Intermittent test failures

Bob Silverberg bsilverberg at
Fri Oct 6 13:50:02 UTC 2017

It turns out the first query referenced in the above email is no longer
correct. Please use [1] instead.


On Fri, Sep 29, 2017 at 9:15 AM, Bob Silverberg <bsilverberg at>

> Hi Team and Friends of Add-Ons,
> You may have noticed that there are a large number of bugs filed about
> intermittent failures of our tests. At Andy's suggestion I have undertaken
> to better understand where we are with these and what action, if any,
> should be taken about them.
> I spoke to Joel Maher about the stockwell project, which aims to monitor
> intermittents and take action on those requiring it.
> In his opinion, the only intermittents that we should be spending any time
> on are ones that have been identified via stockwell, and all of those have
> a whiteboard tag which includes "stockwell" on them. This means that we
> don't really need to do any work in terms of querying and research, all we
> need is a couple of Bugzilla queries.
> [stockwell needswork] [1] - Any current intermittents that are serious
> enough to need our attention will be tagged with [stockwell needswork], so
> if we are looking for current intermittents to address, this is our one
> stop shop. Bugs are marked with [stockwell needswork] when they fail 30 or
> more times in a 7 day period. There are currently zero of these bugs.
> [stockwell disabled] [2] - Any tests that have been disabled because they
> were failing intermittently with too high a frequency will be tagged with
> [stockwell disabled]. After dealing with any bugs that are labelled
> "needswork", we should start working through the backlog of these disabled
> tests. There are currently 14 of these bugs.
> Any new bugs filed with [stockwell needswork] will appear in our normal
> triage, as these bugs are also assigned a priority of "--", as opposed to
> other intermittents which are assigned a priority of P5. When we encounter
> these during triage we should find an appropriate person to which to assign
> them, and that person should ideally try to fix the intermittent within a
> couple of weeks.
> For the disabled tests, I am going to do some more research to identify
> just how disabled they are. If a test is disabled on a single platform, it
> is less of an issue for us than if it is disabled across all platforms.
> Once we identify which tests are disabled enough to represent a significant
> reduction of coverage, we should try to find owners for those bugs and
> should try to get them fixed in a timely manner.
> If you find yourself needinfo'd or assigned to an intermittent it is
> likely because of the effort described above. If you are a contributor and
> you'd like to help us restore some test coverage, please feel free to
> browse through the list of disabled tests at [2] and let us know if you'd
> like to take any of them on.
> If anyone has any questions about any of this, please reply to this email.
> Thanks,
> Bob
> [1]
> [2]
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