Jonathan Desrosiers, a WordPress core committer and software engineer at Bluehost, has published a new workshop titled “How to Use Trac” on the Learn WordPress platform. The 20-minute video offers a crash course on the ticket tracking software that WordPress relies on to manage core development. Trac is also used for contributing to WordPress’ meta component, which includes sites and API, directories, support areas, and other projects.

Trac’s antiquated UI can be intimidating for newcomers, posing another barrier to contribution. Even experienced WordPress contributors are eager to move core development to GitHub or some other platform. It can get confusing since bugs related to the editor need to be reported on GitHub instead of Trac. Until WordPress adopts another platform, the ability to navigate Trac remains an important skill.

Desrosiers’ workshop covers topics like searching for pre-existing tickets before reporting a new issue, how to write a good bug report or feature request, how to identify component maintainers, attaching patches, and how proper classification of the ticket can help other teams get involved. He also helps workshop students understand ticket resolutions so they can frame their expectations accordingly. This video includes a full walkthrough of creating a new ticket where Desrosiers explains each field on the form.

Once you get up to speed on learning Trac and start contributing, you may also want to follow the WordPress Trac on Twitter. New contributors may also want to explore WPTracSearch, an unofficial project that provides an alternative Elasticsearch-powered interface for searching WordPress Trac tickets. WPTracSearch delivers more accurate results, even for basic queries, that can be filtered based on milestone, component, focuses, usernames, and more criteria.

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