Setting expectations for responses to bug reports

Apologies for the possibly off-topic question (I couldn't think of a better forum):

About a month ago someone submitted a bug report on my behalf. To date it has received no attention – there's no indication that anyone's even looking into it.

For new users like me, what expectations should we have regarding bugs we file? Not receiving any response at all after having taken the time to troubleshoot and file a report is very discouraging.

You can politely ping a bug report if you think it's been overlooked. Sometimes we miss things.


My suggestion would be to ping it. It is reasonable to ping after a week or two for sure to make sure it is seen if you don't see any movement.

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Thanks, @Joe_Groff and @Michael_Gottesman. This was the guidance I was seeking.

I second that has been said, sometime some core team members don't post anything on the forums for weeks which makes it seem that they're not interested, yet it's probably due lack of time since they are all super busy. ;)

Even though we do not follow it exactly, I find that the LLVM Developer Guide is not too far from what we do with Swift. There are of course some differences (i.e. we don't use SVN), but for things like you are asking it can provide guidance with respect to what other related online communities do.

Please do not ping bug reports every week if you don't see any movement. We have a lot more bugs than full-time or even part-time code contributors in the project. I hate to say it but no response at all doesn't necessarily mean anything, and commenting on the bug does not make it more likely to be seen.

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I don't think anyone's suggested a weekly ping. But in the absence of even an acknowledgement of receipt, how are submitters to know that someone who can help triage the report and/or fix the bug has actually seen it?

There has to be some sort of feedback loop here – there's no real point in submitting bug reports if there's no indication that the reports are actually being looked at.

I'm sorry, I didn't mean to dismiss the process concern! (I was mostly worried about a possible interpretation of Michael's comment.) But "looked at" is a low bar for a bug report; what you really want to know is whether it's being acted upon, and unfortunately that's the one where a lot of times the answer is "not yet". I feel like it could be worse for morale to have a checkbox that says "a contributor has looked at this bug report but decided not to do anything with it at this time".

I can only speak for my experience so far, but I would've felt much better if there were some sort of triage result (and some way to appeal it in the event the submitter felt that the contributor misunderstood the severity or the consequence of the bug). At least that way I know that something's happened.

Most of the projects I'm associated with (and the ones I lead) strive to provide immediate acknowledgement of the bug – if it can be reproduced, then we say so right away. If we don't have time at the moment to pursue a fix, we say so. At least that way the submitter can decide 1) whether it's a deal-breaker and to move on to another project, 2) wait it out until someone in the know can provide a PR, or 3) try to provide a PR him/herself.

I stopped filing Apple bug reports years ago when I didn't get any sense that anyone had looked at them (the earliest ones are going on 8 years now with not a single response).

Warning: I do not recommend this liefehack because it means more work to contributors!

Liefehack to know that at least there was a single person that did see your bug report:
Just leave one important category out and that‘s it. For instance sometimes I don‘t know the right category and leave it out (tooling/foundation/compiler/etc.) and in most of the times @jrose edited the bug report to fill in the gap. (You‘ll get an email notification with that.)

Again I do NOT recommend doing this!