Animated GIFs on Bug Reports

Sometimes the simplest solution is the best solution.

I like the idea of attaching screen recordings to bug reports to demonstrate an issue as they  provide more context than just a single static screenshot or a series of screenshots.

In the past I have used QuickTime on Mac OSX to record a video file and attach that, but attaching/hosting/streaming video files is quite complicated for bug reports. At Automattic I have noticed people attaching animated GIFs instead: why didn’t I think of that?!?

There’s a really cool, yet oddly named, open source tool to capture screen recordings as animated GIFs: LICEcap. It works on Mac and Windows and allows you to easily choose a section of your screen, record it and save it as a GIF.

Here’s a quick recording of how to use LICEcap I just made (LICEcap recording LICEcap – how meta):

licecap demo

The best part is it’s so easy to attach the GIF to a Github issue, or a blog post, or in a Slack chat, and it’s instantly viewable by pretty much anyone.

Simplicity FTW.

Author: Alister Scott

Alister is a Software Quality Engineer from Brisbane, Australia.

7 thoughts on “Animated GIFs on Bug Reports”

  1. great share thank you. have you explored the option of recording some of the automated acceptance test as gif recordings?

  2. We’ve been doing the same thing. Besides being quite handy to capture details, when you read through the bug reports at a later date and you don’t expect an animation, it makes things a little more interesting.

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