MSDN links / Visual Studio F1 help is more broken than not RRS feed

  • General discussion

  • I don't know where to put this feedback, so I'm putting it in this forum. I hope I'm not whistling in the wind.

    In the last six+ months, more than 50% of the time, when I click on a link that brings me to, from either F1 help in VS, or a link on the Azure Portal, or, really, anywhere else... I get "We're sorry, the page you requested cannot be found." It's gotten to the point that before I hit F1, or click a link, I emotionally prepare myself for disappointment, and then find myself pleasantly surprised when it works. Please, stop and think about that. It took a lot for me to switch from expecting excellence at MSDN to expecting failure, but, now I expect failure.

    Even for links from within MSDN to other places in MSDN, it fails. A lot. Even for links in search results on MSDN, I get "We're sorry...." If I see a search result in MSDN that's actually from, I expect it to be broken.

    I know it's easy to think, "well, he's remembering when it didn't work, but not when it did." But, really... I'm taking time out from my work to write this because it just happened to me ten or so different times on links from VS F1 Help, the Azure Portal, and MSDN search - in the last hour. I don't know what to do or say about that.

    For so many years (and I've been doing Windows development since the early 1990's), Microsoft's developer tools have excelled, and a large part of that is that Microsoft provides better help files/sites than anyone else, by far. I realize that there are many, many teams involved in causing the current mess, but this deterioration in search/linking is making MSDN a zombie site. It's worse in terms of both usage and perception than not having it at all.

    I don't have any quick fix ideas... it's going to take a huge human and organizational/cultural effort to bring it back from where it is, led by senior management, but, please, please, please... prioritize it and fix it. MSDN used to be where I'd point when developers on other platforms complained about lack of documentation and help.

    Does the MSDN team keep track of how often the "We're sorry..." page shows up, and for which links?



    Seattle, WA, USA

    Friday, January 15, 2016 9:23 PM