How to use the public bugtracker

Introduction

With the launch of Android 7, we decided to take full advantage of the public bug tracker and use it to log and monitor both bugs and feature requests.



Preparation

The bug tracker is the right place for all software-related problems with your phone. It is also the right place for feature requests.


I think I found a bug. How do I make sure?

Sometimes it is easy, sometimes it is not.

The easiest bug to identify is the one that is always there for you to see, like a typo in a menu.
The second easiest bug to identify is one that you can replicate by following simple steps. Example: "If I turn Airplane mode on, my device shuts down."

If you cannot figure out what is triggering a bug to appear, you should at least make sure to have the following information:

  • The exact behaviour of the phone (e.g. "My phone randomly keeps me from connecting to any WiFi connection")
  • Its frequency (e.g. "This happens to my phone twice a day.")
  • How you react to it (e.g. "When this happens, I work around it by restarting the device.")


What if I want to suggest a new feature?

That's definitely possible. Make sure to have a clear description of the feature: its intended behaviour and the way you think it should be implemented.



Navigating the bug tracker


How can I check if my issue is already logged?

You can browse the list of bugs currently in the system. If you want to do a search, use the search field in the top left corner. You can also filter the issues using the options on the left side.


Hey, it's already here!

Great, someone beat you to it. You can now read what the reporter has wrote down and see the activity around the issue.


I want to add more information. How do I do that?

To actively interact with the issue you will need to log in or create an account.

Once logged in, you can do many things:


Up-vote the issue

This is how you say "Hey, I noticed this too!"
Click on the counter left of the issue title. Once your vote is registered, the counter will increase by one unit and the box will change color. If you click again, you'll cancel your vote.

up-vote-issue.gif


Leave a comment

You can add your voice by scrolling all the way down to the bottom of the page and leaving a comment.
Be concise. If you don't have anything new to say, there is no reason to add a comment.


Watch the issue

If you want to be notified about any activity, you can also decide to watch (or follow) the issue, by clicking on the button to the right.
Note that if you leave a comment you will be automatically added as a watcher as well.

watch-issue.gif


I couldn't find the issue, I need to create a new one.

  1. Log in or create a new account.
  2. Click on the ISSUES icon on the left column menu.
  3. Click on the green + NEW ISSUE button on the top right side.
  4. Fill in the required information.

You'll notice three drop-down fields right underneath the title field. You can use the first and the last to specify the issue type and severity. The one one in the middle is not currently in use.

new-issue.gif


Wait, I need help choosing the right severity level.

If you are logging a question or feature request, go for "Not applicable".

If you are dealing with a bug instead, choose one of the following:

  • Cosmetic - Good for typos, wrong color schemes, odd icons, etc.
  • Has workaround - Something is keeping you from using the device properly, but you found a way around it. In this case, don't forget to tell us about the workaround!
  • No workaround - Same as above, but you haven't found a way to work around the problem.


How do you prioritize bugs and feature requests?

It is all a matter of balancing out the following elements.


Bug or feature request

In principle, bugs will be given higher priority than feature requests.


Severity

The value of the Severity field is taken into consideration.


Number of upvotes

The number of upvotes gives us an idea of how many users are affected by the problem. The more upvotes, the higher the priority.


Feedback from business partners

The Fairphone 2 has been for sale both on our website and through reseller partners. These partners have their own ways of collecting feedback from their users, which is then relayed to us.


Likelihood of finding a solution

When the software team plans the workload for the upcoming release, they also take into consideration what is the likelihood of finding a solution to a specific problem (or feature request) in the allotted time.



A note on issue statuses

To keep track of the history of an issue, we use the values of the "Status" field.
The current status of an issue defines which team inside Fairphone is monitoring it.

The Tech Support team does the early triaging of the issue, making sure everything is in order. Once the bug or feature has been confirmed, the ownership passes to the Software Development team.


Tech support ownership


New

The issue has been created by an end user and is still fresh. No action has been taken yet.


Needs info

The situation is not clear, which means that more information or hard data has been asked.


Rejected

If dealing with an alleged bug, it cannot be replicated nor confirmed.
If dealing with a feature request, it has been deemed not feasible.


Duplicate

The issue is a clone of another pre-existing one.


Confirmed

We collected enough information to address the request.


Software development ownership


Selected for investigation

When this status is reached, two important things happen:

  • One of the developers takes ownership of the issue
  • The investigation into a solution/implementation begins
If the investigation is taking too long or seems to reach a dead end, the issue might go back to Confirmed or even Rejected.


In progress

A fitting implementation of the fix or feature is being worked on by the developers.

If something goes wrong, the status migh be changed back to either Selected for investigation or Confirmed.


Ready for testing

The fix/feature has been included in a public beta release, for end users to test and give feedback on.

If the feedback received during the beta testing phase is not positive, the status will likely be reverted to Confirmed.


Fixed

A public release including the fix or feature is ready. We are done!


Postponed

There is a delay in pushing out the fix/feature that doesn't have anything to do with the fix/feature itself.
In other words, the fix orfeature is in a good state, but something else is blocking the release.

The issue will stay in this state until it can be pushed to either another beta - Ready for testing - or a public release - Fixed.



Conclusion

You should now feel comfortable navigating the bug tracker. If not, feel free to get in touch with our customer support.

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