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Introduction to Obtaining Technical Support

When seeking assistance with our software, it is extremely important that you provide enough information to allow us to understand, and potentially recreate the problem.  Trying to remotely diagnose a problem is extremely difficult, particularly when we may not be able to access your original data.  Please be patient, and try and provide as much information as possible.  To assist in the process, please read the following section prior to submitting any support ticket.  Please remember to be courteous, and most of all, please let us know if we managed to assist you.

Our support portal provides a dedicated issue management system.  Whether you sign in to our support portal or send an email to our support email address, the result is the same.  A new issue will be created in our database and a notification is sent to our software engineers.  You will automatically receive an email notifying you of the unique reference number.  If you choose to respond to our queries via email, please ensure you do not change the subject line.  This means that the issue progress can be tracked in our database.

Prior to submitting an issue, please open the ‘About’ window (as shown in Figure 1, this can be found by selecting Help » About from the menu) and identify the following:

  • Software Version and Build
  • Platform Information
  • Licence or Dongle ID

 

Figure 1

Submitting a Bug Report

The aim of a bug report is to enable a software engineer to identify a specific issue with the software and to establish what needs to be done to rectify the issue. To enable them to do this, you must provide careful and detailed instructions on how to make the software fail.  If they cannot replicate your issue, they will try to gather extra information until they know the cause. If they can't make it fail, they will have to ask you to gather that information for them.

Please remember, your hardware/software setup may be completely different from our test environments and the way you use our software may also be completely different.  Other software products that have been incorrectly installed by the installation/setup programme can also have a detrimental effect on our software.  We use a number of shared Microsoft libraries, which if incorrectly installed or changed by another product, can cause issues.  These errors are extremely difficult to track down, so please be patient.  We will try everything we can to get our software working within your environment.

Background Information

There are three elements to a bug report:

  • What you did;
  • What you wanted to happen;
  • What actually happened.

The most important element will be if you can provide step by step instructions to recreate the issue.  This will allow us to recreate the bug, and we will be in a much better position to rectify the problem and fix it in a future release.  Use screen shots if you can; these will help the engineer to understand what you are trying to explain.  Data and screenshots can be uploaded and attached to the issue in the web support portal.  Getting access to the data causing the issue is also extremely important.  This is sometimes the only way to recreate a problem.

Single line submissions such as “It won’t work” do not provide us with any useful information and will not allow an engineer to diagnose the problem.  This will not help you in trying to get the software to work and the problem resolved as quickly as possible.

Check Version History

Prior to submitting a bug report or request, please review the release history for the software.  This could save you time by checking to see if the issue you have has already been identified and resolved.  Please also ensure you are using the latest release of our software. 

If you have encountered two bugs that don't appear to be related, create a new bug report for each one. This makes it easier for different people to help with the different bugs.

The software version history and release notes can be found in our knowledge base at:

Mandatory Information

There are a number of things that we will need from you to effectively deal with your issue.  They are as follows:

 

Mandatory Requirements

Licence ID or USB Dongle ID

Software Version and Build Numbers

Operating System Version Information with Service Pack and Architecture Information (32/64 bit)

Table 1

NetAnalysis Error Log

If NetAnalysis encounters an error, it will write out an error log to assist with identifying the problem.  The error log can be found by selecting Help » Error Reporting from the main menu.  A window will open (as shown in Figure 2) showing any error log files.  Please attach these logs when submitting a report.

 

Figure 2

If you encounter a problem with HstEx or Blade, please also submit the recovery and validation logs.

Submitting an Issue

Our support portal provides a way to submit technical support requests or bug reports.  Figure 3 shows the submission screen from our support system. 

 

Figure 3

Figure 4 shows the submitted issue with corresponding Issue ID. 

 

Figure 4

Once the issue has been submitted, you will receive a confirmation e-mail with a unique reference number.  You can either respond to the submission via e-mail, or click in on the hyperlink (as shown in Figure 5) to take you back into the support system.

 

Figure 5

 

You can log in to the system at any time to review the response or add additional information and attachments.