With the recent Beta 2 release of Configuration Manager 2007, we can now share with you our work on how we've been restructuring and redesigning our documentation so that it works better for you when you need it most (our "right content at the right time" goal). As with any beta release though, it's still work in progress as we simultaneously work on the restructuring and provide you with the new technical details you need to be successful with the product.
So when you look at the Configuration Manager documentation library, taking heed of the warning header on every topic "This is preliminary documentation and subject to change", how do you know what is representative of the new structure, what is still "work in progress", and which bits we simply haven't got to yet because there aren't enough hours in the day? Configuration Manager asks a lot from its administrators, but clairvoyance should not be on the list of requirements.
Well, I started a blog post that explained our new documentation structure and wording of titles, and how to use it to find the information you need more efficiently. Rather than just explain the theory, I wanted to provide specific examples of how we had put into practice our design so we could get feedback from you on whether we were on the right track. But in my enthusiasm, the blog entry grew and grew ... until it was a blog entry no more and had morphed into an article.
So we asked our good friend, Rod Trent, if he could publish it on www.myITforum.com for us - and he did. Thanks, Rod!
You can read it here:
Navigating the Configuration Manager Feature Documentation - And How Not To Use It, By Using Search Instead (http://www.myitforum.com/articles/42/view.asp?id=9894)
Let us know what you think about this new documentation design and structure - for example:
- Does it help you find the information you need?
- Is it presented in a way that is useful?
- Does separating the different types of documentation (conceptual, planning, configuring, tasks etc) work for you?
- Are the admin workflows and checklists helpful?
- How does this documentation design, structure, and content compare with previously published documentation for SMS?
- How does this documentation design, structure, and content compare with other product documentation you use?
You can reply to this post, comment on the article on myITforum, or email SMSDocs@microsoft.com. Or you can email me directly if you prefer (email@example.com). But we really want to hear from you, because for the Help to be helpful, it has to be more than just technically accurate.
- Carol Bailey
This posting is provided “AS IS” with no warranties and confers no rights.