HOWTO Report An Error

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When you get an error, you may not know what to do. One of the first things that should be done is deciding where the error occurred. There are several places that are parts of VistA. A VistA system that is setup properly will have at least two kinds of computers involved. One of the kinds of computers is called the Server computer. The other kind of computer is called the Client computer.

Generally, you only have one Server computer, which is the common shared VistA Database. This computer is the center of the communications for the VistA system, and generally will never be turned off.

Most people have many computers that are client computers. They might be laptops, or they might be desktop machines, but most commonly, they are running Microsoft Windows as an operating system. The client computers usually run CPRS, BCMA, GUI Vitals, GUI Mail, as well as a few administration programs like GUI Config. There are some new client programs that allow a client machine to run other operating systems, such as Macintosh or the Linux Operating system, but these are less common. One of the most notable newer clients is CIS from Medsphere.

General Checklist

Deciding Which Detailed Checklist to Use

If an error occurs on the Server, the error might be in the MUMPS subsystem. You can recognize this error because you will see phrases like "%GTM-E" or "M ERROR" or "<UNDEFINED>" or "<SUBSCRIPT>" or "%GTM-E-UNDEF" for example. If you see this you can go to HOWTO Report A MUMPS Error.

If an error occurs on the Client, you might see a phrase like "[Pascal Fatal Error]" or "index out of bounds". If you see this, you need to know which client program you are using.