When work on a story can’t proceed due to unexpected circumstances, you can add a blocker to it. For example, you may need another feature story, a chore to add infrastructure or a bug fix to be completed before the story can be started, finished, or tested. Perhaps you need help from a designer or a decision from the product owner. Blockers make these dependencies visible.
To add a blocker, expand a story, or open it in full page view. You can click to add a blocker in the Blockers section. Type in an explanation of what is blocking the story, which may include a link to another Tracker story, and click Add. You’ll see a visual indicator that the story is blocked.
All project members can add, update and delete blockers. There are several ways a blocker can be resolved. If the blocker is another story, it will automatically be resolved when that story is accepted or deleted. You can mark the blocker resolved manually by clicking on the blocker icon or the resolve button. This turns the blocker icon gray.
Stories with unresolved blockers show a red blocker icon in the story card. Stories that are blocking another story show a black blocking icon in the story card. If a story has unresolved blockers and is also blocking one or more stories, it will have an icon with red and black arrows indicating both blocked and blocking.
If attempting to accept a story containing unresolved blockers, the following modal will appear warning of unresolved items on the story. This modal will also appear when attempting to accept a story with other unresolved items such as Reviews or Tasks.
Click on the Blockers link in the sidebar to reveal a panel showing all blocked stories in your project.
When you add a blocker that contains a link to another Tracker story, that other story will be updated with a “blocking” indicator in the Blockers section, containing a link to the story that it is blocking. This indicator remains until the story is accepted or the blocker is otherwise resolved.
If a blocked story has one remaining blocker that contains a link to a blocking story, accepting the blocking story will automatically resolve the blocker.
If a story you follow is blocked, or is blocking another story, you will receive in-app and/or email notifications per your profile settings. You can @mention other project members in blockers so that they get special notifications to get their attention. You can also @mention yourself, effectively adding yourself as a blocker, which will flag the story to show up in your Blocked panel.
Searching for blocked or blocking stories
In addition to using the Blockers panel in your project, you can use search keywords for blocked stories in combination with (or not) other search parameters. “is:blocked” filters for blocked stories. “is:blocking” filters for stories that are blocking other stories.