An Issue's Life Cycle


The status field indicates the general health of an issue. Only certain status transitions are allowed. The resolution field indicates what happened to this issue.

Open State issues: The following status values are in an "open" state; they have no resolution.

Resolved State issues: The following status values are in an "resolved" state; they have no resolution.

NOTE: Resolved state issues can have the following resolution values:

More about the sequence of an issue's status

What happens to an issue when it is first reported depends on who reported it. By default, issues reported (that is, entered) into IssueZilla are assigned a status of UNCONFIRMED. This means that a QA (Quality Assurance) person -- or whoever has the appropriate permissions on your project -- needs to confirm that this issue is legitimate before changing its status to NEW. By sending mail to issues-subscribe@<projectname>, you can be notified of all changes to an issue. You then use issue tracking to view and further "workflow" the issue.

If you are a project member who is a developer/user/tester, you can create NEW issues and assign them to other developers. When an issue's status becomes NEW, the developer assigned the issue either accepts it or reassigns it to someone else. If the issue remains new and inactive for more than a week, IssueZilla nags the issue's owner with email until action is taken. Whenever a issue is reassigned or has its component changed, its status is set back to NEW. The NEW status means that the issue is newly added to a particular developer's plate, not that the issue is newly reported. Think of NEW as an important e-mail you need to answer, except you respond through IssueZilla, and you can use this tool to track the issue's progress more efficiently than e-mail.

Some project members with additional permissions have the ability to change all the fields of a issue. (Default permissions only allow limited fields to be changed. (Read more about IssueZilla permissions). Whenever you change a field in a issue it's a good idea to add additional comments to explain what you are doing and why. Make a note in the comments field whenever you:

Whenever someone else makes a change to an issue or adds a comment, they are added to the CC list and the owner, reporter, and CC list receive an email announcing changes to the issue. This email reports the change using a "diff" format, marking which lines have changed and including any new comments.

Verifying issues

When issues are marked resolved, project/component owners look at these to make sure the appropriate action has been taken. If they agree, the issue is marked VERIFIED. Issues remain in this state until the product or version is released, then the issue is marked CLOSED. Issues may come back to life by becoming REOPENED.

Be careful about changing the status of someone else's issues. Instead of making the change yourself, it's usually best to make a note of your proposed change as a comment first and to let the issue's owner review this and make the change themselves. For example, if you think one issue is a duplicate of another, make a note of it in the "Additional Comments" section of the issue.

If you make a lot of useful comments to others' issues, you gain their trust in your judgement and you may be given permissions to go ahead and make the changes yourself. Unless and until this happens, exercise discretion by using the "Additional Comments" section.