Tuesday Jul 28, 2015

Diagnosing File Display Issues in AutoVue

File display issues are one of the most common issues that an AutoVue user may be faced with. With the wide array of file formats that AutoVue supports, and the large differences between the formats and their features, there are many different types of display issues that may occur.

It is important to be able to efficiently diagnose file display issues to determine the root cause. Is the issue related to the user's AutoVue configuration, to the files themselves, or is it potentially a limitation within AutoVue?

Common examples of file display issues include, Blank display (either fully blank or partially missing), incorrect display (position, rotation, colors, views, hatching, sizing, etc.), "Unsupported File Format" error message, incorrect display of text/fonts and incorrect display of LineStyles.

There are several key steps that you can take to quickly diagnose file display issues, for example verifying that the file format that you are trying to view is supported by AutoVue and ensuring that your file format is supported by the version of AutoVue that is being used. These quick troubleshooting tips and others are explained in details in following knowledge article Note 789417.1 in My Oracle Support. 

Tuesday May 26, 2015

Configuring Single Sign-On (SSO) for an Integrated AutoVue Environment

A common topic that our Support team receives from customers is the topic of single sign-on (SSO). Specifically, customers are interested in implementing SSO for their AutoVue environment such that users' authorization to open files from a back-end system (e.g. DMS, PLM, ERP, etc) into AutoVue is automatically handled without the user having to re-authenticate.

While the overall configuration process for SSO may be somewhat complex, the AutoVue-specific aspects are extremely straightforward, and can be summarized as follows:

  1. The user must have their web browser configured to accept cookies.
  2. The AutoVue applet must be configured to forward the correct cookies (the ones required for SSO) to the AutoVue server.

That's it. No additional SSO-specific configuration is required on the AutoVue client or server. The AutoVue server automatically includes the cookies when communicating the integration component (e.g. the VueLink, or AutoVue ISDK-based integration), and it's up to the network administrator to ensure that all components between the AutoVue server and the integration component are configured correctly to enable SSO.

For more info regarding SSO configuration and troubleshooting for AutoVue – including a particular limitation of AutoVue's SSO capabilities with regards to the 'HttpOnly' flag – please refer to KM Note 1990144.1 in the My Oracle Support portal.

Tuesday May 05, 2015

"Guided Resolution" (Interactive Troubleshooting) Flow available for AutoVue Client/Server Connection Issues

Our Oracle Support team has enabled "Guided Resolution" Flows for various products such that when you create a Service Request (SR) for a specific problem type you will see a specific set of questions that guide you through to a targeted solution.

When logging a new SR for the AutoVue Client/Server Deployment Issues -> "Client/Server Connection Issues" Problem Type on any of the following products:

  • Oracle AutoVue Office
  • Oracle AutoVue 2D Professional
  • Oracle AutoVue 3D Professional
  • Oracle AutoVue EDA Professional
  • Oracle AutoVue Electro-Mechanical Professional


the Guided Resolution will be triggered and you will see screens similar to the screens below:



You respond to the prompts to come to one or more solutions or to a Data Collection.



You can see all of the selections and the solution. You may also change the edit button to change your selection on any level.



Some options lead to Data Collection



You may give feedback on the Guided Resolution using the Give Feedback button



If for some reason you aren't able to locate the right solution there is still the Next button to log an SR as usual, but the good news is that your answers will automatically be recorded in the SR and this information will be used to help us understand your issue further and to help us improve our tool.



We hope you enjoy using these new tools and that you find your solutions faster than ever!

Monday Feb 09, 2015

Configuring user authentication with AutoVue 20.2.3

As noted in the AutoVue 20.2.3 Security Guide (section 2.1.1) and the AutoVue 20.2.3 Installation Guide (section 13.1), AutoVue offers a user authentication mechanism if needed. Oracle recommends that all client connections to the AutoVue server be authenticated, and supports two different options:

  • DMS authentication (where “DMS” implies any integrated Document Management System, Product Lifecycle Management system, etc)
  • Authentication plug-in (for example Kerberos)

If AutoVue 20.2.3 is installed without either of these mechanisms in place (the non-recommended approach), by default users won’t be able to connect to the server. In this scenario, the AutoVue server administrator will need to configure the ‘jvueserver.authentication.enable’ parameter to FALSE as outlined in the documentation as well as My Oracle Support KM Note 1956742.1.

Friday Dec 19, 2014

Setting up the ABV Sample with Agile 9.3.3

Hello all,

As we wrap up things towards the end of the year, I wanted to talk a little bit about how you can set up our Augmented Business Visualization sample PX with Agile 9.3.3.   If you are running Agile 9.3.3, and are using Agile EC to manage your 3D CAD data, it is quite simple to set it up so that users can create new ECRs or ECOs directly from the 3D view in AutoVue.   There are a couple of constraints around the sample PX - for example, you need to have the CAD connector configured so that the part, design and CAD file name all have the same name - but the PX is relatively easy to extend if this doesn't apply in your environment.

If your 9.3.3 system matches the constraints of the PX, all that is needed is to copy the PX file into the Agile extension folder - Once the PX is installed, you will be able to right click on any part in your 3D models, and create an ECR or ECO - and have the current assembly and the part you selected added as an affected item to the new object.

You can see what this looks like in action in a video on our youtube channel with the link below:


Screenshot of ECR Creation


There is a whitepaper that describes in more detail how the PX sample works, and gives advice on how to set it up and extend it if necessary


The sample PX and the whitepaper can be found on OTN: http://docs.oracle.com/cd/E49948_05/otn/doclist.html  - the specific links are Whitepaper  and PX Sample

I'll close with wishing you all a happy holiday season whatever holiday you may choose to celebrate, and a happy new year!   We'll talk again in 2015!

Wednesday Nov 19, 2014

Analyzing AutoVue’s File Load Time Performance

As organizations continue to increase their volume of digital content, migrate business processes to software-driven frameworks, and expand the complexities of the underlying software/hardware architectures, system performance becomes an increasingly important success factor.

In the world of AutoVue, the most important aspect of performance is file load time – the time it takes from when the user clicks “Open” or “View in AutoVue” to when the file is displayed and the user can start working with it. There are many factors involved in file load time, including:

  • Deployment architecture
  • Specifications of each node
  • Configuration of each node
  • Network performance
  • System load
  • Customizations/extensions
  • Etc.

A proactive approach to performance tuning requires expert understanding of the network and all involved nodes (e.g. load balancers, firewalls, proxy servers, application servers, DMS/PLM systems, AutoVue servers, client machines, etc) as well as load-testing prior to go-live. In addition to proactive planning, many customers identify the need to continue performance tuning after go-live, as the usage patterns evolve.

Dissecting the performance bottlenecks of file load time requires collecting various information including configuration settings and log files. In order to provide general guidelines for this process, our Support team authored a 2-part troubleshooting whitepaper which is published in the My Oracle Support knowledge base:

  • Note 1595727.1 - AutoVue Client/Server Performance Troubleshooting Guide -Part I-
  • Note 1605087.1 - AutoVue Client/Server Performance Troubleshooting Guide -Part II-

I highly recommend this read for any AutoVue admins and SIs interested in file load time performance analysis – whether it be during pre-go-live planning stages, or during ongoing system maintenance.

Tuesday Nov 04, 2014

Simplifying Creation of ECRs and ECOs

Some of you may have seen in our recent videos how you can simplify your creation of change requests and change orders by taking advantage of Augmented Business Visualization in Agile - but you may not realize that if you are using Agile 9.3.3 and AutoVue 20.2.2, then you can easily set this up with a sample that is provided on OTN.  

If you use Engineering Collaboration to handle your SolidWorks or ProE 3D models, you'll be able to quickly create ECOs or ECRs by right clicking on parts in the 3D model and selecting "Create ECR" or "Create ECO", similar to what is shown here:  http://youtu.be/gsG30QmMCeU?t=1m52s

The sample is provided as a PX that can be installed on your Agile 9.3.3 instance.  You can find the sample PX, and a whitepaper describing how to set it up and to extend it if necessary on OTN at http://docs.oracle.com/cd/E49948_05/otn/doclist.html - here are direct links for the sample PX  and the whitepaper

If you try this out - let us know what your thoughts are in the comments


Wednesday Sep 24, 2014

Developing a Solution With AutoVue’s Hotspot Feature - Where to Begin?

It’s been a while since the last couple blog posts regarding AutoVue’s “hotspot” feature, part of the Augmented Business Visualization (ABV) framework. With the rising popularity of this feature among customers and partners, our Support team recently published a new How-To knowledge base article to complement the existing documentation. The article takes a closer look at how to set up the hotspot sample application that ships with AutoVue – known as the “VueActionSample”:

Doc ID 1677471.1 - How to Configure and Run the AutoVue VueActionSample

For anyone looking to develop an ABV solution for AutoVue, the VueActionSample is a great starting point to learn the basics, and the above article is a great additional resource to help you get set up.

Friday Jul 25, 2014

Enhance AutoVue's Performance with streaming files

Performance is a critical issue for most users of AutoVue - They need to be able to access documents, drawings and models to do their work, and they don't want to be watching a 'Loading' bar move when they could be approving a change request or adding a comment to a new design.

There are a number of factors that can influence the final performace that users get with AutoVue - but this post will focus on one of the most important items:  Effective use of AutoVue's Streaming Files.

Streaming files are a long-standing feature of AutoVue (they were originally called 'metafiles', and you may still occasionally hear someone refer to them that way) - they are a single, self-contained file that contains a 'pre-processed' visual representation of a document, drawing or model, plus a collection of attribute data.   The idea is that when AutoVue has read the native file(s) - for instance a Creo 2 assembly - it creates a streamlined form of the same data in a single file, that can be read much more quickly than the original data.

For large 3D models, loading from streaming file can have a huge impact on performance - we've seen Creo 2 assemblies that were over 2 gb in size, where the native data took about 1.5 hours to load in AutoVue (and over 10 hours to load in Creo 2) but from streaming file it loaded in AutoVue in around 2 minutes.   This isn't necessarily typical, and for smaller assemblies you might "only" get a factor of 5-10x speed up - but it will still be a *very* substantial speed up.   Non-3D formats will also often get a big boost from this as well, although the speed-ups may be more like 2-5x.   PDF is an exception where you often will not see a major improvement, as well as raster formats like Tiff, and AutoVue does not generate streaming files for these formats out of the box.

If you are using AutoVue with Agile, you can configure pre-generation of streaming files for all models checked in through Engineering Collaboration - For other documents and drawings what will generally happen is that AutoVue will load from the native file the first time, and will save the Streaming file in Agile so that subsequent views are done from the streaming file.

To tell whether streaming files are in use is very easy - just go the the 'File->Properties' menu item - at the bottom of the 'File Properties' tab you will see it say "Loaded From Streaming File" if a streaming file was used for the current session.

Ensuring that streaming files are properly configured is one of the best ways to get a quick performance boost for users of AutoVue.

I'll talk about other aspects of performance in future posts.  Until then - if you have specific questions around performance or any other topic, just let us know in the comments section below!

Wednesday Jun 18, 2014

New Automated Data Collection Utility for Troubleshooting AutoVue Client/Server Issues

The process of troubleshooting issues with AutoVue Client/Server Deployment (for example, users suddenly unable to connect to the AutoVue server) sometimes requires collection and analysis of specific files from the AutoVue server. Such files may include log files, property files, and user profile files.

Historically, the collection of these files was a manual process. Recently, however, the Oracle Support team released a new automated data collection utility called “AVCollect” (short for “AutoVue Collect”) to simplify this task. The tool is a lightweight Java-based application that runs directly from a Jar file, and collects the abovementioned files as well as the timestamps of the AutoVue server runtime libraries. This automated approach speeds up the data collection process and ensures that the correct files are gathered.

Future enhancements to the utility are underway, including the ability to collect the AutoVue server diagnostics output, system-level info, and so on. For now, make sure your AutoVue server administrators download and familiarize themselves with our first release of the AVCollect tool via the following knowledge base document:

Note 1677441.1 - Using the AVCollect Tool to Automatically Collect AutoVue Server Log Files and Configuration Files

And as always, if you have any additional suggestions for the tool, feel free to share them through the AutoVue MOS Community.

Wednesday Apr 23, 2014

Troubleshooting printing-related issues with AutoVue

Not long ago I posted an article related to troubleshooting connection issues with AutoVue Client/Server Deployment. Following on that theme - since the majority of my posts originate from our Customer Support team - I wanted to highlight a different troubleshooting guide that was recently published in the My Oracle Support portal:

Note 1621489.1 - AutoVue Printing Troubleshooting Guide

This knowledge base document is as the title states - a troubleshooting guide for different types of printing issues that may be encountered on rare occasions with AutoVue (primarily related to the printed output not appearing as the user expects). Printing is impacted by many factors (print drivers, user-defined settings, input document, Java version, etc), and the troubleshooting guide provides a consistent approach for narrowing the scope of the issue and gathering the necessary details and logs to resolve it.

Thursday Mar 27, 2014

Tip: Set JVM Heap Size with 32b and 64b JVMs

Hi all,

I wanted to share a tip I learned about the hard way recently.   If you are using AutoVue with large 3D models it is often valuable to increase the maximum heap size available to the AutoVue client. 

However, this can be unexpectedly tricky if you have both 32b and 64b Java virtual machines installed - the traditional way to do it is to select Java from the windows control panel and set the heap size there.   However if you have both 32b and 64b JVMs installed, that control panel will only give access to the 64b JVMs - you won't be able to change the 32b JVM settings there.

If you are running a browser that is 32b - you will need to change the 32b JVM settings - and the way to do this is slightly counter-intuitive. In the 64b java control panel accessed through the windows control panel, go to the Advanced tab, and scroll to the very bottom and turn on "Place Java icon in system tray".  
Screenshot - place java in system tray
Then start AutoVue the way you do normally.   You should see a Java icon appear in the windows sytem tray at the bottom of your screen. 

Screenshot - System Tray

Right click on that icon, and select  'Open Control Panel' - from here if you change the heap size parameters it will do it for the JVM that is actually running AutoVue.

Screenshot - Java Environment Settings

If you want to be completely sure whether you are setting the parameters for the 32b or 64b version - look at the "Path" field of the "Java Runtime Environment" settings - if you see "Program Files (x86)" then it is the 32b version.


Hope this helps!!

Thursday Mar 13, 2014

How-To: Searching for list of bug fixes in a given AutoVue version

I wanted to add to the couple different posts I submitted in the past on how to track and understand Bug reports in the My Oracle Support (MOS) portal. I've received the occasional question from customers and partners regarding where to find a list of bug fixes for a given version of AutoVue (e.g. in order to evaluate the potential advantages of upgrading, beyond the product enhancements outlined in the Release Notes hosted on the documentation website).

The easiest way to view the bug fixes for a given version of AutoVue is through the Advanced Search feature in the MOS portal, which allows you to search the Oracle BugDB based on the specific products and version number you're interested in. For example to search for the list of bugs fixed in AutoVue 20.2.2:

  1. Log into the MOS portal
  2. Click on 'Advanced Search' in the upper-right corner
  3. In the Advanced Search dialog, specify the following:
    • Source: Bug Database
    • Related to the Product: Add all 5 flavors of AutoVue (Oracle AutoVue Office, Oracle AutoVue 2D Professional, Oracle AutoVue 3D Professional Advanced, Oracle AutoVue EDA Professional, Oracle AutoVue Electro-Mechanical Professional)
    • Fixed in Version: 20.2.2
  4. Click on 'Search'

If needed you can further refine the search by keywords - e.g. if interested in fixes related to specific file formats, platforms, features, etc.

Also if you have questions regarding any of the bugs or enhancements listed as fixed/implemented in a given AutoVue version, feel free to post into the AutoVue Community and our team will be happy to follow up.

Friday Jan 17, 2014

Java 7u51 and AutoVue

Hello all - As you may be aware, Java 7u51 was released earlier this week.  This release includes a lot of important security fixes for java - However these fixes do have some impact on users of the AutoVue client.

The first potential impact is that all applets (including the AutoVue client) must define a 'permissions' attribute in order for them to run.  We released a patch for all supported versions of AutoVue late last year that included this attribute.

The other issue is that 'LiveConnect', which is what allows Javascript to call Java code, is disabled in Java 7u51.  Most AutoVue integrations, including our integrations to Agile PLM, Web Center Content, and Documentum, make use of this mechanism to open files, start comparing files, and various other operations.  

Additionally, some older versions of Java, including Java 7u45, will disable LiveConnect once they 'notice' that Java 7u51 is available, so if a user is prompted to upgrade to Java 7u51 and refuses, LiveConnect will also be disabled.

To renable 'LiveConnect' in Java 7u51, the easiest approach is to make use of the 'Exception Site' configuration.  This configuration allows a user to indicate that a certain set of URLs are trusted - and any Java code provided from those URLs will have LiveConnect enabled.  

The 'Exception Site' list can be configured by an individual user by going into the Java control panel, but it is ultimately controlled by a text file stored inside the local Java deployment - so administrators can update the file centrally, and then push the file out to all members of an organization who need to use AutoVue.

We've published KM note 1615032.1 with more details on how to deal with these issues.

Wednesday Nov 13, 2013

How-To: AutoVue Bug Status Tracking & Email Notifications

I’ve posted a number of different Support process-related and tool-related blog entries over the past few years, and one common question I received back from various customers and partners is “How can I easily track AutoVue bugs & enhancements for status updates?”

The capability to track bug status through the My Oracle Support (MOS) portal has existed in different forms for a while, although hasn’t necessarily been easy to find without going through specific segments of the extensive MOS training. Recently, the instructions were consolidated into the following highly recommended knowledge base article:

KM Note 1298390.1 - How to Monitor a Bug from My Oracle Support

The note covers various capabilities, including:

  • How to add the new ‘Bug Tracker’ widget to your MOS dashboard
  • How to add and manage bugs within the Bug Tracker
and probably most interesting to MOS users...
  • How to enable email notifications for bug status updates

Make sure to pass this KM Note along to your MOS users in case they haven’t already configured this valuable feature.

About

The authors of this blog are members of the AutoVue Enterprise Visualization team at Oracle. The views expressed on this blog reflect those of the members and do not necessarily reflect the views of Oracle.

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