Request Tracker it partners Conference

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Request Tracker


  • What is RT?

  • A Case Study

  • RT on

  • What’s next?

Part 1: What is RT?

  • Request Tracker is one of several open source trouble ticket systems

  • Feature rich and highly customizable

  • Active open source developer and user community

  • In use at many universities and companies

What is RT?

  • Several instances of RT in use at MIT

  • For an open source tool highly scalable and database independent*

  • Commercial support and custom development available

  • Several add-on components

    • RTFM, a simple knowledge base
    • RTIR, an incident response system

What is RT?

  • Some unexpected feature gaps

  • Not highly optimized; large instances require tuning

  • Limitations of a web interface compared to a thick client

Part 2: A Case Study

  • Matlab license renewal requests processed via RT

  • Successful example of (partial) process automation

  • Almost entirely done through user-side scrip(t)ing

Matlab Workflow

  • Pre-processing

    • Client fills out a web form for Matlab and Tool Boxes
    • Server script parses e-mail & generates license file to pass to RT
    • RT creates ticket and using scrips and templates populates custom fields including license file and PLP fields
    • RT also creates a “refers to” link based on requisition number to SAPweb
    • Ticket is kept in “internal” queue not visible to customer

Matlab Workflow

  • Verification (manual)

    • VSLS staff verify req and order
    • Windows license/PLP generated at Mathworks if necessary
    • Same for license for older version
  • Order delivery

    • VSLS staff change subject from "order" to "license”
    • Move the ticket to the “Completed”
    • Triggers RT to send out custom e-mail with license info
    • “Completed” queue is accessible to customers

Matlab Workflow

  • Post-processing

    • Using saved search, generate an Excel spreadsheet containing critical data for SAP uploads
    • A few manual steps to clean up extra fields and add SAP-related tags
    • Submit spreadsheet for upload to SAP to release requisitions
    • Using the update multiple tickets feature, annotate tickets
    • After confirmation that file was successfully uploaded close ticket and update history

Part 3: RT on

  • Developed extensive additions to RT 3.2 to make RT more useful in a mixed phone and email environment

  • Additions to customizations, per-queue options, and diverse “queue space”

  • Additions to RTFM

  • Many mods incorporated into RT 3.4

MIT RT Screen Shots

  • Home Page

  • Search Builder

  • Search Results (Queue Listing)

  • Ticket Display

  • Side-by-side Display

  • Ticket Reply/Comment

  • Queue Configuration

  • Queue Configuration (Custom Fields)

  • User Configuration

What’s Next?

  • MIT RT queue administrator and developer workshops

  • Richer and better integrated documentation and training

  • Casetracker migrations for current Casetracker users

  • Better and integrated reporting

  • An internal knowledge base

Request Tracker

  • MIT RT Project Notebook:

  • Contact information:

  • Best Practical Solutions:

  • Other ticket tracking tools:

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