Tuesday 3 May 2011

Windows 7 Problem Steps Recorder

I was recently introduced to the Windows 7 Problem Steps Recorder (PSR). Wow, it's a well-hidden nugget of gold in Windows! Have you ever had the task of recording the steps you took in Windows? Perhaps to describe a problem, or maybe to create some user guide documentation, or perhaps to record your activities for audit purposes. Regulated industries such as pharmaceuticals demand that evidence of test execution be collected.

The PSR is a great tool for quickly documenting a series of steps that you take on your PC. Screenshots are automatically captured by the recorder (showing keystrokes and screen clicks) and comments can optionally be added to provide a more detailed description of what is happening. Once the recording is finished, the screenshots and comments are saved to a zip file.

To start the Problem Step Recorder, click the Start menu, then type Problem in the search field; you will see Problem Step Recorder in the results list. Click the Start Record button. It's pretty simple to use, but if you need an overview you can refer to the PSR video on Microsoft Technet; for further help, check the How Do I Use PSR article on the Microsoft web site.