This information is designed to help you increase your chances of receiving timely and effective answers. The discussions in this article are with all community forums in mind, so the basic principles can apply for any forum.
When you experience a problem with an SDL product and you need help quickly, forums can be excellent resource for finding that help. If you design your question effectively, you can get good information from people who are knowledgeable about the topic and who are happy to help you.
Important: Before you take any troubleshooting steps, make sure that you back up all your important data.
Collect information relevant to your question
You want to design your question effectively. The question has to catch the attention of the best person for the answer, and it should be short and to the point so that you don't overwhelm the people reviewing your post.
Follow this checklist when you write your forum posting:
- In the subject line, type a brief description of your problem or question. For example: "my screen is black" or "Trados 2017 does not update." A subject line that says only "I need help" will not catch the attention of someone who may be familiar with your particular situation.
- In the body of the posting, describe the problem or question. Include all necessary details but no unnecessary ones. A short description is easier to understand and will save the reviewer time.
- If you’re issue is related to an error include the exact text of any error messages that you receive
- If possible, include the steps to reproduce the problem, as in the following example:
- I turn on the software.
- The startup screen appears.
- After the startup screen, nothing happens.
- If possible include a snapshot of your screen so the issue is visible in context
- Include a basic description of your system, as relevant to the problem. For example, include the following:
- The operating system version
- Version of the software you’re using
- Any other relevant information for the issue.
It may be difficult to determine some of the specifications.
Add a thank-you line.
This may seem obvious, but it’s easy to overlook, and it’s important to be courteous and polite in the forums.
After a successful resolution of your problem, follow up the original online discussion by posting or marking the solution. This helps other people find solutions to their own problems. Also, if a specific posting was helpful, mark the posting and remember to thank the person who posted that suggestion.
Additional troubleshooting methods
SDL Forums are moderated by SDL employees and questions are normally followed up in a timely matter. However If your issue is of high priority, consider contacting the SDL Support department.