1: # Stuff we dislike about gnats
3: ## Storage and filing
5: * gnats does not understand MIME attachments. (At all.) They end up as
6: text blobs in the database. And worse, they end up mildly corrupted so
7: they need to be edited to be decoded.
9: * gnats makes it a nuisance to extract even inline patches from PRs.
11: * gnats has no way to prevent accidentally filing messages in old PRs,
12: and it's frequently necessary to hand-edit old PRs to clean up the
15: * gnats accepts a wide range of misformatted incoming PRs, then
16: mangles them further and drops them into an internal queue needing
17: manual attention.
19: * gnats fairly frequently belches on incoming mail requiring
20: intervention from admins.
22: * By default gnats does not treat incoming confidential PRs as
23: confidential; it requires manual filtering in the surrounding email
26: * gnats has no support whatsoever for automatically handling bounced
29: * There's no way to disable sending mail to email addresses that are
30: known to be invalid.
32: * When a bug is closed, there's no way to disambiguate from its
33: closed state whether it's fixed, invalid, obsolete, or otherwise
34: "won't fix".
36: ## User interface
38: * gnats has no ability to do anything by web besides display PRs, and
39: they display only as plain text. Things that you should be able to do
40: that you can't include:
41: * filing comments
42: * browsing from one PR to other related ones (either explicit links
43: from one PR to another, or retriving other PRs with similar
45: * subscribing to PRs to get updates (even by email, let alone by RSS)
47: * The only way to do administrative operations is to run an editor on
48: the backend text file representation of a single bug. This means you
49: can't readily:
50: * massedit PRs (e.g. put a lot of related PRs in feedback at once)
51: * update someone's email address
52: * move misfiled comments from one PR to another
54: * But you can't file a comment on a PR from the command line; you have
55: to send email.
57: * The nag mails that gnats sends to submitters are annoying to handle;
58: in particular just replying to them does not go anywhere useful.
60: * The nag mails that gnats sends to developers list a bunch of PRs but
61: do not list them in any kind of useful order; nor does gnats note
62: what's different since the previous one.
64: ## Querying and search
66: * There's a web search form, but it's close to useless, partly because
67: it doesn't take input well and partly because the lists of results it
68: produces is unsorted, unstructured, and impossible to work with.
70: * The command-line interface supports search... using a custom query
71: "language" that's nearly impossible to use and that furthermore has
72: most of the same drawbacks as the web search page. In order to do
73: anything much useful you need to write your own scripts that wrap the
76: * Finding stuff in the database is sufficiently hard that many people
77: consider it effectively impossible.
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