down into key issues. The remaining bug descriptions are currently being cleaned up and described with short blurbs, which will hopefully simplify the average developer's life as they can scan and identify if they have their own issue.
Secondarily, we have architected a new system for displaying bugs to the world which has hooks into the very-old LassoSoft BlueBugs system. You can see a "current" puppet (i.e. non-functional HTML skin) here;
WARNING: SPOILER ALERT, NON-FUNCTIONAL HTML (Sorry, Clive, I know you are working on it as we speak, but I wanted to sneak-preview it to the world)
Once we have cleaned this up to our liking, we will be using this to collect comments/info/feedback from the community on various bugs - crowd-sourcing, as it were - to hopefully speed up our completion and squashing time.
We then plan to release another version of 8.6 (8.6.1?) in March, which will have more fixes and hopefully all known bugs squashed or *triaged.
So there yah go, there's some more transparency for you all. Hopefully that helps in planning your year!
Happy New Year!
*Definition of "Triaged"
1) Fix the bug ASAP (IDEAL!)
2) Band-Aid with an external application
3) Explain the issue, and a workaround, in clear documentation
4) Ignore the issue and document the ignorance, as it has been dealt with in other ways
4) "The fix is 9" (full backwards compatibility, coming next)
Will the bugs list be public? if so, then awesome.
Regarding: 7333 Apache 2.2 Connector consuming 100% CPU
If needed I can supply you with a Xen image to replicate this issue with ab...
Also don't forget us Windows users in the final 8.x patches.
Will there still be a Developer version (no license key) for 8.6?
It's great to see a clear definition of the bug resolution process. Thanks!
Will 8.6 final have support for CentOS 4?