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Re: [RFC PATCH] help: add optional instructions for reporting bugs

On Fri, Mar 10, 2017 at 7:13 PM, Jonathan Nieder <jrnieder@xxxxxxxxx> wrote:
> Hi,
> Stefan Beller wrote:
>> When reporting bugs, users will usually look at the output of
>> 'git --version' at one point to write a quality bug report.
>> So that is a good spot to provide additional information to the user
>> about e.g. additional the organizational quirks how to report a bug.
>> As the output of 'git --version' is parsed by scripts as well,
>> we only want to present this information to users, which is why
>> we only give the output to TTYs.
> Interesting thought.  This might also be a good place to point users
> to "git version --build-options" to get more detailed build
> information.

It looks like there is no documentation for `git version` which is a
bit unfortunate.
Also `git version -h` ignores the -h option so we cannot know that
--build-options exists.

> The existence of that option also suggests you're on the right track
> about 'git version' being the command for this.

I agree, but I don't think --build-options is the best for that.

>> Git is distributed in various ways by various organizations. The Git
>> community prefers to have bugs reported on the mailing list, whereas
>> other organizations may rather want to have filed a bug in a bug tracker
>> or such.  The point of contact is different by organization as well.
> It's tempting to put the custom information in --build-options --- e.g.
>  $ git version
>  git version
>  hint: use "git version --build-options" for more detail
>  hint: and bug reporting instructions
>  $
>  $ git version --build-options
>  git version
>  sizeof-long: 8
>  reporting-bugs: see REPORTING BUGS section in "git help git"

I don't think it's a good idea to add those "hint: ..." and
"reporting-bugs: ..." lines.

I think it's better to do things like the following:

- add `git version -h`
- add proper documentation for `git version` so that `git help version` works
- in `git help version` talk about the REPORTING BUGS section in `git help git`
- add `git version --full` or other such options to also print other
stuff like the current OS, processor architecture, libc, etc
- suggest in `git help version` and/or in the REPORTING BUGS section
in `git help git` that people just copy paste the output of `git
version --full` in their bug report


> I'm still on the fence about whether this is a good idea. At least
> having custom bug instructions in --build-options sounds like a very
> nice thing, but it's not obvious to me how people would learn about
> that option.

Yeah indeed.