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Avalara Help Center

Support Case Information Requirements

 

 

This document applies to all license types.  Content last updated 11/13/2017.
Help Center documentation is confidential and proprietary to Avalara clients.

Gather as much information as possible when first opening the case to expedite the resolution. 

High-level information

This is critical user information that we need in every case opened to Support.

  1. Start a word processing document and then copy & paste the following information into it. When finished, you will attach that document to your case after you create it.
  2. Copy & paste the Web address (URL) ProductionUAT (test), or self-hosted (deployed).
    SnagIt0810.jpg
  3. Select the affected company (some customers have more than one) and then copy & paste the Company Name from the dropdown in the upper left corner into the word processing document. 
    SnagIt0839.jpg
  4. Copy & paste the user name from the upper right corner into the word processing document.
    Note: If this problem does not affect you, provide the user name of the person experiencing the issue. 
    SnagIt0801.jpg
  5. Copy and paste the Tax session, if applicable.
    • Click the Tax Session in question and choose Schedule Transactions from the context menu.
    • Below the menu, copy & paste the tax session (highlighted in yellow, below) into the word processing document.
      SnagIt0846.jpg

Self-hosted (deployed) installations

Self-hosted (deployed) installations need to include detailed information on the environment, since Support does not have visibility to it.  A back-end user login is needed to retrieve this information.

Important: Include this information for all application and web servers.

  1. From each web server, copy & paste a full-page screen shot that includes the version in the lower right corner of the page.
    full_page_with_version.png
  2. Services
    • Go to Admin > System Diagnostic > Services and Queue Tables.
    • Attach screenshots that include the entire grid on the Service Heartbeats tab.
    • Are the services running?  If any are not:
      • For any service not running (grid row with a red X in the first column), attach an export file from Admin > Audit Log filtered to the last heartbeat time.   
      • Filter the Event Name to 100.Exception and click on the grow row with an error.
      • Click once in the large field at the bottom.
      • Select all (CTRL+A), copy (CTRL+C) and paste (CTRL+V) the entire text of each error exactly as it appears on your screen into the word processing document.
        SnagIt0850.jpg
  3. Database
    • Go to Admin > System Diagnostic > Database Version.
    • In the Database Name dropdown select each database in turn (ZMSAudit, ZMSClient, ZMSControl).
      Note: It is possible, but uncommon, for the names to be slightly different.
      SnagIt0851.jpg
    • Scroll down until you see the Database Table Versions tab.
    • Select the most recent version from dropdown display.
      Tip: They may not be sorted in the order you expect.
      Database_Table_Versions.png
    • Export the grid results to Excel.

Reproducing the error

Checklist of questions to answer before opening a case to Support:

  1. Can the user reproduce the error? 
    • If so, list the steps.
    • List any troubleshooting steps taken, and the results.
  2. What was the user's expected results?
  3. Does it occur in Production or UAT test environment?
  4. When was the last time it worked? 
    • What changed since it worked last?
      • Example: software release, new computer, firewall upgrade
  5. Does it happen for more than one user? 
    • If no, what is the username affected?
  6. On what browser and version is the error?
    • Do you have the same problem if another browser is used?
      • Supported browsers are Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox and Google Chrome.

Self-hosted (deployed) installations

Include this additional information.

  1. Have there been any recent network or server changes?
  2. If it only happens for one user, note the roles assigned to working and non-working users.
  3. How is a working vs. a non-working user configured?
    • Include a screenshot showing Jurisdiction access and Company access.

Information from specific filing steps

Return generation

Gather return generation information in addition to the high-level information.

  1. Affected Product Codes.
  2. Specific line on the return.
  3. Export and attach the return history log.
    • The log is located in the Session Details of the return generation.
       SnagIt0804.jpg
  4. Copy of the PDF return, if one is created.
  5. Screenshot of the manual entry screen of at least one affected record, if applicable.  
    • Click the grid row of the tax session and select Schedule Transactions.
    • Choose the Schedule Code from the dropdown to find the actual transaction record.
      SnagIt0828.jpg
  6. If taxpayer preferences are overridden, a screenshot showing the new values.
  7. If applicable schedule validation rules are overridden, a screenshot of each of the overridden rules.

Self-hosted (deployed) installations

Deployed clients details about their technical environment.  A back-end user login is needed to retrieve this information.

  1. Data load file for the applicable session.
  2. For each server, web, application, or DB: 
    • What is the OS Version and when were the latest patches installed?
      • For web servers, what is the IIS Version and when were latest patches installed?
      • For DB servers, what is database version and when were latest patches installed?
    • Gather the disk space, memory, CPU usage information
    • How many instances are installed on each machine?
    • Which authentication method is used to sign in?
      • Example: Forms based, AD, SSO
    • Has any new software been installed on any of the servers, or changes made to:
      • load balancer
      • virus scan
      • firewall
      • network
  3. If the issue is in UAT:
    • Where did the data originate – copy from Production or another source?
    • When was this data last used?
    • Was the date manipulated to reflect current filing session?
      • If so, how old is the data?
  4. The Support team may request various configuration files from one or more of these locations:
  5. Application Services:
    • Website:
      • Website config files are at the root of the website, named web.config.
      • All other config files are 1 level deeper in the folder named Configuration: appSettings.config, connectionStrings.sql.config, email.config, logging.sql.config, membership.sql.config, sessionstate.sql.config.
    • Application Services:
      • Application service config files are at the root of the Service folder, named Zytax.ZMS.Services.<servicename>.client.exe.config.
      • All other config files are 1 level deeper in the folder named Configuration.  This includes AppSettings.config, ConnectionStrings.sql.config, email.config, logging.sql.config, sessionstate.sql.config.

eFile

Gather eFile information in addition to the high-level information.

What step of the eFile process:

  • Generation
  • Extract
  • Transmission 
  • Rejection by the jurisdiction
  1. Screenshot showing the eFile create options when you clicked Add New Record.
    SnagIt0802.jpg
  2. If taxpayer preferences are overridden, a screenshot showing the new values.
  3. If applicable schedule validation rules are overridden, a screenshot of each of the overridden rules.

Self-hosted (deployed) install

Include this additional information.

  1. The eFile, if one is created.
  2. Export the eFile history log.
    • The log is located on the eFile Viewer page.
      SnagIt0803.jpg

Import

Gather this in addition to the high-level information.

  1. Import type:
  2. Screenshot of the error message.
  3. An Excel file containing a few of the affected import records.
    • Include any scenarios and/or profiles that affect the data sent.
    • Use Express View to select Scenario Details by jurisdiction, apply filters to display the scenarios used, and export it to Excel.
  4. If using the Schedule Transaction Importer application, what version?
  5. The transmission log, located on the third tab of the Importer.
    image.png
  6. If an import batch job failed or has missing records:
    • SaaS users, send the EXACT import file name and time/date stamp.
    • The userid that attempted the import.

Self-hosted (deployed) install

Include this additional information.

  1. Click Admin > System Activity and click the grid row of the failed batch.
    SnagIt0831.jpg
  2. Click the History Log tab.
    • Send the data import settings.  Filter on 'settings' in the Message column and export the results.
      SnagIt0792.jpg

Schedule Transporter Importer (STI) application users

In all instances: 

  1. Compare the versions in the lower left and lower right corners of the STI application (example). They must be within 2 versions of the current version.
    • For example, if 5.29.xx is current, you must use version 5.27, 5.28 or 5.29 of the Schedule Transaction Importer application.
    • Current version is the recommended version.
  2. Copy and past a screenshot of the entire STI application (example).
  3. Find the folder where the STI application is installed. If you can't attach contents of the entire folder, get the following three files from the Configuration folder:
    • Right-click on the shortcut used to start the STI application and click Properties.
    • The STI application's folder is in the Target field.
    • Navigate to that folder and then ZIP the entire Configuration folder.
    • If you cannot ZIP the entire file, then ZIP these 3 files from the Configuration folder.
      • AppSettings.config
      • ConnectionStrings.sql.config
      • ZyTax.ZMS.DataServices.Properties.Settings.config
    • Attach that ZIP file to your support case.
    • If using a custom mapper, include its version.
      • Look for a file ending with .dll in the same folder as the Schedule Transaction Importer application.
      • Right click on the .dll file, choose the Details tab
      • Copy & paste a screenshot of the Details tab into your word processing document.

 

excisehelpcenter@avalara.com

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