By making some adjustments to the database settings, I was able to make the initial block download about 5 times faster. It downloads in about 30 minutes. The database default had it writing each block to disk synchronously, which is not necessary. I changed the settings to let it cache the changes in memory and write them out in a batch.
A generation ago, multi-user time-sharing computer systems had a similar problem. Before strong encryption, users had to rely on password protection to secure their files, placing trust in the system administrator to keep their information private. Privacy could always be overridden by the admin based on his judgment call weighing the principle of privacy against other concerns, or at the behest of his superiors.
I don't know anything about any of the bug trackers. If we were to have one, we would have to make a thoroughly researched choice. We're managing pretty well just using the forum. I'm more likely to see bugs posted in the forum, and I think other users are much more likely to help resolve and ask follow up questions here than if they were in a bug tracker.
I've developed a new open source P2P e-cash system called Bitcoin. It's completely decentralized, with no central server or trusted parties, because everything is based on crypto proof instead of trust. Give it a try, or take a look at the screenshots and design paper: Download Bitcoin v0.1 at http://www.bitcoin.org
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