The Business Analytics family continues to grow with the recent additions of OpenPages and Clarity, and the onboarding of SPSS being a fairly recent event as well. Fortunately, these are times of change and there are a great many improvements being made to the online self support resources available to customers.
That said, ibm.com is a very big place and it's all too easy to get lost whether you're brand new to IBM or you've been with us for ages. For that reason, we put together a companion BA Support site
in order to help all our customers become familiar with the IBM Support Portal - just about the only bookmark a customer needs to search the knowledge base, view product advisories, download products and fixpacks, log Service Requests and get access to a whole host of other Support related resources.
To have a look, please visit ibm.com/analytics/support
where you'll find a number of videos on topics related to the configuration of Support Portal search, downloads, service requests, and all things related to your Support needs. When you're ready, there is a link to the IBM Support Portal in the bottom right corner on every page within this site, or simply go to ibm.com/supportportal
Once you've entered one or more products that you work with, the rest is easy. All the portlets will have content pertaining only to the product(s) you have configured and selected at the moment. Everything else on ibm.com is filtered out - and with over 4,000 distinct products and more than 10 million pages of information, that is a lot of clutter to get rid of. Perhaps most importantly, if you search for content related to your products using the search box in the top right corner within the Support Portal window (not the ibm.com wide search box in the top banner!), you will only get results that are hard-tagged with your product(s), and from there you can filter the results further based on the document metadata such as product version, document type, and functional task/topic.
We have been helping BA customers who have gotten lost or frustrated when trying to find things on ibm.com for quite a while, and without exception they go away pleased once they see how things work and where they need to go. Quite often, we only need to provide them to the BA Support site link (ibm.com/analytics/support
) to get them on the right path. That said, there are a few tips I'd like to share based on the feedback we've received recently.
The first tip is a way to make it easier to help the other people within your organization.Tip #1: Send your colleagues a pre-configured Support Portal
Once you enter one or more products
in Support Portal, you can then easily share that configuration by clicking the "Share this product list
" link that appears right below the product list. This generates an email with a parameterized URL in your default email client which you can then share.Tip #2: Customize "your" Support Portal
If you think Support Portal is too "crowded", or you'd like to have all the links on the default Support Home page/view, then just re-arrange things any way you'd like.
In order to add or delete portlets or move them around to create your customized view, you will need to sign in to Support Portal. Beyond the ability to customize your very own Support Portal, signing in means that configuration will be saved between sessions, regardless of what computer you access the site from. It also means you are that much closer to accessing the entitled content areas such as product downloads, the Service Request tool and content like open APARs (defect records).
Some customers have found it quite helpful to just remove everything from the Support Home page/view and then drag and drop the portlets of interest to them from the Customize this page section in the right navbar.
In less than a minute, you can re-arrange everything to create your very own Support Portal, customized to have exactly the information and links you need at your fingerprints, all within a single page view. And it will be there just the way you left it each time you sign in, regardless of where you're accessing it from.
Tip #3: You can take it with you!
Although it's still in Beta, you can enjoy the IBM Support mobile version when you're away from the office, or would rather be using your tablet or handheld mobile device. It's a great way to stay on top of your Service Requests, Notifications and product Flashes and Alerts. You can also search the knowledge base from within this one simplified view.
We hope you find these tips and links useful and look forward to providing more in upcoming issues of the Business Analytics Supportlink. Keep the feedback coming!