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Re: Metrics: RFC



>>>>> "CB" == Christopher Blizzard <blizzard redhat com> writes:

CB> If we are able to collect a set of hardware profiles for people,
CB> just after an install, and tie that to a unique machine
CB> identifier, we could make that really useful for people. The
CB> reason being that having access to information about what hardware
CB> people are really using allows us to know where we need to
CB> concentrate our efforts.

I and I'm sure a good portion of Fedora users would happily install
a package that periodically sent various bits of info related to what
hardware is in the system, what packages are installed, what kernel is
currently running, etc.  Such information could be immensely useful to
community packagers as a validation that their packages are actually
being used somewhere.

There are all sorts of useful bits of information we could collect,
most of which require that some client be installed.  I suggest that
this isn't a problem as long as:

There's only one thing to install, not a collection of random
info-gathering clients.

The client runs from cron and doesn't consume any memory when it's not
running.

It is not installed by default.  The installer can ask, sure.  "Please
help us improve Fedora!  Do you want to install the blahblah client?".
"Yes" should probably not be the default choice.  (It could be
installed by default but not enabled by default, but even that is
probably pushing it.  It's about the appearance of impropriety.)

The list of information gathered is presented to the user somehow.  An
option should be there to provide someone (root?) with a report of
everything sent in when it's sent in if someone really wants to know.
Updates to the package which provide new information-gathering plugins
should not cause those new plugins to be enabled without user
intervention.

That's pretty much all the evil-minimization you can reasonably do.
The question is whether the response rate will be high enough and
whether the responses you get give you a statistically valid sample.

 - J<


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