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Portland Linux/Unix Group: Crash Reporting: Mozilla's Open Source Solution

Portland State University FAB, Room 86-09
1900 SW Fourth Avenue
Portland, Oregon 97201, US (map)

Access Notes

Building is at 4th and College. Room 86-01 is in the basement, take the elevator or stairs down to basement and follow the signs.




       Crash Reporting: Mozilla's Open Source Solution


             K Lars Lohn

 Nothing exercises the limits of software like turning it 
 over to the end users. While in-house testing is invaluable, 
 the end users can often find the neglected edge cases or subtle 
 race conditions in a more reliable manner. However, once the 
 software is in the end user’s hands, postmortem crash information 
 is usually lost.

 By taking the Google Breakpad project and enhancing it with 
 Mozilla’s own Socorro project, Mozilla has a solution to this problem.  
 When Firefox goes down, in a last ditch effort, it lobs a 
 packet of crash information over the wall to Mozilla's Socorro 
 servers.  Socorro Servers, written in Python, can handle millions 
 of these crashes per day. Using Google Breakpad libraries to 
 reconstitute useful stack traces, Socorro Server saves its 
 work in a PostgreSQL database.  There statistics are gathered 
 and displayed under the Socorro UI, a PHP web application.  
 With this suite of tools, the Mozilla developers can track 
 trends and even drill down to look at specific instances of
 Firefox crashes.

 WARNING: during this talk, Firefox will be intentionally 
 crashed live on stage.  Those of delicate constitution may wish 
 to retire to the lobby prior to the spectacle.

             about Lars

 Trapped at the triple point between a geek, a hippie and 
 a biker, Lars is a self proclaimed Cowboy Programmer at the 
 Mozilla Corporation.  Unintentionally specializing in programming 
 as performance art, Lars frequently jumps into projects on the 
 Thursday prior to a Monday deadline. Lars is proud of being the 
 only member of the Web Development team that does absolutely 
 no Web development.

 Lars prefers Python, PostgreSQL and Harleys, but is versed in C++,
 MySQL and Subarus.