Section: User Commands (1)
reportbug is primarily designed to report bugs in the Debian distribution; by default, it creates an email to the Debian bug tracking system at [email protected] with information about the bug you've found, and makes a carbon copy of the report for you as well.
Using the --bts option, you can also report bugs to other servers that use the Debian bug tracking system, debbugs.
You may specify either a package name or a filename; if you use a filename, it must either be an absolute filename (so beginning with a /) or if you want reportbug to search the system for a filename, see the --filename and --path options below. If installed, also dlocate is used to identify the filename location and thus the package containing it.
You can also specify a pseudo-package; these are used in the Debian bug tracking system to track issues that are not related to one specific package. Run reportbug without any arguments, then enter other at the package prompt, to see a list of the most commonly-used pseudo-packages.
The program follows the usual GNU command line syntax, with long options starting with two dashes (`'). A summary of options are included below.
This option supports also globbing (i.e. names with wildcards, like file.*) but remember to include them between single quotes (the previous example becomes: 'file.*') else the shell would expand it before calling reportbug leading to an error.
Be aware that when using an external MUA to send the message (such as mutt), the attachment feature is not available and no file will be attached at all: the MUA feature to attach files must be used instead (so from within the MUA).
novice mode is designed to minimize prompting about things that "ordinary users" would be unlikely to know or care about, shifting the triage burden onto the maintainer. Checking for new versions is only done for the stable distribution in this mode. It is currently the default mode.
standard mode includes a relatively large number of prompts and tries to encourage users to not file frivolous or duplicate bug reports.
advanced mode is like standard mode, but may include shortcuts suitable for more advanced users of Debian, without being as close to the metal (and potential flamage) as expert mode. (Currently, the only differences from standard mode are that it assumes familiarity with the "incoming" queue; it allows the reporting of bugs on "dependency" packages; and it does not prompt where to insert the report text in the editor.)
expert mode is designed to minimize prompts that are designed to discourage frivolous or unnecessary bug reports, "severity inflation," and the like. In expert mode, reportbug assumes the user is thoroughly familiar with Debian policies. In practice, this means that reporters are no longer required to justify setting a high severity on a bug report, and certain automated cleanups of the message are bypassed. Individuals who do not regularly contribute to the Debian project are highly discouraged from using expert mode, as it can lead to flamage from maintainers when used improperly.
The output file is a full dump of the email message, so it contains both headers and mail body. If you want to use it as a template to create a new bug report, then you have to remove all the headers (mind the Subject one, though) and start the report at the Package pseudo-header.
This option only outputs a template for a bug report (but, differently from --template it's more interactive); you will need to fill in the long description.
In case of a network error, there are chances it's due to a too low timeout: try passing the --timeout option with a higher value than default.
Use of this option is insecure on multiuser systems. Instead, you should set this option in $HOME/.reportbugrc and ensure it is only readable by your user (e.g. with chmod 600 $HOME/.reportbugrc).
Alternatively, you can specify the 'tag' none to bypass the tags prompt without specifying any tags; this will also ignore any tags specified on the command line.
From version 0.22 on, reportbug has supported a simple run control file syntax. Commands are read from /etc/reportbug.conf and $HOME/.reportbugrc with commands in the latter overriding those in the former.
Commands are not case sensitive, and currently take 0 or 1 argument; arguments containing whitespace must be enclosed in quotes.
Any line starting with # is taken to be a comment and will be ignored.
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