EaaSI Support Guide - READ ME FIRST!

Questions, bug reports, requests for documentation, and anything/everything else related to using the EaaSI platform

EaaSI provides timely and effective support to the members of the EaaSI Community. At this time, the EaaSI support team is small in size and capacity, but despite these limitations we strive to ensure users of all types and levels of expertise can put the system to use. The following outlines the scope of our support services as they continue to develop.

How to get help

Documentation

The EaaSI User Handbook is your first source for answers to most questions regarding installation and use of the EaaSI system.

Forum

The EaaSI Community Forum serves as a platform to post support requests, discuss topics related to EaaSI and emulation, and contribute to the growing body of knowledge regarding emulation, software preservation, and the EaaSI system. The Forum is a space for collaboration as we all become more familiar with the uses of EaaSI and as the system itself develops new capabilities.

The EaaSI Community Forum is open to the public and we ask and expect all users to behave with courtesy and in a professional manner according to the Forum’s social rules. Members of the EaaSI program staff will moderate discussions to ensure users adhere to these guidelines.

The Community Forum is broken down into categories and relevant information regarding the EaaSI program of work and workflows may be found in different locations depending on the flow of discussion. However, for questions or issues regarding the functionality of the EaaSI system, and to ensure a prompt and guaranteed response from EaaSI support staff, users and community members should open a topic via the “Support Center” section of the Forum.

How to start a support request

1. Document your issue

If it helps, get out a piece of paper or open a text file and write down everything you can remember about what you were doing when your problem happened. Also try to write down the exact wording of any error messages you received (take a screenshot if possible!) and/or download the available error report.

2. Try to reproduce your problem

Return to EaaSI, try to do the same thing you attempted before, and see if you can do it again. If you can, attempt to reproduce it in other ways - can the same action be completed using a different button in the menu?

3. Search the forum

It is likely that your issue has been experienced by other users and is being discussed or was solved in an existing post. Always search the forum before posting to see if a previous conversation has answered your question! If your post is repetitive, EaaSI support staff will direct you to the relevant conversation in the forum.

4. Describe your issue

If you still haven’t found an answer to your question, tell us about your problem in a new topic in the Support Center. Please provide as many of the following details as you can in your post:

  • Deployment: Local or Hosted

  • EaaSI Version: This corresponds to the eaasi-installer/release branch used to deploy your instance

  • Browser: The name and version number of the browser used to access the EaaSI UI

  • Description: Please describe your issue in detail (including the name/ID of any relevant environments, software, or content). You can also attach screenshots or relevant error report files.

  • Expected vs Actual Outcome: What did you expect to occur as a result of the steps taken? What was the actual outcome?

  • Reproducibility: Were you able to reproduce the issue in Step 2? If so, what steps did you take to do so?

  • Urgency: Please indicate how urgently this issue needs to be addressed? Is there a timeline or deadline (e.g., upcoming demo, researcher request, etc.) that we should be aware of?

5. Staff or community response

Within 48 hours, EaaSI support staff will attempt to respond to your issue with a solution or follow up questions to better understand the issue. Your post will be tagged according to subject (installation, login, search, etc.), so that other users may more easily find the discussion in the future. If a solution is not provided within 48 hours of initial response or followup, the issue will be escalated as a bug report in our GitLab issue tracker (see below).

Other users and community members may also answer questions and provide input. We encourage all users to respond with relevant solutions to common problems experienced with the system.

Issue Tracking

If a reported problem is not easily solved through discussion in the Community Forum, is unique to one node’s infrastructure, and/or requires additional development by the team at OpenSLX, an issue will be created in our GitLab repository and shared to the node administrator (and other relevant staff) for tracking and discussion. The support team will work with you to determine the approach and timeline for a solution.

Closing Issues and Support Requests

When EaaSI support staff believe that a user’s issue or support request has been satisfactorily resolved, they will mark an appropriate post in the Community Forum topic as “Solution”. The forum topic will remain open for approximately one (1) additional week from the time a Solution is marked, to give the user time to reply in case there are further issues and the issue must be re-opened or if they do not feel the request was adequately resolved.

If a week has passed since a marked Solution with only 1) no response from the user, or 2) positive confirmation from the user that the issue or request has been resolved, the topic will be Closed to further replies. Users who wish to re-open a ticket that has been Closed should open a new topic but refer/link back to the original thread in question, if possible.

Out of Scope

  • We are unable to provide training or support on the use of the underlying technologies that EaaSI relies upon such as Docker and Ansible.

  • EaaSI support staff will answer questions related to infrastructure configuration and deployment troubleshooting, but are unable to provide remote configuration support on node infrastructure (i.e., through a VPN connection).

  • Questions regarding use of preserved software within an EaaSI environment should be posted to the The Software Center, a sub-board for community assistance with older applications that are no longer in support from their makers (e.g. older Microsoft, Adobe, Autodesk products, etc) . EaaSI team members will respond to such questions as quickly as possible but will prioritize requests in The Support Center.