TO Service Pack or NOT to Service Pack?

Discussion of MicroSurvey CAD related issues and questions.

Moderators: Brian Sloman, Jason Poitras, James Johnston

Post Reply

Do we post a Service Pack with every fix?

Poll ended at Sat Aug 21, 2004 4:15 pm

Yes, I want the best you can build!
Weekly would do it
Monthly would be better
Never, I like bugs
What's a Service Pack?
No votes
Total votes: 16

User avatar
Darcy Detlor
Site Admin
Posts: 205
Joined: Tue Oct 29, 2002 10:14 am
Location: West Kelowna, BC

TO Service Pack or NOT to Service Pack?

Post by Darcy Detlor » Wed Aug 11, 2004 4:15 pm

Hello folks,

Today I was working on an little bug that plots the delta angle with a rounded down value instead of rounded up value. It is out by one second on some curves.

Now the question I have for you is:

"Do we post a Service Pack for this one, or do we hold it until we accumulate a number of other issues?"

For some of our customers this delta problem is a royal pain, but for others it is a non-issue. I have received some comments about the number of Service Packs we have had. I can tell you that with automation, we could post a new service pack every day. I run a few batch files and macros and voila! A new update is compiled, processed, batched, transported, and posted to the internet. Obviously this would be a serious burden to our customers (unless we had them auto-install at 3:00 am) - just like Microsoft does with their automatic updates.

A poll is attached. Let me see your votes! :)
Darcy Detlor,
MicroSurvey Software Inc.

Scott Partridge
Posts: 35
Joined: Sun Nov 10, 2002 11:44 am
Location: Calgary, Alberta

Post by Scott Partridge » Wed Aug 11, 2004 8:20 pm

It really depends on what has been fixed. If it is a 'critical' fix to the database and operation of the program, the sooner the better. But other 'cosmetic' changes can wait.

If we were only talking a few licenses, it really wouldn't matter. If we're talking about 30 to 50 licenses, many of which are remote users from the office with often only dialup connections, it is more of a challenge to keep all users current.

As long as you post a full disclosure on what has been changed and as long as each SP release is a full update from the original release, then it is at the users discretion to update or not.

The fact that you are working this hard to keep customers happy and to provide us with the best available solution is admirable. By all means, keep on doing it.
Last edited by Scott Partridge on Thu Aug 12, 2004 3:27 am, edited 1 time in total.

Posts: 139
Joined: Sun Nov 24, 2002 6:45 am
Location: Temecula, California

Post by ianw2 » Wed Aug 11, 2004 10:11 pm

I'd have to second (no pun intended) Scott's comments.

I must admit that I first saw all the Service Packs as an admission of a poor product. 2004 is anything but that. Now, i look at the Service Paks as proof that MicroSurvey is dedicated to putting out the best product possible and making sure that anything less than perfect is made better as soon as possible.

I don't know of any other company with a similar philosphy except Rolls Royce in their hay day in the '60s.

A math bug such as the Delta function demands immediate fix. We live and die by our math.

Fixing a funky font can wait for a semi-monthly Pak.

My 2¢ worth.
Ian Wilson
Ian Wilson Land Surveying, Inc.
Temecula CA 92591
(951) 684-1044

Jerry Johnson

Post by Jerry Johnson » Thu Aug 12, 2004 2:06 am

I really like service packs that have NEW Civil features. To heck with the delta, just get out your trusty HP11C and check them all.

Seriously, lots of SP's are OK. If need be leave your machine on at night to download. I prefer the SP.exe download method, much faster with my connection, can work in the background and I can install when the phone isn't ringing, like now.

Keep them coming.


George Huppert


Post by George Huppert » Thu Aug 12, 2004 4:12 am

Scott said it first, and said it best. It's hard to expand on a good response.
I'll take the SPs whenever they come (for free that is) . Thanks Microsurvey.

Kevin B.
Posts: 36
Joined: Wed Mar 17, 2004 4:10 am
Location: Damariscotta, Maine

Post by Kevin B. » Thu Aug 12, 2004 5:25 am

I agree with Scott. We are extremely happy with the tech support. I don't believe other software companys respond to issues like MicroSurvey does.
Keep up the great work.

T.M. Moretz
Posts: 79
Joined: Fri Nov 08, 2002 1:31 pm
Location: North Carolina, USA

Every day

Post by T.M. Moretz » Thu Aug 12, 2004 9:47 am

If the service pack fixes a problem I'm having I can choose to download - if it doesn't then I can skip it and download a later service pack and still get the one from before at the same time. Also, if one of the service packs creates a bug elsewhere in the software then I would like to see a fix for that ASAP.

Richard Sands

Service Packs

Post by Richard Sands » Thu Aug 12, 2004 1:41 pm

I agree with Scotts opening sentence
"It really depends on what has been fixed. If it is a 'critical' fix to the database and operation of the program, the sooner the better. But other 'cosmetic' changes can wait".
I also agree with other comments re Microsurveys willingness to fix things and the quick response, Thanks.

Vincent Popish
Posts: 129
Joined: Thu Nov 14, 2002 11:24 am
Location: Grand Junction, CO


Post by Vincent Popish » Fri Aug 13, 2004 8:17 am

My complaint with so many sp's is not that you are fixing the problems and providing the fixes in a timely manner, I greatly appreciate that. But it is with the fact that so many fixes were needed in the first place. I recognize that these fixes were almost entirely with the cad engine and not mscad. You guys do a great job. I would like to see sp's come as quickly as possible to.
Vince Popish



Post by Glenn » Fri Aug 20, 2004 12:11 am

Yes, I want the best you can build! 8)

Rusty Collyer
Posts: 9
Joined: Sat Jun 26, 2004 12:52 pm
Location: Big Sky Country - Montana


Post by Rusty Collyer » Sat Aug 21, 2004 6:22 pm

Critical items - sure, as others have said.

The size of the cumulative SP is getting up there - SP9 @ 16MB is a little tough on a dialup - not everyone has broadband.

Ever given any thought to splitting the SPs into segments to help with the file size?

Glad you guys are so vigilant about fixing bugs!! It is appreciated!


Post Reply