Dan Wierenga dwierenga at
Wed Feb 17 00:38:15 UTC 2010

Hi Max (noticably, not to the list),

On Tue, Feb 16, 2010 at 3:15 PM, Max Kanat-Alexander
<mkanat at> wrote:
>        Also, somebody would have to maintain this installer and promptly
> update it every release, or it wouldn't be that useful. I suspect that
> that person wouldn't be me, so we'd need somebody willing to dedicate
> themselves to producing the installer every time we have a release.

I think that's the wrong way to go about this, and IMO it's indicative
of the entire thought process of the Bugzilla Project in regards to
Windows.  It's fairly obvious that Windows is the red-headed stepchild
platform.  Too little effort goes into making things work on Windows
for it to be really, truly considered a "supported platform".

 A command-line script is The Way You Install Things on Linux, and you
wouldn't ship a Linux release with a broken  Similarly,
an installer package (.msi or .exe) is The Way You Install Things on
Windows, and yet here you're talking about "promptly updating it every
release".  In other words, there's a Bugzilla release, and then the
installer would have to be nudged along.

>From my perspective, the release isn't RELEASABLE until the installer
is done.  It's what the release manager is doing from the time the
code base freezes in preparation for the release until the release
actually happens.

Yes, that means that the release management for a Windows build is a
whole lot more complicated than just some command-line perl scripts.
But that's the price of reaching the Windows audience;  you either
support Windows and its relatively un-technical userbase, or you
don't.  But you can't say "we support Windows" and then have a high
failure rate on installation.  All it does is give Bugzilla some
really bad press, because the Windows crowd doesn't think, "Bugzilla
doesn't work on Windows", they think "Bugzilla doesn't work".

I'd like to help on a Windows installer, I really would.  I sent you
my thoughts on why I wasn't contributing to the community, and I saw
your email thread on your research results.  You'll notice that thread
was enough to keep me here on the mailing list  :) , but I'm still not
*really* contributing.  A couple of things need to happen from the
Bugzilla developers before I'd really want to devote any time to a
Windows packager (and by "developers", I mean the real ones, not just
the members of the mailing list; I guess for my purpose the list of
code reviewers is "the real developers"):

- A simple clarion call to the list(s) for some help in sprucing up
the process of installing Bugzilla on Windows.  It's okay that none of
the reviewers knows much about making things install gracefully on
Windows; what's not okay is that you KNOW that, and you still haven't
put out a call for help.
- A commitment to a Windows installer, and the general treatment of a
Windows installation as "just as important as another platform".   You
can't make a release and then say the release is waiting for one
person to create an installer.  (Just think of the Firefox Project.
If they "released" Firefox 4 and said, "oh yeah, you can get the code
from CVS, but the Windows installer isn't ready yet", the majority of
the Internet would think "Firefox 4 isn't released", and the rest of
the Internet would think the Firefox Project has a screw loose for
even announcing it was.)

Basically, the Bugzilla Project needs to show it *wants* to be part of
the Windows community before the Windows community can be expected to
want to be part of the Bugzilla community.


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