Absolute Service 8.6 Release Notes and Upgrade Guide

Version 3



    Features, Fixes, and Enhancements in Absolute Service 8.6.x

    NOTE: The direct download link included in the product announcement for Absolute Service 8.6 is not supported on Internet Explorer 11. Please use an alternative browser.




    Release Overview

    Absolute Service 8.6 focuses on enhancements to the Help Desk edition of the product. Organizations that have not yet fully implemented ITSM processes can now benefit from a more flexible and simplified ticketing solution, while remaining compliant with industry standards and leaving room for future evolution towards full adoption of the ITIL framework.

    This release incorporates more than fifty change requests and new features that touch all areas of the application. Highlights include the following: 

    • The option to bill customers in arrears for support received, allowing service desks to follow a post-paid billing scheme
    • Versatile service level agreements (SLAs) that allow technicians to set target dates manually
    • The ability to easily re-profile requests that were logged in the system with incomplete or inaccurate information
    • A simplified request creation process in the Customer Portal
    • More user-friendly terminology in the Help Desk edition: “requests” and “incidents” are now referred to simply as “tickets”
    • An improved installation experience that requires less technical expertise to complete 

    The complete list of changes can be found in the .pdf version of the release notes attached to this article.

    Installing 8.6 

    Absolute Service has a universal installer that runs on all supported platforms (see Minimum System Requirements). This installer requires a 64 bit operating system, running Oracle Java SDK 7 or later. 

    IMPORTANT If you use web services, you need to begin migrating your legacy applications to the new interfaces (using the underscore prefix) to prepare for overhauled interfaces in a future release; for example, “_authenticate()”.

    Upgrading to Absolute Service 8.6

    Upgrading to version 8.6 requires a valid support and maintenance contract. If you do not have a support and maintenance contract, contact your account manager or a member of the Absolute Software sales team. For customers with an existing support and maintenance contract, go to the Absolute Service Global Support site at service.absolute.com and log in with your support credentials. The Knowledge Base article named Upgrading to Absolute Service 8.6 provides instructions for downloading the product.

    IMPORTANT To process various localization routines, upgrading to Absolute Service 8.6 uses the locale of the user who is running the upgrade. Therefore, this user’s operating system must match exactly that of the default messages stored within the previous version; for example, use the English operating system when upgrading to solve any problems upgrading the language files.

    The Absolute Service 8.6 Upgrade Guide provides information and tasks on the following topics: 

    • How to upgrade from earlier versions of Absolute Service to the newest version
    • How to upgrade from LiveTime 7.0 and later versions to Absolute Service 8.6
    • Post-upgrade instructions for administrators and supervisors

    Features, Fixes and Enhancements in 8.6.1 r6568

    • Windows 10 compatibility (essentially for eval purposes)
    • Help system migrated to https://docs.absolute.com
    • Provided a mechanism to hide date formats from email message templates and removed the default insertion of these on the first date of a message
    • Corrected a customer facing exception resulting from the removal of OpenID as a login facility
    • Reports created using the report builder that include a chart are now always accessible for addition to the dashboard
    • Customer tab in the request editor is once again showing all the options it did in v8.5
    • Knowledge base search in the technician portal will now always show the help content
    • Corrected issue where the request archiver could run the system out of memory
    • Corrected an issue whereby html formatted customizations of labels weren't rendering the HTML tags specified
    • Knowledge Article Editor optimised to reduce the number of (unnecessary) full text searches it was executing in the background
    • Added Request URL parameter to the 'Request Reassigned' and 'Request Escalated' message templates
    • New Incident will no longer show service categories when service incidents are disabled
    • Request Re-profiling feature now better supports specifying required custom field data
    • Customer portal request creation will now correctly prompt the user to select a classification when they have been forced to, but fail to do so
    • Tidied up the relationship map of the Unknown Item (it will no longer show a blank / undefined mouseover box)
    • Added missing keyword localisation for key: Template[4].RequestQueue
    • Corrected an issue where the workflow wasn't being correctly detected at the time of request creation
    • Customers will no longer receive incorrect notifications after a technician adds a note to a closed request
    • Icons for Item Types can once again be customised
    • Global items can now (optionally) be included as part of the shared request visibility logic
      • This can be quite detrimental to the system performance and it is the responsibility of the customer to use this wisely
    • Fixed an issue where a KPI report could attempt to execute an invalid query
    • Corrected an audit issue so that escalated requests will once again show the correct technician in the audit trail
    • Corrected rare issue where a particular workflow sequence can incorrectly trigger an SLA breach
    Features, Fixes and Enhancements in 8.6.2 r6884
    • The list of technicians in the request search page will always adhere to the team membership rules
    • Maintenance task responsible for adjusting the attachment storage locations will no longer modify timestamps
    • Proposed solution emails will once again adhere to the notification options per versions 8.5 and prior
    • PDF exports of custom reports containing ids will once again render these values as integers
    • Fixed an issue that could result in requests being stuck in a workflow state where an underpinning contract applies
    • Users can no longer take actions in the user interface on pages that haven't completely loaded
    • Items generated from PO delivery will once again set appropriate default teams for support
    • Fixed various display issues relating to the data validation messages in the top right corner of the application
    • Warranty end dates can now be imported as part of a csv item import
    • Quick calls will once again correctly apply all default values supplied
    • CSV imported content can now span multiple lines and have this detected as part of the import
    • Applied the attachment type visibility option to the customer portal attachment lists
    • Modified the LDAP import process to better cope with Epoch time as stored in AD/LDAP
    • Corrected an AMIE issue relating to the Absolute Manage via ODBC import mapping file
    • Corrected various issues relating to the handshaking function and sla time recording
    • Corrected an issue that prevented certain workflow structures from being imported (from an xml export)
    • Corrected an issue that could see a user ejected from the service desk when approving change requests in the CAB section
    • Corrected an issue that could result in the self-assign function not apply in certain circumstances
    • + various other minor enhancements
    Changes in 8.6.2 r6902
    • Corrected an issue that would see the request editor fail to allow a note to be added to a request in a rare set of circumstances.
    Changes in 8.6.2 r6916
    • Corrected a rare issue where the line manager circular reference check was able to get stuck during an LDAP account synchronization
    Changes in 8.6.3 r6998
    • Corrected an issue where a certain sequence could cause audit trail inconsistencies
    • Corrected an issue that could result in some scheduled quick calls not being generated to schedule (where there are large numbers of quick calls)
    • Corrected the My Teams Tasks dashboard widget to prevent partner users seeing requests they wouldn't otherwise be able to
    • Corrected a performance issue relating to the display of large survey data sets which was affecting system-wide performance in some instances
    • Corrected an issue that was making attachments that belong to a request group inaccessible after a request merge operation
    • Corrected an issue that was preventing some manager notification emails from sending as part of the approval process
    • Corrected an issue where partner users assigned to layer 1 of a team were not being assigned requests appropriately
    • Cancelling the handshake process of a request will once again correctly clear the necessary date fields
    • Correspondence between technicians using the private email alias of a team will no longer trigger workflow state transitions
    • Reinstated the edit button on the 'Customer' tab of the request editor
    • Allow the scheduled reports list of included reports to have the page size adjusted
    • Adjusted workflow transition auditing in an attempt to prevent a very rare workflow transition error
    • + various other minor enhancement
    Changes in 8.6.3 r7004
    • Corrected an issue where attachments with filenames containing certain Japanese characters were being removed by a maintenance task rather than being relocated.
    Changes in 8.6.3 r7058
    • Alerts requiring breach codes to be specified will now be deleted when the related request is deleted
    • Corrected a sequencing issue that could result in a closed request not having a close date
    • Corrected a sequencing issue that could result in a due date being earlier than the report date of a request
    • Corrected an issue related to invoking endpoint actions on mobile devices using absolute manage 6.8 or 6.9.
    Changes in 8.6.3 r7068
    • Corrected an issue where under a certain set of circumstances, accessing a request could result in a user being ejected from the service desk and receive a 'NullPointerException' message.
    • Corrected a bug in a third party library that in a limited set of circumstances seemed to fill the database connection pool with dead connections, resulting the application hanging.
    Changes in 8.6.3 r7117
    • Added a new email processing option when 'Accept Anonymous' is enabled, to provide control over how anonymous correspondence is handled (as either a private or public note). Public notes will trigger workflow transitions.
    Changes in 8.6.3 r7433
    • Partial re-branding work implemented (Absolute -> HEAT)
    • Documentation links once again refer to the host 'docs.livetime.com'
    • Corrected item category custom field sorting in pre v7 upgraded databases
    • Images in the descriptions of requests created via email again display correctly
    • Added AMIE support for Novell ZENWorks 11.4 due to a schema change in the latest version of ZENWorks
    • When a request enters an underpinning contract state, the audit trail will now reflect the correct third party vendor / service provider
    • Corrected an issue in the report builder where an error would result if certain session based parameters where referenced in a constructed query
    • Corrected an issue where searching for requests by date parameters was using the start of the day as the end parameter rather than the end of that day
    • Corrected an issue where partial matching of the localized 'yes' could incorrectly result in a request approval action being triggered via email
    • Corrected an issues in the Item Type saved searches (Filters) that would result in an error if the filter was reloaded
    • Corrected an issue relating to semi-colon delimited org unit owner lists within a single csv item import
    • Corrected an issue relating to LDAP customer imports where a phone number is referenced but undefined
    • Improved performance of displaying the request description in the user interface