Support FAQ (Frequently Asked Questions)

How do you get help and support?

Create a topic on the ACCESS-Hive Forum and tag it with help.

What is the difference between help and support?
Support is what is provided by an organisation for the products it releases. Someone will be assigned to resolve the support request.

Help is usually advice to assist you to resolve your own problem.

Who can get support?

Anyone with a problem that is in-scope.

Who can get help?

Anyone with a problem that isn’t eligible for support can still get help and assistance from ACCESS-NRI and the Community.

Where should I put my question? Which category?

The best category to put your question is the one where it is most relevant. That way those in the community with related knowledge will be more likely to see it and respond with useful information.

How long will I have to wait for help?

You should receive an initial response for your help request within one working day. Be mindful there may be a holiday in the ACT but not in your area. If you don’t receive a timely response do follow up with a reply to your own question to get attention.

Who will help me?

Any community member is welcome to answer your question at any time, just like with other topics on the forum. However, using the help tag ensures the ACCESS-NRI staff will start a triage process as explained below.

Initial contact will be from an ACCESS-NRI staff member who is triaging help requests. They may ask for more information or clarification of what information is provided. The triager will also let you know if your request is inscope for support or not.

For requests that are inscope for support a helper will assign themselves to your request and ensure there is a resolution.

For requests that are not “in-scope” (outofscope) the triager will assist with suggestions for resources or approaches you can use to solve your problem. Community members can also help if they have the time and expertise.

Will my problem always be solved?

No, your problem will not always be solved.

There is time limit of one month for a query to be resolved. The intention is not to burden helpers with very long running queries.

For in-scope queries the helper will try their best to find a solution within a month. If there is no solution by that point the topic will be closed. Where applicable the problem will be transferred to an issue on a relevant GitHub repository.

In cases where a solution is not available because of circumstances outside the control of ACCESS-NRI you may be asked to resubmit the query at a later date when outside circumstances change.

For queries that are not in-scope you are relying on help from the community, and there are no guarantees.

Do I always need to use the #help tag?

You don’t always have to use the help tag. But it can be difficult for you to know what is “in-scope” for support and what isn’t, so there is no harm in using the tag. It can also help community members to find your question and indicate you are looking for assistance.

If you don’t use the help tag ACCESS-NRI will not triage your request which means you will not be assigned a helper even if your request is “in-scope”.

How can I ask for assistance in a way that makes it easier to get help?

Follow the guidelines in this knowledge-base article

What support can I expect?

For in-scope questions, you can expect an ACCESS-NRI staff member or an in-kind collaborator to be assigned to your question. This means they will follow through with your question until it is solved (if a solution is possible to put in place). The assigned helper might hand over your question to another helper if required to ensure a quick resolution.

After the initial reply within one business day, the assigned helper will ensure you have an update at least weekly until resolution.

Long-term queries might be moved to a GitHub or SVN issue. In this case, a link to the issue will be left on the forum topic and the topic will be closed. All updates on the issue will be then communicated via GitHub or SVN. For SVN repositories only, the topic on the forum can be kept open if the requestor can not access that repository.

The assigned helper might edit your original post (title, tags and text) to ensure the post is well-formed and informative so that users with similar issues can learn from it as well.

Once a resolution is found, the topic will be closed. Any follow-up questions must be asked as separate topics as these questions are often separate issues. ACCESS-NRI staff might merge these follow-up questions with the original question as required.

What role does ACCESS-NRI play?

ACCESS-NRI staff work in teams to triage help requests. Some ACCESS-NRI staff are also helpers, as are some Bureau of Meteorology and CSIRO staff.

Why use the forum for support?

All support requests should be through the ACCESS-Hive Forum, and answers will be provided there. There are a number of reasons for this:

  • Your support request is visible to ACCESS-NRI and a wider audience of community experts. It allows others in the community with the skills and experience to assist whether or not your request is deemed in-scope. This may result in a faster answer for you.
  • Questions and answers will become an invaluable store of knowledge for everyone in the community.
  • It also allows the community to grow without being limited by the number of support staff, as new users benefit from the accumulated knowledge and wisdom discoverable on the forum.

If you have a question about the support model (not a specific question requiring support) and it is not answered above, feel free to reply below and ask.