This morning I woke up and found in my inbox our partner’s request about attachments that SCUtils Email Connector adds to manual activities. Many of you know that the manual activity’s form in Microsoft System Center 2012 Service Manager does not have a Related Items tab. SCUtils Email Connector has an option to add the attachments from email messages related to SCSM Activities. But you cannot see and open the attached files in the manual activity’s form. That is why SCUtils Email Connector lets you attach the files to the activity’s parent work items (including Sequential and Parallel Activities) that have the Related Items.
Recently we have received a request from a customer that wanted to use our free product, SCUtils File Attachment, to let end users open file attachments related to the knowledge articles. Sometimes it is suitable to attach files like Word templates, scripts, large documents rather than place all these things into an internal content of a knowledge article. The customer planned to put direct links to the file attachments inside knowledge articles but did not want to query a SCSM SQL database each time to find InstanceID to create a link like this:
Yesterday I participated in the Service Manager Customer LyncUp call and even typed two messages. I expected to see a road map for the Service Manager vNext but my expectations remain my expectations. However, I noticed that some people asked the product team about a feature request/bug fix that would allow editing the LDAP query filters of Active Directory connectors in Microsoft System Center 2012 Service Manager. Currently you have to create a new connector because those settings are grayed out.
After SCUtils FileAttachment was released, we started to receive questions about the use of this add-on. For those who can use Orchestrator to send the notification, using the solution is a very simple and straight task. But if you want to use the notification templates of Microsoft System Center 2012 Service manager, it could be a bit complex thing.
The reality proves that the comprehensive and up-to-date knowledge base is an essential and laborious tool. We can accumulate tons of the resolved incidents with detailed (sometimes not so detailed) resolutions but our knowledge base may stay a desert. Some of the ITIL implementers think that an ability to edit the knowledge article in the web browser can change the status quo but the experienced practitioners know for sure that only a complete and present-day “how-to-do” database can encourage the end users to search in the KBs before creating a ticket.
In my previous post, I published a notification workflow that informs an assigned IT analyst about a new assignment to a Manual Activity with “In Progress” status. Soon I got a feedback that it would be fine if the workflow also sends an email for the users assigned to Review Activities.
It is quite easy to create a notification workflow to notify an assigned IT analyst when Manual Activity becomes “In Progress”. But sometimes it’s required to assigned the user when Manual Activity is already “In Progress”. You can create a notification that is triggered when the user is assigned (‘addrelationship’). But if you don’t want to bother people before the action, you have to check the activity’s status before the notification.
When you delete Exchange Connector management pack without prior deleting the connector’s instances, you get the orphaned connectors in the SCSM console that you cannot delete. Even after you import the Exchange Connector management pack back, the situation stays as bad as before.
For the beginning, let’s invite you in our recent history. In our first project with Service Manager we used Microsoft System Center Service Manager 2010. And not surprising, our customer insisted that SLA target resolution time for each ticket had to be adjusted in accordance with the customer’s working schedule and calendar. SCSM 2010 did not provide this functionality and we built our first complex customization for Service Manager.
Last year we published a post about creating a report that presents the results of the satisfaction survey for Incidents in Microsoft System Center 2012 Service Manager. The blog’s post described the steps required to create a similar report for Service Requests. However, not all of our customers have enough time and skills to deal with reporting in the SCSM.
As many of you know, in Service Manager 2012 it is not easy to find out who exactly marked a Manual Activity as Completed. This information can be found in the history of the Manual Activity where the user is mentioned in the form of so-called 'Down-Level Logon Name' or DOMAIN\UserName. Needless to say that sometimes it is hard to realize that Contoso\josmi is actually John Smith.
Many SCSM customizers who use Service Manager with non-US regional settings and try to set DateTime value using SMLets cmdlets in PowerShell scripts meet ‘String was not recognized as a valid DateTime’ error.
Last week one of our customers asked how to get a person who actually completed a manual activity. After some investigation, I’ve realized that the only source of that information is a history log of the manual activity.