Monthly Archives: April 2010

Where are My Resources?


Moving Forward Down Memory Lane


Hi all! This is Jim B. with ESRI Support Services. Today, I have a few tips to share that will help you get to the resources that you need. As many of you may have noticed, the ArcGIS Desktop Help, available at http://resources.arcgis.com, has gone through a few changes recently. These are all meant to help us all find the answers we need as quickly as possible. But wait! I can’t find the resources for the ArcGIS Desktop Help for 9.2, 9.3, or 9.3.1!


Never fear, there is a quick and easy way to get back to the ArcGIS Desktop Help that was created for versions previous to ArcGIS 10. These legacy resources can be found at the following link: http://resources.arcgis.com/content/web-based-help. Here, you will be able to find Desktop Help for ArcGIS versions 9.1 to 10. The easiest way to get to the documentation is to select the version you have and then search on that page for the documents that you want. Voila! It’s the best of both worlds, old and new, helping us use ArcGIS to its fullest potential.


-Jim B., ESRI Support Analyst – Desktop Group, ESRI Support Services





Logging Support Requests – What’s New?


Hi, this is Melissa from ESRI Support Services. I wanted to provide you with some updates regarding different avenues to get in touch with us when you’re experiencing a technical issue or question. The two underlying methods of phone vs. email still exist, but with the new look and feel of the Support site, there are two new areas that you’ll visit when trying to get in touch with us on the main landing page. They are titled ‘New Support Requests’ and ‘Contact Tech Support’.


Which to use?







If you’re looking for our email address or phone number to call us directly, you can go to ‘Contact Tech Support’. If you want to log an email webform with your problem description, screen captures, and attachments, the ‘New Support Request’ link is the place to click.


Webform enhancements


Within the email webform, there are a lot of features that help tell us about the issue you are encountering. These were described in a previous blog: ‘Announcing New Features on the ESRI Support Request Web Form’. Within the form there is also a section where you can include attachments up to 70 MB in size with the following file types (*.jpg. *.jpeg, *.gif, *.png, *.pdf, *.doc, *.rtf, *.txt, *.zip, *.docx).
There have been many changes to the email webform to enhance functionality and ease of usability for users. One of the most recent updates is an increase in the character limit within the description entry section of the New Support Request form that allows for up to 5000 characters. This increase was implemented based on feedback received regarding the previous 2000 character limit, so keep your suggestions coming. Use whichever method you feel most comfortable with to contact ESRI Support Services, and we hope to hear from you soon!


-Melissa J., Geodata Group Lead, ESRI Support Services


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Getting Help with the Sample Flex Viewer


With the Sample Flex Viewer being one of the most popular downloads from the ESRI Resource Centers Code Gallery, it only makes sense that people call ESRI Support Services with questions about it…or does it? Since anything from the Code Gallery is not directly supported by ESRI, I would like to provide you with a link to the “Get Started with the Sample Flex Viewer” document, which contains all the information you need to download, get started, and configure the Sample Flex Viewer to work with your own local map service, as well as tips on how to use the widgets with the Sample Flex Viewer.


By the way, if you want to learn about customizing the Sample Flex Viewer using the Flex Builder, here is a blog post that will help you get started: Getting Started with the Sample Flex Viewer Application in Flex Builder.


Kripa J., ESRI Support Analyst – SDK Group, ESRI Support Services



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Finding What You Need on the Customer Care Portal


Hi! This is Hanna from the Eastern Support Unit in Charlotte. Today, I want to provide you with some tips and know-how about the information you can find on the ESRI Customer Care site, located at http://customers.esri.com/. If you are already familiar with it, you may want to check it out again since it has a new look and some new options.


Log in to ESRI Customer Care at http://customers.esri.com/ with your ESRI Global Account and you will be able to:



  • view the status on your Order History, Maintenance Quotes, and Virtual Campus User Licenses;

  • check up on UC Registrations, Training History, and your ESRI Customer Service Contacts;

  • monitor your Support Incidents, Support Bugs, and Software Licenses.

I want to specifically chat about some of the options that are related to ESRI Support Services:


Click here to see a list of Support Incidents that have been created for your account number. The list includes the incident number, creation date, status, caller, product and subject line. You may click on any incident number with the status ‘Closed’ to see the resolution.


Why would you use this?
Example 1: You are experiencing the same issue you or a colleague had before but don’t remember how it was resolved. You can use this information to find the corresponding incident number and review the resolution text. You may be able to apply the information provided without having to contact a Support Analyst again!
Example 2: You are an authorized caller and have multiple people asking you questions. For those questions that you worked with ESRI Support Services on before, you may find the incident number, the resolution to it, and provide the same information to another person rather than opening a new Support request for them.


Click here to see a list of Support Bugs – these are software defects and enhancement requests logged as NIM numbers and linked to your incidents. The list includes the Bug ID, Submitted date, Status, Severity, and Synopsis. You may click on any Bug ID to see more information about the status of it, such as the future release or Service Pack that it may be fixed in.


Why would you use this?
Example 1: You experienced a specific software defect that you have a workaround for and want to know if it is included in the upcoming Service Pack, especially when you hear the announcement that a Service Pack is going to be released soon. If yes, it would be great news that you no longer have to use the workaround!
Example 2: An enhancement request was submitted for a suggestion you had on improving the software usability in a certain way. With ArcGIS 10 being released soon, you may want to find out if it will be included in the new version.


Click here and you will be presented with the option to get a PDF report generated and emailed to you. The report includes the quantity of licenses for each product that you have and their expiration dates.

Sample software licenses report PDF
Example of a Software Licenses Report PDF


New for ArcGIS 10! This is where you will be able to view and manage the software authorization numbers and provisioning files for the software for which you have licenses. On the overview, it shows you how many authorizations are available for the different products for which you are licensed. In the detailed view, you will see the actual Authorization Number and its status as well as the expiration date and who specifically has used that number to authorize their software. You can also combine a set of authorization numbers into a single provisioning file with the tool provided to simplify the authorization process, for example, for the case where you have licenses for multiple extensions for the same product that need to be authorized.


Example of the Authorization & Provisioning Overview


You will see the email and phone number of the person within your company who is the assigned maintenance contact, as well as who within ESRI you may contact for questions about maintenance, invoices, purchasing new products, Support services, etc.


To sum it all up, the ESRI Customer Care site provides you with all your information in one location. So, next time you’re not sure who at ESRI to contact for a specific question, or what that incident number was on that issue you had two months ago and cannot remember how it was resolved, log in to http://customers.esri.com/.


Hope this helps!!


– Hanna S., Implementation Group Lead, ESRI Support Services



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Sasquatch Alert: Downsizing ArcMap’s Memory Footprint

bigfoot crossing sign

Hello, this is Cassandra bringing you another blog about improving your performance with our software. Many ArcGIS Desktop users have noticed how much memory ArcMap takes when it is running, so today I’ve got some tips on reducing the amount of memory or memory footprint ArcMap requires:



  • An extension only consumes memory when it is enabled, so disable any unneeded extensions. For most ArcGIS Desktop extensions, navigate to Tools > Extensions in either ArcMap or ArcCatalog. Click to uncheck any unneeded extensions and click Close.



  • Uninstall any unnecessary 3rd-party plug-ins or extensions. I’ve worked with many customers who had numerous plug-ins or extensions installed that they said they weren’t ever using or were no longer using. Even if you aren’t using them, most 3rd-party tools still load when ArcMap starts, so remove any you aren’t using to help ArcMap’s performance.



  • If you are using custom code, check for memory allocation issues.



  • Reduce the number of layers in your map. ArcMap must still perform memory intensive processes on all layers that are checked on, even if they are outside the visible extent of the data frame. So, if they are not necessary, remove them.



  • When using direct connect, limit the allocation of large buffers in the SERVER_CONFIG table.



  • Finally, remember that the amount of memory available to a Windows application is marshaled by the operating system, so while you may be running a memory intensive process, you may not see ArcMap take more than a certain amount of memory available on your computer.


For more performance tips, search the Knowledge Base on ‘improve performance’. Some of my favorite knowledge base articles on this topic include KB 33325, KB 33098, and KB 34043.


-Cassandra L., Desktop Support Analyst, ESRI Support Services



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Updates from the Online Support Resources program

ESRI logo

As a part of the new ArcGIS 10 experience, we at the ESRI Support Services – Online Support Resources (ESS-OSR) program redesigned the Support Web site, added new Web 2.0 features for our customers to enjoy, and plan to launch more features between now and the ESRI User Conference (July 22nd, 2010). Here are the great new changes you can see and use right now:


Search-centric


The new large ‘Search Support Pages’ bar helps you search existing data and find solutions easily. This ‘Search Support Pages’ bar is powered by a new Google Search Appliance (GSA), which provides an excellent search experience. Using the ‘Search Support Pages’ box is the best way to reach the resources you need.


Keyword search results are now displayed in a new quadrant-based search page that gives you a quick glimpse of relevant search results from different data repositories: Documents, Communities, Service Packs and Patches, and Bugs. You can click on the link directly, or click on “View all … results” to view the full results of the type of resources that you want to see.


Support Announcements


This area provides you support-related announcements – not a marketing feed. These announcements keep you up-to-date on important bug-related announcements, patches and service packs, and new articles.


Online Support Request


This button opens the Web form for logging new incidents to ESRI Support Services.


My Support Requests (currently available only to International Distributors)


This button activates the Online Incident Management (OIM) portal, which allows you to a) create a new incident, b) see all your incidents from one centralized location, c) request escalation, d) view bugs, and e) get various reports for the Support incidents.


This functionality is currently available only to International Distributors and will be made available to users who have a valid Support contract around the UC 2010 timeframe.


Contact Technical Support


This button provides links to find contact details, such as telephone numbers, incident management sites, and technical support sites as applicable for ESRI Support Services as well as for International Distributors.


Find Resources


This button takes you to the new ArcGIS Resource Centers, where you can find information about our products, get Web help, and see knowledge base articles. You can also navigate to the knowledge base articles by clicking on the link to KB articles under Support Center Resources.


Other Links


The new design also provides users easy access to other links like the Support Blog, ArcGIS Ideas, Forums, and other Support resources.


Everyone at ESRI Support Services wants to thank you (our users) for your understanding and patience while we transition to the new Support experience. A BIG thank you goes out to our advisory group of users who helped us every step along the way by providing requirements, reviewing designs, and critiquing our work in progress.


- Sanjay L., Online Support Resources Manager – ESRI Support Services



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