Building a Windows System Tray Application

One of the main issues I face with managing our companies internal applications is the fact that users never seem to send decent screenshot or details of a specific error. We receive numerous support tickets that include “[system] is not working”, with no more information at all.
This is a nightmare for my team to try and investigate, considering our users are spread over multiple timezones. The first thing we do is try and contact the user in question and ask for more information such as screenshot, browser version and more detailed error message.
Now wouldn’t it be nice if the user was “trained” to hit a specific keyboard short cut that would invoke an input screen to gather all this information? Well I am going to try and investigate how easy this is do over a few upcoming articles.

Some things the application must do:

  1. Run silently in the system tray of the users machine
  2. Be a clickonce applications for smooth updating
  3. Ability to run without network access and queue up requests
  4. Pull local log files, browser version etc from the users machine
  5. Take a screen shot, or full desktop shot of the users machine
  6. Submit this information to a workflow system

Some additional ideas are:

  1. The workflow could know which application the user is having trouble with and gather the log files automatically for that system to combine with the ticket
  2. Submit the ticket to either our IT helpdesk or TFS environment for further investigation.
  3. We could push notifications to the user through the system tray icon to warn them of critical issues or ticket resolutions

Some links I have started to gather for references for this application are listed below:

A New Milestone Has Been Reached

So it seems I have managed to keep this blog running for over 3 years now. This in my book deserves a celebration as prior to this one I had many false starts. So I don’t update this often but it is certainly update much more than any previous blogs I tried to stand up.

I have also been making a clear effort to record interesting things I find useful in my day-to-day life and hopefully overtime I will see how my articles and content change.

As always, thanks for stopping by.