Why (and when) should you contact Episerver developer support service.

Today I filed a bug, which I should have filed almost one year ago. I saw it several times, I even had solution for it, but I didn’t think/know it was a bug. It was reported here: http://world.episerver.com/forum/developer-forum/Problems-and-bugs/Thread-Container/2016/9/commerce-catalog-randomly-goes-empty-until-website-restart/  and here http://world.episerver.com/forum/developer-forum/Episerver-Commerce/Thread-Container/2016/6/addstaticattributepropertyvalues-object-reference-exception/

I’ve always wanted to say Episerver products are perfect frameworks and have no bugs at all. But that’s not true. Despite of having very talented developers and dedicated QAs, and a very high requirement for quality (“Quality is non-negotiable”), we still miss to catch some (very few) bugs.

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Diagnose your Episerver site: find and fix the issues

It’s quite often to see some questions related to issues posted in Episerver World forums. While I (and most of people there) are willing to help, it still takes time for you to write the question and wait for an answer. Sometimes, the answer can be incomplete or even incorrect, because the people answering your question do not have the full context as you do. The truth is, you’re the person who know the most about your site, and you can do something to diagnose it. Those steps below are in the order you should take to diagnose your site:

  • Browser console is your friend. It’s the thing which seemingly ignored the most. When something does not work in Edit UI (CMS) or Catalog UI (Commerce), make sure to open your Browser console and switch to Console tab. If their was a network issue, such as a 500 “Server error” response, make sure to open it. (Right click and choose “Open in a new tab” in Chrome). More often than you might think, it can reveal the underlying problem. If it’s a JavaScript error, how does it look like?
  • Logging is your (another) friend. When something seems to be wrong, check your log file, or turn down your logging level to see if you can see any trace there. In some case, no log found can also be a trace to solve the problem.
  • Does iisreset solve your problem? No I’m not suggesting you to run iisreset every minute on your production site, but it might isolate the problem – if it does, then the problem might relate to cache, or initialization modules. If it does not, well, it can be anything else. But at least it’s not caused by certain things – the key is to narrow down the causes of problem. You can also try to call

ISynchronizedObjectInstanceCache.Clear();

    • if the issue seems to related to the “modern” cache – such as ContentProvider. Note that ISynchronizedObjectInstanceCache does not control everything and iisreset is still the more powerful cache-clearing option.

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