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SD 7.5: Overall Feeling About Improvements Compared To 7.1 Version

Created: 08 Jan 2013 • Updated: 08 Jan 2013 | 22 comments

Hello,

I would appreciate hearing from anyone who has upgraded from SD 7.1 SP2 to SD 7.5.  The release notes did not generate much excitement with our group so we are wondering what the overall perception is from customers who have upgraded.

  • Have any major improvements been made to the Incident Management Incident window?
  •  
  • Have any major improvements been made to existing functionalities like searches, working tasks?
  •  
  • What would users of 7.1 SP2 have to look forward to when making the upgrade 7.5?

Thanks

Comments 22 CommentsJump to latest comment

Rdutch12's picture

Have you actually seen a demo of 7.5? If not, contact me and I will be glad to get something set up for your team.

One of the major changes is that most of configuration (customization) is done without changing any work flows ( web interface).

Assignments, sub tasks, SLA is redesigned as well amongst a lot of other things.

Rob Hilberding Sr. Consultant ExpressAbility www.expressability.com

Aryanos's picture

If you're thinking of upgrading to 7.5 I say wait until the next release which I hear is supposed to be scheduled around spring/summer. There's some nagging issues with it as you've probably read on here (permissions, no ability to email external contacts, subtasks only assigned to individuals, no real search form, etc) but overall it's  a pretty good improvement over 7.1 but there is still a lot of work for them to do. It's basically a version one product as they've totally revamped the workflows and data structure.

If you've done a lot of customization in your workflows then the locked down workflows might be an issue as now you'll have to build additional workflows for process actions or for it to be called in the automation rules to replace them. 

I like my beats fast and my bass down low

jpellet2's picture

Ah searching...I don't understand why this is so hard! Overall it is an improvement and if you're looking to get out of 7.1 and haven't made too many changes to the SD.IncidentManagement workflow (or change management, etc) then it might be worth the pain now seeing as they say future releases will be true upgrades. In our experience in testing the flows in 7.5 are much faster, assignments happen quickly, some of the delays are gone, we like the modifications in reassigning to a group in one step rather than multiple steps.

There are some bugs and quirks in a few places. We will be moving to 7.5 shortly as there are fewer headaches that we've seen than in 7.1 and, although it needs more work, the automation workflows being built-in to portal are a huge benefit to us.

Aryanos's picture

I still say wait until the next update before upgrading as the Send Email form is so bad you'll need to build your own workflow. You can't send an email to an external contact, you can't default the template used, the variables in the template don't change, you can't even sort the order of the email templates and you can't edit it since it's part of the Process Manager now and not a separate workflow. Yea I can build my own form but something crucial like sending email should already be done correctly for a Service Desk product. 

I like my beats fast and my bass down low

QuietLeni's picture

Aryanos,

Are you using SD 7.5 or 7.5.1 at this point? I see that a lot of issues were fixed in 7.5.1 within the Incident Management Workflows.

Kindest regards,

QuietLeni

What is the point of an Asset Management Solution that needs excessive management? Let me help you.

Aryanos's picture

I do have SD 7.5.1 installed bit the send email issues I talked about are still there. I've gone through the incident management workflow and yes there are some fixes but there's still some things that are outstanding.

I like my beats fast and my bass down low

jpellet2's picture

Agreed. We don't use the email engine that often yet so I did overlook or ignore most of the quirks but after this discussion I went back to it and it certainly has a lot of work to be done.

WK01's picture

I really appreciate all the feedback.  This has been very enlightening.

We are currently running 7.1 SP2 pretty much out-of-the-box.  We only use the Incident Management Process.  Our group has pretty much conformed to Symantec's 7.1 SP2 design (we learned to live with some of the quirks that cause us difficulty).  With that being said, can someone tell me what the expected learning curve would be for our technical group in regards to learning how the new Incident Management process works in 7.5?  Is it drastically different from the way 7.1 SP2 is OR is it built up on the that original design with improvements.

Also, any improvements to orphaning within incidents?

Thanks again for all the input

Aryanos's picture

If you don't have any customizations then it will be easier for you and your users and the learning curve won't be too high for them. The process view reports refresh right away now which is nice and the refresh issue on the pages are gone. Performance wise things seem better and I'm only using this in our test environment and as mentioned earlier the Send Email form is such a huge step back from the old one. 

However some of the task names are not very clear. 

Reassign Ticket - You think that this task would allow you to reassign a ticket to a user or a group but it doesn't. It only allows you to reassign it to a Service Queue.

Set Ownership - This is the one that actually allows you to assign it to a user

In my opinion these two tasks should really be just one and the names should be more clear like Reassign Ticket to Service Queue or something like that

Manage Related Configuration Items - what's the first thing that comes to mind when you see this task link? If it's attach equipment items then you're right but for me that's not the first thing that popped into my head

 

I like my beats fast and my bass down low

Rdutch12's picture

I think the new service queue is great thing, it assigns very fast, you have can multiple security groups assigned to a service queue and a security group can be assigned to multiple service queue's.

For a  lot of our customers I spoke with it makes perfect sense. You assign a ticket to a queue, then if needed a member of the queue can take ownership.

Yes, the send email action can be improved as mentioned, but don't let that stop you.

One other thing is that now if you go to edit incident, you can change assignment, ownership, pirority, name, description etc, all in ONE screen.

I don't think that there will be a huge learning curve, however keep in mind that you will have to Configure more in 7.5 to start. But it also gives you more freedom.

Rob Hilberding Sr. Consultant ExpressAbility www.expressability.com

Aryanos's picture

I agree, the Service Queue is great but I think the name of the tasks could be clearer as when I look at the Reassign I immediately think of reassigning it to other groups or person and not just the Service Queue. One thing I would have liked them to do is be able to assign it to the Support Queue but also be able to take Ownership of it all in one step instead of taking two similar to what's on the Edit Incident form.

I also don't understand why Symantec didn't setup basic automation rules during the install and this is something I asked about in the beta. The basic rules should be already setup and it would have only taken Symantec a day to do for such things like email user when a ticket is received, email user when a ticket has been assigned to them, email user when the ticket has been resolved, email user when a comment has been added, the basic rules that a lot of companies would already create.

Not only is it easier to delete/disable them if you don't need it but it would also show the customers how to setup the rules as they can use them as reference. It would have been an easy win for Symantec and would have showed a lot of value to customers right away but they didn't.

I like my beats fast and my bass down low

WK01's picture

That screenshot of the actions available to subtasks was very helpful.  It brings up a question.

Sometimes a Group will get a subtask with bad information like incorrect title or description.  They would like to be able to edit the title or description of the subtask (Not The Primary Task).  In 7.1, you can only edit incident details for the primary task, not the subtask.  Has that changed in 7.5?  Can the subtask title and description be edited?

 

Aryanos's picture

Nope, you still can't change the name and description of a subtask but I don't think it would be too hard for them to add that functionality or else you can build your own Process Action workflow to do that. Below is the Manage Subtasks smart task that lists the subtasks for the ticket. A way around it is to delete the subtask and then create a new one with the correct name and description.

I like my beats fast and my bass down low

WK01's picture

If I understand correctly, we would need to setup a brand new Windows server for the ServiceDesk 7.5 Workflows as well as a brand new SQL Server for the Process Manager database.   We would not be able to use the existing Windows IIS or SQL Server that we are using for 7.1 at all.  Basically new hardware (or VMs) for both 7.5 application and 7.5 database.

Aryanos's picture

Yea, no upgrade path and all new hardware. The upgrade from 7.5 to 7.5.1 was pretty painless so it bodes well for future upgrades.

I like my beats fast and my bass down low

BRING's picture

You could use your same SQL server, just not the same same database.  If that SQL server is busy with alot of oter databases then I would recommend a new SQL server as well.

 

WK01's picture

One thing that just now created some noise around here is when working a subtask in 7.1, one of our managers just input some detail into the resolution box of a subtask.  He then hit "Save and Close" not "Resolve".  When he went back to add more information and resolve it, he noticed all the information he typed was lost.  We have seen this happen a few times.   Has anyone else seen this?  Does anyone know if this has been fixed in 7.5?

Also noticed the formatting tools don't seem to work smoothly... has this been fixed in 7.5?

Aryanos's picture

Nah, they just took those functionalities right out of the subtask form. Below is all you get when working a subtask and the task description is not editable.

I like my beats fast and my bass down low

WK01's picture

Aryanos, I just read your part about the automation rules and want to make sure I interpretted that correctly.  In 7.1 all that was already working because it was part of the workflow.  In 7.5, none of that is working and must be setup after installation?

Aryanos's picture

No, it's ready out of the box but what I was referring to is that no default rules are setup for you and you have to do it all yourself.

I like my beats fast and my bass down low

WK01's picture

In 7.1, you had to go to the database directly to edit/delete Primary Task and Subtask templates.  Did they provide an interface to make these edits in 7.5?

Aryanos's picture

Yea, you don't have to do that anymore for the templates and when the ticket is resolved any remaining subtasks are removed as well. Unfortunately you can't assign subtasks to a queue, only individuals.

 

I like my beats fast and my bass down low