Tuesday, August 5, 2014

What is a deferred bug?

A deferred bug is a bug that will not be fixed in the current release.

A typical reason why a bug is deferred since fixing it does not give us significant returns than the investment (ROI).  The deferral decision is a business decision and should not be made by the developers themselves.

Deferring a bug means that we leave a known issue to the product and we do not fix it.

Typically we have the following justifications:

  • It is a corner case.
  • The particular usage scenario is not common.
  • There is a workaround available.
  • We will provide a patch to fix this problem immediately after the release.

The following are excuses but cannot justify unless we can one of the above reasons:
  • It is too late to be fixed in the development cycle of a release.
  • It will introduce significant delay of the release.

One of the important considerations other than just the delay of the release is the risk to the release.

Fixing a bug may introduce other bugs.
Fixing a bug is not just a development effort.  The test may need to be executed again.

The risk may not be just a schedule risk, but a quality risk.

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