This happened almost 2 years ago.
I work as a tech/web developer for a local computer repair and service shop. We do both business and personal work, though Business support is what tends to pay the bills. At the time I had only been with the company for about 3 months, but I had gotten pretty used to the routine and I had known the Owner for several years so he trusted my abilities. Typically
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A few years ago I was building an e-commerce website for a London-based company. The schedule was pretty hectic, but we pulled some all-nighters and got the shipment out in time for initial review.
After the review, the client CEO sends emails to me, my line manager and our CEO stating that we have hacked his website and intentionally added profanity and filth to the system. I was hauled down to explain our actions.
After calming the guys down to a conversational level, he showed me the "evidence" where, when the CEO enters information in the product search text box, it comes up with suggestions such as "inter-racial gang bang" when looking for "inter...". I calmly explained that the search box was named the same as that of Google's and that his search history was showing in the results.
The complaint was dropped without apologies or explanations.
you know that call. you barely have time to get out your greeting when someone manages to get the word "SUPERVISOR" out of their foaming mouth. in a way, you're kind of relieved this person was able to indentify themself as a raging cunt from the get-go.
recently, i had a lady calling in demanding a supervisor. we are required to at least get their account up, verified and have some idea of what the problem is before we bother a supervisor (who knows more about getting employees time in for payroll than they know about troubleshooting). After listening to a barrage of names that would make a sailor blush, i finally get to asking what she needed a supervisor for.
disclaimer: i am in no way responsible for injuries to your face, palm and/or desk. read the reason at your own risk.
she wanted to speak to a supervisor because the username she wanted was already taken. she demanded the supervisor call the customer who has that username already and force them to change it.
Of all the tech support issues we deal with on a daily basis, none of them ever include diagnosing hardware issues. It is very much outside the scope of what we do in our normal trouble shooting procedures, and frankly is a headache. It is especially frustrating when you consider the caliber of redneck we deal with all day. I'm sure many of you can understand the frustration of dealing with people like this. These types of people demand that you support everything from their internet, to printers to coffee pots and margarita machines.
This particular incident happened several years ago, when i first started at this tech support job. A few of my co workers read reddit and have heard many of my snarky stories. As i have stated in previous stories, i am VERY sarcastic by nature and love to pull a gotcha on users that are stupid. So stupid in fact, you question how they are still breathing because their brains are so undeveloped.
I had one of these "gotcha" moments with this particular user that day.
Me: "Thank you for calling internet support, this is C, can i get your phone number please"?
User: uh ya my internet aint werkin, fix this shit for me right the hell now.
Immediately i thought to myself, this is freaking great, already have my first call thats going to end up in a supervisor takeover. From the get go, the user was immediately belligerent and confrontational, exclaiming that our service sucked and he shouldnt have to pay what hes paying for service.
Me: alright sir, what exactly is going on?
User: i cant get on the internet! what do you think is wrong
Me: Alright, so what exactly is not working? Are you able to get to websites? can you not get email?
After much wrangling back and forth, i finally got the user to admit the issue.
User: well my keyboard isnt working
Thinking to myself oh good, something i cant help with, i can send this jerk away to replace his keyboard.
Now, as many of you may know who have done tech support for many years, you tend to become in a sense, clairvoyant. You seem to develop a "spidy sense" if you will and can determine a user's issue within the first 30 seconds to few minutes of a call. I got that tingling on the back of my neck and sense that something wasnt quite as it should of been
I let the user know that we dont support hardware typically, but i decided to be nice and play along since we werent too busy at the moment.
Me: oh ok, is it plugged in?
The user made a very loud audible scoff at me and retorted with a very quick laugh and a "NO"
Me: ok well that may be your problem right there, can you plug it in?
User scoffed again: No i cant, its wireless
Me: oh alright then, have you tried turning off the computer and turning it back on?
User: ya i done that already
The clairvoyant spidey tech support sense tickled the back of my neck again. I probed further. The sarcastic super-saiyan snarkiness of my soul was powering up inside me, ready to unleash a barrage of wit against the target. I thought to myself, "alright gypsy, ill play your game".
The user continued to scoff at me. I probed deeper into the situation
Me: alright, how long have you had that keyboard sir?
User: uh.. 'bout 12 months??
Me: oh ok, whens the last time you changed the batteries?
User scoffed again and retorted: "lol uh never dude, its fuckin wireless"
I ugh'd to myself internally, and grabbed my head in mental anguish at the sheer retardation of the user's assertion.
The entire time the user is talking down to me, acting like i dont know what i'm talking about, at this point i've had it with the user's attitude and lay waste to him.
Me: alright sir let me ask you this... Do you have a cell phone?
User: uh lol yeaaaa i got me a cell phone -- again with a scoff and much unnecessary attitude.
Me: Alright. So you mean to tell me in the past 12 months, you've NEVER charged that cell phone?
At this point, the user became completely silent. You could hear the audible thud as his jaw hit the floor, when he realized that he was infact, an idiot.
My first "real" job was an internship in the accounting department of a large (and now non-existent) public company. I was 19 years old and I took for granted that everyone else in the professional landscape had the same common sense I did when it came to technology. Obviously, this was a terrible assumption. A year and a half of interning at this company left me with a completely different view of the business world, and a pile of good stories. This one just scratches the surface.
Since I was a lowly intern, I shared my cubical with another lowly intern. I wasn't upset in the least by this, because she was smoking hot. I assumed hot chicks didn't go to school for accounting (an admittedly sexist assumption). We sat kind of back to back, and one day she tapped me on the shoulder.
"Are you hungry?" she asked me.
"I'm always hungry."
"Do you want the cookies I brought with my lunch?"
I was confused by why she'd just offer me her cookies. But I learned at a very young age that when you are offered free cookies, you don't ask questions. As I munched away, my curiosity got the better of me.
"Why didn't you want these, anyway? Am I eating tainted cookies?"
"No, I was having problems with my internet earlier and IT said that my problem might be related to having too many cookies."
I explained to her what they actually meant and showed her how to clear her cookies, but only after I finished eating the real cookies. They were homemade and delicious.
Being in Tech support you never really think that you're going to make a huge impact in someones life. Not like being a doctor or the police. But its amazing how far giving a bit of advice could go!
A year or so ago, someone on Facebook pinged me asking for help on something. This is someone who never talks to me, and is a friend of a friend, knows me a bit. Suddenly they're all "Ahh hi mate!! You know something about computers, can i ask you something!?"
Anyway this person had split up with her ex not so long ago, and he had been using her credit card online to buy stuff. He'd bought an external hard drive, but it was one with built in encryption and stuff. I can't remember the make now. But it when I looked it up, it was the best of the best when it comes to securing your data, with various levels of encryption and password protection.
She was just asking me why the drive was so expensive. So I was explaining to her about the encryption. Then she was asking, why would he be needing all that encryption? So I simply said, either he's OCD about his security, or he has something sinister to hide.
Anyway I didn't think any more of it. Until she pinged me last week, and said. I need to thank you. I did some digging based on what you said, and I found out he was a paedophile. She asked her daughter some questions about him and it seemed that this guy had been at her. She went to the cops and they took his computer and uncovered a tonne of stuff downloaded. And now they've locked him up for it all.
So I was quite taken aback by that one! I was kinda meaning it in a bit of an off the cuff remark about hiding something. But she obviously had some suspicion and when I confirmed that this drive was the best of the best for hiding stuff, it gave her what she needed to start investigating this guy further.
I'm quite happy with myself over that one as you can imagine.
Basically it tells us that the Tech support we give might go further than you think!
TL;DR Told a girl that her ex's new HD was the best for encryption. From that she realised he was a peado, got him charged and put away.
Okay so I'm not tech support (not even close, although if anyone in the family has a computer issue I'm the one they talk to first) but this just sets a fire in my blood that makes me want to murder someone.
Basically, my mom switched emails in the last ~2 years when we moved to a new ISP. Her old email account was through our old ISP, and so her access to that account terminated when she moved to our new ISP, and she has a new account with them. Her antivirus coverage (which is through - ugh - Norton) didn't automatically transfer, of course, which is to be expected. No biggie.
So she goes to show me this email FWD today which I told her looked very suspicious and advised her to run a virus scan. When she went to go run said virus scan, she couldn't access the account because it was under her old email address and she didn't remember the password. Turns out she hasn't actively run a scan (only the background scan that runs automatically at 3 AM) since we switched ISPs. Since she can't access her old email account and that's how they get her password info to her, she thought the logical decision would be to change her email address associated with the account, which she did.
Then she logs in to Norton and it says she has 0 active days, when it should say she has 120 active days.
So anyway, she gets ahold of Norton customer support online who basically tells her that she's SOL, shouldn't have changed the email and can't reset her password, even though she knows all of the info associated with the account up to and including the credit card number. My mom asked if there were any solutions and he basically told her he could use the new email account and have her buy another time period, and have the old account (which, unbeknownst to her, was set to autorenew every year) deactivated and lapse. My mom told him that that was unacceptable and basically told him she'd be terminating service with them if that was the only option.
At this point I jumped in and mentioned to her that there were lots and lots of better, free software that would protect her just as well and probably better than Norton. My mom responded by saying that she "likes" Norton and doesn't want to move away from them, and had asked the guy if there were any other options available for her.
When confronted with the possibilty of losing a customer, he came back with (pharaphrased of course) "actually haha I'll just transfer those 120 days you had left of your anti virus protection over to your new email address, just need your credit card info again for the autorenewal", which my mother was much more pleased with, until he mentioned to her that she would have to purchase a full, new year of time on the new account in order for the 120 days to be transferred over.
After much hemming and hawing and quite a lot of protestation from me, my mom agreed and - as a bonus from Norton - he gave her (gasp) a whole 21 days of free coverage.
I can't decide what infuriates me more, my mom's refusal to believe either that a) an email she got from a friend might contain a virus (I initially had to show her that my own antivirus flagged it as suspicious before she would believe me), or b) that I'm not trying to scam her or some ridiculous bullshit, or c) the overall disgust for Norton customer service that I have right now. I hate that my mom is paying for this program and the best they can do for her is "well, our system is kind of skewed so that there is only one single way to retrieve your password, so if you don't have access to that way then you need to give us more money."
Guh, I'm sorry, this probably doesn't belong here and again, I'm really not techsavvy and this is REALLY FUCKING LONG but sitting through that was painful.
tl;dr my mom is computer illiterate and Norton sucks the devil's dick for kicks.
I worked at Circuit City for the better part of 3 years, 2 of which were spent on the "FireDog" tech bench, where we often served the bizarre and just all around cooky customers of a North Carolina market.
We had a few interesting cases, here are just a few of the ones that made me go what in the hell are you doing?
1)I was off helping a customer purchase a computer as we often had to do when the store was busy. A colleague of mine, who I later went to Afghanistan with as a private contractor, was at the bench ringing someone up for a wireless router or some other smaller piece of tech. The guy walks up and asks her if we fix computers, which we obviously do, she quotes him our prices and agrees to. He then proceeds to place a food lion bag with a laptop and power supply in it on the counter. A bit puzzled my coworker decides not to bring up the oddity of bringing in a laptop in a plastic bag, she puts the computer behind the counter on our island that we worked on and locks it down within our laptop security bars. I get over there and instantly smell something wrong with the whole situation as the tech bench area now has a foul stench around it. We decide not to proceed with troubleshooting until the customer has confirmed what he thinks may have happened. My boss gives the guy a call and asks that all important question "What has happened in the past 48 hours that would cause your computer to not boot?" The gentleman responds with "Well my buddies and I got really really drunk last night and I think one of my friends may have pissed on it."
At this point another tech has arrived and is starting to fiddle with it a bit, my manager comes running out of the back of the store and about tackles the other tech away from the laptop, after they stand up he proceeds to inform us of the conversation he had with the customer at which point the other technician begins to vomit. We ended up not refunding the guys money and simply telling him to buy a new computer.
TL;DR Guy brings in laptop for service, informs us after he's left the store he thinks a friend pissed on it while drunk.
2) I saw a story similar to this one a few days, maybe a week ago but thought I would share anyways. A friend of mine, we'll call him Herp, worked on the Tech Bench with me, we often made house calls for those users who just didn't want to cart their computers all the way to the store. He was setup with a call from a gentlemen who appeared to be in his mid 20's, but not very tech savvy.
Upon arrival to the customers home Herp walked in and instantly noticed this guy had a rather strange amount of cats (something that strikes me at odd in that age bracket). Herp proceeded to do the normal troubleshooting steps we take then noticed that the front of the case was "dusty" he proceeded to blow it off with canned air. The "dust" wouldn't move so he took his hand, licked his thumb and proceeded to clean the front of the computer off, licking his thumb a few times here and there to get some other spots on the computer. He then proceeds to troubleshoot some more and figures out the guys power strip is bad, replaces it with a new one and gets the guy to pay.
On the way back to the store he gets a call from the guy, advising him that he thought the "lick and wipe" technique was a bit grotesque and advised him to stop and get some mouth wash, then he hung up the phone. A bit alarmed my buddy Herp calls me up and asks what the guy could have meant, between fits of tears and laughter I inform Herp that he just licked the guys dried up cum and should probably go to the store and buy some mouth wash, a toothbrush, and mints at the very least. He never lived that down, not until the store closed did he escape that story.
TL;DR Tech friend I worked with ended up inadvertently "licking" a guys dried up cum off the front of his desktop.
As I recall more i'll edit/update these and trust me, there are more, i'm just at work right now and it's not easy to type this much up and not get "stern looks".
I figured i'm probably going to keep the name scheme I used with the last one as this one is just disgusting and makes me wtf everytime I think about it.
Characters: Customer Derp, Tech Herp, Me (Ryan is the name)
Background again, I used to work at Circuit City for 3 years, 2 years on their end user support team. This is one of the best wtf stories i've got from there.
Customer Herp enters the store and proceeds to the tech bench, i'm currently working on 3 other systems so the new tech Derp speaks with the lady.
Herp "My computer won't turn on, and I can't figure out why, the fans aren't making any noise anymore."
Derp "Well we can certainly take a look at it for you, our standard diagnostic fee is $60. Anything after that will be extra is that okay?"
Herp "Yes that seems reasonable, other places wanted to charge me an outrageous fee and I can't figure out why."
Ryan's alarm goes off at this statement
Derp "Well we definitely will take care of it."
Herp and Derp fill out the forms and do the payment transaction part, I continue to work on the systems I had in front of me.
Herp leaves the store, Derp puts the the desktop on the bench with the rear facing me, I notice that there are about 3 Expansion slot covers missing with what appears to be hair or something. I inform Derp.
Derp "Well that's strange, most people don't do this kind of stuff, let me take the side off and see what the shape of the board is."
Derp removes the side of the case and gag's so hard I think he's swallowed his tongue.
Me "Dude....are you gonna die on me what's up?"
Derp points to the case and takes 3 steps away like it's a bomb. I step around the bench and drop my head and just sigh
What could be that bad? I'm sure that you're wondering, don't worry you're going to be filled in, right now.
The customers computer had over heated and ALL the fans in the unit weren't spinning for one simple reason. Roaches. The customers computer was full of dead, chewed up, chunked up roaches. I guess they had made it their home, then when the customer turned the computer on, blender, until it couldn't spin anymore. So that hair I thought I saw, antennas.
Received this today. Not real sure how to reply.
I am looking for some help. I recently bought a SanDisk Ultra Solid State Drive. The box says it is a 2.5" drive. Do you know how many gigabytes are in 2.5"? I don't know the conversion rate. Or I can weigh it if you know how much a gigabyte weighs.
Thank you Kevin GOD BLESS Please do not print this
A customer called my store today telling me about the desktop he had purchased from my store just over a year ago.
He starts telling me how his monitor takes 20 minutes to turn on when ever he starts the machine. I start going over the general troubleshooting questions: have you tried another cable, another monitor, another wall outlet. He says he has, and I am leaning toward it being a faulty graphics card, which leads me to my next question.
Does it have a dedicated graphics card or is it using onboard video?
He asks how he can tell, so I point him to the back of the machine and tell him what to look for. A horizontal strip with one or two plugs, either blue or white, on the lower half of the machine.
He tells me that yes, there is a card there and there is a white cable running to the monitor from it. Then he pauses and mentions the blue plug further up the back that also has a cable running to the monitor.
So now it is a apparent that he has both the dedicated GPU and the onboard video simultaneously plugged in to his monitor. I mention that this might be the problem and that he should unhook the blue one and boot up.
He says something to the effect of "That was painfully simple. If this fixes it I'm going to smack myself in the head".
Next thing out of his mouth was, "Welp, while you're still here..."
And hung up.
If only I could get more customers with dumb questions to hit themselves...
Week before last I had a ticket for a printer. The incident description was along the lines of "The blade on the fuser is broken, please help." I get up there, and I quickly realize that I had just put a brand new fuser in this printer a couple weeks ago because the old one was causing paper jams every time it tried to print legal sized pages. I open it up, and the fuser is in four pieces - It was pretty obvious to me that the paper had jammed again and someone got the bright idea to pull on the flimsy black plastic flap to try and release the page. Not only that but there were two smaller pieces that obviously held it on. So instead of someone trying the two large obvious blue handles on the sides of the fuser, they thought they would pull on this flimsy black flap. Gotta tell you, I'd rather have 100 tickets for a paper jam that 1 broken fuser anyday. Sent off a work order for a new fuser, noting the client damage. What's worse, is it usually takes 3-4 weeks before they send me a new one (red tape, I have no idea) so this heavily used network printer will be down for another month.
I also have one fellow who has created tickets for me vicariously through other people. This gentleman sits somewhere on the top floor of the building and has a supply of old beat-up keyboards that he gives out to people who want a new keyboard. At least twice I've had a ticket come to me for a new keyboard, then I get up there with a brand new one tucked under my arm to have them say "Oh it's okay, I got a new one already." Alright, whatever, close the ticket. Then a few minutes later they realize several keys don't work and call me back up again. I've tracked this guy down, and offered to take the old beat-up keyboards off his hands, but he wants them 'just-in-case'. :/
On my way out today, a teacher stopped me in the hall at an elementary school I was in and said when she opened Outlook this morning it stopped working and closed. She continued, "a box popped up and I clicked the button to send an error report thing. I tried it later and it worked so you guys must have seen the report and fixed it." I just replied "Yep."
So we've been rolling out a new network for operations for the past year or so (yes, it's a government job, and it hasn't really been a high priority).
I found out today that the big boss of the place who will primarily use this network (boss of about 5,000 people) was advised by his CIO that we should use the same default passwords for every user on this (classified) network and not allow them to change the passwords. Reason being, multiple users sometimes use the same desk/job manning the desk 24/7, and if the computer gets locked, they cannot afford to reboot.
facepalm On the plus side, the CIO will not be working there much longer...
I work at my college's IT help desk. One day a guy comes to the front desk and explains that he had kicked the power cord from the wall and so his computer died. Fair enough, but then he explained that his attempts to restore power to the computer had failed. My friend who was also at the help desk went with him to the problem computer to figure out this power issue. It turns out that the guy had taken the power strip and plugged it into itself and he could not figure out what was wrong with it. My friend must have a great poker face because I would have probably burst into laughter if I came across this.
One of the more memorable moments of my job came a couple years ago and lasted for weeks...
The customer: A major manufacturer of heavy farm and construction equipment.
Me: The lowly deployment technician who is just trying to get by.
I was working on upgrading a user's computer as the lifecycle of the machine he was currently using had expired. Like usual, I had asked him to run our data migration utility. He did, and I proceeded to deploy to him his brand new machine. So far, all is going according to plan.
As the user was looking through his data to make sure that everything transferred as it should have, he noticed something odd: A sub-folder inside one of his .pst files from within Outlook didn't transfer over. A bit odd, but no worries. I explained to him that we can easily copy the folder to the inbox and after it replicated on the exchange server and synced up with the local copy on his new machine, we could place it where it belonged on his new machine. While I'm explaining this to him, he takes his old machine and starts to look through it, all the while blocking my access to it, and makes several comments about my "obvious" incompetence. He then proceeds to move, not copy, the folder to his inbox and waits for it to replicate. Once it shows up on his new machine, he fails to do anything else with it while I'm sitting at his desk. We usually allow for about 30 to 45 minutes at the user's desk, but this particular user, unsure about the integrity of his data, takes about 1.5 hours.
As I leave his desk, the user insists that I leave his old computer on the network at my desk for a day or so and to send him a link to access his old hard drive, just in case he finds any more missing files. Although this is against the normal procedure, I agree to such a idea in hopes that it will pacify him and I can get on with my day, but not without first advising the user against such an action.
The next day, he calls me up.
User: "I've accidentally deleted that folder that we moved over yesterday. Get it back for me."
Me: "Ok, no worries."
I proceeded to show him how to recover deleted data from within Outlook, but much to our dismay, such folder is not present from the deleted items.
Me: "Sir, it would appear that this folder cannot be recovered. If I may ask, how did you delete it?"
User: "Shift + Del, like I always do. Get it back!"
Knowing that there was no way to recover his missing folder via Outlook, I look to our backup software (backs up hourly) for any of the last three available versions of the .pst in order to recover it. I restore the last one, but that folder is not present. I eventually attempt to recover all 6 of the available backups (3 per computer) and it's nowhere to be found.
Me: "Sir, when did you delete this folder?"
User: "Yesterday, about an hour after you left."
My heart sinks...
Me: "Sir, your data is unrecoverable..."
And I proceed to explain how he screwed up, while neglecting to tell him out-right that it was his fault. Needless to say, the user is growing angrier every second. He insists on talking to someone in the next level of support that sits with me.
3 out of 5 of them tell him that he's out of luck. He proceeds to call us all incompetent idiots and that he will find a way to make his request happen.
Over the next 3 weeks, he does everything he can to make his plight known. He calls the help desk, who in turn, sends the ticket up to my associates. He knocks on my door at random times, in hopes that he'll find someone new who can help him. He even files several formal complaints with the customer's management. We find ourselves going through a formal investigation and several audits regarding the missing folder, during which time I found out included 2 years worth of prototypes and test results for a few of the new machines that the customer was going to produce. At the end of each of the interviews we had to suffer through, the customer's management all shook their heads at the stupidity of the user and we were let off of the hook.
TL;DR: User lost 2 years worth of prototypes and test results because he didn't listen to his neighborhood-friendly support technician.
(situation: the customer's issue is a record-locking file that won't go away even though "everyone's logged out of the database" according to the customer)
me: "ma'am, in order to resolve this, i'm going to need to connect to your server and find out why it won't delete the lock file. we may also need to reboot the server"
her: "ok, give me a support key and i'll go connect you"
me: (after connecting) "ma'am, this isn't the server."
me: "yes. the server's name is 'SBS'. this computer's name is 'WK1'. how many other computers do you have in your office?"
her: "just two more."
me: "ok, here are two more support keys. get me connected to the last two computers and we'll find out which one it is."
me: (after connecting to both the other computers) "ma'am, neither of these computers are the server. are there ANY other computers in your office?
her: "well, there are three machines in our actual server room..."
I sometimes work as a contractor for a company that handles with housing authority data. They were doing everything by Excel (shutter) before I came along. We went from Excel to MySQL with a VB.NET front end. Blew their minds with reporting and how quickly the data came up, etc, etc. Problem is, my boss doesn't like spending a whole lot of money. So we set up two servers: one at his house, and one at a coworkers house. I sync'ed the data between the two every so often (since they were Linux servers and I'm not savvy with rsync).
The first problem we found was that my coworker had a dynamic IP address. So, whenever their ISP decided to, their IP would change and the whole program would stop working until I changed the IP address that the DNS was pointing to to the proper one. My boss didn't like the fact of downtime, so he bought a static IP. Instead of making that the primary and the coworker's server the backup, he makes HIS the backup and my coworker's the primary, essentially fixing nothing.
So, my coworker and boss leave town on a business trip one weekend and I'm at home. As far as I know, only 1 person is using the system. Suddenly, I get an e-mail from her. "Can't get in the system." I look at the IP. Shot. I can't get my coworker to give me her IP address since she's out of town. So, the only choice I have is to drop everything I was doing, drive to her house (30 minutes away), sit outside of her house like a creeper, connect to her wireless network, and go to whatismyip.com to get the IP address. The situation ended better, since that was the final drive to convince my boss that we need offsite servers (which are awesome!!!) and we haven't had a second of downtime since, besides the server switch.
So awhile back we used to remote in to people's PCs using VNC which worked great for in office stuff but not so much remote users and since have switched to a different system but here is an interesting story from the days of VNC.
So I come back from lunch to find an email from an engineer saying he was having an issue with IE (I don't even remember the error today because of what happens.) So I pull up my VNC Client and begin typing in the information to access his PC and while I'm doing that I ring his desk which he answered and I informed him I was taking control of his PC to fix his issue and he responds with "Uh give me one moment!" just as I am hitting connect. What happens next is I see him closing multiple windows all of which playing a hardcore video of some nature and his desktop is cluttered with pictures of the inappropriate kind. I instantly disconnected and just didn't deal with it for about a month.
The kicker is that all of our computers were desktops at the time, which means he is addicted or was beating it under his desk.
TL;DR: Don't watch porn at work, especially at your desk
I should start by saying, I work at a small ISP. We serve undeserved areas where DSL and Cable may not be provided, to a lot of farmers and small townships. When I'm not doing work in the field, I try my best at tech support. So a little after 10AM this morning this call comes in:
Angry: MY INTERNET DOESN'T WORK, WHY DOESN'T IT WORK!
Me: Let me take a look at it for you sir, can I have the last name on your account?
Angry: Blurts out last name so quick can't even attempt at typing it, insists on knowing why the internet doesn't work
Me: Could you please repeat your last name, just a bit slower this time?
Angry: Spells out his last name in annoyance.
Me: Alright Mr. Angry, Give me just a moment to take a look and see what I can come up with.
Angry: (didn't give me a moment) Theres a blue cord here, not plugged into anything, what does the blue cord do if its not plugged in? Why isn't it plugged in? What is it there for?
Me: Mr. Angry, Give me just a moment to look over my notes here and check out the unit at your home.
Angry: Is there a technician there? What is the blue cord for?
Me: Okay Sir, do me a favor and explain to me how things are setup there. Do you have a wireless router? Is your computer directly plugged into wireless router?
Angry: It is a whitebox. I have a white box, and It's suppose to just work.
Me: (Realizes that we rented the router to him, and am able to get into it for troubleshooting, NOW where getting somewhere!)
Me: Alright sir, the internet is working except to your laptop. So I'm gonna have you go ahead and open up your laptop and let it boot up and let me know when your at the desktop.
Angry: I'm there. What is the blue wire for?
Me: I am not sure, but I can see here I don't see anything connected to your router so we're gonna take a couple steps and see if we can fix it.
Me: In the bottom right hand of your computer screen do you have something that looks like signal bars, or maybe even stairs?
Angry: No I do not, are you going to fix my internet?
Me: We just need to go through a couple steps here to make sure everything is working as it should
Angry: I don't see no stupid bars.
Me: So on the bottom right hand corner of your screen there is nothing that looks like signal bars or stairs? Maybe with a X through it?
Angry: You should've said it was on the screen! (I facepalm) It is there but it says no connections available if you click on it.
Me: Okay sir, is there a button or something on your laptop that kind of looks like that maybe that you have to press to turn on or off the wireless?
Angry: No tell me where it is.
Me: Mr. Angry, Sadly I have no idea what computer you are using so I am not able to....
Angry: These stupid things are all the same! Tell me where it is!
Me: Sir, computers are not all the same and they vary the placement often on laptops.
Angry: (Yelling) Your lying to me! Is there a techinicain there that can fix my internet!!!!
Angry: I found the stupid button and now its spinning in the bottom right corner
Me: Okay, wait a few moments and go ahead and try and browse the web.
Angry: It's working now.
Me: Alright Mr. Angry, this is a common problem and can sometimes happen on...
Angry: Oh I know what happened, that stupid cat was walking on my laptop!
Me: Alright Mr. Angry, is that all I can help you with today?
Angry: That'll be all. Thanks for your help. CLICK
I am very novice at tech support, so I really try my best. Some people are just impossible on the phone. Be nice to the guy that wants to help you, because that is all I want to do. Maybe I am naive in my thinking, but I enjoy someone being happy when there crack... erm, internet is working again.
Yet another tale of epic stupidity.
The other day I received a call that started out looking easy enough:
Derp: Hi, I just got DSL with you guys and I am trying to login. It says I need a password, but I don't have one.
Me: Alright, what exactly are you trying to log into? Are you trying to login to your [ISPNAME] email account?
Derp: No, I just turned on my computer and it wants a password.
Me: Ok, can you describe the screen that's asking for the password?
Derp: It just says "Welcome, Click your user name to login" and then when I click it it says "Type your password", but I've never had a password.
Me: Ok, that is your windows login screen. The password its asking for is the password to your computer, not anything to do with your internet connection. Unfortunately there's no way for us to help you retrieve that password since its nothing on our end.
Derp: I don't think you understand, I never needed a password until you guys set up DSL here yesterday. Something you did set this password.
Me: That is the local password to your computer, it doesn't have anything to do with [ispname's] services, so there's no way getting dsl setup there would have set that password on your computer. That password is something that you or whoever administrates the computer setup.
Derp: NO, THIS ONLY HAPPENED AFTER I GOT DSL WITH YOU, I NEVER NEEDED ONE BEFORE.
Me: I'm sorry that has happened, but its definitely not related to our service. I wish I could help you retrieve that, but I can't.
Derp: FINE, SO YOU ARE SAYING I'M PAYING FOR INTERNET FOR A YEAR THAT WON'T WORK, IS THAT WHAT YOU ARE SAYING!?
Me: No, you are paying for a working internet connection, this issue is specifically with your computer. There is no way for us to know, change, or reset that password.
Derp: This only happened after your tech came and installed the dsl
Me: I wish I could help you with this issue, but I can assure you nothing the tech did set a password on your computer. Our technicians don't touch customer computers at all, they just set up the internet connection and test the connection with their own work laptops.
Derp: THIS ONLY HAPPENED AFTER THE TECH CAME. SOMETHING YOU DID CAUSED THIS!
Me: I'm very sorry you are having trouble accessing your computer, but I can assure you we did not set a password on your computer. I can only assist with DSL related issues, so unfortunately there's nothing I can do for this particular issue.
Just had an IBM employee on the phone complaining (CSR).
ME: Good day, this is Derpiter from Hurpy-Durpy Support.
IBM: I didn't receive any email with my support password!!!
ME: Erm, Ok... no problem, please go to our support page.
IBM: I am on the support page.
ME: ok, when you try to log in, you will probably see a button called "Reset my Password"
IBM: yes I see it.
[20 seconds breaktime]
IBM: should I press it??
ME: Yes you should.
IBM: Now i have a window with: "Username: " and a button "Reset Password". Should I press it??
ME: Yes you should rolls eyes
IBM: But I receive an error message saying "You didn't enter your Username"!!!
ME: Well you should first enter your Username, which is your email address and then press the button...
IBM: Aha ok.....
[another 20 sec break]
IBM: I received an email! "click this link to change your password". Should I click it? Normal click or double click?
ME: i'm pretty sure one click will be enough.
IBM: Aha ok... thanks. Will let you know if I need anything else.
TD;DR: IBM engineer prolly earning double what I get doesn't even know how to open weblinks on an email
I drove all the way across town to create a shortcut for one person's computer. I showed others in the office where the program was and even offered to talk it through on the phone, but they insisted I needed to make an onsite visit.
Can you believe that? Creating a shortcut!
So a call comes in this afternoon and it's a very obviously old woman. Her voice is low and quivering. She informs me to be patient with her and that she is deaf, with very little computer know-how.
Our call proceeds to go as follows.
Me: So you can't connect wirelessly at all?
Legendary Old Woman: No. There was lightning last night and the light for the weee...feee is off on the front of the internet box. I searched the google on my iphone with the name on top and it gave me this 192 number and I got up all this stuff. Well, I didn't understand any of it but I saw the word wireless and I clicked on that. It says it's active. But there's no light there. Does this mean it's broke?"
Me:Sweet mother of zombie jesus.. (my actual words then a silence and) I'll have a replacement modem out to you tomorrow.
I checked it afterwards and this woman was 89.
:D Makes me happy to be in IT. I really hope her phone provider doesn't kill her bill with internet access charges.
User: I can't log in!
Me: Can't log into what?
User: The system!
Me: Which one?
User: The log in one... You know... Web one...
Me: You mean Webmail?
Me: Do you get an error message?
Me: Well, what does the error it say?
User: Oh... It says something something password.
Me: Invalid password?
User: SIIIIIIGHHHH! No. Says "Please change your password, yadda, yadda, company policy, blah, blah, blah...
Me: Well... Did you?
User: Did I what?
Me: Change your password?
User: Oh! Is that what I have to do?
User: Well it should have said that on the thing.
(Users don't read. Ever.)
So, working for a nonprofit organization here! I got hired back in '09 to help the IT Director with any software solutions needed for the organization.
2010 comes along, and they decide that I should also be the one that services help desk work orders. So now, it is my responsibility to write any software solution, whether it be a PHP/mySQL website, a VB.net site, a WPF Information kiosk, or an iOS app, but to also make sure that I assist any of the other 150 employees with tech support by phone, email, or in person.
2011 comes along and I graduate with a Bachelors in Computer Science, they bump me up to salary so that I don't have a reason for ignoring phone/email tech support in the evening. This seems good to me because I'm finally getting paid more than $8.5/hr.($15/hr). At this time, our IT office consists of 3 people: Boss, Tikrin, and Derpette. Boss sits in his lair and only helps with work orders if I can directly prove that he has messed up on his DNS,switch, server, or router settings. Derpette is a VOLUNTEER. This is where I suppose the story comes in.
Derpette, sometime in 2010, created a Yahoo! Small business website. From that moment, she started to email our "comments" email about how she could improve our websites that we have. Back to 2011, administration at the organization have decided that it would be great for her to volunteer and help me out with the websites. Always looking for a break, we sit down and discuss what we both know. I quickly find out that she has no idea what HTML is, no idea what a motherboard is, no idea on anything tech support related besides some intermediate Windows knowledge.
I try informing the higher ups that she doesn't have a skillset that would really benefit IT, I get reprimanded for trying to turn away someone who wants to volunteer. So, Derpette starts showing up on a daily basis. She's a grandma, btw. Late 40s, early 50s. I finally provide a back end interface solution for some of our websites. This is good, because she understands this. She starts spellchecking, and making sure blogs look good. Something I don't have to worry about, this works for me.
Towards November of 2011, she gets hired as a part time staff member. She assumes the role of answering any tech support emails she can. I've been able to teach her how to log into Active Directory so she can reset passwords, taught her about security groups, and several other things. She's finally catching on to tier 1 tech support things.
Boss finally installs a time clock server so I no longer have to walk 100 yards to another department to clock in/out with card. However, they set up Derpette, in a secretarial role, to manage my time clock. So if I forget to clock in, she would be the one to approve of the time clock.
Alright, so, some time goes by and she has begun to email me any work orders she can't do, and she's approving my time worked. Being a good ole secretary, or so I thought.
December 2011, I email my Boss personally to ask if I can help out with another department for 2 hours a week. I tell him I understand I wasn't hired for that role, and it's completely okay if I can't. It was just something that I would love to do, and would rather try to do it, than not. I also tell him that I understand if he has to take it higher up. He replies with a "I'll see what they say", and CCs Derpette to let her know that I may be doing this for 2 hours a week.
I, immediately, get a response from Derpette to only me, asking why I thought it was okay to email my boss first instead of her. She starts rambling about a chain of authority and how I shouldn't circumvent it. I inform her that Boss is my boss, and the first person I should be asking. She responds with another email saying that we will talk personally about this the next day.
Next day comes along, and nothing is said. shrugs. Over the next couple of weeks, she starts sending me mediocre work orders. Work orders that she could handle. I inform her that I'm busy working on an Admin-approved programming assignment, and she says that I should do them because she wouldn't have sent them to me otherwise. Oooookay.
So, I do the work orders. Trying to squeeze in the programming projects that I have deadlines on. Eventually, it starts getting ridiculous. We have a remote location, 45 miles away. They email to say that their dual monitors are not working anymore on one of the computers. Derpette emails them back and says that I would gladly start driving that way.
I inform her that I would not and that we could either try to remote in, or they could bring it to us.(They have a "runner" that comes to us everyday). Remote location says that isn't a problem and the runner gives us the computer. I hook it up, and it works perfectly. I double check just to make sure, and give it back with two new DVI cables. I even write down some instructions of how to set up dual monitors.
A week goes by, and I show up to work. I'm now tasked to drive 45 miles to the remote location because "I" didn't fix anything. Everyone is gone from the location that day so I can't remote in. I have to drive there and fix it. Disgruntled, I get a company car and make the drive. I get there and lo and behold, one of the DVI cables is not hooked up. Simply hook it up, and yep, dual monitors working. I take a picture and text it to Derpette for accountability that the problem is now fixed. I then start to head back to my office, 45 miles away.
She corresponds with me a little bit on the road, and everything seems okay. I reach the outskirts of our town when she emails back and says, "BTW, did you fix the other thing they needed done?"
I, having no idea, responded. "I have no idea what you're talking about."
She then forwards me an email between the remote location and her. In the PS section, the remote location asks for me to look at another monitor hookup. She adds to the email, "Do you not know what a monitor looks like? This needs to be done, so turn around and go do it."
I flip, park my car, and then send an email letting her know how sick I am of her attitude. She responds back all hurt saying that she is offended. Once again, it ends with a, "We'll discuss in person tomorrow."
So I drive back to the remote location, and the monitor turns on with a shake of a mouse.
NEXT DAY: I come to work, having no reason or want to talk to Derpette. She walks into my office, closes the door, and pulls up a chair. She then says, "It's sad that I have to tell you I'm your boss...but I'm your boss. And you should consider yourself lucky, or you would be fired after what you emailed me yesterday." My boss then walks in to crack a joke about something(I could tell from his smirk), but she quickly demands that he leave so that "we" could talk. She then rants on about how she has been my boss ever since the time clock server was installed and was absolutely shocked that I didn't pick up on that.
I tell her that no one has ever told me that she was my boss, and that if she was, I am sorry. Her response was "No one should have to tell you that I'm your boss, you should just know. I'll have to bring this up to Administration, because your lack of respect isn't going to get you anywhere."
Two days go by, and I get pulled into Administration. I'm completely baffled that I'm being called by them, and surely I'm not getting fired? Nope! They apologize for Derpette's behavior and have no idea where she got the notion she was my boss. If she ever tried to do something like that again, I should only need to tell them.
So, it ended well, but geez, she got crazy.
I work for a helpdesk at a big corporation (not sure if they'd like me sharing stories, so i'll be careful). I've been doing this for about 4 months now and today, was the best story ever...
ME: "Hello, can I get a first and last name with employee number please"
HER: "***** *******"
ME: "Ok, how can I help you today?"
HER: "I left my laptop at home and I really need to get to work. I am trying to use the computer at the office, but it won't let me logon."
At this point in time I'm thinking she left her computer at home on VPN and it may have her locked out, so I check her account status.
ME: "Hmm, well your account seems fine. Nothing is locked out. What kind of computer is at your desk now?"
HER: "Well I normally use my laptop, but I've got this one here, it's black."
ME: "Ok, so you do have a laptop at home and a desktop at work?"
HER: "Sort of, it's here. Nothing happens when I push the buttons."
ME thinking: *** Sort of? WTF? ***
ME: "Ok, so it doesn't seem to light up or make noise when you push the buttons. Is it plugged in?"
HER: "Yes, I used it yesterday, nothing has changed."
ME: "Ok, so has anyone else used it possibly?"
HER: "NOO! The only thing different is that my laptop isn't with it."
ME: "......wait... you mean the dock for your laptop?"
HER: "YES! That thing. Isn't it a computer?"
I work at a helpdesk for a rather large nationwide organization.
Him: "So I decided to update my iPhone through iTunes on my computer and about halfway through the update, it stopped responding altogether."
Me: "Alright Sir, what do you see on your screen right now?"
Him: "Which screen?"
Me: "Whichever one is unresponsive."
Him: "Which one is that?"
I work in a small independant repair shop in the UK. We do some sales, callouts and repairs on pretty much anything. Since we deal with people just walking in off the street, I have some stories you might find amusing
The elderly couple: They phoned us saying their computer wasn't working, so we we tell them to bring it down and let us have a look. They carry in this huge CRT monitor, cue 10 minutes of me explaining the difference between a screen and computer. The screen turned out to be faulty anyway so they left it with us to dispose of and went away. Ten minutes later they call up again asking about their pictures, and I have to spent another ten minutes going over the exact same points. They then come back to collect their "computer" and once again, I explain the difference. They then ask for the screen back since they need it to use the computer, and again I explain its faulty, they can have it back if they like but its no more than a paper weight. I am still not sure they understood.
We offer a fast track service to people who are desparate to get their machines back, it costs extra but it gets priority. We will often have people phoning us constantly asking when its going to be ready, because they need it right NOW for very important reasons. Then when we call them to let them know its ready, "Oh I can't make it right now, I will pick it up when I am free". Then they come in days later after making life hell for me to get it done ASAP. Business customers are by far the worst for this.
One chap bought his computer in multiple times, apprently it would just cut out but we could never find a problem. Eventually we swapped out the PSU to eliminate that as an issue. He came back in raving that we had given him an inferior PSU that couldn't cope with all the USB devices that were plugged into the machine. We enquired as to what devices they were and it came down to a keyboard and mouse, printer (that has its own PSU) and exteral hard drives (which also had their own PSU's). He refused to listen to us and demanded a refund.
Sold a brand new Lenovo laptop, it was back 3 weeks later with an angry buyer claiming we had sold him a defective product. There was half a screen of toolbars in IE, 2 different fake AV programs and gig's of other crap. He expected a free repair but one was not coming.
I was re-assembling a mac book pro after a sucessful reflow on the GPU, when I dropped a screw onto the motherboard and clipped the power button trying to get it out. Sparks everywhere and a dead laptop, but luckily it turned out Apple had extended the warrenty, so they sorted it out for the him on our recommendation. We stayed quiet on fact we had fixed and broke it again :0
All the stories about laptops charging wirelessly, or the CD drive being used as a cup holder? All true and experianced first hand. Also every slightly technical term being used to describe a desktop. "I have a problem where my modem/processor/box wont fire up"
Replaced a screen for a woman, she brings it back a month later saying its broken again and wants it replacing for free. We take a look at the big crack in the middle of the screen and tell her that that damage is not covered by the warrenty. She insists it cracked itself. The same happens with chargers, people bend and tear the plugs apart and expect a free replacment.
Countless cases of "I had a computer repaired months ago but I only just got round to using it, its broken again and you were the last people to touch it"
Guy's son was having problems with his uni laptop, and the root of the problem was Norton 360 fucking everything up. We remove Norton and put AVG free on there, since we have none of the customers Norton product details. Get an irate call from his father days later slating AVG and us for installing it since he son has now managed to catch a fake AV and has gone back to uni in another part of the country. No explanation is good enough for him, and he demands we pay for the laptop to be mailed back to us, fix it and mail it back. We refuse since its not our fault his son managed to catch a virus, Norton was the original problem anyway and they provided us with nothing to re-install it, he has none of it.
This woman had issues with her laptop not starting up, we fixed it and she was all smiles, even putting a few quid in our tips box. Get a call later from her in blind rage, "It's no longer working, I even tipped you! Rant rave blah!". I apoligise but since another tech worked on it I had no idea what might have gone wrong and the notes he had left were of no help. I calm her down enough (barely) to get her to bring it back in. Next morning she comes in looking very sheepish, apoligised for losing it on the phone and put more money in our tip box since it had started working as soon as yesterdays phonecall had finished.
So many call about people not knowing their wireless password and asking us if we knew what it was.
"You set up our wireless password x years ago, do you remember it?"
"Well is its 'herpderp123' or 'derpherp321'" (standard passwords unless they request somthing different"
"No, you set this up, you have to fix this!"
This also happens even if we had nothing to do with their wireless network setup.
I have tons more stories but they escape me for the moment.
Backstory: The company I work for is, among other things, a reseller of an Asigra-based online backup service that we've had our partner re-brand for us. That leads to calls like this gem I just heard one of my support specialists handle.
Customer: I need to back up my data on my server right now.
Specialist: Ok, we can help with that.
Customer: Because the building next door is on fire.
Specialist: Excuse me?
Customer: The building next door is on fire. I need to make sure I have a good backup of my data before the fire spreads to our building.
Specialist: Oooookay... You're going to need to open up your $backup_software...
Customer: I can't. They evacuated us.
Specialist: Excuse me?
Customer: They already evacuated our building. I'm outside.
Specialist: I'm sorry, sir, but in order for you to do a backup that is unscheduled you have to have access to the computer.
Customer: What do you mean?!?!? You can't just remote connect to it like you always do?!?!?
Specialist: Our WebEx software only grants us access if there's someone at the computer to join the support session.
Customer: That's just great! I'm probably going to lose my server and you can't do anything for me! CLICK
TL;DR: Online backup doesn't always mean on-demand backup
Me: Thank you for calling herpderpy this is lleu.
User: Yeah my website is down, what's going on?
validate into the account
M: I'm not seeing any hosting here sir, let me see what happened. When was the last time you were able to access your website?
U: Hell, I don't know. It's just down. Fix it.
looks through the notes on the account
M: Sir the only hosting that I'm seeing failed billing over a year ago. Are you sure you're hosting it here? Maybe you moved the site to another company?
U: No it's been here forever!
M: Okay, do you have a backup on the site? We can get you a new hosting account and you can upload it.
U: You guys don't have my files?!
M: We have a thirty day backup, but as I said the hosting expired over a year ago. Those backups have been deleted.
U: Give. Me. My. FILES!
M: We don't have them.
U: I want them back now!
M: We don't have them.
U: Give me your supervisor, he'll get them for me! This is bullshit!
M: We don't have them. He can't get them for you.
user proceeds to ask several different ways for his files. I respond "We don't have them" every time.
U: So are you just going to sit there like a robot and tell me the same thing over and over or are you going to get me my files?!
M: I'm saying the same thing because it's the truth sir. I'm not going to change my answer to fit your reality.
TL;DR User wanted to reject reality and replace with his own.
As a graphic designer I have to deal with alot of people basically destroying all the hard work me and my coworkers put into a project. At first, I couldn't handle it, now I just find it funny to see where a project goes.
But today, I had a client yell at me for telling me that the images we used were too low res for their word document.
Me: Sorry but we can not boost the quality of the images, we receive from you. If you have a higher res photo we will have no problems placing it into the document for you.
Client: But I gave you a vector photograph.
Me: Photographs do not come in vector files
Client: But it was a screen grab, the resolution should be larger than the image. What if I scan my monitor, would that produce a higher quality screen grab?
Me: How did you send us the last screen grab?
Client: I took a picture of my computer screen with my iPhone.
Get a ticket, "System unable to restore after power outage." Call and speak with Ludicrously Stupid End User (LSEU).
Me: "This is Last_Universalist. I understand you have a problem with your system restarting after a power outage? Can you tell me more specifically what the problem is?"
LSEU: "The computer itself won't turn on."
Me: "You're not still having the power outage, are you?"
LSEU: "No, the electricity is back. I just can't turn on the computer."
Me: "Can you locate the power button on the machine?"
LSEU: "Yeah, my boss was in here 5 minutes ago and he tried that. It still didn't power up." [So your boss had to find the power button for you. Not a good sign.]
Me: "Did the computer physically come unplugged from the wall, by any chance?"
LSEU: [checking cords]: "No, i see that it's plugged in."
Me: "Are you certain the power outage has been resolved?"
LSEU: "Yeah, the lights are on in the other half of the building."
Me: "Wait. The other half of the building? So your half actually doesn't have power yet?"
LSEU: "Hold on, someone just walked into my cubicle." [He sets the phone down on his desk, but I can hear that a conversation is taking place between him and someone else. I can't quite make out the words. Finally the conversation stops.] "OK, I'm back. My half of the building will have power momentarily. That was the head electrician telling me he just has to reset the circuit breakers."
Me: "Great! Wait until after the breakers are reset and try again. If you're still having problems, we'll open a new ticket."
LSEU: "Ok, thanks. Bye."
Me: [hangs up, followed by a facepalm so hard my forehead still has an imprint of my hand in it]
Heard this story from a trainer today, and it was glorious, this ladies and gentlemen is the potato fix.
Backstory: This is tech support for a satellite provider in the U.S. essentially on our end there was a button that would do a quick reset of everything and fix most problems.
Caller: Hey, my satellite went down and I don't really know why but I really need it up.
Tech support: Alright ma'am, I want to fix your satellite but first I need to know if you have a potato.
Caller: Yeah, I do.
TS: I need you to take that potato and cut it in half.
Caller: I don;t understand.
TS: Please, just do it. And it can't be length wise, it has to be across.
Caller: OK I cut it, now what?
TS: I need you to place one half on top of your receiver and then take the other half and rub it on your tv screen counter clockwise
Caller: I don't understand why I have to do this.
TS: Basically the receivers after a while build up static electricity and we need the starch from the potato in order to remove the build up and get it to work properly. Should only take thirty seconds.
Caller: Ok, -rubs for 30 seconds-
TS: -hits the button-
Caller: IT WORKED!
About 2 weeks later the person called back in freaking out
Caller: ITS NOT WORKING
Tech support 2: I'm sorry ma'am what seems to be the problem?
Caller: I've been rubbing the potato counter clockwise for the last 40 minutes and it ISN'T WORKING.
Tech support 2: I'm sorry ma'am but I'm not understanding what is going on.
Caller: I called in two weeks ago with problems with my reciever and was given instructions on how to fix it and it is no longer working!
Long story short, tech support 2 had to explain what had happened. The original tech support guy had told about 45 people the potato fix and was terminated once they discovered what they had done. It has now become a pretty great story at my work.
"My online store stopped working since you upgraded yesterday! It's been down for hours! I demand a full refund and then some!"
"Don't interrupt me! I don't want to hear your excuses! You upgraded your system without my permission and now nothing works! I make $20,000 a day off this site and I'll be suing you for every penny! I know the DA here and he'll fight for me!"
"Sir, if I could just..."
"You're not listening! Everything is down and it's all your fault. I'm going to call the BBB, the FBI, and my lawyer if you don't fix it now!"
"Sir, the upgrade was pushed back until next week. We sent you an email this morning. Nothing has changed. I'm looking at the frontend now and I was able to log into the backend. Furthermore, I have your account information up and I only show about $25 in sales for the past six months. If you have been making $20,000 a day through your site, according to your merchant agreement you owe us several thousand dollars in commission fees. Would you like to talk to billing to sort that out?"
I was working as a temp at the IT dept at a factory a couple of years ago when one of the office workers at financial had a problem saving files on her computer since she couldn't access the network which she could before in order to log in.
Fresh newbie as I was and didn't know to always solve problems as if the client was retarded I couldn't figure out what the problem was.
A while later a more experienced IT guy came to help and solved it in about five minutes. Turns out that the desk the computer was placed on had uneven legs. Problem easily solved by putting the desk ontop of the network cable contact which worked for about a minute until it snapped off.
There i was, feeling stupid for not believing that someone could actually be stupid enough to do something like that. I truly died a bit inside that day.
Many years ago I was working for CEX. Nowadays this shop is all about games and DVD's but back then they did serious business in computer components, if you wanted to upgrade your 800Mhz CPU to 1.4Ghz then part exchanging at CEX was a pretty good choice. We would test all the hardware people would sell to and also test anything customers returned to see if refund was justified. What we didn't do is any kind of PC service or repair but we were on the high street with all our test benches visible behind the counter customers would assume we did and bring us stuff all the time. We would often help out but accepting any payment was not allowed.
One day I'm stood behind the counter and this guy flops out a Toshiba laptop next to me and is talking to one of my colleagues Ben. Seems his sound isn't working. Ben's gone through all the obvious stuff, it's turned on in the BIOS, drivers are loaded, not muted, everything looks right except no sound through internal speakers or when plugging into headphone jack. Apparently it had been working a few days prior, so Ben's telling him that if windows mixer is showing activity then something gone pop inside and there is nothing can be be done. He starts shutting down windows and turns to me to ask if he's missed anything.
At this point I realise what has happened as I've seen the issue before. These laptops have a hardware mute feature that is controlled by the function key. Function F4 activates it which is easily hit instead of ALT F4. On most laptops these functions keys make sound hardware show as disabled in the BIOS or just trigger windows mute function. This one just mutes with no indication what has happened.
I grab the laptop and with my left hand discretely hit the key combo which works even though windows is almost shut down as it talk directly to laptop hardware. With my other hand I close the laptop lid and leave my hand firmly on top of the laptop and start doing some shamen chanting and shaking my body about finishing with a loud "uurg", I then tell the guy I've fixed it. He just stares at me but I tell Ben to fire the laptop back up. The customer sighs as it goes through the boot process again but then the Windows 98 "ta da" sound comes loudly out of the speakers and his jaw hits the floor.
He tries to pay me for the fix but I tell him we don't do repairs and can't accept payments. He asks me how I fixed it and I tell him he saw how I did it.
I later told Ben what I did who annoyingly told the customer when he turned up a few days later.
TLDNR Used a function key combo to unmute sound on laptop, but made it seem like magic.
A few years ago, in school, we had this IT guy whom has only been drinking coffee for the last ten years, and are pretty much out-dated in the IT world.
One day a student complained to the teacher that logging in on the school computer (to the school network for authentication and private storage) was nearly impossible, since the keys typed in on the keyboard was about 5-10 seconds delayed.
The teacher calls the IT guy (whom was about 50 years old). The IT guy looks at the computer, tries to type something himself, and sees the problem. He leaves the classroom without saying anything, and returns twenty minutes later.
He's now entering the classroom carrying a new keyboard. He unplugs the old keyboard, throws it in the trash, and plug the new one in. Of course this solution didn't work, and it's still delay (from the server). He leaves the classroom again, without any information what-so-ever, and never returns.
I do IT work in a school and I got a kids parent pissed off at me. The kid did his homework and put it on his jump drive, but when he got to school to print it off he couldn't open the file and asked me for help. When I looked at it I saw that he had copied the shortcut link to his usb stick and not the actual file, so I told him what had happened and his teacher gave him permission to turn it in late. The next morning I get a phone call from his mom who is flaming pissed at me because I couldn't get his homework for him on time.
I work for a company that has a strict budget for new computers. To a point where I only have enough to buy refurbished / off-lease computers, that are old but they function for the work the rest of the employees do on the computer. Most of the time these computers have old cases, they look old dated designs and such. I tell you the dated design part because it adds some logic to the call I took last week.
We recently got a new employee and a new computer to go a long with them. It didn't come with a wireless card, so I put one in there. a cheap one because you know 'budget'. Its was one of the wireless cards with a large antenna on it. I do the normal set up process. Its all ready; users set up, on the network etc.
So I leave the office for lunch and I get a call
Boss: this new machine is already broken.
Me: Could you be more specific, what is broken about it?
Boss: Its not connecting to the internet.
Me: That is strange, it was when I left the office 10 min ago.
Boss: Well its not working now, how can we fix it?
Me: I'll be back in 50 min after my lunch break.
Boss: It needs to be fixed now, you can take your lunch break after
So I walk into the room, sit down at the computer, check it out, yup its not connecting to our work wireless, hmm thats strange. I pull out my phone, to check that wireless is still on. Yup, its still on.
I look behind the computer and I look at the wireless card and the antenna is missing.
I look at my boss and ask her 'Do you know what happened to the ante that was attached to this computer?' to which she responds 'Umm, you mean the radio antenna? If so I took it off, I didn't want [insert new employees name] listening to the radio while working, so I removed it.'
So I carefully explain that actually its not a radio antenna and that its how the computer picked up the Internet and I needed it back. She felt silly and explained she thought the computer was so old it came with and FM radio.
I got an extra long lunch break as long as I didn't mention it to other employees.
I work support for a cable/internet company.
So last night about 6PM I get a call from a lady stating they recently switched from Comcast to us. She states she was unaware when we installed an ONT in her garage we would be taking up her power outlets.
She then proceeds to tell me that her services went down. I check the ONT and there is no power. She states that she plugged her leaf blower into the power strip her ONT was on. So basically she did something she totally should not have.
I told her she should not have done that and the leaf blower is most likely the reason shit went wrong. She then demands a tech. Not a tech later in the night or a tech in the morning. She wanted someone to drop what they were doing and come to her house right then. "What do you expect me to do? Go an hour or two without internet?". This is coupled with yelling and comments on how she pays her bills and she should not have to wait for anyone.
Long story short it's 9AM now, and she is still waiting on a tech. He'll be there sometime before 1PM. Our techs only work until 5PM. So getting someone out last night was not possible unless it was an emergency situation.
It just pisses me off that people fuck something up and expect everyone else to drop everything they are doing to kiss their ass.
The best self-inflicted story that I have is from yet another new client that came on board. They're a high-profile wealth management company that won't look at an account unless it's got more than $10mil in assets to manage.
They want everything wireless. They have about 30 people in their office. They all have wireless keyboards, mice, and MONITORS. They get a smoking 1024x768 out of their spiffy wireless monitors. Which, by the way, still have to be PLUGGED IN TO POWER. Oh, and the icing on the cake - they had wireless charging stations for their laptops.
So we've got about 120 devices in a small office space operating at various frequencies. We warned them about the obvious issues that may arise, like 30 Bluetooth mice all trying to steal the signal of every other Bluetooth mouse, but they refused to listen.
Each and every day, we got a call from at least half of their office because they couldn't get their mouse to respond. Each and every day, we'd tell them why, then try to fix it. Only problem was, when the mouse or keyboard searched for a device to connect to, it would pair up with someone else's laptop about 50% of the time.
This went on for 3 months before they FINALLY got rid of their wireless keyboard and mice, and just plugged the damn things in.
They blamed us for the whole thing. I just smiled and laughed, because self-inflicted misery is the best kind.
Just got this ticket in... yes, yes it is normal.
I scanned a document that was 29 pages and tried to email it to Derpette and got a message "scan file too large" for email. Is this normal?
At least they were polite right?
Ok, first I know this is going to show Dell tech support in a bad light, and perhaps me as well, but looking back I am amused by the singular train of that this guy had...
So a few years back my laptop died. Well more accurately the power jack in the side of the laptop came loose on the motherboard, and power would no longer get into the running hamsters and make computer go zoom.
It was of course, 3 days after the warranty expired (I am sure that comes as no surprise to anyone) but I thought I would call Dell anyway to see if they can help.
Tech: How can I help you, what is the problem, blah blah blah
Me: The power adapter plug on the motherboard is loose and I can no long get power. Can I get a replacement?
Tech: Ok, can you get into Windows?
Me: No, the laptop has no power. The batter is drained, it cannot boot up.
Tech: Can you log in to Windows? We need to check a few things.
Me: No, the laptop has no power. It cannot boot up.
Tech: Ok, cannot log into Windows. Can you hit F8 when it is booting up so we can do a logged boot up.
Me: No, the laptop has no power. It cannot boot up.
Tech: Is it network cable properly plugged in?
Me: Ummm, no, but that is irrelevant. The laptop will not boot up, there is no power.
Tech: Well your system I see is no longer under warranty.
Me: I know that. That isn't the issue. What can I do about the problem I am actually calling about. Do I need a new motherboard? Can I get a replacement jack?
Tech: I can't help you unless you boot into windows and we check a few things.
Me: Please listen to me. I cannot boot into Windows. There is no power coming from the wall into the wire into the jack onto the motherboard. Period. Do you understand?
Tech: Well I can't help you with that. We do however, have a sale for xxxx that we can give you for 599.99.
Me: This conversation is over.
Tech: Thank you for your call. Please tell me on a scale of 1 to 10 how was this experience.
Me: A very generous 1.
Tech: Why would you say that. I solved your problem.
Me: Really? I am sitting here frustrated with a broken laptop, how would I be satisfied with that.
Tech: I gave you an option that will solve your problem. Your experience is a success.
And with that, dear readers, is how I learned to hang up the phone.
Moments ago, so maybe this was just funny to me, but maybe it's funny in real-life too...
Caller: "I just bought a router from derpmart. They said it would let me get the internet on my new TV."
Tech Support: "Ok, give me some numbers off the bottom and we'll get the internet on it..."
She gives MAC address, Tech guy puts MAC in appropriate place in system, explains how cables need to go, etc. Generally does an awesome job.
Tech Support: "Ok, you should be good-to-go."
Caller: "So, this has the internet in it now?"
Tech: "Yeah, it should be fine now." Ends call.
Caller calls back and says "it's not working."
Turns out Caller was unplugging the router, carrying it over to her TV, plugging it into the TV, and trying to pour the internet out of the router and into the Television.
After all, the router has the internet in it now.
Had just hooked up a KVM to a client's server. Before even connecting to it, he calls us and waits on hold just to ask us "How do I tell if the keyboard is working?"
After a 5 second pause he was apparently satisfied with the answer "When you type, letters will appear on the screen."
Halfway into the call, he's insisting an error on his website is server related. When it was clearly a developer issue. We pause debating his circular logic for a moment and out of the blue he asks me "Do you know if you can put pillows in the dryer?" and I'm like "Uh… ._. …Yeah, I'd put it on low heat."
Clients ask the darnedest things...
I work tech support at a high school. A month and a half ago, we replaced a lab full of ancient machines in a teacher's room. He doesn't speak very good english, and he's not a very good teacher (one doesn't mean the other necessarily, but in this case it's both).
About a week ago, he comes rushing into my office, asking about one of the computers we had replaced, and demanding that he get a specific one back. I calmly explained to him that I wasn't the tech who replaced the machines, but most of the time when we replace machines, they're gone within the week.
At this point, he freaks out. He asks what "gone" means, and I explain that we recycle all the parts of the machines. Noticing him becoming more agitated, I told him I would call the tech who worked on his lab, and I'd get back in touch with him in the next couple of hours.
I called the tech, and sure enough, all parts for all of those machines were recycled. I call the teacher and inform him, and he seems like he's about to burst into tears. He asks where the hard drives went - like he was going to go look for them at whatever recycling thing we use.
It turns out, ALL of his grades, and ALL of his curriculum were kept on the desktop of a specific machine, no backups were created, and he didn't have a written copy of them. Furthermore, he wasn't using the online grading database that we use. He also knew that we were replacing the machines, WATCHED the tech replace the machines, and then waited over a month to come ask frantically about them. I believe this will cost him his job.
And that, my friends, is how users learn to use network drives.
About 4 years back, I was working as after school tech support, hanging around for a few hours and fixing up the computers as much as I could.
I'd been doing this for two and a half years at this point (I was in my senior year), and had the whole school running pretty well most of the time. So I was a little surprised when we got a phone call to our closet sized office right as the school day finished and work started. For starters, we used a ticket system for support requests, so this phone never rung. Nevertheless, I answered and it was from the English department.
"Can you please come down now? We have a situation."
Okay... that sounds foreboding. Still, the other tech and I wander down to see what the problem is. Now, the English department was never the most tech savvy of departments, so we figured someone will be unable to find some student's essay or something.
As we reached the front doors to the English block, the head of department(HoD) was there to meet us. She was rather red in the face, but simply asked us to follow her.
We follow her down the corridor towards the computer lab and we see the entire English staff, as well as half the school's cleaners outside it, all red in the face, and stifling laughter. We reach the door and look inside and there is a kid, elbow deep in a computer.
At this point, both of us just lose our shit and collapse into chairs, laughing at the kid, which sets off all the staff again. After a good few minutes laughing, we wander over and ask how it happened.
"I got mad."
"I got mad so I punched it and the thing went in and then I punched again and my arm went in."
Yeah... On the school computers were those little panels on the front that you can take out, to slot in a CD drive, or something else. He'd punched in one of those panels, then managed to punch his other arm through the gap, but he couldn't build enough momentum to get out again.
Needless to say, we took our time dismantling this computer around this poor child, all while we mocked him and his mother waited in the car outside.
A guy came in with his laptop giving us a brief rundown, it was running slow, lots of popups etc. He leaves it with us, gives us the password and off he goes. Being the "rookie" it was immediately handed to me as it was a rather simple job, I fire it up key in the password and do all of the normal things you would do straight away like checking msconfig for irregular start up files and so on.
2 wanting to smash my head on the desk hours later everything is cleared up and its back to normal, literally all the viruses were from what I can tell limewire and more specific; porn. I call him up telling him he can come pick up the computer whenever he is free.
He comes in a couple of hours later with his wife..... I get one of the normal workers to come and deal with the payment as I wasn't allowed, he asks me what was wrong with it. Not wanting to get detailed due to his wife being there I just tell him it had some viruses and I had cleaned it up and it was ready to go, he then laughed and said something along the lines of "I don't think so, I have avast anti virus" I told him he was indeed infected and avast is not exactly known for being a good AV, he then calls me a brat, asks for proof so on so forth.. I am thinking "dude, I am trying to help you out here.. whatever" So I tell him it was from files he downloaded which have all been removed as well as a free version of an anti malware installed.
Still insisting I be more specific with something like "what files you little brat, avast said my laptop was clean". So I decided, fuck it. I start reading out the source of the infected files from the log, it has been a few years so I don't remember them exactly, but they were all along the lines of "petite white girl xxx virgin anal slut 18 deflower" and so forth. His face goes white, he pays for it and leaves without saying much else and his wife glaring at him the entire time. Then as soon as they were in the car she is waving her arms around and from what I can tell, screaming as well.
tl;dr Trying to defend a guy in front of his wife, he wont take it so I humiliate him. Justice served.
This didn't happen to me, thankfully, but I got a little involved in it. Started a week ago, we got a new lady working in our department, I'll call her Maria. Maria had this look on her face when she came in, the kind you see on a dog when it's taken from an abusive home.
After a day she was smiling like she'd won the lottery, which I thought wasn't possible in my company. So a day or two after she starts, I get a call from another lady asking to speak to Maria. Maria was no where in sight, so I just asked if I could help her out. She very bluntly told me to have her call Jane ASAP, then hung up. Being use to rude user, I didn't think much of it, so I just emailed Maria and didn't think of it after that. A short time later, Maria came back and asked me questions about Jane, she had that abused dog look again. I told her about the call I took, and didn't have any information beyond that. She thanked me, and went back to her desk. I found out yesterday that all of this came to a head.
Turns out Jane was calling into our office demanding to speak to Maria, and on one occasion got through, where Maria told her she was going to call the police. Maria explained that Jane was her former supervisor in her previous job, who had made their environment so hostile that people were quitting left and right. Seems the last company Maria worked at was family owned, and Jane was part of the Family. Jane apparently needed a job and they put her in charge of the help desk, where she was going to "Motivate" the techs into shape.
She imposed crazy rules, like no talking in the break room, and a demerit system for accumulated infractions. People decided they would be better off and just started quitting. Those professional enough to turn in a two week notice were worked like dogs with all kinds of projects. Maria was one of their more senior people, and found that her work load multiplied every time someone quit. When Jane started to demand she put in long days to resolve issues, but denied all raises in their department, Maria had enough and just quit. Then Maria came to work for us, and the less hostile environment was like a breath of fresh air.
Apparently the loss was affecting Janes department, and she kept calling into our office trying to get Maria to take on some projects even though she'd quit. One of my co-workers took a call from Jane, and he told me that Jane was pretty nasty, to the point of threatening to come down and find Maria herself. She said that Marias resignation wasn't acceptable, and that our company wasn't going to be allowed to steel her employees without catching hell.
I was told that the matter was taken up by the police, and some lawyers who apparently know about Janes "Family" and were happy to take care of the problem. I've had some bad employers before, but I can't even imagine what Jane put Maria through. I find that Maria knows her stuff, and is capable of running her own team if she wanted to, she can handle most any issue without any expense in energy. I've seen her handle network issues like they were nothing and juggle tickets like a circus clown juggles balls. She's confident and skilled better than most people I know. So I wonder what Jane put her through to make her so scared every time she called.
TL;DR Boss from Hell drives off employees with abuse, calls new jobs telling them they're not allowed to quit.
I work at a helpdesk for a large, nation-wide organization.
Me: Alright ma'am, what does the error message say?
Her: It says I can't log in. I need my password reset.
Me: Ok, I need to know exactly what that message says.
Her: It says, exactly, that I can't log in.
Me: Ma'am, the exact wording of the error message is extremely important as my next course of action is drastically different depending on the wording of that message.
Her: Well, I don't see how that matters. Anyways, I already told you what it said. Can you just reset my password?
Me: Ma'am, I'm intimately familiar with the system you're using and no action you can take will make it display an error message worded the way you described it. I need you to read, word for word, the message that is on your screen right now.
Her: (very loud and slow) THIS COMPUTER IS IN USE AND HAS BEEN LOCKED. ONLY (her username) OR AN ADMINISTRATOR CAN UNLOCK THIS COMPUTER. THERE. NOW WILL YOU JUST RESET MY PASSWORD!?
Me: No ma'am. Press ctrl, alt, delete, and type in your password.
** angry, rushed, loud keyboard strikes **
** windows login sound **
** click **
i new employee (of higher rank and pay than me) brought me a paper document and asked me if I could make an electronic version of it so she could email it to someone. after looking at it, it was obviously recently printed on crisp paper. when i asked her where she got the printout she said she printed it from her computer. i had no idea how to respond. (we both worked in IT)
During my years in college, I did computer repairs and IT related stuff to get extra cash. To get the jobs posted ads in different boards (campus, coffee shops, etc) and through word of mouth.
Once I got a call from a previous customer letting me know that his 70-something year old father needed some help with his computer, which to me was pretty normal. A few days later I showed up at the old man's house. He greeted me and immediately gave a piece of paper and his credit card. My job was to sign him up for 7 or 8 XXX websites and teach him how to navigate through the sites (he was actually taking notes in a notebook). After 5 hours, I was finally able to leave the place. Funny thing is that he was totally serious and professional during the whole time.
TL;DR Got hired by a 70 year old man to sign him up to adult sites and teach him how to navigate through them.
Many years ago I worked as a techie on the phones for a games company and I've got too many stories about this type of thing, but this particular one will never leave me.
A little background; we had a load of educational games, I think this one was Math Blaster, I forget precisely, but you had to have the Windows desktop set to run in either 16 or 32bit colour for it to work. I forget which now.
~~I'll leave the pleasantries about the thing not working to your imagination~
Me: Okay, can you right click on the desktop for me?
Customer: Right click?
Me: Yes, with the mouse. You know.
Customer: Hmm, okay...
Customer: Huff. It's not working.
Me: What do you mean?
Customer: Right click on the desktop?
Me: Yes please. Just right click and you should see a little menu pop up.
~more scuffling noises~
Customer: No, it's not working. Does it have to be in capitals?
Me: Huh? Wait a second... Are you writing "click" on your desktop?? With your mouse?!
My colleagues heads all turn to face me with looks of varying disbelief slowly spreading across them in unison and I nearly lose my shit, but manage to maintain a straight enough face.
Customer: I've tried about 10 times and it's not working.
Me: Does your mouse have two buttons?
Me: Hmm. Is there an apple logo on it?
At which point I have to explain that Windows games don't work on macs.
Background: I work tech support for a POS software company. Our software utilizes 3 programs. There is a point of sale program, a program for back office functions and a 3rd program whose sole function is just a screen that doesn't allow users to access the desktop without a password. Nobody other than tech support gets the password. Employees use Alt-Tab to switch between the first to screens and don't usually encounter the 3rd screen but sometimes they do.
Me: Thank you for calling Derp POS this is nerm2k how can I help you.
User: My registers frozen and wants a password to unlock it.
Me: Did you try alt tab?
User: Yeah, it takes me back to the office but I need pos.
Me: Well try hitting alt but then tab twice to get back to pos.
user: I know how to did it but the computers broken. It never asked for a password before. Just give me the password so I can do it.
Me: That screen is always there in the background. There are three total screens and you are only switching between two. We need to try and get to the third screen. Just try and hold Alt but press Tab twice.
User: I did it not working. I Told you I been working here 2 years I know how to did it but it's not working. Just give me the password so I can go to the pos.
Me: Just try this for me. Hold Alt down, Press Tab, Release Tab but leave alt held down and tell me what you see.
User: It's back on the password screen.
Me: You let go of Alt
User: I know how to did it I been working here longer than you. You don't know what you're doing just give me the password so I can ring sales. I got a long line and I need this computer.
At this point I put the user on hold and beat my head on the desk for awhile. I get this call at least twice a day but not often is the user what I call "Belligerently Ignorant." I decide to take the 5 minutes to actually remote into the register and then continue with the employee.
Me: I'm dialed in and can see what you're doing. Please press alt and tab at the same time then release tab but leave alt held down.
I now watch her just alt-tab from one screen to another and let go of both buttons. If I try and alt-tab it will not work for the remote computer but I have learned if they hold alt I can tab for them and make it work.
Me: Hold alt
I proceed to press tab several times and explain how each little icon is a program and that this is how she switches between them.
User: ohhhhhhhhhh, Why didn't you just say that.
-click- She hangs up on me
I work as a support technician at a local ISP. Just finished this call:
Me: Thanks for calling [insertISPhere], This is [AnAwesomeTech], How can I help you?
HerpnDerp: Ya, you keep telling me that this security code for my wifi thing is on the bottom of my modem, but it don't work.
Me: Alright, well what you will want to do is ensure that you are capitalizing any letter you see.
HerpnDerp: (mumbling) 7...2....B...O, wait... is this a Zero, or an o?
Me: That is a Zero, Ma'am.
HerpnDerp: The number zero, or the letter?
After a few moments of laughter behind the wonderful mute button, the call ended.
Customers hurt my head....'nuff said
Me: Thank you for calling XXXXX technical support, how may I help you?
Client: I can't login to the software.
Me: What does it say when you try to login?
Client: Try again or cancel.
Me: That's it? It doesn't say anything else?
Client: No, it just says try again or cancel.
Me: There is no error message of any kind?
Client: No, that's all it says.
Me: Can you try again while I'm on the phone with you.
Client: Sure....it says try again or cancel.
Me: No error message?
Me: Can you read what it says?
Client: It says "Incorrect username or password try again or cancel".
user: I am having trouble accessing content on the site
support: What URL are you using to access the site?
support: My apologies for the lack of clarity. A "URL" is a websites address, as seen in the address bar at the top of the browser. - What URL are you using?
user: Internet Explorer 9
A few years ago, before I moved onto only doing b2b IT Support, I used to do a lot of home IT support. As a result, a good handful of my clients were old people.
One lady phoned me up to tell me how annoying her computer had become as a result of the popup windows. We do a lot of support, so I started with the usual questions over the phone, "have you installed anything recently", etc.
After finding out these pop ups have been happening since she bought the laptop, I start to get suspicious that she's either been sold a second hand store-returned laptop, or someone's done something they shouldn't have before selling it to her.
Anyway, I get her to install our remote support software of choice (LogMeIn) and jump on to have a look for her. I can't find any signs of pop up windows happening at all, so I do the usual MalwareBytes, CCleaner, and all the rest and tell her to give me a call again if it keeps happening.
The very next day I get a call from her saying that the pop up windows keep appearing. So, I do the only thing I can do, and I hop into the car and drive to see her.
I ask her to show me the pop up windows she sees. She turns off the computer, turns it on. The Packard Bell BIOS splashscreen comes up and she shouts with a smug smile on her face "There! There it is! That pop up!"
I'm on the tech support team (call centre) for a very large ISP in Australia. I've had my share of memorable calls, but I don't think I will ever forget this call I received from a customer last week.
It's a normal day, except for the fact my manager happens to be sitting next to me listening to my calls as part of a feedback process our office is trying. I had taken a few calls by this time of the day but this call was the first my manager would be listening to with me. I click the 'ready for next call' button, a call comes through and after I introduce myself, the first thing I hear is a classic middle-aged semi-Aussie-bogan accent saying "right - there's been a huge fuck up here and we're about to have a situation on our hands". My manager and I look at each other and it's obvious we're both thinking "it's going to be one of those calls".
She (the customer) is calling because her services (DSL, landline and several mobile phone services) have been suspended, which can happen for a number of different reasons. Her account did not automatically appear on my screen as normal though, so when I asked for her phone number so I could pull up her account, she responds with a series of rude and smart-arse comments; "all your other people have found it without needing my number", "are you a moron?", "what centre are you in?" ect. That last comment is a jab at one of our overseas centres which often receives complaints (normally from people just like this woman) for no other reason than being overseas. Finally, after a few minutes of this, she finally gives up her phone number and I open her account.
I notice straight away her services were suspended due to non-payment. The amount owing is over $1500 and she is on a $250/wk 'payment plan'. A payment plan is when a customer owes an unusually high amount of money and must make regular payments to have their balance brought to zero within a few weeks in exchange for their services remaining active; if you don't agree to the payment plan or if you miss a payment, your services are suspended until the balance is paid. It's a tough but (IMO) fair system. But I digress.
She's very angry. The worst part is she goes around in circles and won't directly answer my questions or statements, so at first the call goes nowhere. About about 30 minutes (I'm not kidding) of her ranting about how awful the company is (most of it nonsense), I finally realise that she had called earlier today and spoken to somebody about reducing the amount of her weekly payments from $250 to $150 per week. The last representative placed her on hold to speak to our credit management team, she hung up while on hold, and the rep tried to call back but only got her voicemail. The answer from our credit team was no. The credit officer managing her case decided suspending her services was necessary but their reasoning was unclear. I finally convince the customer to let me put her on hold while I speak to the case manager. The credit officer informs my manager and I that this lady owes one of our sister companies $4200 (so she owes us nearly $6000 total) and had mentioned to the last representative that she was not going to make her next payment scheduled as part of her payment plan, which is why she was suspended.
As we're speaking to the credit officer, something clicks in my manager's head and he suddenly remembers who this woman is. My manager was previously the head of the sister company's complaints department; this woman was known to be fraudulent and caused a lot of problems while she was a customer with our sister company, which my manager had to deal with personally. Because it's now clear she is trying to do the same thing with our company, my manager decides to take over the call while I listen in.
After taking her off hold, her demeanor has completely changed. With me she was just rude and a smart-arse - with my manager she is so angry she is crying (angry crying, if that makes sense). She's demanding her services be unsuspended immediately before she 'considers' making a payment; my manager says, politely but bluntly, that she will make her scheduled $250 payment now or have her account cancelled and forwarded to an external debt collecting agency. This sends her into a tirade, but after about 20 minutes of her ranting and insulting my manager, she agrees to make a payment so we can remove her service suspensions. My manager passes the call back to me to process her payment.
I take back the call and she immediately tells me my manager personally insulted her and she wants to speak to my manager's manager. Having had listened in on the call, I knew this was a flat-out lie and told her I would not be doing that. She then tells me she will be contacting a lawyer and starts insulting me. At this point, knowing I have my manager's support, I tell her bluntly that I wasn't interested in listening to her nonsense anymore and all I would be doing from this point forward was taking a payment from her. After several minutes of more nonsense ranting from her, I finally manage to take a payment and remove her suspension.
She has calmed down by this point - after the 1hr and 20min of ranting, crying and yelling I figure she has run out of steam. It's now the point of the call when I tell her how long an unsuspension takes to process - the DSL suspension will be removed within 15min, but the landline and mobile suspensions can take between 2-72hrs because they are wholesale products.
She starts screaming. No joke, literally blood-curdling I-AM-BEING-MURDERED screaming. If you heard your neighbour screaming like this you would call the cops straight away. She does this for about 10 seconds before I decide to hang up the call - there was nothing left for me to do and I wasn't about to put up with any more bullshit from her. I find out later that day she called back to speak to somebody else and alleged my manager and I threatened her and her family, which of course was another lie.
Here's the kicker: all throughout the call this woman is telling me how she struggles to pay her bills and provide for her kids. Later that night I googled her address and found she lives in a fucking mansion in a really expensive suburb. I then looked her up on Facebook; her profile picture is of a very well dressed middle-aged woman and her profile is full of albums with pictures of her and her husband at gallery openings, weddings, dinner parties ect. No sign of kids.
A not-so-classic case of the rich bitch who has no trouble spending millions on a house but can't bear the thought of paying her phone bills.
TL;DR: rich woman pretends to be a poor bogan, owes our company nearly $6000, claimed my manager and I threatened her and her family.
A client of mine called our helpdesk with a problem.
Client: I have a problem with my computer.
Helpdesk: What's happening exactly?
Client: The mouse isn't doing what it's supposed to be doing according to the manual.
Helpdesk: What does the manual say?
Client: The manual says when I move the mouse forward the arrow on the screen should move upwards.
Helpdesk: And the mouse is doing what exactly?
Client: It's moving down the screen when I move it forward.
Helpdesk: Downwards? As in down to the bottom of the screen?
Client: Yep, it's broken.
Helpdesk: You may find you are holding the mouse the wrong way around.
I am a part of a small Internet Service Provider is the midwest. My responsibility is to assist people in getting connected to the internet.
Me: Thank you for calling [---], may I help you?
Client: Your sever is down, you better get it back up!
Me: Oh! (since our server is capable of failing) Hmmm, (checking logs, pinging the server, etc) no, everything is running here. What's your account name?
Me: So I can check to see if how you're connecting.
Client: How can you do that if your server is down?
Me: It's not.
Client: It is so.
Me: [under my breath] Is not.
Me: I need your account name see if you are making any kind of connection.
Client: I'm Not!
Me: Your account name sir? [looking over at the caller ID]
Client: When you get your server going, I'll give you my information.
Me: Ah, Mr. [------] account name [-------]. Let's see what's happening on your login ....
Client: How did you know my name?
Me: Caller ID in the phone system.
Client: You have no right to know my name ...
Me: You called me.
Client: What are you going to do about the server?
Me: I've reset the server. (lieing!!!)
Client: So I can get online?
Me: The logs are showing an incorrect login. Your account name is [-------] not [-------]. I can show you were to correct it.
Client: There's nothing wrong with my account, your server is down.
Me: [As nicely as possible] The server is not down, your account name is misspelled. It happens sometimes....
Client: I've never changed my account name! What did you do to my computer?!
Me: Nothing. [resisting the urge to say "I stealthed through the firewall and can see EVERYTHING, and I suggest getting rid of those pics before someone sees them]
Client: Then why isn't working?
Me: Because your account name is wro...
Client: [yelling now] No it's not!
Me: What is your account name sir?
Client: I'm not telling you!
Me: Is it [-------]?
Client: What are you going to do about the server.
Me: I've reset the server to ensure there is nothing wrong on this end.
Client: So I can logon now?
Me: After we correct your account name you should be able to login. If you go to Control Panel ....
Me: To change your account na...
Client: There's nothing wrong with my account, your server is down.
Me: [getting a touch annoyed]We covered this already, we're advancing to step two. We were opening Control Panel.
Client: I'm not opening anything.
Me: Then what's the point of this call?
Client: Your server's down.
Me: It never was down, you have an incorrect login that needs to be changed by going to Control Panel.
Client: Give me someone else.
Me: No one here but me at the moment. So the Control Panel.
Client: I'm not doing that.
Me: Then this conversation is over. Good Day Sir. [click]
For the next three hours I see the client attempting to login, incorrectly. Another tech person came in later that day and gets the Client on a call. It's same as above and the client cancels his account.
When I used to work for a big cordless phone manufacturer I got a call from a person who insisted that every time her phone ringed a one foot flame shot out of it..
I work at the support desk for a small hospital. For us, there is no level 2 tech support. Theres level 1, and then the back-end network and programming people. This means we handle all the calls from "I forgot my password" to "My computer exploded," and many things above our pay grade. This means when we're not answering phones, we're out fixing stuff. Well, about halfway through the day I was tasked with going into an operating room and troubleshooting a computer that wasn't connecting to the network.
Now, one does not simply walk into the OR. In order to even set foot in it, you have to completely scrub down. This meant putting on a white, paper-like jumpsuit (like a cheap biohazard suit without the cool mask), slippers that slide over your shoes, and a paper version of those bandana-style hats you see all the cool doctors wear on TV. I'm a slightly larger than average guy, at 5' 10", 230lbs. I fit in the suit fine, but there was no flexibility, so bending over to put everything on was a challenge.
After getting suited up, I walk into the room and take a look at this computer. The last user is still logged in (for some reason medical staff doesn't like to lock their computers AT ALL, and don't care who uses it, this applies to doctors more than anyone else). So, sure enough it says "local connection only" so I know that at least theres signal going to the port, plus it has link lights. I follow the cord down the floor and around more medical equipment, and get the port number so I can check the switch. I've been in there less than 2 minutes and this suit is already causing me to sweat because its not very breathable. I take one last look at the desktop and BAM! no network connection. I look down at the port and sure enough, me pulling on the cord to trace it was just enough force to yank it further out of the port. So I plug it back in and walk out.
This happened to me a couple of years ago from an extremely needy user. Sadly I'm sure I a not alone in receiving a request for help similar to this.
I was supporting a Car Dealership with two locations. I had about 200 users and was the only IT guy on staff at the time. While working at my home office at location 1, I receive a phone call from the needy user at location 2 telling me that his keyboard and mouse won't work and I need to get there ASAP. This guy was one of the finance managers (the guy you see after your sales rep to finalize your loan information and paperwork) so if he can't process deals, the sales floor is stopped. After I ask him if it's plugged in or not he yells into my ear that I need to drop whatever I am doing and rush out there click.
I speak to my direct supervisor (who is one of those types who knows a few acronyms so therefore assumes he is tech savvy), and he instructs me to go to location 2 and fix the problem. I might also add this is in the DC area so 30 miles from one area to another can take anywhere from 30 minutes to 3 hours in traffic.
I luck out with traffic and arrive there in just under 45 minutes. At this point the user is irate and is yelling that IT support should be relocated to his location blah blah blah. Anyway - I go into his office and eyeball his system. He rebooted (which i am amazed at) and the system is sitting at the CTRL+ALT+DEL to login screen. Hit CTRL+ALT+DEL - nothing... hmm.. Try to move the mouse - nothing... At this point I notice that the keyboard and mouse are wireless. I try to reconnect the keyboard and mouse to the receiver with no luck. I then remember the caliber of the user I am dealing with and a thought pops up in my head....
It couldn't be....
I flip over the mouse and keyboard change the batteries and everything works again... I tell the user what I did and asked him if he had replaced the batteries recently. He responded with, " It has batteries"? NO YOU JACKASS IT RUNS ON PIXIE DUST AND CHILDRENS WISHES...
Warning, this story is only slightly IT related and kind of gross.
So I was working in a small IT department for a small company. The owner of the company also owned the nine story office complex we worked in and occasionally had us perform IT on the building as well.
More than once I had to lead technicians for phone/internet/fiber/elevators down to the basement... it wasn't unusual to have to walk through about 15cm of raw sewage to get to the maintenance rooms because of a clog in the lines.
See, every time they had someone out to clean the pipes it turned out a feminine product had been flushed instead of put in the trash. Every. damn. time.
So once a month I'm walking my dress shoes through raw sewage because some girls think it's 'gross' to put their trash in a trash can where it will smell (as one girl told me).
It smelled like hell down there and the tenant that used part of basement space always complained. Eventually the owner got tired of calling the plumber and had the receptionist put signs on all the stall doors saying.
"Please do not flush feminine products as it can cause flooding in the basement"
I didn't think this was a firm enough warning so I added this note on my floor:
"Anyone caught ignoring this notice will be taken down into the basement and be forced to walk their Louis Vuittons through the raw sewage mess they created."
The receptionist was horrified at how 'immature' this message was and spent the next hour tracking down the culprit until a manager told her, "Just print out new ones and get over it."
Ha! (ps I'm a girl too, so I'm not hating on women)
I worked at a major Canadian Mobile Provider chain. They're not well liked and constantly gets yelled about. I don't want to potentially get yelled at by the company, so let's just call them Cerberus.
At any rate, I was working in a special area of the company. We dealt with any problems with the phone and the phone bill. Example being that we would get the calls for people who were charged for United States roaming in seeing if it was legitimate or not. If they got pinged on a tower that was in America but near to where they lived, then fine. If they were hit by a tower in Vegas there was no way in hell we were crediting them back.
At any rate, I've gotten many a calls from many disgruntled people over that and Third Party Charges that end up in our department from morons who don't know how to transfer properly.
Me: Thank you for calling Cerberus Mobile, my name is Cade, can I get your first and last name please? *(Note I've got a  relatively pronounced accent and I don't try to hide it at all.)
Her: Ugh, I would like to talk to someone who's IN Canada and who is FROM Canada please. Don't want to talk to no f**king foreigners. (I was born in Canada but raised in Britain and been living in Canada for the past 10 years or so)
Me: Alright Ma'am. Please hold while I transfer you to a different operator.
I put her on hold for about 2 minutes, and fired up a Canadian accent.
Me:  Thank you for calling Cerberus Mobile. My name is Cade, can I get your first and last name please?
Her: Yes, thank you. My name is Jane Doe.
Me: And your pin number?
Me: And how can I help you today?
She proceeded to explain her situation which was the usual. She had gotten hit with American Provider towers while living in a town that borders Canada and America. I went through the problems, fixing them all and crediting her where due.
During the call she proceeded to explain this was the 2nd time she had been transferred because the first person wasn't Canadian and she wasn't supporting immigrants, and the second person (me) was extremely rude to her. I just kept saying "Oh" or "Alright" and just continuing the conversation without really adding more fuel to the fire. All the while a thought bubbled in the back of my brain.
Me: Alright, is there anything else I can help you with Jane?
JD: No, that's everything. Thank you so much!
I slipped off the Canadian Accent and dropped back to my own.
Me: Well, thank you for calling Cerberus Mobile and have a lovely day. By the way, are you interested in hearing anything about our
She screamed "YOU MOTHERFUCKER" and hung up the phone.
tl;dr Woman didn't like my accent and called me a foreigner. Faked Canadian Accent to get her to calm down and slipped back into my accent and she lost it.
I used to work at a tech support desk. One of the ladies that worked there, let's call her K, was usually pretty good at her job with one exception. If she'd never heard a particular issue before, she'd start panicking and asking everyone to help her. It wasn't just issues she hadn't heard before, but issues she had heard about but were stated differently ("I can't login" vs. "I can't access"). Once you told her the answer, she'd be OK, but it was getting annoying.
My breaking point came during my last weeks there. Normally, when someone signs up for our service they point their domain's DNS records to us and we handle the rest. The problem was, this particular caller was just registering their domain. She comes over to me and the following takes place:
K: "They don't have a domain yet. How to they point the DNS records?"
Me: "Same as they usually do, they just need to register their domain first."
K: "But how?"
Me: "You know how we normally tell them to set it up?"
K: "Yep! They point their DNS to dns1.foo.bar, dns2.foo.bar, etc"
Me: "OK, tell them to do that after they register their domain."
K: "Tell them to do what?"
Me: "Point their DNS"
K: "To where?"
Me: "You just said it."
K: "I don't know."
Me: "Where do you point the DNS servers?"
K: "dns1.foo.bar, dns2.foo.bar, etc"
Me: "So tell them that."
K: "Tell them what?"
Me: "The exact words you just said."
K: "I don't know what I just said!"
Me: "You just said it. Twice! Either tell the caller where to point the DNS records or tell them you can't do your job."
K: "OK. I'll do that." runs off
five seconds later
K (on phone): "Sorry, I can't do my job right now. Have a nice day and if you receive a customer survey please fill it out." click
She transferred to another department shortly thereafter for "personal reasons".
A few years ago I was doing HP printer support, and a friend of mine, we'll call him Mike, took a call from a customer with a fax issue.
This guy wasn't able to receive faxes, and was particularly concerned because the display said "Rinsing" instead of "Ringing". Mike explained to him that the display was probably just defective and a portion of the g wasn't showing up, making it look like an s, and that it may be related, but he'd still need to troubleshoot it as a fax issue.
So while he's trying to check things like splitters, lines, etc, the customer kept insisting that the problem was this Rinsing message.
He didn't believe Mike's explanation about the display being defective, and kept asking him to look in the manual for this Rinsing message, and eventually started asking to speak to someone else who knew more about the Rinsing message, and wanted to know why a fax machine would say Rinsing.
Finally he says "You've told me several times it's not supposed to display Rinsing but it does. Do me a favor, just tell me what Rinsing is?"
"It's the act of washing."
I work for an ISP's tech support line:
So this lady calls in, telling me she had her computer at Staples for three days, getting fixed.
And that she wants three days of service credit for this.
Me: "I'm sorry ma'am, but if your car's transmission's in trouble and you had to bring it to a mechanic to fix it, will you go to Shell to get a credit?"
Her: "It's not the same thing! This is not a good example at all! At (insert competitors names) they always applied credits like this!"
I check in her account. Tons and tons of credits for dummy reasons.
Glad I said no.
Edit: Turns out my example wasn't too good, I have to admit this. But this following argument, as suggested by letsgocrazy: "[...]could have just said 'you still pay for it when the computer's off anyway, so why not pay for it when the computer is out of your house' "
I work for a cable company servicing customers in the United States. I just recently switched over to tech support from the billing department. I have a feeling my job is going to get much more interesting based on one of my first calls from my new department...
Customer: HELP! There's something wrong with my TV! Please help me! Me: Sorry you're experiencing issues with your TV; what seems to be the problem? Customer: Extremely worried There's a black box on the bottom of my TV screen & every time somebody talks words appear in it!! I don't know what's happening!! Please help! Me: ಠ_ಠ ... Go into your menu and change the closed captioning setting to off...
Welcome to tech support.
I was supervising three software engineers (no, real, genuine engineers with rings) for a software company that also did some hardware support.
One day, my boss's boss comes and tells me, go with Derp to Herp in Blurtville (50 km away); their printer is not working, so you bring it back here and we'll fix it.
So I leave with Derp, we drive the 50 km to Blurtville and while Derp goes to to his upgrades, I have a look at the printer. I turn it on, and the print head starts accelerating towards the side, and I barely have time to turn it off before it smashes on the side.
- Aha! I found the problem: sure enough, a bit of paper fell on the head optosensor, nothing a puff of breath can't fix.
I check that the printer works fine to Mr Herp's satisfaction, and we head back 50 km to the office.
When we get there, my boss's boss asks me where is the printer.
- Oh, we didn't bring it back, because I fixed it over there, and Mr Herp is happy about it.
- WHAT? What did you do? the boss shouted at me. I told him we'd bring the printer back here and now he thinks we cannot keep our word!
- But... I fixed it, and Mr Herp is fine with that!
- I don't care, now we look like a bunch of nitwits who can't keep our word!
That's what I got in return for saving 100 km of driving.
The place was out in the boondocks, it was a 2 hour bus+subway commute and I had to walk 2 km on a country road from the bus stop (fortunately, when it was minus 30, my boss always gave me a lift to/from a far more convenient location). I also had to be there at 8:30 in the morning, so when I started in the winter, it was still dark. There were no windows, too, so I only saw daylight for about 1 hour during lunch.
When it eventually closed-up, I didn't care at all, even though I had the highest salary ever of my life on that job.
So, I'm operating as a senior admin on a military vessel in the great lakes region. We're using Vista on our workstations, Server 2003 on the virtual servers, and Server 2008 on the Host server.
Most of my users are what I like to refer to as "The lowest common denominator". Some are smart enough to be dangerous, the rest, not quite that far up the food chain. Those that are smart enough to know that they don't know what they are doing are by far my favorites.
Well, when new people report aboard, or when someone needs access to a different printer, they add one. This process would usually involve doing a search in active directory or doing a search through the add printer wizard. If you are on board and understand how the naming convention works, then this isn't difficult, but remember... Lowest Common Denominator!
Well, because I got sick of having to explain the difference between a slash and a backslash, what a server and workstation are, and how the printers don't just magically appear... I decided to find a better method.
I created a page on the ships internal site that had all of the printers listed. All you had to do was right click and press "Connect".
I made it live and told the crew. 45 minutes later I'm getting phone calls saying that they can't figure it out. Okay, I can deal with this, I'll add something to the page that gives actual instructions. I know, I'll even include pictures.
"Yes....YES...." I cackle to myself as I type and cut and paste and modify the pages.
When I'm done, I have this fancy document that explains HOW to right click (Included a picture of what the menu looks like), how to select your printer (Included a picture of that too), and what will happen when the printer connects (Hey, I even had a picture of that).
The calls stopped.
This was good....
Untill the phone rang.
It was the oldest, surliest, and hardest to work with person on the ship. This guy spent 2 hours one afternoon trying to convince me that he knew computers but still had a hard time differentiating RAM from HDD. He tried to convince me he had networking classes under his belt and knew all the ins and outs of my job. Yeah, this was going to be a "Face-Desk" moment. I could tell.
The exchange begins...
ME: IT Shop, how can I help you. Him: I can't add a printer. Me: Have you tried using the new printer page? Him: I'm on it right now. It doesn't work. Me: Alright, well, lets walk you through it. I need you to right click on the printer icon of the printer you want. Him: Okay. Me: Then select "Connect" and Left Click once. (I hear about 7 clicks) Him: It's not working. .... I proceed to try and walk him through the process two more times.... Him: The menu doesn't look right. And now it won't close. Me: You mean the right click menu isn't closing? Him: Yes. Your system is broken. Come fix it.
Considering this guy outranks me by like 5 paygrades, I finally get out of my chair and waddle down to see him.
I take his mouse, right click on the printer, click connect and the window announces "Connected to Printer xxxxxx".
Him: How come it worked for you? Me: I'm not sure... can you show me how you were trying to add your printer? Him: Okay...
I look at what he is doing and realize his error. He scrolled back up to the top of the page and found one of my screenshots that had the right click menu shown and was furiously clicking on the JPG version of the "Connect" option.
My jaw hit the floor. HOW THE HELL do you stay in the military for 30+ years and not learn how to read?
I ask him "Did you read the instructions?" His reply "No, I shouldn't have to. I've been doing this a long time". I proceed to face palm. I mumble a few obscenities under my breath and politely find out if he needs anything else.
It's time to smoke.
EDIT - Speeling, Grahamar, Thaipoes
TL;DR Senior Military member clicks on pictures of the instructions instead of following them and wonders why he can't add a printer.
This happened about a year ago, as I was just getting to know out new VP of development. She will be a regular source of tftp stories in the near future, in addition to the amusingly incompetent staff members she has since hired to do the work that she should be capable of doing herself.
I am not tech support. I am the database and web admin. I'm used to being considered the "IT guru" around the office, but it usually doesn't amount to much more than the occasional windows/word/excel tip. We have an IT person, but she's... Ineffective, to put it mildly.
This was the moment, however, when I realized this lady thought that was my actual job title. She still introduces me to new hires as such, but more on that in future posts.
Her: "You're the guru around here, right? (irritating, unfunny chortle) I've got a problem with my eye-phone."
Me: "Ok.. Well I use an Android, but I can probably figure it out. What's up?"
Her: "The icons are all wrong, and I can't get to my email. Everythings just... Different. Here, have a look."
I look at the phone, some random apps... Then I slide it to the left. Home screen.
Her: "OMG, what did you do? Thank you so much!"
Me: (pokerface) "Well... I just swiped to the left. To get back the home screen... You just, press and drag left or right."
Her: "Ooohhhhh... You mean there's more than one screen?! 'Swipe...' I'll have to remember that."
Me: "Yeah. well. That's, you know, what makes it an iPhone..."
Her: "Oh you. You're my hero! I'll have some questions for you later!"
And that's when I knew my life was about to get a lot worse.
An executive called to get information from a previously terminated employee's computer sent over to the new employee's computer. I told her it would make the process very simple if she happened to have the previous employee's password. She says "sure, he told me the password is Tubesteak7."
Shockingly, that password was not actually correct so I had to ask her to verify. Again, she repeated that it was indeed written in her notes as Tubesteak7. At this point I'm trying to keep from laughing as it is quite obvious this lady doesn't know what she's saying.
After a few minutes of trying to do what I could, the issue was not resolved. I'm not sure if that lady will ever figure out that her former employee that she fired was just saying "screw you" in a nice(r) way.
So background information about the job I used to have is  here so from now on I'll be more to the point :)
One day an undergraduate student (almost an exact replica of any stereotypical frat boy you've seen in a movie) came in with a screen that has clearly been punched. Our policy was that we were never allowed to accuse the students of anything, and had to try and work the information out of them so that we could properly document it in the ticket. So being prepared for another case of the "I don't know what happeneds" I ask the student why there is circular damage leading out from the center of the screen as I set a loaner laptop in front of him to begin the temporary setup.
To my surprise his response was "I got really angry at something I read on the internet so I punched it, like this" and proceeds to punch his loaner laptop, cracking the screen on that one as well.
facepalm facelpalm facepalm facepalm
Needless to say, this student was charged more than the deductible from our laptop insurance plan for blatantly voided the warranty -_-
EDIT: I forgot to add my favorite part of the dialog -
Him post punch: You guys should buy better laptops.
Manager: You should try not punching the laptops.
So I'm at the doctor's office for an appointment. I'm talking with the receptionist who is filling in the usual redundant information even though they've taken the same information the last dozen times I've been in there.
Their network goes down right in the middle of it. Everything's borked, computers, debit system, you name it. She gives me a deer-in-the-headlight look, and starts muttering something about not being able to proceed.
Her co-worker helpfully reminds her about something called paper and pens and points to the shelf where the correct forms are kept.
She gets the forms and realizes the one she needs is a triplicate form that needs actual old-fashioned carbon paper in between the pages.
She and the co-worker proceed to spend the next five minutes trying to figure out how to put the carbon paper between the pages!!
I was successful at keeping my mouth shut for about two of those minutes, then gently explained that they would need a piece of carbon paper between each page.
They ignored me, and kept switching one piece of carbon paper back and forth between the three pages, mostly upside-down.
I again explained they'd need both pieces, and that the black side needed to be down, otherwise they're copying backwards on the bottom of the top sheet.
She gave me a long-suffering look, and said that, no, it should really work with just one piece.
The receptionist eventually gave up, continuing to completely ignore any and all suggestions I made, and told me, "I'm sorry, this stuff seems to be not working. I don't know what to tell you."
I'm about to blow my top when another receptionist, one about fifty years old, walks up and gives the other two a withering look. She quickly and efficiently puts the carbon paper in right side up, apologizes for her co-workers' abject stupidity and incompetence, and proceeds to get the information.
Thank god for people who still remember, or are intelligent enough, to know how to use old-school office tech.
I'm not the tech guy here, but I've sort of adopted the role of a buffer between the tech guy (who is responsible for this entire region) and the technologically illiterate populating this office. This is simply an example of why he might appreciate me.
A couple of officefolk working just outside my door had a mission: they had something on their screen that they wanted to show the support people in Georgia (we're in Florida).
When left to their own devices, they planned out a "solution" that Rube Goldberg would have said over-complicated the issue:
Step 1. Press the Print Screen key.
-Honestly, I overheard this and gave them props. I figured they were going to be alright. It when downhill fast...
Step 2. Open MS Word. Paste into Word document.
-Hmm... I suppose you could do that.
Step 3. Save document. Print document.
-Thaaat's a red flag.
Step 4. Scan printed document.
-Ok, weird. At least our scanner is also a fax machine. Maybe that's what they're planning.
It was not:
Steps 5, 6, 7, etc. Email scanned image (now .PDF) to own address, save .PDF, compose new email to people in Georgia, attach .PDF, and send email. Then of course, make a phone call to be sure they received it.
I interrupted their execution of this frightening process before they moved on from step 1. When I showed them how to Ctrl+V into an email they were simply astounded.
Teacher: I need to show this movie on my computer.
Me: You can't.
Teacher: Why not?
Me: That's a VHS tape.
Me: That's a computer, not a VCR.
Teacher: What do you mean?
Me: There is no slot on your computer to shove a tape in.
Teacher: Are you joking with me?
Me: No, are you joking with me?
Teacher: So, why won't it work?
Oh Lord, how I hate this one. Especially today.
Mother's Day Sunday, phone rings and it's a client I literally haven't heard from in 3 + years. (Just checked my last invoice, I fixed her computer on June 18, 2008.) She's apparently having problems and would like some help.
Her: Hey, since you were the last one to fix my computer, I thought I'd call you to see if you want to come out and fix it again for me?
Me: I'm sorry I don't do PC repair anymore on an ongoing basis. You could try HerpDerp, (Friend that I know does this stuff) He's really good.
Her - bitchyness factor +3: But I need it fixed today!
Me: You do realize it's a Sunday, right... and that it's Mother's day to boot... right?
Her - bitchyness factor +5: That's why I need it fixed today!
Me: I'm sorry, even if I was still doing that stuff, I wouldn't be able to help you today as I have many other family activities planned.
Her - bitchyness factor +11: But you were the last one to touch it. It's your fault it doesn't work! YOU MUST COME TODAY AND FIX IT!
Me: Actually, YOU were the last one to touch it, I haven't touched it in over three years. Given that you've had no other issues in the past three years, I'd say your odds of pinning this on anything I did are slim and none, I'll not take any implied threat that your issue is my problem. Try calling HerpDerp tomorrow, I"m sure he can help you. - click.
text to Herp Derp: Your phone's going to ring in a few... probably from ###-###-#### don't answer until tomorrow...
Back in the 3.5" floppy disk days, I had a small office customer who had 3-4 computers there for their accountants. I used to do maintenance on their PC's. The secretary there mentioned that accounts and turnover were completely on the computers and if that was lost, all the books would be gone. I offered them to setup daily backup copies to keep all data safe in tapes.
Their CEO refused on the grounds that it was ridiculous to pay someone for something he could do himself.
Fair enough, so as time went and as you can imagine shit hit the fan and all their data was lost due to a new virus (back in those days, a common occurence). So I asked for the backup copies to restore all the accounts info and the CEO went :"sure here they are...."
SURPRISE!!! he handed me pages and pages of photocopied disks that he religiously performed everyday (you know , an ACTUAL PHOTO ON PAPER of the disk). You should have seen how angry the guy got when I told him that's not how you make backup copies of data....
It wouldn't matter to him:
How many times I explained to him that data on disks was stored in a magnetic support and photocopy machines work on refracted light.
How many times I explained to him that it didn't matter he photocopied religiously all data everyday and that all pages were ordered (really? like it made a difference and I would go "oh sir! My apologies, since it's all so neat and tidy everything is going to work").
He insisted I HAD TO try to recover the data somehow using the photocopies (!!!). No matter how many times I went through point 1 and 2 , he would still insist "JUST TRY DAMN IT!". Needless to say unerase tools proved unefective...
He threatened me to give bad feedback to their associates about me. I told him fair enough, as long as you explain everybody the whole story, specially the part were he foolishly thought he was making COPIES by PHOTOCOPYING THE MEDIA where the data was stored on.
Oh and I forgot the best bit. One of the things that he suggested was "maybe I should have made color copies instead?" .... I wanted so badly to tell him "reaaaaally? reaaally dude? are you reaaaally that dumb?"...
I worked on a Helpdesk for a large Government Department for a while and it amazed me how people generally ignore what IT are telling them. Makes me weep for humanity.
Here is one of my favorites from when I worked there; The department had two email systems running. One was for corporate use (those employed directly to the Department) and the other educational use (by those who worked for the educational off-shoot). One day, the Corporate email servers pack it in. All twelve. Dead. Unfortunately, these were hosted by a third party vendor (who wouldn't be able to find their backside with both hands, a 1:1 map and a compass) and we had no control over getting them back online in a timely fashion. I took solace in this, as my work for the afternoon was (tragically) still in my Inbox. I was taking the obligatory calls from those who were stupid enough to ignore the message on the phone system stating that said email server is down.
What ensued next was a great source of amusement to myself. One of our more difficult clients called up, ignored the phone message and then proceeded to yell at me about it. Here's how it went down: Me: Welcome to IT, how can I help you?
Derpette: The email is down. I need to get onto it and I can't.
Me: As the phone message stated, the servers are currently down. No one, including us on the helpdesk are currently able to access it. It is not just your team. (This user has a reputation for being a stubborn bitch at the best of times and would not accept that I couldn't help you)
Derpette: I don't care for your sarcasm. I need my email. Fix it.
She then proceeds to rabble about what she does, who she works for, then on about something to do with an urgent submission. To which I said (after I came out of the client-induced coma I was in)
Me: Well I know for a fact that this submission isn't required for over a month. I know. I spoke to your director today in the elevator. So please stop telling me about it. We are following our SOP in relation to third party vendors experiencing issues and we are genuinely powerless to help.
Derpette finally relents (after abusing me some more about my sarcastic nature) and then comes up with this gem: "Well, why haven't you send out your standard email for outages so we know. That is part of your SOP and I know that for a fact".
By this stage, it's like shooting fish in a barrel.
Me: "Yes, you are correct, it is part of our SOP. But even if we on the helpdesk could send it out, how would you be able to read it?"
Derpette: "Oh. I hadn't thought of that..."
She then hangs up, just after I hear her yelling about IT's incompetence in dealing with issues.
To make the day even better, her boss rings me on my personal extension and apologies for her behavior and said she would make her send me a hand written apology letter for her actions.
In case where you guys work doesn't have live chat, I try to keep the chats I do to under 10 minutes, 5 or fewer is preferable. The people who come in mostly have generic problems of their own faults with quick fixes or redirects to articles we've written. 15 minutes to find out that a user isn't even hosted by us... it's a shame we don't have technology that would let me punch them through the computer.
So, 15 minutes later:
09:22:15 [User]: No, I aint actually hosted by this company, I used to, but my hosting isnt answering Live Chat.
I just... no.
Well it's been a month and a half back at Tech Support, and today it finally happened.
User calls up with email issues. After the initial "what type of computer do you use" type questions I figure out she's using Mac Mail.
"But it won't let me check my email!"
So I go through, step-by-step with her. As an ISP we don't actually support email programs, but, as a nice group of guys, we'll bend over backwards to help our clients. So I make sure she's typing in her user name instead of her full email. Yup. That's ok. Now type the password in slowly, letter by letter.
"Agh! It's still not working!"
"Okay," I say, "let me double check the server. Is it giving you any error messages?"
"No, it just won't take my password!"
"... wait... what do you mean?"
"It won't take my password. I try to type it in and it wont let me?"
"Describe what it does. Does it get all grey so you can't click on it?"
"No." typetty typetty. "It keeps typing dots instead of my password!"
Open up your web browser... Internet explorer. The internet. Open it. Double click on the icon which takes you to the internet. The blue e on your desktop. No, on your screen, not on your desk. Yes, double click it. LEFT mouse button... Double click. Faster.
Blast from the past during my days as tier 1 phone support for major ISP:
Me: Thanks for calling LameBroadbandISP. This is SkippyJDZ. How can I help you?
User: I can't connect to the internet!
Me: (Perform some diagnostic tests) Well, sir, I see that your cable modem is online and receiving a signal. Let's try some troubleshooting.
User: I'm a sysadmin. I've done all the basic troubleshooting already. I have several computers here, and none of them can connect. There's a problem with your service.
Me: Sir, I need you to connect your computer directly to the modem. We need to eliminate your router as a variable since we don't support it.
User: I'm not doing that. There's nothing wrong with my router. Just send out a tech.
Me: I can't send out a tech without properly diagnosing the issue. Can you please just directly connect to the modem?
User: Fine. (Fiddles around for a few minutes) There.
Me: Okay, go to ipconfig and do a release/renew. What's your IP address?
Rule #1: USERS LIE
TL;DR: Sysadmin couldn't connect to the internet, and I stopped caring.
Its a short story, but I faceplamed.
I work at a retail pharmacy in the photo department. A lady came in to print photos at the kiosks. She spends 5 minutes looking a blank screen, then asks me why her card isn't being read by the computer. I take a quick look. She was trying to stick her cameras battery into the compact flash card reader. She nearly destroyed the pins on the reader and her battery.
I once had a customer bring back a laptop she bought the day before claiming it was broken. She said it wouldn't open, I asked her if it was windows not loading up or a program not opening, she said the laptop itself wouldn't physically open. I took it out of the box, opened it up and just looked at her. Her mouth fell open, she looked at me and said "Oh, it opens that side! Me and my sister tried for an hour to open it up last night and couldn't" She had been trying to open it from the hinge side...
Supervising a Tier 1 help desk this weekend. We have about 1000 clients we're servicing who are spread out over about 200 square miles, and every single one of them thinks they're the most important person on our network.
This one guy however takes the cake. In the grand scheme of things he's about as important to the overall operation of this company as Korben Dallas' mother is to the plot of The Fifth Element. As I'm coming onto shift tonight I was briefed by the outgoing about this guy and how he's already submitted about ten trouble tickets in the past six hours. All for basic things.
About an hour ago I get a trouble ticket from him that said the following:
"Need port activated."
That was it. Location, MAC address, which type of network, EVERYTHING THAT WE REQUEST FOR PORT ACTIVATION is left off. I send him back a request for this and he proceeds to personally call up the help desk stating that he "doesn't have time to deal with this nonsense!" My tech tries to tell him that this information is needed but he proceeds to get abusive.
Now I can understand impatience from time to time, but you DO NOT get abusive with my techs. He's going to find his trouble ticket dropped to the bottom of the pile and all further ones ignored for at least the next week if I have my way.
I lost some customer data today: I don't know why it didn't copy over but it didn't. I suspect some virus crawled into the folder and one of the 4 anti-virus I ran on it deleted it.
Of course, customer goes berserk about 'their entire school career' and 'years of tax data' going missing, and I'm sitting there wondering what happened to the flash drive we gave them for free at the start of the class.
Then she says it: "I'd have backed up my files if I'd have known I was going to lose them."
I work for a company that makes custom control systems, mostly for high-efficiency heating systems and home automation. Many of the systems we have allow us to connect remotely to diagnose problems from the office, which can be a lot more convenient than having to send someone out.
I had one customer call me. It was about a heating system in a multi-residential apartment complex. This was an older system that didn't have automatic alarming when there was a problem, but we could still remotely connect to see what was going on. (Note: It was the dead of winter in Toronto).
The conversation between me and the customer went something like this:
Customer: My building's cold. Why is my building cold?
Me: I'm not sure, but if you can give me a moment to connect to your system, I'll probably be able to figure out where the problem is. What's the address?
Customer: [gives building's address]
(a minute or so passes)
Me: Well, I seem to have found your problem.
Customer: And that is?
Me: Well, according to the system, your building is designed to be heated by three boilers, but two of them are reporting a burner lockout and can't fire. You should probably have someone from [local contractor] out to look at the burner on boilers 1 and 3.
Customer: Yeah. I know about that. We shut off the gas line to those boilers down because of a leak.
Me: Well, without those boilers you're basically running at one third heating capacity. That's why your building is cold. You might be able to get by with one inoperative in the warmer weather, but you can't run in the middle of January on just one boiler. It's not powerful enough.
Customer: Can't you do anything about it?
Me: Not from here. Like I said, you should probably call [local contractor] I can get you their emergency service number if you like.
Customer: Can't you tell the working boiler to just work harder?
Me: Sir, it autmatically did that when the system started cooling off. It's already running at 100% capacity.
Customer: What can we do about it?
Me: Get your gas line fixed and bring the other two boilers back on-line?
Customer: That's not an option. What else can we do?
Me: Chop some wood and build a fire?
TL;DR: Customer couldn't understand why his building started getting cold after he shut down 2 of his 3 boilers in mid-January in Toronto.
I work in tech support for an ISP and although we don't have to troubleshoot routers, if it's not too busy and the caller is nice or I feel sorry because they seem really helpless, I'll help them with wireless issues.
So yesterday a man who sounded like he was in his twenties or early thirties called exasperated because he's been trying to install his third router with no luck.
Dude is so over the edge that he rants for nearly five minutes before getting to the questions I need answers too. Each time he purchased a different brand, believing the previous brand to be junk.
"How do people deal with these punkass routers?" he asked me. I used the pause to ask which port on the back of the router is the Ethernet from the modem connected to.
"What?" he asked, with a mixture of bewilderment and annoyance. "Man, this here's a wireless router! Aint no cables nowhere!" I understand, I said, but you have a cable from the modem to the router, right?
"Nah. So you telling me I need to put cables all up in this shit?" I started to explain the setup and he cut me off and said he'd had it. Routers, he determined, we're not for him and he couldn't fathom why people would put themselves through "all that work" just to have wireless Internet connections. He said he was returning the router to the store and hung up.
I had a similar call with a snooty woman who informed me that her luxurious home was too beautifully furnished to ugly up with routers and cables. She had given her modem away and placed the router in a closet thinking that would work.
A personal favorite of mine.
Bob is a horrible customer. Bob is that old man who tells you up front he doesn't know anything at all about "these blasted machines" but wants to tell you how to fix his. Bob is the man who screams "It's not rocket science! Fix it cheaper!" when the cost is not under $50. Bob is a jerk.
Bob brought his PC in because he couldn't get online. He states he called comcast the night before when it happened and, in his words, "Cussed those greedy bastards out" before they told him it was his PC and not the modem. We'd had a bad lightning storm the night before, and I've seen more than one case of an ethernet card going kaput during one of those but nothing else.
I dunno if it's lightning, a miniature surge coming through the modem or what, but it happens a lot down here during summer storm season.
So I take the pc in, check it out, determine it is in fact an ethernet port gone out, and call Bob. After telling him it would cost $80 for the part and labor, and telling him if he doesn't like the price to get it done elsewhere, I got permission to do it.
Installed card, tested connection, all is good. I put a piece of masking tape over the onboard ethernet port, and when he picked it up even explained to him he would not be plugging it in where he did before, and he would need to reset his modem.
Bob called back a half hour later screaming and cussing about how we ripped him off. I tried to walk him, over the phone, through making sure it was plugged in properly, making sure he reset his modem.... he would have none of it.
Finally, after telling him if I came out there and it was one of those things he would be paying for our on-site labor fee ($85/hr, one hour minimum) and he agreed, I went to Bob's house.
Two minutes of cussing after I get there, he's online. I asked him why he tore the tape off the old port like I specifically said not to. He claims he didn't know. I pointed out that I showed him the old port, the tape, and the new port, and explained to him in clear terms what to do. Then I handed him the printed invoice for my coming out.
Bob screamed, Bob cussed, and Bob told me to get out of his house. I left. I then called the two other small PC places around town to alert them to a customer they need to keep an eye out for. Illegal, maybe, but we tend to help each other out there instead of hoping the others get ripped off.
Three weeks later Bob comes back in with cash to pay up, because they both denied him service, and the only thing he could do would be drive fifty minutes out to the nearest Best Buy.
I took the money, then told Bob we no longer wanted him as a customer.
Background: I don't work tech support (but admire those of you who do) but I do work on the business side of a software company where I frequently need to do basic troubleshooting and tech support for my clients and I act as the resident Microsoft Office guru. I get along really well with our Help Desk and we commiserate about our fellow co-workers and their inability to do some pretty simple things.
Story: I was at a client site this week with one of the loaner laptops and an internet stick so that I could RDP to my desktop at the office. I had tested the connection before leaving the office the previous day to make sure that everything was working. As I'm talking to the clients, I'm trying to connect to show them something I had been working on and I keep getting an error that the computer isn't on the network.
During a break I called the Help Desk and explained the problem and they had no problems accessing my computer so we moved onto other possibilities. I played with the internet stick and nothing. After about five minutes on the phone trying to sort this out, it struck me that I'm a complete idiot.
Me: "I owe you Timbits*."
Help Desk: "Why?"
Me: "Well, I'm thinking it would probably help if I opened up the VPN connection."
Help Desk: "A 20 pack works"
Me: "Roger that"
And this is why I'm always nice to my Help Desk peoples. Sometimes, even those of us who have a good foundation of technical knowledge aren't immune to Monday mornings.
*Timbits are donut holes from a Canadian coffee chain.
Taken from an actual message requesting help with an email account:
"I would like to disable spam..."
"I didn't know it had to be physically connected".....
client: I can't log in, what's my password??
Admin: There is no password...
client: I've already tried that one!
A small number of years ago I got promoted to field tech at a local repair shop. Everything was going well for a while when I got a call one Friday at ~4:30. Two power surges at a lumber yard a few towns over knocked out the battery backup, then the computer connected to it. When the computer came back on it wouldn't start back up. They said there was a noise coming from the hard drive. I told them to unplug it and I'd be out there first thing Monday morning, they said hell no, it needs to be back up NOW and the data needs to be intact. Apparently this computer controlled the saw and the conveyors or something that the entire business hinged on. They were completely down. Yadda yadda yadda, losing $1k/minute. Whatever.
Since I was on call that weekend anyway I make the 45 minute drive out there, find a guy who takes me into an office that was about as dirty as you'd expect an office in a lumber yard to be and points at a computer at the bottom of a metal bookshelf behind the door. It's a late 90's style white-box custom build. I plug it in and immediately hear a metallic sandpapery churning sound followed by a grind and a clunk. Toast. Turns out that this computer has been running non-stop since it was installed over a decade ago. All the lubrication was gone from the bearings and the only thing that kept the drive spinning was the fact that it was already moving.
I'm making overtime and charging double-time at this point so I'll make as much of an effort as they're willing to pay for, so I pack it up and head back to the office. I'd never dealt with important data on a dead drive before so I stuck it in the freezer, dropped it on the table, laid it on its side and did everything my little google searches would come up with short of summoning FSM. Finally I gave up and decided to start researching data recovery. Unfortunately I couldn't get any decent answers about what it might cost. All the companies were saying "Well it really depends on what the damage is and how much data you want back. Send the drive to us and we'll send you a quote." Yeah, that's what I want - some company I found on the internet holding my client's mission-critical data hostage while they roll the dice to decide a fee. Oh well, it's not like I have a choice.
The problem was that I needed a credit card so I could ship it to them. I called my boss's brother (our interim manager at the time) and gave him the rundown: "I've done $X, $Y, $Z. I can get BIOS to recognize the drive but I can't get any data off of it. I think the bearings are worn out and the platters just won't spin up. The only thing I haven't done is open it up, but that needs to be done by professionals in a clean room." He says fine. He'll be there in about 20 minutes. Considering it's damn-near 9pm at this point and I haven't eaten lunch or dinner, I have my wife run to Arby's for me. Giving at least a few fucks about the situation, we laugh nervously and try to make the best of it just long enough for the manager to come stumbling in reeking of scotch with WD-40 and two pairs of rubber gloves (he owned a forklift distribution/repair company as his main job. He was doing this as a favor to his brother, who ended up screwing him over). At this point I smiled as big as I could and knew that I had just been absolved of all accountability.
I gave him a final warning that even something as small as a flake of skin on the platter might as well be a tarp over a baseball field. "Bullshit," he says. "Crack this piece of shit open. All we need to do is get it spinning long enough to get the data. It's only a 40GB drive and you've got that Spirit thing (Ghost) so we should be able to picture it over to another drive." Yes sir.
It was like watching a monkey attempt brain surgery. Better yet it was like watching a drunk redneck try to perform forensic data recovery. After 30 minutes he was pretty much sobered up and says "fuck this. Take some cash out of the drawer and drop it off at UPS in the morning. Document your time and go the fuck home." No problem. I send an email to the client, copy the manager and the boss explaining the parts that seemed appropriate and basically said "shit happens. It's out of our control at this point."
It took a few days to get a quote and all attempts to follow up with the customer (office, cell, email) failed. After a week the data recovery company was getting impatient so we told them to do whatever they wanted with the drive since we're not paying to ship it back. Within the hour the customer calls demanding to know why they're not back up yet. They didn't recognize my voice so I went into secretary mode and transferred to the manager. He recognized the number, smiled and let it go to voicemail. For a month.
I'm so glad to be out of that place.
This is by far the worst thing that has happened to me working in IT/Tech Support over the years.
When I was in college I was the head lab assistant for the school. The computer labs were pretty large and there were classrooms off of the main lab. Normally the classrooms were locked at night and we would leave one of the smallest labs open if there were a bunch of people in the lab. Well it was right around midterms and the students who worked the last shift that night had left one of the smaller labs open so people could use the computers.
The next morning I walk in after my classes are done to start work and my Boss, the Sys Admin for the school and the CIO are all in my boss's office and when they see me they call me in. I immediately think something is up because they never meet unless it's a big issue. When I get in there they tell me there is a situation in the smallest lab that got left open the night before. I ask what the problem is and they tell me they'll show me.
We all walk in the lab and close the door and they point out a computer. I go to walk over to the computer and it's a milky white substance and there is porn on the screen. Yea, someone had shot their load all over the monitor, keyboard, mouse and lab table. I proceeded to ask my boss what we were going to do about it, completely weirded out that someone did that.
My boss said that the cleaners will not clean it so we would have to do it ourselves. So my boss and I borrow some heavy duty gloves and cleaning supplies and throw out the monitor, keyboard, mouse and clean the table. It was so gross. Before we cleaned it though my boss checked to see who was logged in and we found who the student was.
Security finds the student (a female) and they ask her who she let use her login and she said it was her boyfriend. Needless to say the kid had to pay for the equipment we had to get rid of (Who would ever use it again?) and he got 40+ hrs of community service around campus. To this day it's the worst thing I've ever had to deal with in IT.
So back when I was working general public computer repair, there was this guy that would come in about once every other week to have us clean up his computer. He was a real creeper. He would always try to strike up a conversation about sex and would request that he work with some of the female staff. He even sexually harassed some of them, but the company would turn a blind eye due to him being one of our best (read: most profitable) customers. To get a better image of the guy, he was a short, round, red-headed dude who had a very squeaky voice.
His computer was an archaic POS (486DX) and it took forever to get anything done on it. Apparently this guy LOVED porn. He also loved to click anything to get to the porn. This caused his computer to become filled with spyware/adware making the computer unusable. We got to the point of just making a good working image of it and reloading it every time he came in.
One time he requested that one of the techs (me) to come out to his house and setup a web cam on his computer. I arrive at his house, knock on the door and WHAM! Wall of smoke to the sinuses. He takes me to his computer room, or as he affectionately calls it; his "Porn Room." Boy was he not kidding! Imagine a small, dark, and musty room with pictures of porn lining the walls. Torn out magazine photos and printed photos of very naked women where everywhere. To top it off, the pictures on the lower half of the wall where all crinkly like they were wet at one point (!!!!!!). His keyboard was even worse.
I put on some gloves and promptly installed the web cam and got my ass out of there. Of course he stood behind me and made weird noises while I was fixing it. Fastest. Tech call. Ever. Explaining that situation to my boss finally convinced him to at least restrict house calls. No one should be subjected to such things!