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More descriptive error messages

More descriptive error messages

The message that a user got when they tried access an approval task link that no longer existed because it was already approved was:

Cannot restore because it no longer exists.

For most users this message is not descriptive enough to indicate to the user the reason of the error message.  We would like more user friendly error messages in this situation as well as many other messages to users. 

"The task you have attempted to access no longer exists because it was approved by zzz".

21-Topaz I

Here, here.  Unless you are a Sherlock Holmes type then you love PTC's error messages.


WIth my background as a software developer I have no issue with reading the error messages, apart from that I always want to see a full stack trace to send to PTC support.

Unfortunately most of to users on our system are not of the same opinion, thus I voted 'up' on this suggestion . IMHO good error messages often follow this pattern: <problem> <reason> (optionally what the user can do to fix it themselves or what to report to get get someone else to fix it)


I would be glad if the user would get an error message at all without the necessity to look for it at several places. What happened to the good old error dialog?

E.g. if You cannot check out an object, why not tell the user directly instead of showing a status of 'failed' and let the user find out, why?


I agree with having a standard layout to error messages as you say <problem> <reason> <solution>.  I also think that looking at stack traces can be a bit thick.  When looking at a log for example it can be frustrating to get a handle on what part of Windchill is having an issue.  So in general I think this enhancement could go a long way toward making Windchill a friendlier place.


The one error that drives me crazy, is when someone sends a link and the person gets a cryptic error message, and to send a link to the Site administrator.

They can't see the link, but it's usually the errors in the logs, which sometimes aren't even useful.

So I have to see if they're in the system at all, if they're on the team, figure out what they are trying to look at, find out if that file exists, if there are any other folder permissions....  This should not be a site level administrators job, especially in a large company.

If PTC is worried about giving out crucial information they could default to the highest level preventing the person from accessing the object.

You do not have a Windchill account for

     You are not a member of team (Product/Project/Library/Org Name) for this Object

          You do not have access to folder (folder name)

               This Object does not exist


So if that object doesn't exist, but they don't even have a Windchill account, they don't get to know that detail level of information.

It's like when you enter a wrong password on a website and it says "username and/or password are incorrect" and you have to question everything. Did you have to enter email for username? Was your usual username taken? Was it just my password? Do I even have an account?...

I also added a new idea Ability to Request Access to Objects  which would be a nice addition instead of defaulting to the site admin for help each time.


Error message of the day:


If you're interested, it was just an OIR setting that didn't work out.

23-Emerald II

In Pro/Engineer, before Wildfire days, there were messages like: "Call Rudy, X-8765, this should not happen" or "If you see this error, something is wrong".

Most of these were cleaned up in the recoding that went into Wildfire.


So, I got into a bit more detail about this error message.

When a user is not found (at least in our Single Sign on system) and they are trying to access a document, they are sent to the Windchill error page which can only be seen by Site Administrators (there's even code in the page to make sure). So they get sent to the error handlers for a stock error page and stake trace (if the property is set)

"Note: Administrators cannot manage the errors that display this page; Windchill error handlers determine what to display for error messages."

I'm hoping this is only because of our single sign on setup, because I'd hate to think this was a common error practice. User not found? Send them to a page they have to be a site admin to see, and then give them a cryptic email link to email to the admins as a solution.

Status changed to: Acknowledged