Frequently Asked Questions and Answers on Common Portal Problems
Q: Help! How do I upload a video?
A: It's easy! Here's how to do it:
- Login to the PMTO website.
- Click the big, green "Upload Video!" button in the top right corner of your screen.
- If you have a supported browser click on Continue to Step 2. If you don't have a supported browser, please install the the latest version of Mozilla Firefox or Google Chrome (or ask your IT person to do it for you).
- Next click on the image to select if you are uploading from a memory card, hard drive, or DVD camcorder.
- Either drag and drop your videos into the "Drop files here!" area on your screen or manually choose them by clicking on the Browse or Choose Files button. If you are using a memory card or hard drive camcorder, generally you should go to "My Computer" by clicking on the Start button at the bottom left corner of your screen and choosing "My Computer". Once you are there, the video will likely be under something called "Removable Drive" or "Removable Disk". Double click on that to access the video. However, they may be stored in a folder underneath, so you may have to go through and search the folders for the video by double clicking on each folder until you find the video.
- Select which family and session these videos will be uploaded to. Videos MUST go to an existing session. They have to be attached to a specific session. If you don't have a session for the videos, go create one then click the refresh link next to the family/session drop down box for it to rescan your families and sessions and give you that option.
- If you no longer want to upload a video just click on the red icon on the far right to remove that video from the upload queue.
- When you are done selecting videos and assigning them to the sessions, click the Start Upload! button. Be patient! It can take hours for your video to upload depending on the size and then several more hours for the video to be processed on the server depending on how busy we are.
- You will receive an email when your video is finished processing so you can view it.
- Once you have received the email confirmation that it was uploaded, confirm it was uploaded fully by clicking the link and watching at least the first minute or two of it. If it uploaded successfully, you may delete the original video off your memory card. Just go back to the memory card in My Computer and right click the video and click Delete.
Q: What kind of videos can I upload?
A: You should be able to upload most types of camcorder videos including
- Windows Media (.wmv)
- AVI (.avi)
- MPEG (.mpg)
- MP4 (.mp4)
To check on what type of video you have, right click on the video file and select Properties. Look in the popup window where it says "Type of file:" When you try to upload a video and it doesn't show your camcorder video, open a new support ticket with that info for us to review.
Q: Help! My video is having problems uploading!
A: We would be happy to help track down the issue why your video isn't uploading! But we need help from you. If you are having problems uploading, DO NOT close the upload videos window. Click the Email Upload Debug Information to Support button to open a new support ticket with some vital information in there for us. If you do not do this, it is very unlikely we will be able to troubleshoot the problem. Please, please do not open a support ticket saying the upload system does not work without trying to upload a video first then clicking that button so we can determine what's happening.
Q: Help! My video says it uploaded okay, but I don't see it! What happened?
A: Once your video is uploaded to our server, it has to be processed and converted before it automatically appears on your session's page. This process can vary a lot depending on how long your video is and how many other videos were uploaded that day. It can take several hours or more for your video to show on your session. You will get an automatic email when your video has finished processing. If you don't see your video within 24 hours or get an email, please submit a support ticket and let us know the name of the video you tried uploading and when you started the upload.
Q: Help! I can't watch videos on the portal!
A: There could be a number of reasons why you can't watch videos on the portal. Let's try to figure out what the problem is!
- Can you watch YouTube videos? The PMTO portal system uses the same type of computer systems as YouTube so if you can't watch videos there, you probably won't be able to watch them on the portal either.
- Do you have Adobe Flash Player installed on your computer? You can check to see if you have Adobe Flash Player installed here -- you should see an animated graphic at the top if you have it installed. If you don't have it installed, you may download and install Flash Player for free.
- Do you have the latest version of Adobe Flash Player installed? It's easy to check. Go to the Adobe Flash Player status page and follow the instructions to check to make sure you have the latest version installed.
- Can you check to see if your internet connection supports videos from the portal? Go to the video connection test page and click the run port test button. If you don't see all success messages, please copy and paste the results into a new support ticket.
Q: Help! I am not getting any of my emails from the portal? What's wrong?
A: The portal sends out a lot of automatic emails when you receive feedback, your video has finished processing, you have received a reply to a support ticket, etc. First, go to your profile by clicking on "My Account" at the top of the page and make sure your correct email is entered. If you still aren't getting emails, please have your IT staff add do-not-reply at michiganpmto.com to their email whitelist (don't worry they will understand what that is - just tell them!).
Q: Help! I am adding a family/session/feedback/etc. and when I paste something in from Microsoft Word that I already wrote it looks weird!
A: Microsoft Word includes lots of hidden formatting information when you paste text in which makes it look weird. It's an easy fix. Instead of pasting from Word directly, click the "Paste from Word" button (the icon that looks like a clipboard with a "W" on it) and paste your text in there and then click OK. That will automatically remove all that hidden formatting that is messing things up for you.
Q: I am a therapist or coach. What do I need to use the portal?
A: All you need is a computer (either laptops or desktops are okay), a good internet connection, and the latest version of Mozilla Firefox or Google Chrome. Both of those programs are free and will run on any computer.
Q: I am in IT. What do I need to do to get a therapist using the portal?
A: All you need to do is make sure that the therapist is running a newer computer with adequate processor and enough memory (thin client computers will not work), a broadband internet connection (minimum recommened is 1.5mbps down and 1mbps up for uploading videos), the latest version of Mozilla Firefox or Google Chrome, the latest version of Flash, and make sure that Port 1935 (both TCP and UDP) is open for RMTP. Other than Firefox/Chrome and Flash Player, no additional software is needed. Everything is web based and runs directly in the browser so there is no software to install or manage. Also, please let Firefox or Chrome auto update themselves so therapists will always have the latest version of them.
Q: I am IT and we want to use Internet Explorer. Why can't we?
A: This is a complex answer that needs a detailed explanation. Our old video upload tool was an installable program that required the Microsoft .NET framework as well. This piece of software has created problems from the beginning since it would need to be installed by a system administrator and the .NET framework would have to be installed as well. While the program wasn't an issue per se, the .NET framework created issues. Also, it was very hard to support the program since there were multiple versions and therapists had to uninstall and install a new version. Needless to say, this was not an option for many users.
Additionally, since this was an installable program and needed the .NET framework, this left out any therapist on non Microsoft platforms. While Microsoft Windows has the majority of the market share, we cannot leave out our users who are on Apple Macs or even Linux computers. Tying our system to just a single operating system is not a viable long term solution.
So we decided to develop a web based tool for uploading videos that would require no additional plugins or software installations outside of a web browser. Other than Flash for viewing videos (and most computers already have installed) our video upload tool requires no software installation, configuration, or maintenance by users. There's nothing to install or configure which makes therapists' jobs much easier. Also, since it's a web based software as a service (SaaS), therapists will always have the latest version. This makes pushing out updates to therapists painless - there's nothing to update since Firefox, Chrome, and Opera all update themselves automatically!
While viewing the PMTO system in Internet Explorer will generally work, Internet Explorer is not officially supported. When the PMTO system was originally launched, Internet Explorer 6 was still the dominant browser on the market. Internet Explorer 6 was released in Summer 2001. Internet Explorer 9 (the first version of Internet Explorer that started to come close to achieving standards) wasn't released until Spring 2011 almost 10 years later. That is an eternity in software age and the web changed dramatically since IE6. Internet Explorer versions 6-8 have become irrelevant and have become completely out of date when compared to new browsers like Firefox, Chrome, or Opera. IE development stagnated while the web moved forward at a breakneck speed. Standards evolved and became globally accepted while IE decided to ignore those standards. New features were introduced while IE refused to update and become compatible with evolving web standards.
While IE9 and the new IE10 have taken great strides in becoming more standards compliant and supporting new features, we would like to include support for IE 10 or later eventually. However, for the present, we do not fully support IE because there is no way to add or fix features and standards it simply does not support in the first place. We have introduced a highly advanced browser based video uploading system based on standards and the latest HTML5 APIs which there is absolutely no way to support on old versions of Internet Explorer. We believe in that the portal should require no outside software or plugins other than the latest version of standards compliant browser and Flash Player. Using Internet Explorer would lock users into a Microsoft operating system and would be harder to support with different versions and different versions of permissions. In the long run, sticking to standards and HTML5 APIs will mean the most wide spread compatibility and we hope Internet Explorer will catch up.
We have found through the Portal's 4+ years of usage that therapists have not had any issues with using Firefox once they have been shown what to do by clicking on Firefox to open the Portal. We have also found that if parts of a CMH's IT infrastructure requires IE like SharePoint, then Firefox can be installed and labeled on the desktop as "PMTO Portal" which then further lessens any confusion. Many therapists have used computers with Internet Explorer and Firefox installed together for years with no issues whatsoever. Since Firefox, Chrome, and Opera are standalone programs, there is no chance they will conflict with other programs on the user's computer.
Q: Why should we be using hard drive or memory cards to record sessions? What happened with the DVD camcorders?
A: We highly, highly recommend agencies switch to using hard drive or memory card based camcorders. We have found that using those camcorders are so much easier than the DVD based camcorders. DVDs are prone to smudges, fingerprints, or dirt and one bad spot on the DVD can ruin the entire recording. Also, we have found that DVDs not being finalized was a huge problem when trying to upload. Hard drive or memory card camcorders are much easier to use since the video files can be copied off the camcorders much easier and faster.
Q: Where is the old uploader program? The one with the flower icon on my desktop?
A: As we said in the question and answer above, we don't recommend using DVD camcorders. We have officially discontinued support for the DVD uploaded program. If you still have DVDs to upload, you will need to convert them into digital files first before uploading.
Q. I am in IT. What else should I know about the portal?
A: Please see the IT workshop video from June 12, 2013:
Q. How to upload a video to the PMTO system?
A: Please watch this video:
Q. Video Uploading FAQs
A: Please watch this video: