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Discussion on: What's the longest you've ever spent debugging a single bug?

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David Taitingfong

Probably a whole 9-hr work day and some change.

I was tasked with creating some Ansible configs for these build agents. The machines being spun up from them were identical, but spread across 3 different networks: A, B, and C. The big difference was one zip. A and B got it from shared drives, but C pulled it from our Artifactory. I was told that the one in Artifactory was the same from both A and B.

A and B were fine but machines on C were failing. I figured it was the zip, and it was...but it took the whole day and 2 30-minute Zoom meetings with different folks.

The problem? Well all 3 zips had the same name: Dir_X.Y.Z_14.0 but

  • The zips on A and B unzipped to C:\Path\To\Dir_X.Y.Z_14.0
  • The zip on C unzipped to C:\Path\To\Dir_X.Y.Z-14.0

A single-character typo brought me to my knees lol. Someone renamed the directory to have a hyphen, but the zip they created still had an underscore, lol. Ahh good times.