Is cleaning up old issues worthwhile?

Matthew Pickering matthewtpickering at
Sat May 4 19:14:20 UTC 2019

A bug sweep like this is very valuable so thank you for starting to do
it. Labelling older issues is also very useful.

If you are going to doing this a lot then you might be interested in
the TUI I wrote to browse gitlab issues which makes
traversing the issue list more ergonomic.



On Sat, May 4, 2019 at 6:35 PM Kevin Buhr <buhr at> wrote:
> I presume I can't be the first to ask this question, but I tried searching the ghc-devs archives and didn't find anything.
> After accidentally clicking on the sort order button in the GitLab issue list, I found myself browsing 18-year-old open issues that are clearly obsolete (e.g., #515 related to bad source location info in LHS files long since fixed, #517 which looks like a transient issue with error messages affecting HEAD in March 2001, #519 which refers to "ghc -M" reading "import" statements from comments which I tried and failed to duplicate. etc.).
> I would be interested in going through some of these and triaging and closing them where appropriate.  But I also don't want to be "that guy" -- you know, the person who systematically works his or her way through the wiki boldfacing all occurrences of the word "GHC" or submits 1200 merge requests to remove doubled-space-after-period occurrences in comments.
> So, the first question is, would working on cleaning up these issues be useful, or would it generate too much noise to be worthwhile?
> Second, if it *is* useful, what sort of policy/procedure would be most helpful?  There are a bunch of these issues that:
> have gone many years without any non-administrative activity
> have clear test cases that can't be duplicated with modern GHC
> don't involve any apparent unresolved technical issues
> I'd be pretty comfortable adding a comment documenting my failure to duplicate them and then closing them.  So, that might be a good first pass.  Is there any reason *not* to simply comment and close them immediately?  For example, I already closed #497 and #515 on this basis. Would it be better to comment on them, maybe tag them with a new label like "issue cleanup", and have a grace period before closing them?
> --
> Kevin Buhr <buhr at>
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