Raptorix

Today i came back from a 2 week holiday, before my holiday i had to investigate or InfoPath could be of use of one of our customers, i installed infopath 2007, and was looking for some developer tools for VS2005, since we want to use infopath serverside/webbased.

After installing several servicepacks (why are those not advised in the microsoft updates ) i finally got what i want! (took me 4 hours). Using infopath in VS, but when creating a blank infopath c# solution i get some stupid memory error. Offcourse there is no clear error, like in 99% of all MS errors it only tells what's the problem, not what's causing it, and offcourse not how to fix it!

After using The Google for 2 hours, i gave up, since the error could be caused by everything.

Day is over, and the next day i thought, why not trying to install it on a Fresh Virtual Machine which i had stored on my PC, so started to install VS2005, patches, etc. And Finally WOOOOOHOOOO the developerpack, and offcourse another error, something like locales not compatible, WTF, i only use us/english software, so stuck again.

So wasted another 3 hours, finally i spended 1 extra hour to submit the bug at feetback:

http://connect.microsoft.com/VisualStudio/feedback/ViewFeedback.aspx FeedbackID=245806

Ok almost holiday, so lets post this bug, and watch after my holiday.

Today, 3 weeks later, i checked the results:

0: votes,Validation: 0/0 Workarounds: 0

SO is there any person at Microsoft even looking to the problems customers encounter

But its good for me, i reported to my chief, that the product sucks, that the support is ill, and the whole platform is buggy.

Great work guys, keep up the good work!



Re: Visual Studio Tools for Office Is Microsoft taking problems serious?

Geoff Darst - MSFT

Hi,

I'm sorry to hear you are having trouble with your InfoPath project. I want to assure you that Microsoft does care about its customers and their problems and if you will give us a chance, we'll do whatever we can to take care of you. The issue here is that you just haven't been seeking support in the right place. If you need support directly from Microsoft on VSTO, you can get it here: http://support.microsoft.com/oas/default.aspx &c1=501&gprid=10285. This page documents how to get support either via e-mail or telephone. While support options are pay per incident, you get do some free incidents per license.

In addition, you can seek support by posting your question to the forums. While you are not guaranteed a response by Microsoft, we do stay involved here. In addition, the community is very active so even if you don't get an answer from us, somebody else is very likely to be able to help you.

As far as the product feedback center goes, we absolutely care about your feedback and we value it greatly. However, it is not a support channel. We do look at all bugs that customers file, but we make no guarantees about when this will happen. Ideally, you should get an acknowledgment that we have received the bug within a few days of filing it, but it may be a while before we are actually able to look at it. For example, when we are at a point in the product cycle when we are focused on developing features for the next version we typically do not spend much time investigating incoming bugs. Once we do investigate the bug, typically you will not get much more information beyond the resolution of the bug (i.e. that we will fix it, that it "by design" behavior, etc). To be clear, we very much value this feedback and when you take the time to submit a bug you are helping to make the product better. But if you need support, you should use the support channels available to you.

If you are still interested in resolving this issue, I would suggest either talking with our support staff directly (see the link above) or reposting this as a question in the forums. I'm sorry that the error isn't clear, but there isn't any way that it can be made to be clear; acess violations are completely unexpected conditions. More than likely, you have a problem with the way your machine is set up. It would help to know exactly what versions of Visual Studio, VSTO, and Office you have on your machine along with a list of the service packs you installed. It would also be useful to know the install order. Finally, a stack trace of the crash might be helpful as well. If you attach a debugger to Visual Studio prior to trying to create the project and load public symbols (go here for instructions on how to download Microsoft public symbols: http://support.microsoft.com/kb/311503/) you can generate a stack trace that could be helpful.

I'm not particularly familiar with Infopath projects in VSTO, but I'm guessing with the above information provided someone will be able to help you.

Sincerely,

Geoff Darst

Microsoft VSTO Team





Re: Visual Studio Tools for Office Is Microsoft taking problems serious?

Raptorix

Well the problem is not only that i reported it on the wrong place, but that its totally unclear WHERE i have to report it.

I can understand that submitted problems are not fixed/read within one day, but after several WEEKS, there is still no response, well thats a good motivation for people to keep bugs submitting :(

Another very annoying point is, that its totally unclear what service/develope packs and patches have to be installed to get this working, why is microsoft not putting those updates in the normal Updates I am getting redirected from one site to another, giving me all kind of choices to install, and when downloaded telling me that i first have to update/upgrade/patch. Its so time consuming and frustrating, that i don't had time to TEST the actual product. Ok i don't care, but i have to tell my boss what happened, and i also hoped that i could tell him that infopath is a great product, but now Told him that it didn't work, and that he have to decide him self or we gonna use this product.

Regards,

Sjors Pals





Re: Visual Studio Tools for Office Is Microsoft taking problems serious?

Geoff Darst - MSFT

Hi Sjors,

A couple of things that might help. First, the Help menu on any major Microsoft product will generally have a "Technical Support" menu option which will document your support options. IIRC this information is also usually included in the box. Finally, you can access product support information directly from http://www.microsoft.com--there is a support link on the main page which will take you here: http://support.microsoft.com/. From there you can choose your product (More developer tools... Visual Studio Tools For Office) to get you to the link I mentioned in the previous post.

I can understand why you might expect us to look at a bug report right away, but keep in mind that even if we fixed a bug immediately upon receipt of the report, we still have to wait for some sort of ship vehicle (i.e. a service pack or a next version release). For that reason it doesn't always make sense for us to handle bugs when they come in. There are certainly times in the product cycle where we will do this, but we aren't in that position right now. Despite the fact that we may not get to your bug in what you would consider a timely fashion, we will investigate it sometime before the next release. If a bug report is something we are able to act on, then you will have directly contributed to the quality of the next version. We hope that is motivation enough for customers to keep filing these reports.

As far as service packs go, I'm curious which service packs you are referring to and how you became convinced that you need them. The installation requirements for VSTO can be found here: http://msdn2.microsoft.com/en-us/library/54ds2za4(vs.80).aspx and the only SP that is necessary would be SP1 or greater for Office 2003. While this service pack isn't part of windows, you can elect to install Microsoft Update from the Windows Update page and at that point you would receive it automatically.

Again, I'm sorry you had such a bad experience. Hopefully you will give us another chance and you will find the above information useful when you do.

Sincerely,

Geoff Darst

Microsoft VSTO Team





Re: Visual Studio Tools for Office Is Microsoft taking problems serious?

LastHope

Geoff Darst - MSFT wrote:

I can understand why you might expect us to look at a bug report right away, but keep in mind that even if we fixed a bug immediately upon receipt of the report, we still have to wait for some sort of ship vehicle (i.e. a service pack or a next version release). For that reason it doesn't always make sense for us to handle bugs when they come in. There are certainly times in the product cycle where we will do this, but we aren't in that position right now. Despite the fact that we may not get to your bug in what you would consider a timely fashion, we will investigate it sometime before the next release. If a bug report is something we are able to act on, then you will have directly contributed to the quality of the next version. We hope that is motivation enough for customers to keep filing these reports.


Well...not always a bug has to be fixed "only" with a new version: it might be that Sjors has got (unfortunately) a weird setup/environment system, so, maybe, it'd be helpful for both VSTO programmers and Sjors to have a way to check his system, a debug system that can give a better handling/vision of why VSTO doesn't work on his computer. Maybe they could cooperate with him, he could be useful for them: maybe he'd receive a hack/quick fix and he'd be operative again, and the VSTO team would have knowledge for a future update...

I understand quite much Sjors: I've been using VSTO for many months, and I was happy; I've been using many times this forum for coding/deploying problems (as everybody: Outlook programming lacks of an easy system yet...) and I've found help on 80% the times I've wrote.
However, since November, since that Windows Update, I cannot use VSTO anymore: not a programming problem, but an environment one...I've tried to reinstall as he did, and I cannot use even another machine (I've got only that laptop for programming), and the only true suggestion was to use a VPC environment (which maybe eventually I'll adopt, since I'm still writing to many forums, but to no avail)...but that's not a solution to the problem, it's avoiding it...

That's all for telling: yep, I'd like too a nice bug-report...;)





Re: Visual Studio Tools for Office Is Microsoft taking problems serious?

Geoff Darst - MSFT

Hi,

Microsoft employs dedicated professionals specifically to work with customers to resolve the types of issues you mention.  To reach these individuals, you can utilize the support options mentioned previously in this thread.  The forums are a great place to start when you need help with one of our products, but if you can't get an answer, you should really submit an incident through our official support channels.

Sincerely,

Geoff Darst

Microsoft VSTO Team