Submitting a clear and accurate support ticket assists the K2 support team in pinpointing the issue you have encountered, which can drastically reduce the time to resolution. The K2 support team can address detailed, clearly-written tickets more quickly and efficiently than those which are unclear or lack the necessary information and detailed steps to reproduce the behavior.
For a full understanding of how to write a good support ticket, please read through this entire article. Alternatively, you can jump to a specific section in the document by referring to the table of contents below.
Before Logging a Support Ticket
K2 has multiple resources available which can assist you in resolving the issue without enlisting the help of K2 Support.
Many of the tickets logged with K2 Support turn out to be unrelated to K2’s product stack, or the answer is available by doing a quick search in the resources available to any Internet user. With this article we will provide you with all the resources available – resources we use to answer many of the support tickets – which you can search before logging a support ticket.
Here follows some of the key resources K2 makes available to you:
K2 Help Consolidated Search (help.k2.com/search)
The search engine on help.k2.com searches a vast array of K2 resources, including help files, K2 Community, Knowledge Base, and even your company’s past tickets. It also allows you to filter your results in a variety of ways. This should always be your first stop when you encounter any issue.
Help.k2.com contains Getting Started guides, user guides, and developer references, to name a few. These contain valuable information such as troubleshooting tips and helpful pointers to using diagnostic tools.
We find that many of the support tickets logged are resolved by a simple search through this documentation.
The K2 Community is a community-driven site with valuable resources such as the K2 product forums, K2 market and K2 Community Articles.
The K2 product forums are monitored by K2’s own product developers and field personnel, along with members of the K2 community, which includes the K2 Insiders, leaders of the K2 community. Many of the issues logged via support tickets have already been answered in the forums, so it’s well worth the time looking at the forums.
The K2 Market was created in order to facilitate project and code sharing in the K2 community. The sharing of projects and code with members of the community greatly enhances the learning experience and reduces the learning curve that is inherently part of getting to know new technologies.
YouTube K2 HowTo Channel
The K2 YouTube channel is a great source for short videos on how to use K2.
K2 Partner and Customer Portal
The K2 Partner and Customer Portal isn’t only a place to visit when you need to submit a support ticket or to download the latest software. On each product’s download page you will find a link to the Release Notes, as well as available Updates. Please have a look at these (along with the Knowledge Base Article associated with each Product Update) to see if your issue wasn’t already resolved with the latest available update.
K2 Knowledge Base
The K2 Knowledge Base contains articles written to assist you with various aspects of K2 and its product, along with articles on sustained development. The KB system is exceptionally helpful, from when you require information on setting up your environment, to help on planning destinations in a process. It even includes Support KB articles, regarding known issues, tips and tricks, and more.
An RSS feed is also available to allow you to be notified when any new KB article is published to the site. The KB RSS has been updated and is now available to customers and partners.
K2 Center of Excellence
The K2 Center of Excellence is intended to showcase best practices for all phases of K2 product usage, from environment planning, to design phase, runtime, and beyond.
K2.com provides you with detailed information around the products available, along with interesting information on our customers, contact information and general company details. If you have any general questions around our products or the company – this should be your first stop.
Couldn’t Find it?
If you have exhausted all of the above, please proceed and log a support ticket – the staff at K2 support would gladly assist you.
How to Log a Great Support Ticket
First, we’ll cover how to log a support ticket and give you an example of a great support ticket, then give you some advice for keeping your tickets from being returned, and lastly give you some tips for logging a great support ticket.
How to Submit a Support Ticket
After verifying your question hasn’t been answered elsewhere (see Before Logging a Support Ticket), logon to the K2 Support Portal.
Browse to the New Ticket form by using the dropdown menus, or browse directly to the New Ticket form.
The New Ticket form is broken down into three sections; the Ticket Owner Details, Issue Details and Attachments sections. The Ticket Owner Details section is populated with your Portal Account information by default, though you can use the Change Ticket Owner button to specify a different Portal account to be used as the point of contact for ticket communications.
The heart of the New Ticket form is the Issue Details section. Use this part of the form to describe where the specific problem is occurring. Every field in the Issue Details section must be filled out. More about each field of the Issue Details section are described below. Several of the fields have a Help button for more information. Please fill out every field with information that is as accurate as possible.
The Ticket Category dropdown list allows the user to choose what type of issue the ticket references (e.g. Performance Issue). Further information about each category can be found by clicking the Category Help button.
The next dropdown menu is the Environment field and is used to select the specific environment where the issue is occurring. Note that the Environment Details section will be automatically filled once an environment is chosen. If this is the first time that a ticket is being submitted, this dropdown menu will be empty. The Add/Edit Environments button can be used to create a new entry for the specific environment in question. This control can also be used if a new environment has been added, or if information about an existing environment needs to be updated. For more information on how to configure your environments, see the Saved Environments section below.
This field will be auto-filled when the Environment is selected.
Severity level is selected in accordance to the scope of the issue being encountered. For more information about each severity level, click the Severity Help button.
From this dropdown menu, the user can select which K2 product is in question.
This dropdown lists the features of the K2 Component in question. Select which one is most relevant to the ticket.
Once the Add/Edit Environments button is selected, the Saved Environment Templates popup view will be displayed. From here, you can add more environments, or edit those your company already has defined.
Keeping the information in your Saved Environments up to date is an excellent way of helping K2 Support work as effectively on your tickets as possible. Outdated Environment information can lead to lost time, spent researching and reproducing problems on the wrong versions of K2, SQL, SharePoint, etc.
Ticket Subject and Problem Description
The Ticket Subject is one of the most important sections of any support ticket. Use a clear and understandable subject. Check out the section of this guide titled Tips for Writing Good Support Tickets.
The Problem Description and Attached Files should contain all the information the K2 Support Team needs to understand the issue you are experiencing, how to replicate the issue, and any workarounds you may have identified. Ticket Details should contain the following:
- Issue statement and detailed description
- Repro Steps
- Possible Workaround
- Additional Details
Please see below for additional tips to avoid having your Support Ticket sent back to you as “Unable to reproduce” or “More information required”.
Example of a Great Support Ticket
Unable to properly link a document library in a workflow.
I have created a workflow that uses the Move Document step to move a document to a library named Closed Items. When I try to link to the reference of this Library in the “Select destination site collection and specify options” screen I cannot find this library available (see the attached document named “EmptyOption.zip”). I have tried deleting this step and reconfiguring it but the problem keeps recurring.
- In a blank step, drag the Move Document step into the workflow.
- Specify a document reference in the workflow.
- When selecting the destination library, the document library is unavailable.
This library is a default SharePoint library without any changes made.
Keep your Support Ticket from being Marked “Unable to Reproduce” or “More Information Required”
Too often we get support tickets about issues that you and others have experienced but we are unable to take action on because the support ticket is unclear or is missing important information. When this happens, we return the ticket to you to request additional information. This delays our ability to troubleshoot the issue and usually results in a delay in getting a resolution back to you. If your support ticket does not follow the guidelines below it will probably be sent back to you for additional information.
- Submit one problem or issue per report. One problem at a time is easier to reproduce, track, and resolve.
- Attach files, screenshots, and logs to every report. We rely on all this information to troubleshoot problems accurately.
- Use a clear and understandable subject. We look at lots of support tickets. Make your issue stand out by using a clear and concise title.
- Create clear and detailed repro steps. If we can’t reproduce the problem you’re encountering it is very difficult to take action on the issue.
- Attach screenshots or recordings. For any user interface issues, a screenshot or recording is very helpful. Also think about when it can be used to more clearly communicate your issue.
- Include relevant logs and troubleshooting output. Some logs to include, depending on the issue, are Host Server logs, SmartObject Server logs, ADUM logs, SharePoint ULS logs, Installer Trace logs, and IIS logs. In addition, browser Developer debugging, Fiddler traces, and SQL Profile traces may be relevant.
- Include your artifacts. Please include your P&D packages, SharePoint list templates, SQL table templates, or similar, to facilitate reproducing your issue.
Tips for Writing Great Support Tickets
Write your report clearly so that anyone can sit down and reproduce your bug. Avoid using jargon or abbreviations because the person reading the bug report may not know what you mean. If you have difficulty following your own steps for reproducing an issue, chances are we'll find it difficult, too. If you have a workaround, include step-by-step instructions in your support ticket – this will assist the K2 team and possibly other users who might encounter the same issue in the future.
Test your issue report before submitting it. Do the steps to reproduce your issue result in the same error or issue every time? Did you forget to write down a step? Walking through an issue report before submitting it helps ensure that your report is accurate and complete and contains enough information for us to research the problem effectively.
Spending the necessary time up front to ensure that your support ticket is easy to read, and that all of the pertinent information is included, allows the K2 Support Team and developers to spend more time working on the issue and will help you avoid the frustration of having to backtrack in order to provide missing data.
Follow the recommended format. Include a detailed description, numbered reproduction steps, expected results, actual results, and any discussion or comments, including your recommendations or workarounds.
Here are some links to documentation on capturing K2 logs.
From the K2 Five documentation:
There is a tutorial available in the Attachments section of the ticket form, accessible by clicking on the “i” (information) icon. Not all file types are natively permitted by the attachment control. Please limit attachments to the following file extensions: csv, config, doc, docx, jpg, jpeg, kspx, log, msg, pdf, png, rar, txt, xls, xlsx, zip, 7z.
Helpful Links and Information
Environmental Setup and Troubleshooting