Let it be said: I love being back in the day-to-day operations of the Notes/Domino business.  Officially six weeks in, I already know that this new role has been a great move.  Of course, nothing's ever perfect, right?
In the last two weeks, I've been involved in a couple of post-sale technical support kinds of discussion.  In one case, a customer called me out of the blue and asked me for advice on how to get a particular end-user's problem addressed; the other was discussed in various online forums.
The common thread on the two -- the customer experiencing the problem had not opened an incident with Lotus Support.
One of the cases is particularly surprising to me, because two assumptions appear to have been made: in reviewing a discussion thread on developerWorks -- 1) their problem was the same as the one being discussed, and 2) "someone else is working the problem and it will get fixed".  You could state the second one more generally as "IBM must be aware of this problem because of the discussion."
In working with any enterprise-class software, not just Notes, my advice of the day is -- don't fall into either of these traps.  I know it's easy to look at a problem description, especially one like the link above where there is a lot of detail being shared, and say, "yep, that's what is happening here".  Further, because the customers in that case took the unusual step of sharing their incident numbers publicly, it's easy to assume that the best and brightest are working towards resolution.  Neither of these are entirely unreasonable.  Still, what if that customer's environment is significantly different than yours -- different hardware, different network topology, different point releases in use?  Or viewed from the vendor's side, if only one or two customers report a problem with a mass-market product, how can the vendor surmise that more customers might be having this problem?  
Supporting software is a partnership between the customer/business partner and software vendor.  Think of it like your doctor -- if you don't tell your doctor you have a headache, there's no visual indication to them that you are, and thus, they can't accurately diagnose nor prescribe.  Help your vendor help you.

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