Maybe you have seen the dialog that pops up most times when you crash AutoCAD 2004 (see images below). This is titled the AutoCAD Error Report and we call it the Customer Error Report (CER).
The report when sent contains:
* Operating System name and version
* Product name and version
* ARX applications that were loaded when the error occurred
* Active command when the error occurred
I hope that when you get one presented to you that you take the time to send it in and also make sure to add more information by selecting the Optional Data button. Please enter data such as your contact details and any known steps to reproduce the problem or any clues.
These reports have resulted in a very stable AutoCAD 2004 shipping product. Many of the AutoCAD 2004 CER submissions went into what we solved in AutoCAD 2004 Service Pack 1a.
Here is a Microsoft quote on error reporting:
"We've been amazed by the patterns revealed in the error reports that customers are sending us, About 20 percent of the bugs cause 80 percent of all errors, and -- this is stunning to me -- one percent of bugs cause half of all errors.
Steve Ballmer- Chief Executive of Microsoft”
It is easy to see that if you identify the most common problems and address those then you can significantly increase the customer experience and stability.
Just last week I called by phone the number one CER submitting company. Of course it is not a great award or position to be number one in this case but the customer did find out that over 75% of all CER report issues they submitted were addressed with the AutoCAD 2004 Service Pack 1a. The customer is now happy and rolling out the Service Pack to their users. Their CER reports were a factor in us finding tjhe problem and then we solved it.
In some cases we need sample drawings or steps so it is very important for you to communicate to all of your fellow AutoCAD 2004 users to add the optional data and details. I will continue to contact the customers that show up as high CER reports and see what we can do in order to solve the issues.
In the future we will have the persistent text fields so you are not required to fill out every field each and every time.
Thank you for submitting the reports and please keep it up so we can keep the problems down.
Technical Marketing Mgr. & Beta Programs Mgr
Direct (415) 507-8432
Helpful Tip: I used SnagIt 7 from techsmith.com to create the screen grabs. This is a tool I use daily as a picture says a thousand words and I am not always good with words. ;-)