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Here at PARSEC Group, our Technical Support Teams – OpenVMS, Unix and Linux – receive several new trouble/support calls from customers daily.
We – your Support Team specialists – want to provide timely and efficient feedback and resolutions for any and all technical issues, but we need your help to do so, as you'll be our “eyes-&-hands” with your computer system.
Here's how you can help us to make each case resolutions effective and efficient…
firstname.lastname@example.org, or inquire at www.parsec.com/about/inquire.php.
For immediate assistance, and especially for urgent issues (system down, performance or operational impact, etc.),
call PARSEC's 24×7 Support Line:
866-372-7732 (or 866-3PA-RSEC)
If you've registered as a PARSEC Member, you can also log a new case at www.parsec.com/members.
This call will be answered quickly by a non-technical support representative; their job is to get basic contact information, a quick problem description, and then get you in contact with the next-available tech-support specialist from the PARSEC Support Team for your operating system.
Have the following contact information at-the-ready:
For less-than-urgent issues – things that you want to check out or ask a question about – send an email message to one of these:
email@example.com– Monitored by all operating system teams
firstname.lastname@example.org– OpenVMS issues only
email@example.com– Unix, AIX, HP-UX, TRU64 (and other variants)
firstname.lastname@example.org– Linux, any distro or flavor
Include the same contact information and brief problem description as above.
A specialist from the Tech Support team for your operating system will get back to you either by email (likely) or telephone.
Please be prepared to provide these basic items of “getting started” information to the PARSEC VMS Tech Support specialist who answers your call:
1. Is the system with the problem you're reporting actually on a current support contract?
2. What is the:
All of the above can be displayed with either of these commands:
Command symbol (for your LOGIN.COM) and its invocation:
$ sysin*fo == "PIPE show system /noprocess " - + "; write sys$output "" Architecture = ''F$GETSYI("ARCH_NAME")'"" " - + "; show cpu /full | SEARCH sys$pipe ""Serial Number"" " - + "; show memory /physical | SEARCH sys$pipe ""Physical Memory"" /WINDOW=(0,1)" $ sysinfo
Just cut-&-paste the following long line onto your DCL command line (all of it; this command is identical to the one above), then hit
PIPE show system /noprocess - ; write sys$output " Architecture = ''F$GETSYI("ARCH_NAME")'" - ; show cpu /full | SEARCH sys$pipe "Serial Number" - ; show memory /physical | SEARCH sys$pipe "Physical Memory" /WINDOW=(0,1)
Hint: Use your mouse to select all four lines above. When the whole command is selected, enter
Ctrl/C to copy it to your paste-buffer. Then go to your terminal window logged into VMS (e.g., your PuTTY session), and enter
Shift+Insert to paste this text into the command line… hit
Enter to execute the command.
In either case, you'll see something like this:
OpenVMS V8.4 on node CLASS8 6-SEP-2018 15:07:27.74 Uptime 51 05:30:49 Architecture = IA64 Primary CPU = 0 HWRPB CPUs = 2 Page Size = 8192 Revision Code = Serial Number = (virt.) US42779094 Serial Number..: 0001c606a2cad9bc Serial Number..: 000266ffb74dbc96 Physical Memory Usage (pages): Total Free In Use Modified Main Memory (1.99GB) 262096 46466 211634 3996
When you run either of these commands, just cut-&-paste the resulting output into an email message for us, typically in response to the PARSEC's introductory email,
Subject: Case XXXX has been logged for YourCompanyName by VMStechName.
Be sure that all of your email correspondence about this case includes the “Case XXXX” (where XXXX is your case number) as the first two words of the Subject: line.
Your initial communication of the problem, whether by phone-conversation or email message, to the VMS Tech Support specialist who answers your call must include:
3. A simple, concise and focused description of the problem.
Stay objectively focused on what's happening, on symptoms, not on what you want fixed, or on what you “think is wrong.”
a) Good: "When a user attempts a directory command on disk DQA1:, he gets an error message, device not ready." Bad: "We're getting a not-ready message."
b) Good: "Last night's routine BACKUP command file failed, and when I investigated this morning, I've found a flashing red-LED light on disk DKA100. I've got the BACKUP command file script for you if needed." Bad: "I guess backups are failing... Can you fix it for me?"
c) Good: "One of my authorized users, JSMITH, cannot login to VMS using SSH from her PC and a PuTTY terminal emulator. She last logged in two days ago using Telnet. Can you help me troubleshoot this?" Bad: "Users can't login, my system's down."
4. Where available (and this is nearly all the time), be ready to provide exact VMS error messages, or error message text from whatever layered software or third-party software is failing.
Also, where possible, provide the exact DCL (command line) command which is generating the error. Can the problem be reproduced at-will?
a) Good: $ directory /size /date $32$dqa1:[bjones] %DIRECT-E-OPENIN, error opening $32$DQA1:[BJONES]*.*;* as input -RMS-E-DNR, device not ready, not mounted, or unavailable Bad: "We get a bad-directory error."
5. The PARSEC VMS Technical Support specialist will contact you within your support contract's SLA window, either by phone or by email. Your specialist will likely follow your case all the way through to resolution, although s/he will likely consult with the rest of the VMS team as needed, and draw on the team's overall experience and expertise.
Because you've previously provided the information specified in Step 2 (above), exchanging this additional information will be much more efficient.
During the initial contact, your specialist will likely ask questions to clarify understanding of the problem, and will also ask you to provide and/or generate additional information about the problem, the operational environment, and the VMS system itself.
You may be asked to execute one or several DCL commands at the
$-prompt – it is always best to do these commands from the privileged SYSTEM account, or from another sys-admin account (such as your own) which can activate the necessary VMS privileges.
Your tech specialist will rely on you for “eyes-&-hands” on the system, so be careful to execute the commands/requests s/he makes and to cut-&-paste all relevant output, plus any other information which can help shed light on the problem and its solution/resolution.
Your specialist may repeat the email requests for additional information as the overall picture of the problem emerges and builds. Be patient, but also be forthcoming with additional information if/as things do occur to you which might help. More information is (usually) better than less…
6. As soon as a clear picture of the problem emerges from this conversation, your specialist – backed by the PARSEC Tech Support team – will usually offer a best-effort diagnosis of what the root problem is, what may have caused it, and how to remedy or repair the problem. Proscriptive (preventive) steps may also be offered. It will be up to you to implement whatever steps and/or remedies your specialist will offer.
7. Your Tech Support specialist will likely ask you for permission to close the case when you both agree that a successful resolution has been reached. It's okay to confirm permission to close at this point.
Of course, any previously closed case can be re-opened with a future recurrence of the problem, or to supply more newly-available information if/as needed.