2017 Community Summit Notes

The Plugin team is small but mighty. We had a very productive summit and contributor day this year, pushing forward some of the changes we’ve been working on for a while. The following notes are the product of the sessions as well as some hallway chats over red wine, gin, and cheese.

Notes:

  • Security issues in the new directory have to be corrected before new users can be added
  • We intend to open reviews by everyone (yes, everyone) with a .org account
  • Plugin Closures will be documented and then reported on
  • Plugin Check code revisited – What can we catch as a ‘before a human reviews’
  • Similar but not identical plugins will continue to be accepted
  • We need to allow frameworks in, but we have to do so safely to protect developers from hate-reviews when someone deletes a required framework

To Do:

  • Design a ‘dashboard’ for people to check the status of their plugins (and themes)
  • Add more stats to the plugin page (or possibly move to the future dashboard…)
  • Replace SupportPress (our email client) with something that works (possibly Support Flow?)
  • Code out a way to publicly track why a plugin was closed (see Meta #2860 and #2627)
  • Determine if we want to backfill why 6500-ish plugins are currently closed (owwwww)
  • Determine the best way to track ‘dependancies’ (in lieu of #22316 ever getting traction …) so frameworks and add-on plugins can be clearly indicated and reduce errors
  • Incorporate theme review features such as a11y and i18n ready flags
  • Make sure the VVV repo for the meta environment is sufficient for more people to contribute (see Meta Env)
  • Hold ‘open office’ hours to discuss topics like developer tools, what stats are needed, frameworks etc

Most of that to-do is on me to at least get the tickets started, but if these are things you’re interested in, then I encourage you to come to the open office hours! I’m hoping to have the first in August, as I have July Vacations 🙂 Sorry, family first!

I’ll post more about what I plan to do with the open office hours soon, including topics and schedules.

#community-summit, #contributor-day

Test With Gutenberg Please!

Call for testing: Gutenberg

This is especially important if your plugin adds meta boxes or otherwise makes changes to the editor. PLEASE test early and often.

Search Issues

UPDATE (@dd32): All issues should be resolved as of 2:15AM UTC. The root cause was a change in the behaviour of Jetpack Search which we rely upon causing queries to fail. A network outage had caused issues for some queries earlier in the day, but was completely unrelated.

You may have noticed that search is acting up. Per @dd32:

w.org is experiencing a few network issues at present in the datacenter, it’s likely that connectivity between the API and wp.com’s elastic search is up-and-down, and when it’s down, search will be offline.

Yes, that means search for plugins too.

There’s nothing to do but wait at this point. It may be up and down while the connectivity is being sorted.

X-posting Proposal: WordPress Community Conduct Project

Please read + comment on the original post.

Proposal: WordPress Community Conduct Project

New Directory Status

As everyone knows, the first phase of opening up the directory to more reviewers was getting on the new system. We’re not quite there yet, however a great deal of progress has been made!

So far, we’ve run into a few weird flow issues that are blocking us from being able to invite new people. The biggest issue is that if you know the old system, it’s easy to move tickets through the new one. But it’s set up in a way that is very very easy to make mistakes and put tickets in unrecoverable states. So we need to mitigate that as much as possible before we let new people in. Basically we don’t want to break things for users because we didn’t think about use-cases.

Okay, fine, you say. What can you do to help?

I’m glad you asked!

We have 100 tickets open in Meta Trac. You can install the meta-environment in VVV and help us out with patches. Sadly, the meta env isn’t complete. It’s missing data, so you’ll end up having to add in plugins in order to mess with the state flow.

But if you can’t patch, and I do understand that, remember to come to the Plugin Directory revamp meetings on Wednesday at 2200 UTC in #meta on Slack. And please, test test test everything! The more we break the directory, the better it is 🙂

SVN Status: Seems to be Okay

I know Dion mentioned it in a comment, but here’s the official… We think it’s okay now post (I delayed to be more sure).

The SVN sync stuff SEEMS to be okay. The main issues appear to be sorted out, so 🤞🏾

We’re keeping a close eye on it, but please do remember to be nice to our poor system 🙂

#announcement

SVN Syncing Issues Continued

tl;dr – Yes we know, yes we’re working on it, no you don’t need to email.

I’m really sorry about this issue, but right now literally all I know is that the tool we use to automagically schedule everything that happens after you use SVN to bump your plugins is acting like a truculent child. It’s slow, it’s dragging it’s feet, and it’s taking WAY more than six hours (which is usually the outside norm for this stuff) to finish, if it does at all. It took 36 hours for one plugin, and even then some people got weird results.

And no, we don’t really know why yet.

It’s possible this is related to the new directory. It’s possible it’s from the entire .org slowdown last week or maybe it’s because we released the Beta and everything is slow from that. We literally don’t know.

I apologize for a series of very curt emails, but with the volume of people complaining, we had to resort to an auto-reply of, basically, we know, please be patient. If I have anything else to tell you, I will post, but right now we don’t know why and we can’t magically tell you what we don’t know, so please be patient with us.

Also no, there’s not a ticket because this is actually outside the meta repository. That means it’s not open source, the part that’s busted. The people with the access are aware and yes, I’ve pushed to escalate this. But it’s the weekend and it’s Mothers’ Day in the US, so you’re just going to have to be a little extra patient.

Repository Syncing Issues (Updated)

Update from Otto: “The brunt of the plugin-delay problem has been solved now, so plugins should be nice and speedy again. There may be a few stragglers that got rescheduled for later due to the overload, they will clear themselves up in the next couple hours.”

Due to a network issue in the wee hours of May 11, updates to SVN are taking longer than normal to show up on the directory. The issue created a 2 hour backlog, which normally would work itself out pretty quickly. It’s currently being exacerbated by everyone who sees their code NOT showing up right away and pushing it again.

As Otto says:

In short, when it’s being slow, then it’s being slow and nothing you can do will speed it up, so just relax, go outside, walk around, and wait for it.

Do we want to make the process faster? Of course. And if you’re interested in helping that, please check out Meta ticket #1578 to understand how it was all written for the new directory.

To remind you:

  • Changes can take a couple hours to display even on the good days. While it is generally much shorter, 6-12 hours is about when you should start wondering if something’s up, not before.
  • Multiple commits to SVN means multiple builds of your code. The more times you commit, the more builds, and the slower it goes for everyone. Commit once, then go make a sandwich.
  • Zips are built for for every tag’d release in your repository. Fewer tags, faster builds. We advocate removing older builds as they’re generally not necessary for use.
  • Patience, patience, patience. With over 60k plugins (counting the closed ones), this is a HUGE database of things.

#announcement

Server Load Woes

If you got an error like this when using SVN today, it’s not just you:

Committing transaction...:   Error: Commit failed (details follow):  Error: Error running context: The server unexpectedly closed the connection.  Completed!:

Or

Committing transaction...:   Error: Commit failed (details follow):  Error: Failed to start '/home/svn/repos/wp-plugins/hooks/pre-commit' hook  

There was a high server load on WordPress.org on Monday May 8th, which caused the system to have those errors. When it happens to you, just go make a coffee or bake a pie and come back in a bit.

#downtime, #server-load

2016 in Review

It’s May. I forgot to post this. Go on and laugh 🙂

Anyway. At the end of last year, I looked at all the posts on Make/Updates and manually crafted out a spreadsheet that listed all the plugins submissions, rejections, approvals and closures. And here’s how the year looked:

image

If you don’t want to calculate it all yourself, I’ve made my Google sheet sharable. I didn’t go back and do 2015, and while I do plan to do one for 2017, we will have a big gap in numbers as I don’t have a way to calculate closed plugins at the moment.

By the way, there was a higher number of closed plugins in 2016 than ever before. That’s because more people than ever have asked us to close plugins, but also because we closed plugins without a committer with a valid email address. And that was a lot of people.

#announcement