This documentation supports the 20.02 version of Remedy Change Management.

To view an earlier version, select the version from the Product version menu.

Troubleshooting Change Management approvals

This topic explains how you can troubleshoot the issues related to Change Management approvals.

The Change Management approval issues can be related to incorrect configuration settings. Issues such as approvals getting skipped or change requests getting stuck are a few of the common issues.

Before you begin

  • Make sure that you have performed the correct configuration settings at the application level. For more information, see Configuring approvals.
  • Make sure that no issues exist at the approval server level and the approval server is correctly configured and running, because the Change Management application uses the approval server to achieve approval functionality. For more information, see the How to test Approval Server is working fine or not knowledge article on BMC Communities. For approval server issues, see Troubleshooting Remedy Approval Server .
  • You have access to the following forms:

    Important

    Make sure that you have the Approval Administrator or the AR System Administrator permissions to access the AP forms and the application-specific Administrator, Master, Config, or Contract permissions to access the configuration forms.

    Form typeForm name
    Backend AP forms
    • AP:Detail
    • AP:Signature
    • AP:Detail-Signature (join of above two forms)
    • AP:Role
    • AP:PreviewInfo (Vendor form)

    For more information about Approval forms, see:

    • Administration forms
    • User forms
    Configuration forms
    • APR:Approver Lookup (Approval Mappings form)
    • APR:SYS-Approval Definition (Approval Process Configuration form)
  • Gather the following log and configuration files to troubleshoot the Change Management Approval issues:

    FilesDescription
    Server-side Filter+API+SQL combined log fileTo enable the log file:
    1. Navigate to AR System Administration Console > System > General > Server Information > Log Files tab.
    2. Select the check box to enable the API log, Filter log, and SQL log and give a common name and location to all three log files to generate a single, combined log file.
    Approval Debug log file
    • To enable the approval debug log file, see the Steps to enable approval log and activate Approval Debug Mode article on BMC Communities.
    • To enable logs in a server group environment, see Managing logs for server group .
    Configuration files
    • ar.cfg or the ar.conf file
    • armonitor.cfg or the armonitor.conf file
    • pluginsvr_config.xml file
  • Gather the following additional files:

    FilesDescription
    arjavaplugin*.log or approvalplugin*.logUse to troubleshoot plug-in issues. For more information, see the How to enable Debug Java Plugin server log article on BMC Communities.
    Dispatcher log

    For information about enabling the log file, see the How to enable the AR System Dispatcher log (All versions) article on BMC Communities.

    arerror.log and the ardebug.logUse to troubleshoot any JMX related issues. These log files are located in the Remedy AR System server DB directory.

    Client-side Active Link+Filter+API+DB log

    Use to troubleshoot Approval Central or any User Interface (UI) related issues. For more information, see How to enable client side logging for Remedy.

Diagnosing and reporting an issue

The following table explains the symptoms, scope, and action for the issues.

SymptomScopeAction

Change request approvals are skipped

If there are issues with the approval process configuration or approval mappings.
  • Verify if the Approval Server is up and running.
  • Verify if the issue occurs for any particular approval phase (for example, the Implementation phase) or if it exists for all phases.
  • Verify the approval process configuration by using the APR:SYS-Approval Definition form:
    • Review the company-specific records or the global company records on this form to make sure that the details on all the tabs are correct. Compare the records with the out-of-the-box or working environment.
    • On the Status Flow tab, verify if the Change Process Flow is default (Standard Process) or custom. If you have used a customized status flow, make sure that you create an end-to-end flow across all the approval phases. Additionally, make sure that the change request is created by using a change template that has the same custom process flow attached to it. For more information, see Associating custom process flows to a change template.
    • Make sure that the information on the Additional Qualifications tab is the same as that on the change request.
    • If any specific approval phase is affected, review all the records of that specific phase.
  • Verify the approval mappings by using the APR:Approver Lookup form:
    • If you are using a non-individual mapping, make sure that at least one user of that support group has the respective functional role added in the People profile with the value of Assignment Availability set to Yes. For example, for support group mapping, the functional role is Infrastructure Change Approver. If the value of Assignment Availability on the mapping is No, contact BMC Customer Support.
  • Verify if the change request meets the criteria defined in the configured approval mapping.
  • Create a new mapping with minimum criteria and verify if the approvals get attached to the change request. If yes, then verify the affected mapping to make sure that it is correctly configured.
    Tip: Remove as much criteria as possible from the affected mapping and then add the criteria back to find out which criteria has an issue.
  • From the result list in the Approval Process Configuration form, note the Approval Definition ID for the affected approval phase. Review the approval mappings for these respective Approval Definition IDs.
    Tip: Sort the approval mapping result list on the Approval Definition ID column and verify the respective approval phase records.
  • To identify if there is a data issue, create an identical mapping and verify if it is working.
  • Monitor the Application Pending form, to make sure that the records are not getting accumulated. To process the records that are stuck, restart the Remedy AR System server to re-initiate the dispatcher process. If the records keep accumulating and do not process, see Troubleshooting when Remedy Approval Server fails to process records from Application Pending form .

Duplicate approval signatures are created for a change request

If the approval configurations are enabled on more than one Remedy AR System server

For a standalone server, make sure that the Approval-Server-Suspended parameter located in the ar.cfg or the ar.conf file is set to False.

In a server group environment, note the details of the server, which is designated as rank 1 for the Approval Server operation in the AR System Server Group Operation Ranking form (for example, server A). Make sure that the Approval-Server-Suspended parameter located in the ar.cfg or the ar.conf file for that server (server A) is set to False.

Make sure that the Approval Server is enabled only on one admin server, for example, the primary server, which is designated as rank 1. For the other admin or secondary servers, make sure that the approval operation is suspended in the configuration files. For this, set the value of the Approval-Server-Suspended parameter to True.

Important: Set the value of the Approval-Server-Suspended parameter to either True or False on every AR System server.

The change request gets stuck after being approved or rejected or even when no approvals exist

If any process on the Approval Administration Console is not active or if the approval records are stuck on the Application Pending form.

  • On the Approval Administration Console (AP:Administration), from the Process tab, verify all the CI-IA levelled processes to make sure that their status is Active.
  • If the approval records are stuck due to unprocessed records of the Application Pending form, see Troubleshooting when Remedy Approval Server fails to process records from Application Pending form .
  • If it is a one time data issue, see the Reset the active approval flag utility article on BMC Communities.
  • If the issue is randomly reproducible, verify if you can replicate the issue by creating a Copy Change of the affected change request.
  • If you can reproduce the issue, capture the log files, and contact BMC Customer Support.

The Approval Preview functionality for Future Approvers and All Approvers in the Show menu of the Approval table never displays any result

If there are some issues with the plug-in server or the workflow.
  • For all the Remedy AR System servers (default port 9999), in the ar.cfg or the ar.conf file, make sure that the ARSYS.ARDBC.PREVIEW plug-in exists and that it is not commented. If the plug-in does not exist, manually add the plug-in and restart the Remedy AR System server.
  • Make sure that the ARSYS.ARDBC.PREVIEW preview plug-in entry exists in the pluginsvr_config.xml file.
    Important: If the Approval Server runs on the default plug-in server (port 9999), the file location is <ARSystemInstallDir>/pluginsvr /pluginsvr_config.xml. If the Approval server runs on a separate plug-in server (port 9800), the file location is <ARSystemInstallDir>/Approval/bin/pluginsvr_config.xml.
    For more information, see Configuring BMC Remedy Approval Server with a separate plug-in server instance .
  • Locate the ARSYS.ARDBC.PREVIEW plug-in entry in the pluginsvr_config.xml file. Make sure that all the included JAR files exist on your Remedy AR System server environment in the same directory location where the pluginsvr_config.xml file points to.
  • Run a test on the AP:PreviewInfo form to find out whether the issue is at the application or workflow level or on the Approval Server side. Open the form and search with the Request ID (Field # 1) field of the change request for multiple processes (separated with a semi colon) and verify if the search results are displayed:


    If the test returns the results, review the errors from the workflow side and verify why the workflow is not passing these values properly. If no results are returned or if any error is displayed when searching, then review the errors on the Approval Server end.
  • Capture the arjavaplugin.log plug-in log and the approval debug log file along with the Filter, API, and SQL transactions log files.

Resolutions for common issues

SymptomActionReference

When selecting either the Future Approvers or All Approvers from the Show menu of the Approval table of a change request, the following error message is displayed:

Error in plugin : ARSYS.ARDBC.PREVIEW null (ARERR 8753)

Additionally, the following NullPointerException with preview plug-in file is displayed in the log files:

at java.lang.Thread.run(Unknown Source)
2015-02-06 14:56:32,857 ERROR [pool-4-thread-1] com.bmc.arsys.pluginsvr.plugins.a (?:?) - getListEntryWithFields() FAILs in plugin: ARSYS.ARDBC.PREVIEW
java.lang.NullPointerException
(...)

From the ar.cfg file, change the Server-Plugin-Alias parameter value from:

Server-Plugin-Alias: ARSYS.ARDBC.PREVIEW ARSYS.ARDBC.PREVIEW ServerName.ext.ext:9999


to


Server-Plugin-Alias: ARSYS.ARDBC.PREVIEW ARSYS.ARDBC.PREVIEW ServerName:9999

For more information, see the KA000087340 knowledge base article.

The Approval Preview functionality for Future Approvers and All Approvers does not work.

Important: This is a random issue.

This issue can occur when the approval server is not configured correctly on all the Remedy AR System servers in a server group environment.

  1. Set the value of the Approval-Server-Suspended parameter to either True or False in the ar.cfg file of every Remedy AR System server in the server group environment.
    This is because, although the approval feature is enabled on a single admin server, the approval preview requests can get routed to any of the servers.
  2. Make sure that the ARSYS.ARDBC.PREVIEW plug-in exists, and that the related entry is not commented in the ar.cfg file.

For more information, see:

The Approval Preview functionality for Future Approvers and All Approvers (Show menu of the Approval table) never displays any result.

Duplicate approval signatures are created for a change request

The configured approvals are not getting attached to the change request that uses a custom process flow.

  1. On the Approval Process Configuration form (APR:SYS-Approval Definition), open the company or global company records of the related approval process.
  2. On the Status Flow tab, verify the value of the Change Process Flow menu. If the value is Standard Process flow, this approval configuration record is not used for the change request that uses a custom process flow.
  3. Create a new record for the same approval process and select the custom process flow by using the Change Process Flow menu. Make sure that the status of the created new record is set to Enabled.
    Important: This configuration will take effect on newly created change requests that use the selected custom process flow.

For more information, see Configuring custom process flows.

Not all approvers of the support group receive the approval requests even though the approver is a part of the support group with the required functional role.

If the configuration is correct, this issue can occur due to data issues with the AP:Role and the APR:Approver Lookup records.

Delete the relevant functional roles for the user (approver) from the CTM:People record, save the changes, and then add and save the same functional roles again.

To correct the AP:Role and the APR:Approver Lookup records, see Approval role and mapping records utility.

This utility is effective when a large number of records are affected.

All the approvers of the support group receive the approval requests. However, the change request progresses even though only one approver either approves or rejects the request.

Set the value of the If Multiple Approvers field of AP:Role form to All Must Sign for the respective support group record that is related to the relevant functional role.

For example, if the support group is Back office Support (Support Group ID SGP000000000009) and the functional role to authorize the approval is Change Approver (CAB-Member), then the relevant record is with the Role Name SGP000000000009 | CAB-Member.

Important: This action requires a response from every approver for the change request to progress.

For more information, see Form to create role definitions for approval processes .

For more information about how to configure the If Multiple Approvers field, see the Working with "If Multiple Approvers" in Remedy article on BMC Communities.

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