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How to create a Cloud Foundry Support Ticket successfully

Environment

Product Version
Pivotal Cloud Foundry all
Pivotal Ops Manager all
Pivotal Cloud Foundry Services all

Purpose

This article discusses how to open a successful support ticket for Pivotal Cloud Foundry. The purpose is to show what information is required so that Pivotal Support can address your ticket in the quickest and most efficient manner possible.

Instructions

Prerequisites

Prior to opening a ticket, there are a few steps that Pivotal recommends you take.

  1. Check the product documentation. Many common problems can be resolved by reviewing our fine documentation.  Not finding what you want? Try searching for the specific topic that is causing your trouble.  Our documentation has search built-in to help you more quickly find what you need.
  2. Check our Knowledge Base. The Knowledge Base contains articles written by Pivotal Support Engineers to address many of the common issues that we have encountered while working with a customer on Pivotal Cloud Foundry. You can browse or search the KB articles at the link above.
  3. Register for an account with Pivotal Support. To open support tickets, you must have a registered account with us. The process is easy and only needs to be done once. You can find instructions here.

Opening a Ticket

The act of opening a ticket with Pivotal Support is straightforward and documented here. However, knowing what questions to ask or knowing what information to include on the ticket is not always as easy. Consider using the following tips to both increase the success of your ticket and the speed at which your ticket can be resolved.

Define the Problem

It's critical for Pivotal Support to understand the nature and scope of the problem that you are experiencing, so when opening a ticket please start by providing a precise description of the problem. Pivotal suggests that you include as much of the following information as possible:

  • A brief description of the problem. Try to describe the symptoms of the problem clearly, carefully and using proper terminology.
  • Include details about any relevant recent changes to the platform
  • Indicate any articles that you have already read and any troubleshooting steps that you have already taken
  • Indicate the impact and scope of this issue on your platform. Is the whole platform down or just part of it? Is one application failing or are all applications failing? Is one app failing to push or are multiple? Properly conveying the impact and scope of the problem you're seeing will help Support to focus in on the specific issue more quickly.

Include Supporting Information

Please include the following information when relevant:

  • List the software and full version numbers (x.y.z) being used.  For PCF this would minimally include the version of Ops Manager & Elastic Runtime, but should also include any installed tiles and their versions too.
  • List the IaaS being used and it's version information.
  • Indicate if this is a Dev / QA / production environment.
  • Provide any relevant details about the environment in which the problem is occurring. For example but not limited to: the load balancer being used, description of network layout, details about hardware & storage and / or any non-standard or unsupported changes that have been made to the platform like when running OSS CF, running without Ops Manager or running custom tiles.  
  • Provide step-by-step instructions on how Pivotal Support can reproduce the problem that you are experiencing.
  • Include the exact message for any errors that you are seeing. Either copy and paste the message or take a screenshot of it.
  • Post screenshots of the Status page for each tile deployed in Ops Manager or the output of `bosh vms --details` [link].
  • If any VMs on the Status pages are listed in red or if `bosh vms` lists any VMs as "failing", obtain and attach logs from the problematic VMs. Instructions for obtaining logs can be found here [link].
  • If you are having installation or upgrade problems...
    • Attach a copy of the most recent installation log.
    • If the installation fails to indicate that a particular bosh task failed, run`bosh task <number> --debug` and attach the output.

Additional Information

Here are some additional pointers for interacting with Pivotal Support.

  • When sending text and logs to Pivotal, please attach them to the ticket instead of copy and pasting them into the ticket. Our ticket system has a limit on the size of posts and will truncate large logs and text output.
  • Files up to 20M can be attached directly to the ticket. Files over 20M can be attached to the ticket if you split them into 20M chunks [link] or you can request a SendSafely link through the support ticket and upload the file there.
  • Please stick with standard formats when sending information to Pivotal. Upload files as plain text and screenshots as PNG, JPG or PDF. Whenever possible, do not use rich text files or Microsoft Word documents.

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