The Document Foundation Blog

2014/12/19

Behind the scenes at TDF: Quality Assurance (QA)

Filed under: Community, employees, Interviews, LibreOffice, QA — Florian Effenberger @ 18:30

Towards the end of the year, The Document Foundation would like to share achievements in 2014 with our community and our generous donours, to whom we’d like to express our sincerest gratitude and thanks for their incredible and wonderful support and their invaluable contributions!

As a start, Robinson Tryon, who is in charge of Quality Assurance (QA) since August, and summarizes the efforts in this important area:robinson-in-brussels

Hi all,

I’m Robinson Tryon and I’m a QA Engineer for The Document Foundation. I became quite interested in computers in high school and got my first taste of Free Software playing around with RedHat Linux on a spare machine.

In college I started to study computer science in earnest, and found myself very interested in the topics of human-computer interaction and computing freedom. I can’t remember who first introduced me to the Free Software Foundation, but I have fond memories from my undergraduate years of attending annual membership meetings at MIT and thinking of how I’d like to get a job where I could spend my time working on Free Software.

In the years since I graduated with a degree in computer science, I’ve been fortunate to be able to work with a number of different organizations and labs on Free Software projects. I’ve worked on a multimedia engine used to create training simulations for doctors and first-responders, tools for teaching non-technical people how to use programs such as git and ssh, and a series of web-based games designed to help libraries, museums, and other organizations crowd-source metadata for images and video in their collections. I was very excited to join the Document Foundation this year and bring my experience to the LibreOffice project.

My first contributions to LibreOffice came early-on in 2010 when the project was just starting out. The renewed energy and community-focus espoused by the leaders heartened me, and the reduced barriers to contribution sounded very promising. I tested out new builds and made a few small edits to the wiki, but didn’t get seriously involved until a couple of years later. Up until that point, I was just a user.

When I was still in college, I remember running Sun’s OpenOffice.org off of a Knoppix LiveCD. I desperately wanted to find an alternative to running MS-Office to type up all of my papers and reports, and just using a text editor wasn’t quite cutting it. Although I wasn’t always able to work on my own desktop computer in my dorm room, carrying around a Knoppix CD made it possible for me to boot-up and run a Free Software office suite on the public cluster machines.

By the time LibreOffice had its first release, I had upgraded from the CD and could carry around Free Software programs on a USB stick, ready to be run on any computer. I currently carry a USB stick with builds of LibreOffice for Windows, GNU/Linux, and Mac. My thinking is that if a friend ever needs a hand opening documents on a computer, it’d be great for me to have the right tool ready to go for them. In fact, using LibreOffice to help out a friend is what got me very involved with LibreOffice and the QA Team.

A friend of mine had a large number of documents in proprietary formats (word processing, spreadsheet, etc..) and reading through the LibreOffice documentation I found out that the suite has some excellent tools for conversion of documents from one format to another, including the ability to bulk-convert via the command line one hundred documents as easily as one document. While I was doing my research, I started to chat with contributors to the LibreOffice project, I attended a couple of QA Meetings, and before I knew it was an active member of the QA Team!

When I first started out contributing to LibreOffice, I focused on some basic bug triage tasks and filled-in missing pages on the TDF wiki. As my understanding of the project and its members grew, I was able to make contributions to Bugzilla, to the BSA, and MediaWiki, and was able to help set up tools such as ownCloud. I currently work on a large number of different QA tasks for LibreOffice, including generating binary-bisection or “bibisect” repositories, improving and updating QA documentation on the TDF wiki, and overseeing the implementation of improvements to Bugzilla. Right now I’m gaining experience as a Release Engineer for LibreOffice.

In addition to the technical tasks I undertake for LibreOffice, I work on LibreOffice outreach — both in the US and abroad. Although we have a large number of active users, only a small fraction of them are active contributors. We are always looking to expand the number of contributors in each of our teams, and are excited about getting more people involved in QA through our BugHunting sessions and LibreFests.

A LibreFest is usually a one or two-day event in which various LibreOffice teams may participate. LibreFests, just like hackfests, are typically held in person, as that’s the best way for us to collaborate with and teach new contributors. When the QA Team participates in a LibreFest, users are asked to perform basic or advanced bug triage, to bibisect regressions, and to file new bugs that they observe. With experienced LibreOffice team members present, users feel much more comfortable stepping outside their comfort zone and taking on QA tasks that they wouldn’t try to tackle by themselves.

In our BugHunting sessions, we spend a weekend (usually Fri-Sun) testing the latest builds of a new Release Branch. One of the tools we use to test the builds is MozTrap — a test case management system that help to ensure greater reliability and consistency. Through extensive use of LibreOffice, we hope to shake-out any obvious bugs and squash them before going further in with the release process.

Speaking of BugHunting sessions, this weekend (Dec 19-21), we’ll be having a BugHunting session for the upcoming 4.4 Release Branch. We’ve worked to make it easy for newcomers to participate. To join in, or just for more information, see: https://wiki.documentfoundation.org/BugHunting_Session_4.4.0_RC1

LibreOffice 4.4.0 bug hunting sessionIf you’re looking for a way to participate in LibreOffice, or just curious about what we do in QA, please stop by our mailing list or our IRC channel. There’s so much more that we do that can’t be contained in a single blog post, and we’d love to tell you all about it!

2014/12/15

TDF announces the second and final LibreOffice 4.4 bug hunting session from December 19 to December 21

Filed under: Announcements, QA — italovignoli @ 18:07

The Document Foundation (TDF) announces the second LibreOffice 4.4 bug hunting session, which will happen from December 19 to December 21, 2014, immediately after the availability of the first release candidate of the new major release (with the final release planned for the end of January 2015).

Details of the second LibreOffice 4.4 bug hunting session are available on TDF wiki at https://wiki.documentfoundation.org/BugHunting_Session_4.4.0_RC1. A list of LibreOffice 4.4 features that have to be checked for bugs and regressions is also on TDF wiki: https://wiki.documentfoundation.org/ReleaseNotes/4.4.

To participate, it will be necessary to download LibreOffice 4.4 RC1 for Windows, MacOS or Linux from http://www.libreoffice.org/pre-releases. Filing bugs will be extremely easy, thanks to the help of experienced volunteers who will be around on the QA mailing list (libreoffice-qa@lists.freedesktop.org) and IRC channel (irc://irc.freenode.net/#libreoffice-qa).

2014/10/29

LibreOffice 4.4 bug hunting session coming soon

Filed under: LibreOffice, QA — Tags: , , — italovignoli @ 15:30

The Document Foundation (TDF) announces the first LibreOffice 4.4 bug hunting session, which will happen immediately after the availability of the first beta of the new major release on November 21/23, 2014.

Details of LibreOffice 4.4 bug hunting session are available on TDF wiki at https://wiki.documentfoundation.org/BugHunting_Session_4.4.0.0. The list of LibreOffice 4.4 new features that have to be checked for bugs and regressions is also available on the wiki: https://wiki.documentfoundation.org/ReleaseNotes/4.4.

To participate, it will be necessary to download LibreOffice 4.4 Beta 1 for Windows, MacOS or Linux from http://www.libreoffice.org/pre-releases. Filing bugs will be extremely easy, thanks to the help of experienced volunteers who will be around on the QA mailing list (libreoffice-qa@lists.freedesktop.org) and IRC channel (irc://irc.freenode.net/#libreoffice-qa).

A second LibreOffice 4.4 bug hunting session will be organized – with the same pattern – immediately after the release of LibreOffice 4.4 Release Candidate 1, in mid December.

2014/06/17

LibreOffice community working hard to make the next major release the best ever

Filed under: Announcements, QA — italovignoli @ 12:32

Berlin, June 17, 2014 – The Document Foundation (TDF) announces the second LibreOffice 4.3 bug hunting session, from June 20 to June 22. The community has already made a large collective effort to make LibreOffice 4.3 the best ever, based on automated stress tests and structured tests by Quality Assurance volunteers.

Enterprise and individual LibreOffice users can now contribute to the quality of the best free office suite ever by testing the release candidate to identify issues in their preferred user scenario.

Participating is easy. Details of the bug hunting session are on TDF wiki (https://wiki.documentfoundation.org/BugHunting_Session_4.3.0_RC1). The list of LibreOffice 4.3 new features, which have to be tested for bugs and regressions, is also on the wiki: https://wiki.documentfoundation.org/ReleaseNotes/4.3.

To participate, it will be necessary to have a PC with Windows, MacOS or Linux, and LibreOffice 4.3 RC1 (available at http://www.libreoffice.org/pre-releases). A previous Quality Assurance experience is not mandatory.

Filing bugs is also easy, thanks to the help of the experienced volunteers who will be around on the QA mailing list (libreoffice-qa@lists.freedesktop.org) and IRC channel (irc://irc.freenode.net/#libreoffice-qa).

2014/04/24

Get ready for LibreOffice 4.3 bug hunting session

Filed under: Development, QA, Technology — italovignoli @ 11:20

The Document Foundation (TDF) announces the schedule of the first LibreOffice 4.3 bug hunting session, which will start with the availability of the first beta of the new major release in calendar week 21 (May 23 to May 25).

Participating will be easy. Details of the bug hunting session are on TDF wiki (https://wiki.documentfoundation.org/BugHunting_Session_4.3.0), where there is also a growing list of LibreOffice 4.3 new features and improvements to check for bugs and regressions (https://wiki.documentfoundation.org/ReleaseNotes/4.3).

To participate, it will be necessary to have a PC with Windows, MacOS or Linux, and LibreOffice 4.3 Beta 1 (available at http://www.libreoffice.org/pre-releases), plus a lot of enthusiasm.

Filing bugs will be extremely easy, thanks to the help of experienced volunteers who will be around on the QA mailing list (libreoffice-qa@lists.freedesktop.org) and IRC channel (irc://irc.freenode.net/#libreoffice-qa).

A second LibreOffice 4.3 bug hunting session will be organized – with the same pattern – immediately after the release of LibreOffice 4.3 Release Candidate 1, in mid June.

2013/08/01

LibreOffice QA volunteers: armed and ready

Filed under: Community, LibreOffice, QA — bmichaelsen @ 16:00

The current budget of the the Document Foundation reserved some funds to provide the most active members of the LibreOffice QA team with TDF-owned netbooks. These netbooks where specifically selected to be configured with a platform the volunteer does not use on his primary machine, thereby allowing these volunteers to have multiple native platforms at hand for quick triage work all the time. This first set of netbooks went out to: Florian Reisinger (famous for the implementation of the Server-Installation GUI helping QA volunteers everywhere), Joel Madero and Joren de Cuyper, the latter two both very active volunteers and key players in the QA team that among others went above and beyond in organizing the recent Bug Triage Contest. This bug triage contest itself also has been a huge success, with many new contributors getting involved in QA and more than 580 bugs triaged. Joining the LibreOffice QA team like so many did in the contest, is quite easy — to get started contact the team on irc-chat!

Florian with his triaging netbook

Florian with his new triaging netbook

Joels bug triaging setup

Joels bug triaging setup

Jorens freshly unpacked netbook running LibreOffice

Jorens freshly unpacked netbook running LibreOffice

Keeping in mind that for each bug report fixed by a developer, there is another bug report triaged out of existance before that, the Document Foundation wishes Florian, Joel and Joren a smooth transition from the stressful pre-release phase of LibreOffice 4.1.0 to the for QA volunteers equally exciting post-release phase. Good hunting!

2013/06/13

LibreOffice QA Team launch a Bug Triage Contest

Filed under: Announcements, Community, QA — italovignoli @ 10:24
The competition will run from June 20th to July 5th, 2013
Berlin, The Document Foundation announce a Bug Triage Contest to prepare for the announcement of LibreOffice 4.1. The event will last two weeks during the availability of the first release candidate of the office suite, from June 20th to July 5th, 2013.
Details of the Bug Triage Contest are available online at the following address on TDF wiki: https://wiki.documentfoundation.org/QA/Projects/Bug_Triage_Contest (the page is still a work in progress, and will be consolidated before the event).
The top 5 triagers – amongst the known ones – and the first 10 new contributors will win a TDF/LibreOffice T-shirt.

2012/12/08

The LibreOffice community organises a 6 day Test Marathon to help preparing the new 4.0 version of LibreOffice

Filed under: Announcements, Community, LibreOffice, QA — cornouws @ 09:51

Berlin, December 7 2012 – The Document Foundation announces the LibreOffice 4.0 Test Marathon. During 6 days, from December 14 to 19, users and supporters around the world will be testing the first beta of the upcoming LibreOffice 4.0.

The final version of LibreOffice 4.0 will be released in February 2013. By organising this big Test Marathon early, the developers will be able to fix many bugs before the release candidates and the final version are made available.

The LibreOffice community has organised various bug hunt sessions before, with many people joining, bugs found and tests done. This has contributed considerably to the overall quality of the product.

Also participants were enthusiastic. Thanks to helping in the QA work, they learned a lot about powerful functions of LibreOffice and tricks how to use the office suite.

Participating is easy and fun. Since the event is lasting a week, everyone may choose the moments that suit them best.

Details are available on the wiki of The Document Foundation: http://wiki.documentfoundation.org/QA/Test_Marathon_LibreOffice_4.0. There’s also an overview of LibreOffice 4.0 new and improved features: http://wiki.documentfoundation.org/ReleaseNotes/4.0.

All participants need is a PC with Windows, Mac OS X or Linux, and a LibreOffice 4.0 test version (which is available from http://www.libreoffice.org/pre-releases), plus a lot of enthusiasm.

Filing bugs will be extremely easy, thanks to the help of experienced people who will be around those days to help users and supporters with tips, on the QA mailing list (libreoffice-qa@freedesktop.org) and on the IRC channel (irc://chat.freenode.net/libreoffice-qa).

2012/06/30

LibreOffice 3.6 Bug Hunting Party – July 6 & 7

Filed under: QA — Florian Effenberger @ 10:39

TDF announces the LibreOffice 3.6 Bug Hunting Party to improve the quality and stability of the best free office suite ever

Berlin, June 29, 2012 – The Document Foundation (TDF) announces the LibreOffice 3.6 bug hunting party, to be held in a virtual environment on July 6 and 7, 2012. Volunteer bug hunters will gather on the Internet from the five continents to spot software problems of the upcoming new major release, featuring a large number of improvements and new functions, in order to make LibreOffice 3.6 again the best free office suite ever.

Participating is easy, and fun. Details are available on the wiki of The Document Foundation
http://wiki.documentfoundation.org/QA/BugHunting_Party_3.6.0
where one can also find a comprehensive list of LibreOffice 3.6 new and improved features
http://wiki.documentfoundation.org/ReleaseNotes/3.6

All you need to join is a PC with Windows, MacOS X or Linux, and LibreOffice 3.6 Beta 3 (or Beta 2), plus a lot of enthusiasm.
The LibreOffice 3.6 Beta is to be downloaded from http://www.libreoffice.org/pre-releases

Filing bugs will be easy, thanks to the improved bug submitting assistant and the help of several experienced people who will be around to help users and supporters with tips, on the QA mailing list (libreoffice-qa@freedesktop.org) and IRC channel (irc://chat.freenode.net/libreoffice).
Most people are expected to join from 8AM to 10PM UTC on both days.

Information on filing bugs may be found here: http://wiki.documentfoundation.org/BugReport

People joining the LibreOffice Bug Hunt Parties not only do so for hunting new bugs. Checking and possibly categorising already submitted bugs also is a popular and interesting activity.

LibreOffice 3.6 Bug Hunting Party – July 6 & 7

Filed under: Announcements, Community, QA — cornouws @ 08:45

TDF announces the LibreOffice 3.6 Bug Hunting Party to improve the quality and stability of the best free office suite ever

Berlin, June 29, 2012 – The Document Foundation (TDF) announces the LibreOffice 3.6 bug hunting party, to be held in a virtual environment on July 6 and 7, 2012.
Volunteer bug hunters will gather on the Internet from the five continents to spot software problems of the upcoming new major release, featuring a large number of improvements and new functions, in order to make LibreOffice 3.6 again the best free office suite ever.

Participating is easy, and fun.
Details are available at the wiki of The Document Foundation, where one can also find a comprehensive list of LibreOffice 3.6 new and improved features.

All you need to join is a PC with Windows, MacOS X or Linux, and LibreOffice 3.6 Beta 3 (or Beta 2), plus a lot of enthusiasm.
The LibreOffice 3.6 Beta is to be downloaded from the pre-releases web-page.

Filing bugs will be easy, thanks to the improved bug submitting assistant and the help of several experienced people who will be around to help users and supporters with tips, on the QA mailing list (libreoffice-qa@freedesktop.org) and IRC channel (irc://chat.freenode.net/libreoffice), where many people are expected to join from 8AM to 10PM UTC on both days.
And of course there is a webpage withinformation on filing bugs.

People joining the LibreOffice Bug Hunt Parties not only do so for hunting new bugs. Checking and possibly categorising already submitted bugs also is a popular and interesting activity.

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