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LOL Woes of an IT helpdesk

Discussion in 'General' started by legoman, 6 Mar 2018.

  1. legoman

    legoman breaker of things

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    We've all had them people who work in IT but don't grasp the concept of IT or simply just don't know what they are doing.

    User 1
    Me: Can you log off the laptop please
    User: OK *shuts down laptop*
    Me: I cant see your laptop on the network currently can you tell me what's on the screen?
    User: Nothing I turned it off like you told me
    Me *thud*

    User 2
    User: My hard drives full
    Me: OK you need to do some house keeping or move stuff to a network share
    User: Cant you just give me more space?

    User 3
    User: Hi, I'm at the gym an I cant sign into their WiFi can you help me
    Me: No

    User 4
    User: My trackpad on my laptop keeps turning off
    Me: have you tried tapping the top left?
    User: Yes but when I tap it again it turns off
    Me *thud*
     
  2. Mister_Tad

    Mister_Tad Super Moderator Super Moderator

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    They're delights, aren't they.

    Way back, in the long long ago, I was a storage and backup admin. This was 99% back-end work, but I would occasionally be asked to perform user restores if the client's helpdesk was unable to do them for some reason. Nine times out of ten, the reason was that they were impossible to do.

    They were all for an imminent important meeting - a presentation for upper management, accounts for some sort of deadline, abort codes for an imminent nuclear launch etc. All of the files also always just disappeared without a trace, I guess filesystems have a habit of being finicky like that.

    - Restore files on work laptops (we didn't back up endpoints, as it wasn't really the done thing and not really feasible at the time). Bonus points if it was offline.
    - Restore a laptop. The whole thing, bare-metal restore.
    - Restore files on a home machine
    - Restore text messages on a phone, or something else ridiculous like that.
    - Restore files that were created and "disappeared" within hours during the working day (i.e. overnight backup window). My favourite part was having to explain to the user that backups ran at night, but if they made if this morning, and lost it just a couple hours later, perhaps they should work on re-creating it for their apparent deadline rather than sit having a moan at me.
    - Restore a file of unknown name, type and location, but it was definitely there. Be threatened with legal action because this file is really important accounting information and is needed for an audit. Eventually find the file on a share, untouched, exactly where it always has been.
    - Restore files which were clearly unrelated to work.
    - Restore the management report (or something equally ambiguous) for someone's boss. No other clues.
    - Restore something that "disappeared" some time in the last 12 months. But it's still super important right this minute.
    - Restore this file that disappeared last week at some time, that is so important I left until I need it right now to get it back.

    All this snapshot business now, storage admins don't know what they're missing.
     
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  3. IanW

    IanW Grumpy Old Git

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    You might like to also read The Register's "On-Call" & "Who, Me?" weekly posts.
     
  4. Mister_Tad

    Mister_Tad Super Moderator Super Moderator

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    At least 25% of the time I feel like they're made up stories. They're almost certainly not though, which makes them all the more painful.
     
  5. Wakka

    Wakka Yo, eat this, ya?

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    My grandmother-in-law, since getting a new laptop for Christmas, has developed an extraordinary talent for switching it to "Tablet mode" - Every time I show her how easy it is to fix, and warn her about clicking ANYTHING in that corner she isn't sure about, she protests till she's blue in the face that she didn't do it ("I just turned it on and it was like this!!")...

    Ok Sheila, just like you definitely don't keep ringing those dodgy numbers we keep telling you to ignore that pop up when you're playing Facebook games, right?
     
  6. RedFlames

    RedFlames ...is not a Belgian football team

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    Oh, people can't really be that stupid...

    *works in tech support*

    ...yes, yes they can be that stupid.
     
  7. Tichinde

    Tichinde Active Member

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    My stand out moment on the Service Desk was still the Secretary to the VP of an Electricity Distribution company calling me at 17:59 (my hand was hovering over the log out button) to ask me when the power cut would be over.
    While she was fine with my answer ("that sounds like a you problem, not an IT problem"), the call monitoring monkeys were less than impressed with my flippant attitude to a VIP user.

    That and users who just can't spell Orange123......Apple987 is fine though. Just not Orange..

    Yeah we do :p
    Happen to be restoring a 5.5TB VM right this second actually because a bad OS patch caused the VM to screw it's cmos equivalent into oblivion (yep, explain that one....)
     
  8. ElThomsono

    ElThomsono Well-Known Member

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    The worst call I've ever had went something like this:

    Customer: "*major system 1&2* are down"
    Me: "I'll check that over immediately and get back to you"

    Both systems are checked and are running without fault, so I call back.

    Me: "I've checked and they're both online, it's possibly your connection at fault, does the VPN load?"
    Customer: "No, it doesn't, and I can't get to the internet either"
    Me: "...I think it might be your internet connection at fault"
    Customer: "You might be right, we're in the middle of a power cut at the moment"
    Me: "..."
    Me: "...ok well most likely the internet connection will come back up when the power is restored and you should be able to access *major system 1&2* again"
     
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  9. Mister_Tad

    Mister_Tad Super Moderator Super Moderator

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    Ah, but are you restoring a two week old version from a huge set of incrementals fragmented across three dozen tapes because there's a perpetual I/O error trying to restore last weekend's full, and the week before the full overran and was cancelled, and then finding out that some of the tapes were left offsite anyway to having to recall them once again, and then restoring inconsistent trash data because the server owner thought that "backup" meant magical application consistency without them having to do anything, and then finding out that one of the application owners have a separate self-managed backup anyway and never thought you mention it?

    EDIT: Bonus points as well if you enlisted a data-recovery firm on an emergency callout to try to recover last week's set of tapes along the way at the cost of tens of thousands in the process.
     
    Last edited: 7 Mar 2018
  10. legoman

    legoman breaker of things

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    Couple more

    User lost their laptop, requested we recover the business critical data from it.

    User raised an alert as his laptop kept giving alerts that Steam.exe was being blocked, his son had somehow circumvented the lockdowns which isn't too hard and installed steam signed into his account an installed a couple of games.

    Personal pet hate, windows roaming profiles, why in this day an age we still use them, that along with Outlook cached exchange mode being force enabled under policy and offline file sync. WHY! you RAS in via a juniper client an you have full access!

    Bulk of the business use HP G3 laptops with 120gb HDD's fine, shame our "build" is over 80Gb then you add the OST files, offline cached files and roaming profile data, an oops hard drives full! Woe betide anyone on a shared device.

    Reason its annoying me today is ive cleared down this one guys profile three times, checked event viewer can see the user profile service errors but nope, only solution nuke it from orbit an let the user whinge their networks drive etc have vanished eurgh!
     
  11. Journeyer

    Journeyer Well-Known Member

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    A few years ago I was tasked with writing an instructional for installing MS Office, and that it should be simple enough so that a child might be able to follow it.
    So I did, and I included lots of screenshots and red arrows pointing to the relevant buttons and checkboxes, and I kept the text as simple and as short as possible. It was also available directly on a website and downloadable as a PDF.

    Then I got a call...

    User: I'm unable to install Office, and I was told that you would be able to help me.
    Me: Sure, what seems to be the problem?
    ...
    *now followed ages of back and forth with me giving her instructions*
    ...
    Finally, Office was installed and the user had this to say at the end:

    User: So, if I had read the instructions I would have been able to do this by myself?
    Me: ...yes. *face met desk*


    I also remember a support message I got by mail. It was short and to the point, and it read:

    "The Office-crap isn't working!"
     
  12. yodasarmpit

    yodasarmpit No longer the other Brett.

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    Not IT, or end user tech support relationship, however I work in a Portfolio Management Office for a large scale blue chip company.


    Boss: I need some more analysis
    Me: What do you need analysed, what output, does it need a specific spin
    Boss: Just see what you can come up with
    Me: Ohh ffs I give up

    Boss: What’s MoSCoW
    Me: Ohh ffs I give up
     
  13. Mister_Tad

    Mister_Tad Super Moderator Super Moderator

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    [​IMG]

    I work predominantly in the analytics space, and this is one of three Dilberts I frequently use in business meetings.

    (The other two being exhibit A and exhibit B)
     
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  14. loftie

    loftie Well-Known Member

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    If this is a Windows 10 laptop and you mean the Tablet Mode option in the action centre, you can remove it from there.
     
  15. RedFlames

    RedFlames ...is not a Belgian football team

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    Settings -> System -> Notifications and Actions -> add/remove quick actions [or drag it off the list].

    One Step Further...

    Settings -> System -> Tablet Mode... Set 'When I sign in' to 'Desktop Mode' and/or set it to, iirc 'Don;t Ask, Don't Switch' or 'Always Ask' on the auto-switch setting below.

    [can provide screengrabs if needed]
     
  16. yupson

    yupson New Member

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    Funny.... I'd go crazy if I work in support >_<
     
  17. nimbu

    nimbu Well-Known Member

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    Inept senior management. I manage our support function at work. Which includes myself, one team member and two virtual support agents from India.

    I have lots of empathy for the users that we support and am mindful that well we wouldn't have a purpose if they understood this better.

    What really grinds my gears is when my Head of Tech in full it meetings replies to a question from one of my guys or their updates with "that's the unimportant part of it" or when they give me a debrief of their CEO catch up telling me the CEO doesn't give a crap about the 6 month tech operations update you wrote and well neither do I.

    Reminds me of a convo I had with an old boss ages ago.

    Him: what's the number one priority for some one working in support?
    Me: providing excellent cs
    Him: nope
    Me: ensure we are meeting our resolution targets
    Him : nope
    Me: what is it then?
    Him: get the hell out of support as quickly as possible!
     
  18. crazyg1zm0

    crazyg1zm0 Well-Known Member

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    Here is a small conversation from about a year or 2 ago.

    $User: Some of my emails have gone missing from my machine and i need them as they are business critical emails.
    $ME: Sure no problem, when did you last see the emails on your machine.
    $U: Last night before i went home.
    $M: I fire up outlook and have a look at the size of his inbox (not very big) checking the deleted items folder and the recently deleted emails as well to see if they were there
    $M: $U I dont see anything can you show me where abouts they were appearing please.
    $U: Right here, there were 15 years worth of client email and business critical emails I must have back.
    $M: Starts getting worried as he pointed to the archive files section of outlook. Checks the users outlook settings and sees a couple of PST files listed and one of them appears to be FUBAR.
    $U: As you can see that one still works but the main one is not working at all.
    $M: This might not be easy if at all possible to recover, I start to tell him. (i will just explain if you dont know, PST is a local only archive of emails the user can make, The issues we have seen with these are that once they get too big (over 20gb) they can go tits up badly. Now we have tried a few things to fix them over the years from special repair software (hit and miss) to hex editors to remove the corrupted part (also very hit and miss) The company has a cloud backed up system for document and email storage relating to client work and every department except one is now expected to be using it.
    $U: Well surely you have a backup of all of these emails so just get me that
    $M: unfortunately not, As you know last year we implemented and pushed out a new system for storing critical documents and emails and asked every department to start using it, we even trained superusers in each department to help you use it.
    $U: this is unacceptable, My Manager will hear about this and will have something to say about it.
    M$: Ok I understand the frustration you are feeling, if you would like to complain you can do it either by $method 1, or you can talk to my manager. But a PST is a personal storage table, we do not condone the use of them for email storage. I understand we have in the past but due to issues much like this one we have stopped supporting the use of them unless you are aware of the dangers and risks for them. Thanks



    There have been plenty of other amusing ones, Will try to remember some more.
     
  19. Guest-23315

    Guest-23315 Guest

    Its not my fault its company policy I have to email you and have everything ticketed, rather than:

    a) Fixing it myself
    b) walking 10 feet to ask you to come help.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: 3 Apr 2018
  20. Anfield

    Anfield Well-Known Member

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    While working in support for any HW manufacturer:

    Employee: I'm sorry to hear you have problems with Windows, unfortunately we can't help with that as we have nothing to do with Windows, you will either have to fix it yourself or contact Microsoft.
    Customer: But Microsoft support sucks
    Employee: I'm sorry to hear that, unfortunately we have no control over the support provided by a completely different company, is there anything else you need help with?

    Rinse repeat 500 times a day.
     

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