How to Create and Provide Error Documentation to Helium 10 Developers

Software can be a mercurial creature, reliable and logical one day, unresponsive or inconsistent the next.

Most people have dozens of software programs running on their computers simultaneously. These programs update periodically, usually in the background, and we don’t even notice it. Most of the time, one software program’s update doesn’t negatively affect another software program. And...sometimes, it does.

Conflicts between different software programs and different versions of software programs can trip up software functionality, stall out productivity and frustrate users. Helium 10’s software can get temporarily  impacted by software conflicts and software updates. Fortunately, Helium 10 offers you help and access to our highly talented developers via our customer service agents.

Usually, if a software glitch is widespread, the developers can replicate it from their end and begin working on a fix immediately. But if the error is isolated to just a few individuals, and the developers are unable to recreate the problem from their end, helping the user remotely becomes a challenge.

You can help the developers solve your problem more quickly if they can see the coding associated with the software errors. The best way to communicate that code is through screenshots or video.

All web-browsing computers and devices allow for screenshots. This article addresses how to take those screenshots on a computer specifically. Ideally, the developer needs multiple screenshots, tracking the sequence of events leading to the issue, before, during and after.

1. Open an incognito window using your Google Chrome browser. In Windows, right click the Google Chrome icon to open the menu, then click on New Incognito Window. Or, on both the Mac and the PC, open Chrome and click on the three dots in the upper right corner to activate the drop-down menu and select New incognito window.


2. Go to the website, and/or to the Amazon site, or open the tool to where you are having technical difficulties.


3. On the PC, press the F12 key in the top right corner of the keyboard; and on the Mac, right click and select 'inspect'. The screen should split into the website side with its accompanying code, or, what is called the Developers Tools.


4. Inside the Developers Tool area with the displayed code, click on the Console tab to show the page's developer code. 


5. Take a screenshot showing both sides of the screen. On the Mac, press Command + Shift +5. On the PC, press Windows key + Shift + S.

6. Sign into Helium 10. Take another screenshot.

7. Go through the steps that led up to the error message you are experiencing, making sure to screenshot each step of the process. If the coding extends beyond the initial screenshot, be sure to capture enough shots to show the full Developer Tools text.

8. Share these screenshots with the customer service agent so that he or she can pass them along to the developer.

9. If you are experienced and have the time, you can create a short movie showing the technical issue as it happens, instead of a series of screenshots. Be sure to include the Developer Tool text in the recording. The Mac allows you to do this using either the Screenshot tool or QuickTime. The PC requires you to download free software to create a movie. Or, you can used PowerPoint (v. 2016 or later) to create a Screen Recording on either platform. In PowerPoint, you need to open a new blank document, insert a Screen Recording and follow the instructions and the same steps listed above.




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