3.1. Bugzilla Configuration

Bugzilla is configured by changing various parameters, accessed from the "Edit parameters" link in the page footer. Here are some of the key parameters on that page. You should run down this list and set them appropriately after installing Bugzilla.


The maintainer parameter is the email address of the person responsible for maintaining this Bugzilla installation. The address need not be that of a valid Bugzilla account.


This parameter defines the fully qualified domain name and web server path to your Bugzilla installation.

For example, if your Bugzilla query page is http://www.foo.com/bugzilla/query.cgi, set your "urlbase" to http://www.foo.com/bugzilla/.


This dictates whether or not to automatically create groups when new products are created.


Bugzilla products can have a group associated with them, so that certain users can only see bugs in certain products. When this parameter is set to "on", this causes the initial group controls on newly created products to place all newly-created bugs in the group having the same name as the product immediately. After a product is initially created, the group controls can be further adjusted without interference by this mechanism.


You run into an interesting problem when Bugzilla reaches a high level of continuous activity. MySQL supports only table-level write locking. What this means is that if someone needs to make a change to a bug, they will lock the entire table until the operation is complete. Locking for write also blocks reads until the write is complete. Note that more recent versions of mysql support row level locking using different table types. These types are slower than the standard type, and Bugzilla does not yet take advantage of features such as transactions which would justify this speed decrease. The Bugzilla team are, however, happy to hear about any experiences with row level locking and Bugzilla.

The "shadowdb" parameter was designed to get around this limitation. While only a single user is allowed to write to a table at a time, reads can continue unimpeded on a read-only shadow copy of the database. Although your database size will double, a shadow database can cause an enormous performance improvement when implemented on extremely high-traffic Bugzilla databases.

As a guide, on reasonably old hardware, mozilla.org began needing "shadowdb" when they reached around 40,000 Bugzilla users with several hundred Bugzilla bug changes and comments per day.

The value of the parameter defines the name of the shadow bug database. You will need to set the host and port settings from the params page, and set up replication in your database server so that updates reach this readonly mirror. Consult your database documentation for more detail.


If you need to shut down Bugzilla to perform administration, enter some descriptive text (with embedded HTML codes, if you'd like) into this box. Anyone who tries to use Bugzilla (including admins) will receive a page displaying this text. Users can neither log in nor log out while shutdownhtml is enabled.


Although regular log-in capability is disabled while 'shutdownhtml' is enabled, safeguards are in place to protect the unfortunate admin who loses connection to Bugzilla. Should this happen to you, go directly to the editparams.cgi (by typing the URL in manually, if necessary). Doing this will prompt you to log in, and your name/password will be accepted here (but nowhere else).


Every time a user creates an account, the text of this parameter (with substitutions) is sent to the new user along with their password message.

Add any text you wish to the "passwordmail" parameter box. For instance, many people choose to use this box to give a quick training blurb about how to use Bugzilla at your site.


This option is an undocumented feature to allow moving bugs between separate Bugzilla installations. You will need to understand the source code in order to use this feature. Please consult movebugs.pl in your Bugzilla source tree for further documentation, such as it is.


This allows you to define an email address for each component, in addition to that of the default owner, who will be sent carbon copies of incoming bugs.


This defines whether you wish to have a free-form, overwritable field associated with each bug. The advantage of the Status Whiteboard is that it can be deleted or modified with ease, and provides an easily-searchable field for indexing some bugs that have some trait in common.


Set this to the number of days you want to let bugs go in the NEW or REOPENED state before notifying people they have untouched new bugs. If you do not plan to use this feature, simply do not set up the whining cron job described in the installation instructions, or set this value to "0" (never whine).


All these fields allow you to dictate what changes can pass without comment, and which must have a comment from the person who changed them. Often, administrators will allow users to add themselves to the CC list, accept bugs, or change the Status Whiteboard without adding a comment as to their reasons for the change, yet require that most other changes come with an explanation.

Set the "commenton" options according to your site policy. It is a wise idea to require comments when users resolve, reassign, or reopen bugs at the very least.


It is generally far better to require a developer comment when resolving bugs than not. Few things are more annoying to bug database users than having a developer mark a bug "fixed" without any comment as to what the fix was (or even that it was truly fixed!)


Turning on this option allows users to ask to receive copies of bug mail sent to another user. Watching a user with different group permissions is not a way to 'get around' the system; copied emails are still subject to the normal groupset permissions of a bug, and "watchers" will only be copied on emails from bugs they would normally be allowed to view.


This option will prevent users from resolving bugs as FIXED if they have unresolved dependencies. Only the FIXED resolution is affected. Users will be still able to resolve bugs to resolutions other than FIXED if they have unresolved dependent bugs.


When Bugzilla is using Sendmail older than 8.12, turning this option off will improve performance by not waiting for Sendmail to actually send mail. If Sendmail 8.12 or later is being used, there is nothing to gain by turning this off. If another MTA is being used, such as Postfix, then this option *must* be turned on (even if you are using the fake sendmail executable that Postfix provides).