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Webmaster FAQ

Revision as of 10:15, 24 May 2013 by (Talk | contribs) (A few words about dummy inboxes)

Something bothering you about the infrastructure? Something not running right? Please read these FAQ's before contacting


Getting the news, reading the mail

How do I access the Eclipse newsgroups?

A. There are two ways:

  1. Use the web interface at . You will need an Eclipse Bugzilla ID to post messages, and you will be automatically re-directed to the login page when you use the post option.
  2. Use a Newsreader application, like Mozilla Thunderbird or Outlook Express. You will also need a username and password to access the news server, please see "Where do I request a username and password to read the newsgroups" below. Configure your application to connect to the server, then subscribe to the groups you're interested in. If you can't connect to the news server, please see the next question.

I can't connect to using Thunderbird or Outlook Express. What do I do?

A. Your firewall may be blocking communication on port 119 - configure your news reader to use port 80 instead. If that still doesn't work, use the Web Interface.

Where do I request a username and password to read the newsgroups?


  1. For access via NNTP, complete this form and a username and password will be emailed to you shortly. Please disable SPAM filters or e-mail verification scripts!
  2. To post via the webinterface, signup for a bugzilla account here if you don't already have one, and when you use the post function for the first time it will re-direct you to the login page.

Why does the Web based news portal send me to the 'Friends of Eclipse' login when I want to post?

A. The 'Friends of Eclipse' login system has been re-used as it's a well tested and fairly secure solution, and since it allows people to login via their Bugzilla accounts it was an ideal fit. Besides our newsgroups should be places where friends talk to each other, shouldn't they?

Is the username and password combination that I use to access the newsgroups the same as the one that is used for my mailing list subscription?

A. No. You can get a mailing list subscription by selecting the appropriate mailing list on this page.


Someone else is using my username to post to the newgroups. Who is this impostor?

A. The newsgroup username and password is shared. It is only used to deter SPAM robots from harvesting email addresses.

How do I cross-post using the web interface?

A. Don't. Really. If you absolutely must cross-post, then hit the New Message link, and add the newsgroup names in the URL, separated by a comma.

When should I cross-post to several newsgroups?

In general, cross posting to several newsgroups is a frowned-upon activity. It's often viewed as a form of spam and as such is likely to result a suboptimal response. It's generally best to determine the most appropriate newsgroup and to address the question there. If you're a newbie or don't know the most appropriate group, please post to the eclipse.newcomer newsgroup; someone is likely to answer you there or redirect you to a more specific group appropriate for your question. Only if your problem is clearly of a cross cutting nature, is it appropriate to post to multiple groups. In that case, a single posting addressed to all the groups is the way to go. Multiple separate notes will always result a request to cease and desist that inappropriate practice. Keep in mind too that if you post to a newsgroup that can't help, the folks helping on that newsgroup are likely to help redirect your question, so some might argue that it's never necessary to post to multiple groups.

How do I unsubscribe from a mailing list or change my mailing list options?

Select the link that refers to the list you have subscribed to on the eclipse mailing lists page.

To change your subscription options such as (set options like digest and delivery modes, get a reminder of your password, or unsubscribe from eclipse-dev), enter your subscription email address in the Edit options box and press Edit Options to submit.

On this page, enter your password in the second column to visit a list of links to option pages for all your subscriptions and select "List my other subscriptions" Unsubscribing from eclipse-dev

Your other subscriptions

To unsubscribe, enter your password and hit the button. (If you've lost your password, see just below to have it emailed to you.) Password: Enter your password to visit a list of links to option pages for all your subscriptions. Password: You should find a list of all your subscriptions. Select each one to unsubscribe.

Do I have to unsubscribe to the mailing list if my email address changes?

A. Yes.

I sent an e-mail to the list, but it got rejected. What gives?

A. You must subscribe to the list before sending e-mail to it. You must also use the same e-mail address in your mail client, otherwise our list software won't recognize you. Please note that lists ending in -dev, such as eclipse-dev, are intended for Eclipse developers working on a specific project, and should not be used for general information.

I sent an e-mail to the list, but it's not appearing in the archives. Why?

A. The list and group archives are generated hourly, so just wait a bit. If the server load is too high when the archiving process starts, it will abort and wait another hour.

How do I enter a bug reference into a mailing list post?

A. ...

Reporting bugs

Is the username and password that I use to access Bugzilla the same one used to access the mailing lists?

No. You can request a Bugzilla account by completing this form with email address and name.

Help! I've forgotten my Bugzilla password.

A. The account page has everything you need.

How do I change the email address that I use to login to Bugzilla?

A. Login to Bugzilla and enter your email address in the New email address text box on the Bugzilla preferences page and press Submit Changes.

Help Using Eclipse

I need help using Eclipse - where should I send my question?

A. The newsgroups are the best place to post a question about using Eclipse. Please don't send questions regarding using Eclipse to the mailing lists. They are for development discussions only.

Can you send me a list of books about Eclipse?

A. A list of Eclipse books is available on the community page under the Sources of Eclipse information heading.

Is there an Eclipse FAQ?

A. See the Official Eclipse FAQs on this Wiki, or look at other FAQs on the Main Page

I get Access Forbidden for a project's update site

A. Update sites are typically not browseable. The Eclipse Update Manager knows to look for a site.xml within that directory.

Getting Eclipse - Downloads and Mirrors

How do I become an Eclipse mirror?

A. Please follow these instructions.

Help! I can't seem to download - my download stops at 99% and never completes.

A. Disable real time virus scanning while you download.

I don't have broadband. Where can I get Eclipse on a CD?

A. Many sites offer Eclipse Distributions - Yoxos is one of them.

I've downloaded Eclipse several times and it seems to be corrupt. Is the archive valid?

A. Yes, the archive is valid. Please remove all temporary files that were created during the download and try again.

I can't seem to download Eclipse from a mirror X. Is there a problem with this mirror?

A. We only administer servers. If you have a specific problem with another mirror, please contact the webmaster of that mirror.

Creating new projects

I want to create a new project. What do I do?

A. Please view this page: Dev Process

CVS and Eclipse Source Code

I'm running an Eclipse code camp. How do I configure the cvs server so my participants can read and write to the test repository using both extssh and pserver?

A. Please refer to the document CVS server configuration for Eclipse code camps.

Where can I download the Eclipse source code?

A. Use a CVS client, such as Eclipse, and connect to our CVS repositories.


I need access to Plugin XYZ. Can I have it?

A. Before granting access, I need PMC and/or Project Lead approval, as well as a list of projects you need access to. I don't know that XYZ plugin requires access to org.eclipse.zzc and org.eclipse.yyz, so be as explicit as you can.

I can't connect to CVS anymore

A. If you're using extssh and you're getting error such as: CVS communication error:$SSH2IOException: Software caused connection abort: recv failed your IP address may be blocked or blacklisted on our firewall due to a perceived attack (too many bad logins, trying to login using an invalid user ID, etc). Contact the, and don't forget to specify your Internet-facing IP address (can be obtained here)

I need to change a web page. Can I?

A. If the page is a project page to which you are a committer, I can grant you access to the website if the PMC/Project Lead agrees.

How do I update

A. Send a note to Webmaster telling us the name of your help plugin and where we can find it on We'll copy it over to the help server and re-start things.

B. As part of the release train someone usually opens a bug called something like 'Will soon need a $release_name Info center'. You can update that bug with your plugins and we'll add them to the help server.

I need to add/remove.change a version/milestone/component in Bugzilla. How do I do this?

A. There is now a tool located in the committers tools section that will allow you to edit bugzilla. But there are some things you should know first:

  • Only the PLs or PMCs for projects can grant committers the ability to edit bugzilla data.
  • Edit access only aplies to one specific project. In other words: if the platform PMC gave you access, it does not mean you can edit the birt bugzilla data, you can only edit the platform bugzilla data. If you convince the birt PLs to give you access then you can edit both.
  • You can't delete anything. This allows us to prevent the database from corrupting.
  • You can add as many versions and milestones as you like, but you can't edit them once they have been created.
  • Once you have submitted a new component, you can't change the name. You can change everything else about it though.
  • All email address must be valid bugzilla accounts.

So how do you use this new system?

Once you click on the link [2] you will see the main page to edit bugzilla.

If you are a PL or PMC the first item you will see is a drop down box that contains all of the projects you are in charge of. By selecting one of the projects and clicking the 'Edit' button you will be presented with the known list of comitters and you can then procede to grant and revoke access to your bugzilla components.

To change the access status of a committer simlpy click on their name and watch for the checkmark to change in the 'Edit Bugs' column. To save your changes just click the 'Save Changes' button.

If you are a committer that has been granted bugzilla edit privileges, or a PL or PMC there will be a drop box containing all of the projects you have access to. By selecting a project from this list and clickeing the 'Edit' button you will be taken to the main bugzilla page for that project.

The main page conatains the basic information about the project. Namely:

  • A description of the project.
  • The maximum number of votes per user.
  • The maximum number of votes a single bug can have.
  • The number of votes required to confirm a bug automatically
  • The default milestone for the project.

You can edit all of these details on the main page, and you can save them by clicking the 'Make Changes; button.

The other things located on the main pages are links to pages that will allow you to:

  • Edit/add components
  • Add new versions
  • Add new milestones.

Dealing with components:

The main components page show you a list of all of your current components, their description, default owner(who gets the email whan a bug is filed) and the default QA contact.

If you want to edit a component just click on it's name and you will be able to change any details, excluding the name. Just click the 'Save Changes' button when your done.

Adding a component is the same as editing except yo ucan pick the name you want.

  • NOTE: All given email addresses must be for valid bugzilla accounts, or else you will get an error.

Dealing with milestones:

The only thing to remember is that milestones, unlike versions require a 'sort' key. This numeric value is used to order the list of milestones you see in bugzilla.

Dummy Inboxes

It is a common practice for Eclipse projects to set a dummy inbox as the default assignee for new bugs. Dummy inboxes generally take the form of <project>.<component> (e.g., or Any messages sent to this email address are discarded.

In the Bugzilla preferences, any user can opt to be copied whenever email is sent to a particular email address. This makes it easy for any user (i.e. community member) to monitor bug activity against a particular dummy inbox. Further, this sort of arrangement is resilient to change as there is never any need to change the dummy inbox (individual default assignees can change frequently).

Some projects opt to have a different dummy inbox for each Bugzilla component. Some have a single dummy inbox for all components. How you use dummy inboxes is a project decision. If you have any questions, check with your PMC for advice.

You can request that a dummy inbox be created by sending a note to

I asked the webmaster to do something. When will it get done?

A. Here's how we (webmasters) handle our workload, in order of priority.

  1. Infrastructure issues causing outage or performance loss of any kind, or that can potentially cause outage or performance loss (kernel updates, security advisories, monitoring, enforcing proper usage of resources, etc).
  2. Issues blocking committers from working: password resets, permissions, locked accounts, firewall issues, slow performance, etc.
  3. Other committer/project issues: new CVS or bugzilla components, new project provisioning, new lists or groups for projects, new account provisioning, helping committers get up and going, project reorganizations, etc.
  4. General community requests that don't involve infrastructure change, forwarding e-mail, fixing broken links, etc.
  5. Our MBO's, as defined by Mike
  6. Enhancement requests and infrastructure changes not covered by the above, and for which enough community support warrants its execution: anything in bugzilla, ordered by priority, enhancements last. Anything in this pile can be brought up higher (or lower) by Committer/community support, or PMCs.

Some notes:

  • We encourage folks to use Bugzilla for any request that is 4. or higher numerically. Anything 3. or lower numerically can come to our inbox or Bugzilla, because we handle them as fast as we can anyways.
  • When a work request is sent to our inbox (which is 4. or higher numerically), we move it to a Bugzilla bug so we can track the work that needs to be done, and so that it can be open.
  • Folks who use Bugzilla and who want to know *when* a priority 4. or higher numerically will be done should ask for a guesstimated timeframe.
  • Folks who are not happy with where their priority 4. (or higher numerically) requests are in the queue can gather PMC support and/or committer support to increase the priority.
  • Folks should understand that if a priority 6 is bumped up to priority 3, it will have an impact on everything else in 3., 4., 5. and 6. Likewise, if everyone wants everything at priority 3., it all looks the same to us. infrastructure

What software does use on its servers?

A. Linux, and an assortment of Open Source Goodies.

You're running Something-1.0.2. Why don't you use SomeOtherThing-3.4.5 instead? It's way cooler.

You're not using plugin-0.99/extension-4.98 for Something-1.0.2, why not? it's uber.

A. There are many reasons we use the software we do. Here's a short list:

  • Because we've been using it for years, and switching to something new may require more effort than what it's worth.
  • It's proven its stability in mission-critical environments, under heavy load.
  • It's well-understood and easy to maintain.
  • It is known to perform well under load.
  • It's part of our core OS. It's much easier to upgrade and maintain software that's bundled with the OS.
  • Works well in a clustered environment, making it stable, scalable and redundant.
  • Because. Just because.

There are many reasons we don't run some software. Here's a short list:

  • It's not part of the above list of reasons.
  • Because the projects hosted at haven't asked, or don't feel the need for it.
  • Because it's not enterprise-level. We install the least amount of hacked and compiled software.
  • Because it's too hard to maintain. Sure, installing it is easy, but can it stay up 24/7/365 under heavy load?
  • Because it doesn't run in a load-balanced environment. We don't set up services on one server, that doesn't scale.
  • Because it's a security risk, and Webmasters don't like getting up at 3:00am to fix problems.
  • Because we haven't had time to look into it yet.
  • Because. Just because.

You should install Xyz 1.0.2. It's way cool and it only took me 15 minutes to install on my basement server.

A. When your basement server averages hundreds of concurrent connections 365 days/year, get back to me.

Why don't you use wiki namespaces?

A. There are a couple of answers

  • If Wikipedia doesn't need namespaces to serve up 2 million plus pages then we probably don't either
  • The ongoing overhead of maintaining the namespaces is not currently offset by the limited application and benefit.

Contacting the WebMaster

How can I get the quickest response from the WebMaster?

A. When contacting the WebMaster, please include a detailed message, with as much technical information as possible:

  • for broken links include the URL of the page that contains a bad link.
  • for problems downloading files: indicate which file and the name of the mirror
  • for information on Eclipse builds, troubleshooting, How-Tos, and plugins, check our Newsgroups and subscribe to the mailing lists

How do I contact the WebMaster?

A. Just e-mail We'll try our best to respond as quickly as we can. Check my status.

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