JIRA not here yet

Oracle moves OpenJDK public bug database

Chief of OpenJDK, Java's drive towards an open source implementation, Mark Reinhold has reported some bad news about their intentions to create a public bug database for the project - there is a change of plan.

Originally planned to surface as a pilot JIRA project for the JDK community and then go public in mid-2012, Oracle has had to re-assess based on the size of the task afoot. Reinhold, with a heavy heart, told of the decision to change tactics within the OpenJDK mailing list after realising migrating the JDK bug corpus from the 'creaky old Sun legacy internal system' was just too much work for a small team.

Iris Clark initiated all the drafting behind the big move, with Mohan Pakkurti's team working in paralllel to implement the pilot system, which included configuring JIRA, acquiring suitable hardware and all the internal approvals due to Oracle's protocols.

Reinhold said that there was still a long-term commitment to adopting a public JIRA within OpenJDK but not for the forseeable future. Fortunately, like any good general, he offered a new plan of action:

Rather than make a public pilot system available first, we're initially going to migrate the JDK bug corpus from the legacy internatl system to an internal JIRA instance. Our goal is to complete that transition by mid-June, and in order to do that we've assigned several more Oracle engineers to the effort. We'll move to an external public JIRA instance some time later once the hardware is in place...

This seems pretty logical, given the gargantuan task here. Too much too soon could ultimately lead to a mishmash of a JIRA. Reinhold admits that this won't be as ambitious as Clark's plans had originally been but those ideas will still be knocked around in future considerations.

Reinhold shows his disappointment at the decision by saying:

I understand that this news will be disappointing to many; I'm not very happy about it myself. It's unfortunate that there won't be a public pilot system prior to the migration, that deep customization work will have to wait, and that the public system most likely won't be available by mid-2012.

It will be far worse for all concerned, however, if there is not even a working internal bug system for the JDK by the time that Sun's legacy system is shut down.  This new plan therefore places the highest priority on migrating off of that system.  Oracle remains firmly committed to making a public system available as soon as possible after that.

It's disappointing news for those who wanted to see a full-realised OpenJDK but for now though, this is a good compromise for the over-ambitious plan. At least we won't have an absence of a bug system!

Chris Mayer

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