As you are pondering 2017 (for real, we are already here?), here are some activities to consider to help you become more successful using SolarWinds products. Bookmark these 7 habits in your favorites!

 

1. Wait, you don’t know the answer? ASK the THWACK community!

Join THWACK™, the SolarWinds Community of over 130,000 IT Pros!

  • Browse the content exchange:Looking for a specific OID, etc.? Save time and see what others’ have contributed before you create your own.
  • Start or contribute to a discussion: Want advice on how to create a specific report or create a unique view? Submit your question and get responses from the SolarWinds IT pro community.
  • Submit and vote on feature requests:Is there a feature you would love to see? Submit a feature request or vote on other feature requests to make your voice heard.

 

2. Get Access to the Customer Portal!

What is so great about your Customer Portal? You will have access to free, instructor-led training, you can view the status of support cases and gain knowledge and insight into what’s next with SolarWinds.  Don’t be left out when it’s time to upgrade, renew or add more licensing. See it all here at your fingertips.  Request your *Customer Portal Login if you don’t have access. If you are the Customer Portal Administrator, you can simply add your co-workers. Here are the instructions on how to set up a new user in the Customer Portal.

 

a) Start taking Free Training Now: No budget required for training offered by SolarWinds!  Use the Virtual Classrooms calendar view in your Customer Portal so you can see all the upcoming live classes that are offered. Can’t make it to live training? Check out the latest recorded on-demand videos.

b) Keep up to date on recent product releases:  Get the current feature releases for current product enhancements and updates at your fingertips, even easier.

c) Download FREE trials for products:Download FREE Trials of any SolarWinds products (we have over 30 to choose from) without having to fill out a form. NO FORM just PICK-CLICK- DOWNLOAD! Try other SolarWinds products to boost your productivity. If you do have questions or need assistance with your evaluation, contact customersales@solarwinds.com.

 

PRO TIP* - Link your Customer Portal account with your THWACK account to automatically earn 2000 THWACK points – Learn How  One of the benefits of linking your THWACK & Customer Portal accounts is you can get up to 2,000 THWACK points for every live customer training course attended.

 

3. Understand how to open a support case and get the right visibility

Please take a look at this article on how to check the status of your support case and increase visibility. We've also provided a video for you on how to use the Active Diagnostics feature of Orion Platform products.

 

4.   Learn how to prepare your system for a stress free upgrade

If you are under active maintenance, you can upgrade to the latest version free of charge. Take advantage of new features and performance improvements and upgrade to the latest version. Be sure that your current version of software is supported – we’ve announced end of life for some versions recently. Here are the top resources to help you successfully upgrade:

  • Back Up SolarWinds - Be sure you have a current back up of your Orion Platform database (you should be doing this already!)
  • Use Upgrade Resources:

a) Product Upgrade Advisor – The product upgrade advisor will help you establish steps for upgrading. If you need help upgrading to the latest releases of your SolarWinds software, contact support.

b) Upgrade Guides – Go to the Success Center homepage, simply choose your product, select the documentation tab and then select the “UPGRADE GUIDE”. Some guides also include step-by-step videos so you can follow along.

c) SolarWinds Lab – Upgrade Edition In this episode we cover the best way to plan and prepare for a SolarWinds upgrade, as well as provide hints on how to make your upgrade experience stress-free.

 

5. Customization – Take your monitoring to the next level!

  • Use Community-Contributed Reports & Templates. We know that creating custom reports and templates can be time-consuming. That's why SolarWinds created a Content Exchange on THWACK, where engineers like you can share the custom reports, network config templates and application templates they have built.
  • Learn how to customize your environment with free training and documentation in the Success Center. Check out these guides on how to create custom templates, use custom properties, create custom alerts, and how to create custom reports.
  • Join or create groups to collaborate with like-minded members. Here you can find and meet the THWACK MVP’s, SolarWinds employees, and Technology Partners that can help you find scripts, custom reports and even find an Alert Guru or two!

 

6. Share your Story – No ordinary campfire tales here!

SolarWinds prides itself on the amount of sharing of knowledge and feedback we are able to present on an ongoing basis. Customers are always looking for ways to find the best practices, latest tips & tricks that others are using. We offer multiple ways to interact with fellow customers. You can attend a local SWUG (SolarWinds User Group), read testimonials, write and read a product review or refer a colleague.

 

  • SWUG - Cost to attend SWUG is FREE & these are onsite, in-person events. Locations for these events are currently based on demand for a particular area.

You can request your area here. If you are interested, you can also sign up to apply to be host for a SWUG in your area. Apply Now!.

  • Write a product review - Your review needs to be original (no plagiarism allowed), based on your own personal experience. We would like to know why you like our product(s) and what particular features saved your bacon. If you have an anecdote or an interesting story, even better! Start your review – click here!

 

  • Referral Program - Join our referral program to tell your friends and colleagues why you love SolarWinds and how they can benefit too! When your friend signs up to learn more - you will both receive a FREE t-shirt! Check it out

 

7.  Keep IT fun and informative!

Learning IT best practices doesn’t have to be dull. Who doesn’t enjoy playing a game or finding a mission to gain insight and knowledge to get the job done. Check out the latest THWACK contest or mission, our customer’s favorite way to learn and earn THWACK points for exclusive Solarwinds SWAG! Or visit the Geek Speak™ blog to learn what's currently going on in the world of IT Management. Save these into your favorites so you can stay engaged and informed.

 

What is your favorite habit? Any others you would add? Please comment below. Best of 2017 to you!