Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Making Bugzilla Read-only

I finally got this working after a few frustrating attempts. So, what not to do first.

Change database-level user permissions

I actually got this working once but it took three or four iterations since Bugzilla needs to be able to write to some tables to let you log in. Also, once you have messed with the permissions, I find restoring them to the prior state to be fiddly. This approach is really at the wrong level.


The editbugs group


There's a system level group in Bugzilla named "editbugs" that is apparently related to allowing a user to edit bugs. However removing a user from the group does nothing that I could see.

What Worked For Me

1. For each product, check the Closed checkbox so that the product does not appear in the list of products where bugs can be created. This effectively stops new bugs from being created, though perhaps using the right URL might still work.

2. Define a new group named something like "CanStillEdit" that can be used for bugs and add it to all products. Don't add anyone to the new group yet.

3. For each product, edit the group memberships at the end of the configuration page and set the "Can Edit" checkbox for just the CanStillEdit group. Leave all of the other groups unchanged. Now only members of the CanStillEdit group can edit bugs. It took a few passes through the documentation about this feature to see what they meant.

If all goes well then trying to save a change to a bug will produce a big red box with an error message in it. Usually the error message is helpful ("you do not have permission to do that"), but sometimes it says things like "you tried to update X from to 123" which is confusing but harmless. Search works just as before.

Other details:

1. The other settings for the groups I was working with were Shown/NA.
2. Administrators can also still edit issues.
3. All this is for Bugzilla 2.x - I would hope that there are better ways to do this in the latest versions.

3 comments:

Matt Doar said...

Nothing seems to have improved in this area since then.

Anonymous said...

I'm not sure it fits your requirements, but this worked for us:

mysql> REVOKE INSERT, UPDATE, DELETE, CREATE, DROP, ALTER ON `bugs`.* FROM 'bugs'@'%';
mysql> GRANT SELECT, INSERT, UPDATE, DELETE, CREATE, DROP, REFERENCES, INDEX, ALTER ON bugs.logincookies TO 'bugs'@'%';

Neeraj Tiwari said...

It is a simple solution yet effective. Thank you Matt!