Windows 7 and Server 2008 R2 Tool Records Symptoms

Problem Steps Recorder should make it a little easier for IT pros to see what exactly is wrong with an end user's computer.

If you have to help end users over the phone, you've probably dealt with a user who simply had no idea how to explain what was wrong with a computer. Windows 7 and Windows Server 2008 R2 will include a new utility that lets a user record what's going on.

In his blog today (or, as he calls it, "blahg"), Microsoft IT Pro Evangelist Keith Combs showed off the tool. Check out the entry for a screencast of Problem Steps Recorder in action. It looks like Problem Steps Recorder should be easy even for technophobe end users. Just tell a user to hit the start button, type psr, hit enter, then click record and demonstrate the problem.

Problem Steps Recorder doesn't take a video of the user's screen. Instead, it creates a .zip file containing an HTML file with pictures and a text description of what the user did. Pictures might be a bit harder to decipher than full video, but they should also be much smaller, making it easier for users to send the .zip file to an IT pro as an email attachment.

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