Liner Notes
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The FATpick Blog

FATpick maintains a small application log that may contain information that can help troubleshoot any problems you might encounter. If you run into a problem, the FATpick support team may ask you to share these local files to help us debug the issue. This post provides some background information about the feature.

The Debug / Error Log

When the FATpick application encounters an unexpected problem, it may write an error or debugging message to a file on your computer's hard drive.

The FATpick team does not have direct access to the file, but if you'd like to share it with the support team to help resolve an issue, there's an easy way to do that.

Security and Privacy

It's not unusual for an application to maintain a local log file, and FATpick follows best practices to ensure that the log is small and secure:

  • The most recently written 1 MB of data is retained, at most.

  • The file is only available on your local hard drive (but can be uploaded to the FATpick support team when you choose to).

  • The file should not include any sensitive information. In fact there is little or no account-specific or instance-specific information in the log file, let alone any personally identifiable information.

If you have any concerns however, you can (a) review the log contents at any time and (b) disable the log entirely if you so choose.

Application Log Settings

The application log configuration can be managed using the "Log" section of the "General Settings" control panel.

To manage the settings:

  1. Open the General Settings menu.

  2. Enable "Show Advanced Options", if you haven't already.

Once advanced options are enabled, your General Settings menu will look something like the following screenshot.

Application Log Settings

Show/Hide Advanced Settings

The toggle switch labeled "Show Advanced Options" (A) will show or hide a number of advanced features and configuration settings throughout the application. Notably the "Logs" section of "General Settings" will only be visible when advanced options are enabled.

Log Settings

Once advanced options are enabled, you'll find a section labelled "Logs" at the bottom of the General Settings menu.

This section contains the following controls:

Send to Support

The button labeled "Upload Logs" (B) will post a copy of your current log file(s) to the FATpick server, where it can be reviewed by the FATpick Support Team.

Both the file upload and the eventual ("at rest") location at which the file is stored on the cloud is secure. These data cannot be intercepted by a third party and can only be read by the FATpick team.

Note that the FATpick team will probably notice when you upload your log files, if you are looking for help with resolving a particular technical issue be sure to contact the team to give us a head's up and to describe your symptoms in more detail. You can use the in-app feedback form (the lightbulb icon in the header navigation on each screen in the app), the support email address or this web-based form to reach us.

Clear Logs

The button labeled "Clear Logs" (C) will erase the current contents of your FATpick application log files.

Note that if logging is still enabled, a new (blank) log file will be immediately created.

Generate Diagnostic Report

The button labeled "Write Diagnostic Report" (D) will generate a report containing detailed diagnostic information about your FATpick application state and write it to the log file.

Generating the report will not automatically upload the information to the FATpick team. If you want to share the report with FATpick support you must click the "Send to Support" button after writing the diagnostic report to the log. You can however review the log contents directly if you want to see the information for yourself.

(Note that the application log must be enabled for this to do anything useful.)

Enable/Disable Logs

The toggle switch labelled "Enable Logs" (E) will enable or disable log file support. When disabled, any existing log files will be erased and no new log file will be created. Enabling the setting will create a new (blank) log file.

Log File Location

At the bottom of the log configuration form you'll find a message that reads something like:

Application logs can be found under some-directory-location.

This reports the exact location at which you can find FATpick's application log on your local hard-drive.

Clicking on the link in the message will open the containing folder in Windows File Explorer or OSX Finder, from which you can open the log files to review their contents.

Other Notes

  • The log files have a .log file extension and contain plain-text content. These data are largely human-readable, although they may be difficult for an uninformed reader to make sense of. They can be read with an application like Console or TextEdit on MacOS or Notepad on Windows.

  • You may find more than one log file in the application log directory. This is an artifact of the different sub-processes that may be active within the FATpick application, and is perfectly normal.

  • You may find a "backup" log file that contains older log messages. This is also normal. There will be at most one backup log file per sub-process.

  • It is not unusual for the log files to be empty or nearly empty. FATpick is judicious about writing information to the log. If no errors or warnings have been encountered there may be little or no information contained in the log.

FATpick Support

Should you run into any issues while using FATpick, you can:

Seriously, we're here to help. Both users and reviewers positively rave about the quality and responsiveness of FATpick's support team. If you have any questions or concerns, please reach out.

FATpick
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