The Bug Genie team blog

What's cooking behind the scenes of The Bug Genie

I’m your clone!

with 3 comments

Our list of things to do after the 3.1 release had been finalized and finished is long. On top of that list, however, is «move source code hosting from svn to git». The team has had a long discussion trying to find a good git hosting provider. We’ve been with for a long time, and they even have a git source code hosting service which was available to use. However, it became glaringly obvious that the collaboration tools available to us at this time was sub-par compared to the three other options we considered:

  1. Staying with Springloops

Picking a git source code hosting service

Option 1 would have been the easiest. However, Springloops is a (at least has been so far) a very “closed” platform – insofar that it is very hard to share code with outsiders. Their 2.0 platform looks promising, but it is still too much targetted at closed teams and closed code to be of interest. So, staying with Springloops was out of the question.

Option 2 and 3 were the only two remaining git code hosting services considered. In the end, we picked github. Why?

  • Using commit / push hooks with a hosted repository seemed very difficult. Although probably possible, the hook services provided with were much easier to use and set up
  • Github has a much better team setup than While this may be a subjective opinion – we definately felt we had more power with the features available on github than on gitorious
  • Merge / pull request integration appears to be more integrated, visible and easy on
  • Forks, branches and repository overview is much easier to get an overview of on
  • The “organisation” feature on

This isn’t a rant on how bad is – we don’t think it is bad at all. However, the features available on was – to us – far superior than those available on In any case, we’ve chosen to go with

Migrating the source code from svn to git

There are several good tutorials available on how to migrate from svn to git. has its own, available here: One thing that was missing from that howto, however, was a dead simple way to map our current structure (trunk, tags, branches) into a more “standard” git repository setup, with master and next branches. Again, a quick google search was all it took to find this awesome article by John Albin: That article mentions all steps needed to convert a classic svn repository into a classic git repository, complete with svn revision history, author logs and more. Combined with the instructions in the tutorial we were up and running in almost no time (the main part of the time it took was waiting for all the 1766 revisions to be imported, one by one by freaking one).

Choosing the upcoming commit/merging/branching strategy and development strategy

Again, this was a team decision, although not a hard one. We actually ended up with a very “classic” git branching strategy, with one main stable branch (master) and one branch for the current ongoing development of the upcoming stable version (next). The next branch will see tons of feature branches, just like a regular git hosted project. Nothing magic!

In addition to this, we’ve decided to adopt a scrum-based approach to the bug genie development with regular, defined, sprints. During a sprint, we will branch out any new features from next, and as soon as it is deemed stable, it will be merged back into next. After a sprint is completed, next will be merged back into master, with (hopefully) only stable features. As soon as we’ve reached all targets set for a release, we will tag master and release. This means we may do feature branches for features not yet to be included into next or master, but the flexibility of git will hopefully let us juggle this with ease 🙂

As with any development strategy, this is up for review at any time. Expect changes 🙂

Cloning and forking

Feel free to clone, fork and send pull requests. The only thing we’re going to be very adamant about is the fact that your contribution must follow some simple guidelines:

  • Your changes / additions must follow the bug genie coding standards, described here:
  • Changes must not break existing features / behaviour. Exceptions are of course made when improvements are made.
  • Contributions you make are not limited to the current licence. This means your contributions may be relicensed in the future, should we choose a different license for The Bug Genie. No exceptions.

Noone describes successful cloning better than our dear Arnold. Take it away!


Written by Daniel André

June 18, 2011 at 17:31

Posted in Uncategorized

3 Responses

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  1. I know that this is not the 100% perfect spot to post this, but how about considering changing your website provider? Over the last couple of days I tried again and again to get information about module development for TBG but failed a lot of times because was either unreachable or terribly slow. Are you aware of that issue, or is it just me having problems accessing the site?


    June 21, 2011 at 10:05

    • It’s one of the things we are absolutely least satisfied with at the moment, yes. The response times is sometimes absolutely *horrible*, but we can’t afford to switch hosting providers repeatedly.

      We would like to have a stable and fast php 5.3-enabled hosting provider, but at the moment, we haven’t found one – and the contributions we get doesn’t cover much webspace / traffic.


      June 21, 2011 at 11:23

  2. Thanks for the reply – I know that it sometimes is a pita to find a reliable provider to an acceptable price. I just wanted to make sure that you are aware of the issue. I simply keep trying to get the information I need 😉


    June 21, 2011 at 11:45

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