[openstack-dev] [Heat][Rant] About blank rechecks

Thomas Herve therve at redhat.com
Thu Oct 22 07:58:14 UTC 2015

Hi all,

You've seen me complain about people doing blank rechecks in Gerrit on IRC,
and it seems it had little to no effect. So here I am trying to spread the
word here. I'll try to stay calm.

I'm seeing way too many rechecks on heat patches. It's not epidemic, but
it's still enough to make me sad.

First, it makes me sad as a developer. I don't know if it's just me, but
one of the reason I code is curiosity, and debugging a gate failure is a
great way to learn, pierce through the layers, and improve the situation.

It then makes me sad as a team member. By doing a recheck you're basically
implying that you don't care about the failure, and surely someone will
care at some point. Except, the information will be lost, and we may have
100 builds before that happen again, when a release already happened, and
we have to backport it. Working early means working less.

And finally, it makes me sad for the infra team. Doing a recheck is
disrespecting all the work they're doing to create a reliable environment
to run our tests. Sure, sometimes the environment is the reason the failure
happens, but then it's even more important to give feedback about it. They
provide a great deal of logs, we can use logstach to find patterns, the
least we can do is trying. We're also using resources that other projects
could be using. As much as we'd like to believe it, the cloud doesn't have
free infinite resources.

Recently, I've seen many cases where rechecks were made whereas:
1) The heat branch was broken. Generally for some external reason (a
dependency updated), doing a recheck is a pure waste of resources until
that failure is fixed. Most of the time, we say something on IRC when it's
the case. We also try to open a bug, so looking at launchpad can show
2) THE PATCH WAS ACTUALLY BROKEN. And there I'm not sad anymore I'm
particularly angry. It basically means that you didn't look at all at the
build results, and just mindlessly typed rechecks hoping that some fairy
will fix your broken code. Frankly, that makes want to go on a -2 rampage.
ESPECIALLY where a core is doing it.

To close, I'll try to provide a solution. I know we all have our agenda,
debugging gate failures takes some time that you may not have, and
obviously "my patch is fine it's not my fault" (who cares, that's what
being in a team means). Still, I'd like everyone to look at the test
failures, look if the patch is not the problem, and if not open a bug [1]
mentioning the test name, pasting the traceback in the description, and
linking the build result. Then do recheck bug #xyz. That's it. It shouldn't
take you more than 3 minutes, and at least we didn't lose the information.

Thanks for reading that far and sorry for the length,

[1] https://bugs.launchpad.net/heat/+filebug

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