What Makes a Good Bug Report? – FSE 2008

by Nicolas Bettenburg, Sascha Just, Adrian Schröter, Cathrin Weiss, Rahul Premraj, Thomas Zimmermann

In software development, bug reports provide crucial information to developers. However, these reports widely differ in their quality. We conducted a survey among developers and users of APACHE, ECLIPSE, and MOZILLA to find out what makes a good bug report. The analysis of the 466 responses revealed an information mismatch between what developers need and what users supply. Most developers consider steps to reproduce, stack traces, and test cases as helpful, which are at the same time most difficult to provide for users. Such insight is helpful to design new bug tracking tools that guide users at collecting and providing more helpful information. Our CUEZILLA prototype is such a tool and measures the quality of new bug reports; it also recommends which elements should be added to improve the quality. We trained CUEZILLA on a sample of 289 bug reports, rated by developers as part of the survey. In our experiments, CUEZILLA was able to predict the quality of 31-48% of bug reports accurately.

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See also: http://thomas-zimmermann.com/better-bug-tracking/



Nicolas Bettenburg, Sascha Just, Adrian Schröter, Cathrin Weiss, Rahul Premraj, Thomas Zimmermann. What Makes a Good Bug Report?. In Proceedings of the 16th International Symposium on Foundations of Software Engineering (FSE 2008), Atlanta, GA, USA, November 2008.

BibTeX Entry

    title = "What Makes a Good Bug Report?",
    author = "Nicolas Bettenburg and Sascha Just and Adrian Schröter and Cathrin Weiss and Rahul Premraj and Thomas
    year = "2008",
    month = "November",
    booktitle = "Proceedings of the 16th International Symposium on Foundations of Software Engineering",
    location = "Atlanta, GA, USA",