What is actually in the system information?
It is what it is: information about your system. What all can be there?
- WordPress version
- PHP version
- Server environment variables
- The list of active plugins
- The active theme
- WordPress settings
- Plugin settings
Where can I find the system information?
A lot of plugins already have a separate page or tab or some section where you can see the relevant data of your setup. Usually it is somewhere among the plugin settings, under ‘Help’ or ‘Support’ or something similar.
Here are some examples.
The Events Calendar has it under Events > Help. You need to scroll down that page about half way and you will see a big black box with the relevant system information.
For WooCommerce you can find it under WooCommerce > Status > System status tab. If you click on the magenta ‘Get system report’ button it will reveal the system information which you can copy with the press of another magenta button.
Why is it helpful to share this?
We are working in a very complex ecosystem. There is a multitude of hosting providers, server options, plugins, themes, etc. There are basically no two environments that are the same. (Okay, there are, but the number of these is insignificant.)
The system information gives the support agent a glimpse of your environment. And with all the information that is contained in there he might be able to pinpoint a couple of things, which could be causing the issue. This can be anything from an outdated PHP version, a short
memory_limit, an outdated or incompatible plugin or theme, a setting that is not set up properly, or many a more things.
Without the system information you and / or the support agent might need to spend precious time on testing before you can find that one thing that causes the issue.
It can save time, if you share it upfront.
Sharing is caring
One more thing. If you do not share it there is a high chance the support agent will ask you to do so. 🙂 Which again takes time, so the resolution is delayed.
This year (2019) in September I participated at WordCamp Switzerland in Zürich. I applied with a talk about how a support exchange, and thus reaching a resolution can be made faster. And I thought it would make a great blog series.
This is the third set of tips for Clients in the Faster Support – For Both Sides series.