checkbox fingerprints not unique between different laptops

Bug #1037599 reported by Tommy Trussell on 2012-08-16
6
This bug affects 1 person
Affects Status Importance Assigned to Milestone
Checkbox
Undecided
Marc Tardif

Bug Description

I signed up to test some experimental kernels at packages.qa.ubuntu.com and I noted that others were submitting system fingerprints of some sort. SO I just ran checkbox on two different laptops I own, very different ages, different screen sizes, different processors, different graphics chipsets, different wireless chipsets, slightly different keyboard layouts, everything is different on the two laptops EXCEPT they are both ACER brand units.

I was surprised when checkbox didn't ask me to test lots of things, such as suspend on either unit. (Ironically the first laptop, a newer netbook, suspends fine, most of the time, whereas the old one suffers from a resume bug in its Radeon graphics chip that makes it unusable for suspend at all.) Checkbox chose several tests not appropriate for the hardware, and left out several that it should have included.

HOWEVER, when I looked at my hwdb submissions for these two different laptops, they generated the SAME fingerprint 2954e74ba17fb0e37fc942cd1d9fab4e See https://launchpad.net/+hwdb/+fingerprint/2954e74ba17fb0e37fc942cd1d9fab4e -- as of tonight there are 6609 tests with this fingerprint, and I wonder if they are being lumped together inappropriately.

The older laptop is an Acer Aspire 5100-3949. It has a 15.4" screen, PCMCIA, DVD drive, etc.

The newer netbook is an Acer Aspire One D260-2380. 10.1" screen, more compact keyboard (no media keys etc.) no optical drive, SD card reader only.

Tommy Trussell (tommy-trussell) wrote :

I ran lshw -sanitize > lshw.log on the Acer Aspire One D260-2380

Tommy Trussell (tommy-trussell) wrote :

I ran lshw -sanitize > lshw.log on the Acer Aspire 5100-3949

Marc Tardif (cr3) wrote :

The checkbox fingerprint is a requirement from Launchpad when uploading submissions. It is a coarse attempt to identify models using an md5sum of chassis information from your system. You can generate this hash from the command line to see how it works:

  $ export PATH=/usr/share/checkbox/scripts:$PATH
  $ run_templates -st "sudo /usr/share/checkbox/scripts/dmi_resource | filter_templates -w 'category=CHASSIS'" <<'EOF' | tr -d '\n' | md5sum
  Computerunknown$vendor$model
  EOF

This information is only provided for historical reasons, it was never really used. For your reassurance, Launchpad submissions are also used by the Ubuntu Friendly programme which can still identify unique models independently of the fingerprint:

  https://friendly.ubuntu.com

It is unfortunate that this may cause confusion in the Launchpad web interface but it is so rarely used that there's little motivation to do anything about it.

In principle, the fingerprint should be generated on the server side so that it can be refined as new hardware appears on the market, like ARM hardware might not have chassis information. Since this is not likely to be implemented, I will have to set this bug to Won't Fix.

Changed in checkbox:
assignee: nobody → Marc Tardif (cr3)
status: New → Won't Fix
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