Tracking project issues

Issue tracking administration

Because you are a Project Owner, you automatically have administrative permissions in the Issue Tracker to manage and track your project's issues. Along with the options available to other project members, your view of the Issue Tracking page includes a Configuration Options link that will take to the Issue tracking configuration parameters for project page. Almost all administrative options are included on this page. (See "Configuring the Issue Tracker's administrative options" below for descriptions of the fields you can configure.)

Your role of Project Owner gives you the ability to grant roles and permissions to members of your project. You can use project roles to delegate some of the administrative tasks to other users to help manage and plan the project workload. If one of your project members builds a solid track record of committing issues that get confirmed, this is probably a person who understands the project and the issue tracking system well enough to be granted the "Issue tracking - change" permission. As a project owner, you can and should use the Issue Tracker to track this kind of information about project participants to help you manage project issues effectively.

To learn how to assign permissions to project members, see Member roles for information of granting project roles.

Configuring Issue Tracker's administrative options

You can configure Issue Attributes and Operating Parameters from the Issue tracking configuration parameters for project page. Below are descriptions of the options that you can configure:

Issue Attributes
Add/edit components
When a project is created an issue database is created with the name of the project as the default component in the Issue Tracker. Each component is a unique entity within the Issue Tracker. All issues must be associated with a component to be created. The component interface allows you to define subcomponents, versions and milestones.
Subcomponents
A subcomponent may be used to define functional areas within the component. For example, for a component called pacman you may have a set of subcomponents with the following titles; user interface, strategy, user documentation, installation, etc. A subcomponent inherits all the characteristics of the parent component. Thus, if you assign a set of version numbers to a component, all subcomponents will receive the same set of versions. A component selection screen that lets you create, define, edit, add, and delete project components and subcomponents.
Versions
To assist in tracking the releases and build cycle of your project you can assign versions to your component. Versions represent a full unit of a release cycle. That is, the version is used to track the process from original design, through development and final release. The version includes the development, QA and release cycles. HINT: to assist in your review process you may want to consider using the same versions as you use to tag unique code sets in CVS.
Milestones
Milestones are significant points in the development process which you may wish to track. For instance you may have design, scoping, development, documentation, QA and release milestones. The milestone field can be used to run reports on the progress of your project.
When you create a new target milestone or edit an existing one in the Milestone field, you can set the Sortkey, which is a number that defines where in the dropdown list of the milestones, this particular milestone appears. For example, if you create three new milestones Milestone 1.0, ;Milestone 2.0, Milestone 3.0 and want to make them appear in reverse order in the dropdown list, the sort keys will have to be:

Milestone 1.0 :2
Milestone 2.0 :1
Milestone 3.0 :0

The Sortkey determines the position in the list where the milestone appears.
Add/edit keywords
Allows you to create, define, edit, and delete regular expression keywords to be used for issue tracking groups and queries. Keywords can be used to flag issues for queries based on information that is otherwise difficult to track. For example, you could use define the keyword "test-plan" to notate issue for which a test plan has been written. You could then require your project members who write test plans to add this keyword to their issues as soon as the test plan is compled.
 
If no keywords have been defined in a project, the Keyword field is disable. Once you have defined keywords, the Keyword field appears on the Query page and the Issue view page. Project members can view the list of available keywords by clicking on the Keyword link.
Add/edit platforms
Allows you to apply a sort key, mark as Closed, or Delete any of the defaults, or add new platforms. Default platforms are:
  • All (happens on all platform; cross-platform issue)
  • DEC
  • HP
  • Macintosh
  • Palm PDA
  • PC
  • SGI
  • SUN
  • Other
Add/edit operating Systems
Allows you to apply a sort key, mark as Closed, or Delete any of the defaults, or add new operating systems. Default values include most available operating systems.
Operating Parameters
Edit users
Allows you to access the user edit screen either by filtering for specific users or leaving it blank to access the full list of users after clicking the "Submit" button.
Add/edit groups
Allows you to create, define, and delete groups specifically for issue tracking purposes, and assign project member users to groups. You can make changes to one, several, or all fields and submit them all at once.
Edit advanced configuration options
Allows you to edit the values of many of the keys within the Issue Tracker. This page should be handled with care! Checking the Reset box on any item will reset it to the default value.
Add/edit mimetypes
Allows you to create, define, edit or delete descriptions for attachment uploads.
Add/edit hosts
Allows you to create, edit or delete hosts for exporting (copying) issues to another project. Specify an export host in URL form, for example: 'http://{project}.{domain}/' or 'https://{project}.{domain}/'. To remove an entry from the list, clear the text from that field and click the Submit button.
Edit issue import configuration rules
Allows you to set rules and field values to be used when importing issues from another project's database. The following items can be configured:
  • Component
  • Subcomponent
  • Version
  • Milestone
  • User resolution
  • Importing votes
  • Subject prefix for imported issues
Run sanity check
The sanity check function allows you to run an automated process that checks for and identifies any anomalies in your project's issues database, such as conflicting dependencies, committed issue errors, and correct references between issue reporters and user profiles. You can run the sanity check to check for corruption or invalid entries in your issue database.

Tips and tricks for issue management

The Issue Tracker is a powerful tool for managing and tracking your project's development activities down to the fine-grained details. The following tips have proven particularly useful to project managers or users with administrative issue tracking permissions:

Generating issues as XML

When viewing an issue, you can generate an XML representation of the issue by clicking the Format as XML link. This option is also available by clicking the Format as XML button when viewing query results.

About limiting email content

Issue notification emails sent through Issue Tracker can contain project sensitive information. If you are concerned about the dissemination of proprietary information you can limit the content of the email sent. You can use the iz_send_diff administrative key to limit the amount of information contained in Issue Tracker emails. This key configures Issue Tracker to send issue change alerts that do not contain the summary or any comments. Authenticated users can then log in to see the issue changes.

To limit email content:

  1. From your project's home page click the Issue Tracker link in the left hand navigation bar.
  2. Click the Configuration options link on the Issue Tracker home page.
  3. Click the Edit advanced configuration options link under Operating parameters on the Issue tracking configuration parameters page.
  4. Scroll to the iz_send_diff key.
  5. Click the on radio button.
  6. Click the Make changes button.

To remove email content limits:

  1. From your project's home page click the Issue Tracker link in the left hand navigation bar.
  2. Click the Configuration options link on the Issue Tracker home page.
  3. Click the Edit advanced configuration options link under Operating parameters on the Issue tracking configuration parameters page.
  4. Scroll to the iz_send_diff key.
  5. Select the off radio button.
  6. Click the Make changes button.

You can use the reset radio button to return this key to the default toggle.