----- Original Message -----
From: "Steve Grubb" <sgrubb(a)redhat.com>
Cc: "Martin Preisler" <mpreisle(a)redhat.com>
Sent: Tuesday, September 2, 2014 5:33:05 PM
Subject: Re: Best ways to say this system is not compliant
On Tuesday, September 02, 2014 08:48:17 AM Martin Preisler wrote:
> > Several participants in the thread "Re: New report and guide in openscap
> > 1.1.0"
> > raised concerned over a language "The system is not compliant!" in
> > report.
> I decided to avoid using the word compliant at all in this case.
> XCCDF spec defines what it means on the report but people may think
> the word has a different meaning and may be shocked.
> So instead I decided to explicitly say how many rules failed or were
> For example:
> "The target system did not satisfy conditions of 131 rules! Furthermore,
> the results of 2 rules were inconclusive. Please review rule results
> and consider applying remediation."
Inconclusive is a word that I would not use. It prejudices the results by
indicating that something may or may not be wrong and it can't really tell.
That is exactly the case. It's not prejudice, it's fact.
That's not the message I want from any tool. Imagine running
or find and the message output is that it's inconclusive. :-)
I'd simply say something to the effect that the scan has findings that need
be reviewed. Short & simple.
The report says "inconclusive" for rules 'error' or 'unknown' as
Excerpt from XCCDF 1.2 spec:
error - The checking engine could not complete the evaluation, therefore the
status of the target's compliance with the rule is not certain. This could
happen, for example, if a testing tool was run with insufficient privileges
and could not gather all of the necessary information.
unknown - The testing tool encountered some problem and the result is unknown.
For example, a result of 'unknown' might be given if the testing tool was
unable to interpret the output of the checking engine (the output has no
meaning to the testing tool).
I am not a native speaker but I am pretty sure inconclusive is the right
word for this. If not, please provide an alternative.