The Shape of Everything
A website mostly about Mac stuff, written by Gus Mueller
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July 29, 2007
(This post is from my old, old, super old site. My views have changed over the years, hopefully my writing has improved, and there is now more than a handful of folks reading my site. Enjoy.)

I just passed my 1000th bug filed in FogBugz, and I thought I would share with everyone how I'm getting along with it (that's about 130 days, at 7.7 bugs filed on average a day).

snip

Ok, I had a long blog post here detailing why I like it so much and my workflow and so on, but it was getting too long and I'm a busy guy and I'm sure you are too and I thought I could just shorten it down real quick:

1) It rocks. It was way easy to setup. It works. 2) All email to support@flyingmeat.com goes through FogBugz which is a huge huge time saver for me. I can turn emails into bug reports, file them away, respond, easily see previous emails from the reporter, and generally do everything I need to do when I'm wearing my support hat. It's all easy and does what I need and want it to do. 3) It provides a link when I respond, so folks can see the status of their bug reports. That's cool. 4) The overall workflow is very sane. 5) Respond to an email + close is pretty nice. If a customer responds to a closed case, it pops back open again. I don't "lose" emails like I did in Mail.app. 6) It's a good bug tracking system in addition to email support. 7) I can easily see previous emails the sender has sent to me. I know who the trouble makers are!

The Gripes: 1) It is incredibly obvious the UI was done by a hardcore windows user. It screams Microsoft. It is disgusting, but I'll live with it because it works so well. 2) Two steps to close a bug kind of sucks when it's just you opening and closing bugs. 3) It doesn't wrap email properly when responding. I've got a quick script to handle that, but ... sigh.

Previously I had been using Jira to handle my bug reports, but two things got me to stop using it. The Java vm I was using needed to be restarted every night or else it would crash randomly. Not really Jira's fault but more of a combination of Java sucking hard and running the JVM on FreeBSD, which is very much a second class citizen in the java world. The other reason I left it was because I really wanted the email integration without spending a ton of money. I also tried out MailTank for a little bit, but it was just email support and I needed both bug tracking + email. MailTank was also subscription based, and I'm not too fond of subscriptions. I looked into other apps as well, but they were all horribly complicated or just... lame.

And here is what I'm sure someone is already thinking about leaving a comment on: FogBugz costs $129 per login (or less, depending on how many logins you need). You know what? It's worth it. Anything that makes my life this much easier in the support arena is worth 129 bucks. The idea of going back to Apple Mail to handle my support load makes me cringe. It's a time saver, and one of my rules for being an indie dev is to spend your time wisely. 129 bucks is nothing for what it does for me.

In short, (cc)Gus recommends FogBugz++uber+.