Skip to main content

CLI tool for managing and automating Red Hat software releases

Project description

Elliott - Errata Tool Automation

PyPI version codecov

Elliott is a tool for automating several aspects of the errata lifecycle. This exists because the Errata/Advisory process has hooks into several other systems, and coordinating all of that manually is tedious and error prone.

Table of Contents

Basics & Terminology

To operate Elliott with any skill it is beneficial to first understand the language we use, as well as the errata process a little bit. Let's cover some basics.

  • Elliott is this software, write it capital or lower-case E, either way is fine as long as you remember that it ends with two "t"s
  • Elliott was first created by Sam Munilla and is a reference to Steven Spielberg's 1982 summer blockbuster, E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial
    • "ET" is also a short-hand way of referencing the Errata Tool, see the connection now?
  • Grammar and Synonyms
    • Erratum - is the singluar version of the word "Errata"
    • Errata - is plural, and it refers to a collection of "Erratum"
    • Advisory - is another word we use and it is interchangable for Errata and Erratum
      • This word is mostly used by humans in conversation, or in print as an informational message ("this bug has been attached to advisory RHBA-1337")
      • Behind the scenes, APIs and code generally use the term erratum
  • Brew Builds - NVRs (Name-Version-Release) and Numeric IDs
    • Use an NVR or a numeric build ID interchangeably in subcommands
    • For example, apb-1.1.16-1.el7 is an NVR for the build 668623
    • This is the apb package, version 1.1.16, first release (-1), for RHEL 7 (.el7)

The Errata Tool is the central record keeping location when software is first released or updated. An advisory is created for every new release or update in a product series. Advisory contain references to items in several other public and private systems.

  • Bugzilla bugs are added to advisory, their status (VERIFIED, ON_QA, etc) is refreshed periodically as an advisory can not move forward for release until all associated bugs have passed testing
  • Brew RPM builds are attached to advisory, these contain the latest software and bug fixes
  • When the RPM builds are signed, brew image (container) builds are created using the new/updated RPMs and are attached to a separate advisory

Setup and Installation

pip install rh-elliott



Ensure you have a valid kerberos ticket before proceeding. A valid kerberos ticket is required to use elliott. See the following link for assistance with the basics of kerberos at Red Hat:

Once you have that taken care of you should run a simple command from elliott. I suggest the following, it will verify that you can access the Errata Tool successfully by attempting to get a list of recently created advisories:

<elliott> $ ./elliott list
2018-11-20T04:23:44 NEW_FILES Red Hat OpenShift Enterprise Container Image Updates
2018-11-15T14:36:55 QE OpenShift Container Platform 3.5 images update
2018-11-13T01:17:33 QE OpenShift Container Platform 3.6 images update
2018-10-31T15:23:47 NEW_FILES Red Hat OpenShift Enterprise Container Image Updates
2018-10-18T11:11:25 NEW_FILES openshift3/jenkins-agent-nodejs-8-rhel7 Container Image Updates


Here we describe how to effectively use elliott.

NOTE: Every elliott <foo> command has a thoroughly detailed --help page. This includes examples and descriptions of all options. We will not be listing each and every single option for every command here. This will focus on getting you comfortable with the basics.

get - Viewing an Advisory

You have already seen how to list recently created errata with list, now let's look at a single one in more detail using the get command.

To get started, copy one of the IDs returned from the list command, for example 32916, one of our test advisories from the previous example. We'll pass that directly to get. You will see the same brief output as you did before.

<elliott> $ ./elliott get 32916
2018-03-02T15:19:08 NEW_FILES TEST OpenShift Container Platform 3.5 bug fix and enhancement update

Say you want additional information about this specific advisory. In which case you can give the --json option to the command (this is all documented in the commands --help output as well):

<elliott> $ ./elliott get 32916 --json
  "diffs": {},
  "jira_issues": {
    "jira_issues": [],
    "id_field": "key",
    "id_prefix": "jira:",
    "idsfixed": [],
    "to_fetch": [],
    "type": "jira_issues",
    "errata": {
      "rhba": {
      "rating": 0,
      "rhnqa": 0,

The returned JSON object is quite large and sprawling. I recommend piping it into the jq tool if you want to trim down the output. Piping it into a pager afterwards is also nice if you want to scroll through it. For example, to look at just the content (basic information) returned from the API you could use the .content filter in jq:

$ ./elliott get 32916 --json | jq '.content' | less
  "content": {
    "revision_count": 1,
    "packages": null,
    "errata_id": 32916,
    "description": "Red Hat OpenShift Container Platform is the company's cloud ...

create - Create a New Advisory

Creating an advisory with elliott requires very little input as far as errata details are concerned. You MUST provide:

  • The product release (openshift-3.Y)

A release date is automatically selected for you. However, you MAY override this date if there is a problem with it. The kind of advisory this is must be specified. Valid choices include rpm and image.

NOTE: This command will NOT create an advisory without your explicit instructions.

Here are two examples from the --help option:

Preview an RPM Advisory 21 days from now (the default release date) for OSE 3.9. The default boilerplate text will be printed to the screen in the form of the JSON object that would have been submitted to the API:

<elliott> $ ./elliott --group openshift-3.9 create --kind rpm

Create an Image Advisory for the 3.5 series on the first Monday in March. The date is given in simple YYYY-MM-DD format, and finally we give explicit confirmation to create the advisory by providing the --yes option:

<elliott> $ ./elliott --group openshift-3.5 create \
    --kind image \
    --date 2018-May-05 \

change-state - Change the State of an Advisory

Change the state of an advisory. For example, move an advisory from NEW_FILES where bugs and builds are still being added, to QE state where the testers are able to take over.

Here we'll move our example test advisory 32916 from NEW_FILES to QE:

<elliott> $ ./elliott change-state --state QE 32916

find-bugs - Find Bugzilla Bugs, Add to an Advisory

Bugzilla bugs can be attached automatically to an advisory. This keeps track of which documented issues/enhancements are included in an advisory when it ships. Additionally, it is important to know that an advisory can not change to the QE state until attached bugs have been verified to a certain degree. The Errata Tool UI will show this information to you in the form of percentages indicating how many attached bugs are in each state.

Bugzilla queries are constructed for a given product release (ex: openshift-3.9) to return bugs which are in a MODIFIED state. In Bugzilla, this MODIFIED state indicates that the engineer has written code to implement the enhancement or fix the specific bug and the associated code has been merged into that components git repository.

Technically speaking, candidate bugs are bugs in the MODIFIED state which have a TARGET RELEASE set to the supplied product version (GA or ASYNC update).

find-bugs has two modes of operation:

  1. Query Bugzilla automatically and attach all discovered bugs (as described above)
  2. Provide bug IDs manually on the command line

Example: Automatically find bugs for an OpenShift 3.9 update (but do not attach them). Notice how we do not need to provide an

<elliott> $ ./elliott --group openshift-3.9 find-bugs --auto
2018-03-19T17:49:44.573042 Searching group directory: /home/tbielawa/rhat/cd/enterprise-images/groups/openshift-3.9
2018-03-19T17:49:44.584135 Using branch from group.yml: rhaos-3.9-rhel-7
Would have added 7 bugs: 1537593, 1510212, 1519365, 1529482, 1550797, 1543647, 1551904

In order to add bugs to an advisory you must provide the ID of an advisory as the value to the --add option:

<elliott> $ ./elliott --group openshift-3.9 find-bugs --auto --add 32916

Flags may be added to the identified bugs by using the --flag option.

Provide one or more bugs manually by using the --id option.

See the --help output for additional examples and descriptions.

find-builds - Find Brew RPM/Image Builds, Add to an Advisory

Brew RPM and Image builds can be attached to advisory. As we noted already in the create command, we deal with two different types of advisory, RPM and Image. When you're attaching builds ensure you are attaching the right build to the matching advisory.

A build must meet very specific criteria to be considered as a viable build to add to an advisory. For example, assuming --group=openshift-3.7, then a build is a VIABLE BUILD IFF it meets ALL of the following criteria:

  • HAS the tag in brew: rhaos-3.7-rhel7-candidate
  • DOES NOT have the tag in brew: rhaos-3.7-rhel7
  • IS NOT attached to any OPEN RHBA, RHSA, or RHEA

That is to say, a viable build is tagged as a "candidate", has NOT received the "shipped" tag yet, and is NOT attached to any OPEN advisory (closed advisory are allowed).

Here is an example of how we could look up image builds that would be attached to a 3.6

<elliott> $ ./elliott --group openshift-3.6 find-builds -k image

2018-11-27 10:23:28,117 INFO Using for metadata
2018-11-27 10:23:28,117 INFO Cloning config data from
2018-11-27 10:23:29,146 INFO Using branch from group.yml: rhaos-3.6-rhel-7
Generating list of images: Hold on a moment, fetching Brew buildinfo
Generating build metadata: Fetching data for 40 builds
The following 40 builds may be attached to an advisory:

If we ran that same command again and suppplied the --attach option with a valid ADVISORY number as the argument then the discovered builds would be attached to the advisory instead of just printed to the screen.

We may also provide build NVRs or numeric build IDs manually with the --build (-b) option. As with automatic discovery, a --kind {rpm,image} option must still be supplied.

See the --help output for additional examples and descriptions.

Data Sources

Elliott relies on external data sources to provide it with boilerplate for advisories and search parameters for bugzilla queries. This data takes the form of yaml files store either locally or, ideally, in a separate git repository with a branching structure matching the --group values you want to use.

In either case, you must point to this data source using the --data-path parameter or one of its override settings.


server: ""

product: "RHOSE"

release: "RHOSE ASYNC"

product_version: "RHEL-7-OSE-3.10"

brew_tag: "rhaos-3.10-rhel-7"

  rpm: "OpenShift Container Platform 3.10 bug fix and enhancement update"
  image: "OpenShift Container Platform 3.10 images update"

solution: |
  Before applying this update, make sure all previously released errata relevant to your system have been applied.
  For OpenShift Container Platform 3.10 see the following documentation, which will be updated shortly for release 3.10.z, for important instructions on how to upgrade your cluster and fully apply this asynchronous errata update:
  This update is available via the Red Hat Network. Details on how to use the Red Hat Network to apply this update are available at"""
description: |
  Red Hat OpenShift Container Platform is Red Hat's cloud computing Kubernetes application platform solution designed for on-premise or private cloud deployments.
  This advisory contains the RPM packages for Red Hat OpenShift Container Platform 3.10.z. See the following advisory for the container images for this release:
  Space precludes documenting all of the bug fixes and enhancements in this advisory. See the following Release Notes documentation, which will be updated shortly for this release, for details about these changes:
  All OpenShift Container Platform 3.10 users are advised to upgrade to these updated packages and images.
topic: "Red Hat OpenShift Container Platform releases 3.10.z are now available with updates to packages and images that fix several bugs and add enhancements."

quality_responsibility_name: 'OpenShift QE'



server: ""

classification: "Red Hat"

product: "OpenShift Container Platform"

  - "3.7.0"
  - "3.7.1"
  - "3.8.0"
  - "3.9.0"
  - "3.10.0"

  - "3.10.0"
  - "3.10.z"

  - field: "component"
    operator: "notequals"
    value: "Documentation"


I usually run the unittests with this setup:

  • Switch into the tools directory if you aren't already
  • Run . ./hack/
  • Switch back to the repository root directory

Then run the unit tests:

$ nosetests -v --with-cover --cover-package=ocp_cd_tools --cover-html \
    src/ocp_cd_tools/ \
    src/ocp_cd_tools/ \

Add or remove any other * tests you wish.

If that works then you can open the HTML coverage report:

  • xdg-open cover/index.html


Most of elliott is released under Apache License 2.0, except elliottlib/ and elliottlib/, which are embedded copies of dotconfig and gitdata projects respectively, therefore those two files are released under LGPL v3.

Project details

Download files

Download the file for your platform. If you're not sure which to choose, learn more about installing packages.

Source Distributions

No source distribution files available for this release.See tutorial on generating distribution archives.

Built Distribution

rh_elliott-2.0.14-py2.py3-none-any.whl (168.6 kB view hashes)

Uploaded Python 2 Python 3

Supported by

AWS AWS Cloud computing and Security Sponsor Datadog Datadog Monitoring Fastly Fastly CDN Google Google Download Analytics Microsoft Microsoft PSF Sponsor Pingdom Pingdom Monitoring Sentry Sentry Error logging StatusPage StatusPage Status page