It’s happened to all of us — we’re animating the night away and the noon deadline is breathing down our neck. Then suddenly, “Bing.” Maya has encountered a fatal error and is attempting to save … and there appears some string of letters that you can barely see through your tears because you’ve forgotten to save since dinner. Then those letters disappear and you have no idea where to find your last hope of getting a good grade for the week.
What should you do?!? You submit a support ticket. But it’s 3 a.m. Pacific Time on Sunday and there’s no way you’re going to get the help you need in time! You panic. You start over.
Then Tuesday afternoon arrives, you get your eCritique, and some of the first feedback you receive is: “I feel like you rushed through this, I think you should focus on using your time more wisely next week.”
It hurts to hear. If only they knew what had happened to you! You can protect yourself from situations like this by knowing how to properly search for troubleshooting instructions online. In this situation for example, by the time you had entered, “Maya 2012 Fa-” into Google, it would have auto-filled the search bar to say, “Maya 2012 fatal error attempting to save” and you’d be the lucky recipient of approximately 35,300 pages referring to the problem you had encountered. There is a very good chance that the first page on that list is the Area :: Discussions for Autodesk® Maya® on the Autodesk site.
This page is an absolute gold mine of troubleshooting information. When I receive a ticket with an error I’ve never heard of before, this is the first place I go. Similarly, when I encounter an error in Maya that I’ve never experienced before, this is the first place that I post my question. You have access to the combined experience of thousands of users, both novice and expert — not to mention the fact that Autodesk’s own support staff checks the forums on a regular basis.
Search for Solutions
Bookmark http://area.autodesk.com/forum/autodesk-maya because this should be your first stop if you ever experience an unexpected issue in Maya. If you are given an error message, you can actually just copy and paste it into the search bar in the forum and it will take you directly to a list of existing threads where the question has already been answered! In the event that your question has not already been answered, I encourage you to join the community and ask it yourself! Spending a little time on the forums will greatly increase your knowledge of Maya — and eventually, you may even find yourself knowing the answers to new posts!
Finding information about troubleshooting programs on the internet is easy! I highly recommend that you search for a solution to your problem before you submit your next support ticket — especially if you are given an error report! With that error message, you are almost guaranteed a solution.
Of course, I will always do my very best to answer you within 24 hours of submitting your ticket. But on weekends especially (when many students do the bulk of their work), that is not always possible. If you are unable to find a solution through research, submit a support ticket! And if you have any questions about research techniques, or ways to refine your search — submit a support ticket! I am always happy to help.