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Re: Steps that can help stabilize Nova's trunk


These are all great points Jay.

I'd like to re-echo the comment about unit tests. Obviously they aren't
the panacea, but they can protect against some of the dumber errors that
have made their way into trunk. One particular bug stopped one developer
on my team dead in his tracks, and it ended up being a semi-colon in place
of a colon. There's a lot of utility in simply "exercising" code...

I think we may want to consider everyone's favorite topic of code coverage
as well in all of this. Specifically, we may want to take note of code
coverage on any given merge, and if subsequent merges reduce that number,
we throw a fit/reject the patch. I know that won't be a popular solution,
but it would definitely put a stop to the lack of unit tests.

On 2/16/11 4:27 PM, "Jay Pipes" <jaypipes@xxxxxxxxx> wrote:

>Hey all,
>It's come to my attention that a number of folks are not happy that
>Nova's trunk branch (lp:nova) is, shall we say, "less than stable". :)
>First, before going into some suggestions on keeping trunk more
>stable, I'd like to point out that trunk is, by nature, an actively
>developed source tree. Nobody should have an expectation that they can
>simply bzr branch lp:nova and everything will magically work with a)
>their existing installations of software packages, b) whatever code
>commits they have made locally, or c) whatever specific
>hypervisor/volume/network environment that they test their local code
>with. The trunk branch is, after all, in active development.
>That said, there's *no* reason we can't *improve* the relative
>stability of the trunk branch to make life less stressful for
>contributors.  Here are a few suggestions on how to keep trunk a bit
>more stable for those developers who actively develop from trunk.
>1) Participate fully in code reviews. If you suspect a proposed branch
>merge will "mess everything up for you", then you should notify
>reviewers and developers about your concerns. Be proactive.
>2) If you pull trunk and something breaks, don't just complain about
>it. Log a bug immediately and talk to the reviewers/approvers of the
>patch that broke your environment. Be constructive in your criticism,
>and be clear about why the patch should have been more thoroughly or
>carefully reviewed. If you don't, we're bound to repeat mistakes.
>3) Help us to write functional and integration tests. It's become
>increasingly clear from the frequency of breakages in trunk (and other
>branches) that our unit tests are nowhere near sufficient to catch a
>large portion of bugs. This is to be expected. Our unit tests use
>mocks and stubs for virtually everything, and they only really test
>code interfaces, and they don't even test that very well. We're
>working on adding functional tests to Hudson that will run, as the
>unit test do, before any merge into trunk, with any failure resulting
>in a failed merge. However, we need your help to create functional
>tests and integration tests (tests that various *real* components work
>together properly).  We also need help writing test cases that ensure
>software library dependencies and other packaging issues are handled
>properly and don't break with minor patches.
>4) If you have a specific environment/setup that you use (Rackers and
>Anso guys, here...), then we need your assistance to set up test
>clusters that will pull trunk into a wiped test environment and ensure
>that a series of realistic calls to the Nova API are properly handled.
>I know some of you are working on getting hardware ready. We need help
>from the software teams to ensure that these environments are
>initialized with the exact setups you use.
>The more testing we fire off against each potential merge into trunk,
>and the more those tests are hitting real-life deployment
>environments, the more stable trunk will become and the easier your
>life as a contributor will be.
>Thanks in advance for your assistance, and please don't hesitate to
>expand on any more suggestions you might have to stabilize trunk.
>Mailing list: https://launchpad.net/~openstack
>Post to     : openstack@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx
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