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Collecting Support Information for PDM

Tech Support Tips

Written by: Bryce Hooper, Application Engineer

Eventually, we will all have issues or need some support with our vault. It’s inevitable. To get the best help, we need to be able to describe our issues and pass along relevant information. This can be tricky with PDM as we don’t have a capture tool like we do for SOLIDWORKS with the RX tool. However, we do have a few options when trying to pass on information when we suspect the problem is PDM.

Exporting Configuration

The simplest and most common information to pass along is our vault configuration. This can be gathered by opening up the PDM Administration tool and logging into your vault with a user that has Admin privileges. You can then right click your vault and select “Export”.

Export Vault Configuration

A window will show inside of the Admin Tool with nodes for all of the pieces for your PDM configuration. From here, you can go to File > Save As and pick a location for the resulting CEX configuration file.

Administrative Export

In some cases, the whole vault configuration isn’t necessary. We may only be troubleshooting a template, so that is all we need to export. In that case, we can right click any node and select export for the same results. If we need to add additional things to this export from within the same vault configuration we can drag them into the export window by drag and drop.

 

Using the Collect Support Function

Sometimes, a configuration alone is not enough information for us to troubleshoot against. Tech support sometimes needs things like client logs, server logs, event logs, as well as the configuration. This is a lot of stuff to gather and package up manually. Thankfully, we have a tool that does just that.

The “Collect Support Information” wizard is a handy tool to help us collect all relevant information for our PDM troubleshooting needs. To access this wizard, open up the PDM Admin tool and right-click the vault name. In the menu fly-out, Collect Support Information is the option we want. Keep in mind, to use this tool, we will need the PDM Admin password, and potentially SQL and server credentials.

Collect Support Information

Upon clicking this option, we will be confronted with the wizard. The first page of the wizard deals with logs and configuration. This is the most commonly requested set of information.  If Support is asking for a package of this kind, this is most likely what they are looking for. After this, you’ll likely be able to skip to the last steps unless specifically directed to do so.

Here, we see a list of options for which pieces of data we want to collect. It is most likely that you can leave this page as it is. All of these logs could be potentially helpful information. All of this could also be collected individually if necessary, but this tool will, of course, do it for us.

Collect Support Information Wizard

The next page in the wizard concerns collecting specific pieces of the archive. This portion will help support re-create portions of your vault in the event that the issue is file or vault specific. If this is requested, please select all relevant files by clicking ‘Add Files’ or ‘Add Folder’ as necessary. This will package all files (or folders) selected into the final package. Be aware that depending on the files that you select, the end package can become much larger.

Wizard - Select Archives

This next part pertains to SQL and, in the end, requires server access. This portion will create a backup of your PDM database for a re-creation of the vault. This goes hand-in- hand with the previous step of collecting the archive files. It is highly likely that if Support is requesting any collection of Archive files, a SQL backup will also be required.

PDM Vault Backup

This screen only requires that you toggle the generation of the backup on, and specify a location. A full path is required, with filename and extension included. Make note, that this path is a path that is located on the server, not your local machine. A backup of the database will be created on the server and will require separate retrieval. It will not be bundled as part of our package.

This next screen is a place for explaining the situation or adding any more detail if necessary. This would be a good place to describe if we are moving a file and it is failing – where it is now and where is it going. Things like this that will provide Support with a more clear direction as to the case that is being investigated.

Additional Information for Support

The final screen is another simple one. This is where the package is summed up and given a location and filename. Click ‘Finish’ to author the zip.

Support Information Zip File