I have been looking for an issue-tracking system for some time. Our workflow is not software development. Rather we track changes to documentation across groups of people.

I don't need project management, gantt charts, a wiki, or anything else. I just need an issue-tracking system.

Specifically, I want completely customizable forms. I want to be able to start with a blank form and build it up manually. I don't want a "subject" or "description" or "start time" or anything. Our process is extremely well-defined, but we've come to the point where we need to start storing our data in an easy-to-access and -- more importantly -- easy-to-manipulate format to help with reporting efficiency.

I'd love to be able to wire up the business logic myself. The form data just needs to get inserted into the database. If there's a way to wire up business logic, I can do that. (I am a s/w developer when required.)

My frustration stems from the fact that all issue-tracking systems seem to think that you are developing software and that all workflows are approximately the same. We have need of a documentation defect-tracking system, but almost all of the normal fields are unnecessary.

EDIT: This needs to be a non-cloud, fully-controlled, server-based installation.

  • Could you add information about what actions you need the system itself to perform? Because on its face it sounds like a Google Docs Form that writes to a spreadsheet would suit your needs...so I'm missing the in-between info.
    – jcmeloni
    Commented Mar 20, 2012 at 23:46
  • I would really like the ease and flexibility that a Google Docs Form offers, but in a non-cloud, server-based environment. Nice idea, and I will look at that angle. Commented Mar 21, 2012 at 1:19
  • @logilcalscope I think you'll find better solutions if you can articulate what else you need the system to do (authentication, alerts, email notifications, etc), because if your needs are as basic as you've described, you'll spend more time and money installing something and ripping all its features out than you would having someone whip up a basic CRUD application for your group.
    – jcmeloni
    Commented Mar 21, 2012 at 14:06
  • You mention server-based, but which platform do you want your solution to run on? Windows? Linux? etc. Commented Oct 8, 2012 at 19:16

5 Answers 5


look into jira from atlassian. While the defaults are sensible for software development, you can customize tasktypes, workflows (per tasktype if you really want), input forms/layouts (per transition), attributes, whatever.

The package might seem complicated at first, but it is very powerfull and customizeable. If you need some details, they have good support, and a thriving community. Otherwise feel free to ping me, details are in my bio.

  • Yes, I support that. JIRA is highly customizable and as a consequence there is the danger to get carried away ...
    – Manfred
    Commented Mar 22, 2012 at 5:56
  • 1
    Yeah, it reminds me of the famous "mod_rewrite" quote: ``The great thing about mod_rewrite is it gives you all the configurability and flexibility of Sendmail. The downside to mod_rewrite is that it gives you all the configurability and flexibility of Sendmail.'' -- Brian Behlendorf Apache Group Commented Mar 26, 2012 at 12:46
  • Jira is also a good pick because of integration with other dev tools, including HipChat Commented Oct 7, 2012 at 21:16

I've seen at least a few places that build out such tracking forms using InfoPath with or without SharePoint. Control fields, add logic, and have it integrate with email. Maybe the Google Docs, InfoPath, and other "form editing" tools would be a better fit than issue tracking software.

A step simpler could be spreadhsheets, where you add calculations and graphs within the tool.


I recommend redmine. Existing information on redmine:

You can try it out here.

  • Thanks, but I've used Redmine. You cannot completely customize the tracking fields. This has been a commonly requested feature for the past 3 years or so. I hope they add this, because otherwise Redmine is great. Commented Mar 22, 2012 at 14:56

Check ClearQuest from Rational as well. We can customize the workflow and customize the tool very well suit your requirements.

We are working on a big product development using feature driven development (agile) last 6 years and we have implemented Clearquest related to several project management workflow successfully using Clearquest including feature management, issue tracking, ticketing, approvals to name a few.

  • 4
    From your answer it sounds like you are affiliated with ClearQuest. If so, can you please edit your answer with that information as per the FAQ entry on self-promotion. Thank you :)
    – jmort253
    Commented Mar 22, 2012 at 1:49
  • No, How did you generalize this statement? I am not affiliated with clearquest. We are working on a big product development using feature driven development (agile) last 6 years and we have implemented Clearquest for our feature and issues tracking successfully.
    – java_mouse
    Commented Mar 22, 2012 at 13:50
  • 1
    It is very-very expensive, and it was really hard to change anything in it without IBM support
    – Zsolt
    Commented Mar 22, 2012 at 14:14
  • @Zsolt I am not sure about the price. But One of our developer could maintain it very well. I dont think we will need to be in touch with IBM for changes.
    – java_mouse
    Commented Mar 22, 2012 at 14:22
  • I meant the change. Maintenance was all right as far as I remember, but once we decided to change our workflow and would like to "transfer" our old database, but it was impossible.
    – Zsolt
    Commented Mar 22, 2012 at 14:27

MantisBT - originally a software bugtracker, but easy adaptable to any workflow in any areas.

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