Funny and Humorous Technical Support Tales and Stories

Submitted Tales From Technical Support

Tales From Technical Support Content

Upgrading DOS
Posted 05/01/2001 by Michael

I've had my share of the boot disk failure(floppy in drive), green audio jack goes in green hole in sound card and having to tell uncountable customers that the colon is the "two dot key" but this one is my favorite.

This lady calls in for help installing drivers. I asked her if she just reinstalled windows, she said she had. I look through her account, and she has not called in for help, so I have no information as to why she reinstalled windows. I should have asked her what happened, but at the time, we sent out our windows 98 boot disk that said to boot from it and follow instructions, and a lot of people reinstalled windows into a directory called windows.000 unintentionally. I checked for the windows.000 directory, it wasn't there. It was a fairly new computer, (less than a month old) and rather than load drivers and software, I asked her if we could restore the system back to defaults. She said yes. Our restore program was on a second partition, the D: drive. (SOL if you loose that,) so I switch over to D:, "invalid drive specification." Now I am totally confused, so I asked the question that I should have asked first off, "What have you done to the system?"

She answered, that she was trying to learn her new computer since her old one was a dinosaur. Part of the DOS manual stated that to check your version of dos, type in VER. This reported Windows 98 [Version 4.10.1998] and she had version 6.2 from her old computer….

Needless to say, we removed the 2Gig FAT16 partition and recreated the 18Gig FAT32, and started a format. I didn't have the heart to tell her she lost her backup information on her second partition.

That can't happen!
Posted 05/01/2001 by Anonymous Tech Supporter

About 25 years ago, I worked as an avionics banch technician. The shop foreman and I were working late when the pilot for one of our largest customers came in and explained he had a major problem with his autopilot. The foreman went with him for a test flight while I continued to work. On the bench beside me was a communication transceiver that I was testing by listening to the tower's main frequency. After about five minutes, I heard the pilot's voice on the radio calling for permission for a takeoff and autopilot test flight. The controller gave him clearance and an altitude and vector out of the main traffic pattern. About a minute later I heard the controller say "Delta Mike (the last two lettes of the aircraft's callsign) what are your intentions." This was immediately followed by a command of TOGA (Turn Off and Go Around) to the approaching commercial flight.

About forty-five minutes later, the foreman and the pilot came in; the foreman had both arms full of the autopilot boxes. He dropped them on the bench and he and I started working on setting up a test. During the setup, he explained that while the pilot was taking off, the foreman had programmed the autopilot for a normal climb and turn to the assigned altitude and vector. The pilot then turned control over to the autopilot, which brought the nose up, and up, and, up.... Before the pilot could react, they were flying, upside down, about 100 feet above the runway, heading toward that commercial flight which was supposed to be landing behind them. It took the pilot about twenty minutes, flying upside down, to climb to an altitude where he could safely flip the plane back over. It took about an hour, but we reached a point where we could reproduce the problem, called "trim reversal," in which the plane's control surfaces would run in the wrong direction, making the plane nose over onto its back. This particular autopilot had everything on a series of plug-in boards, so we pulled the boards one at a time and replaced them with spares. The problem persisted, so we suspected a rare double failure; we replaced every board--same problem. we pulled all the boards out of a brand new unit and installed them; same problem.

The next day, I called the manufacturer's support tech's and explained exactly what was happening. His response was "that can't happen." I insisted that it was, indeed, happening. He said "I have no doubts that it's happening--I believe you. I just want you to know it can't happen." At his request, I put the customer's boards back in the main unit and shipped it to the factory, via overnight express at their cost. I also installed the new stock unit we had in the aircraft, at their cost. I was unable to tell the pilot what the problem was.

A month later, I got a call from the tech I'd spoken to. They had tried everything I had, and still couldn't fix the problem, and putting all of the boards into another master unit did not reproduce the problem. This was particularly strange, because the master unit was just a box with a passive backplane. They then removed the passive backplane board and took it apart layer by layer. Between two layers of fiberglass, they discovered a small sliver of metal that, occasionally, shorted two of the traces together and caused the trim to reverse.

So, sometimes, the absolutely impossible is possible after all.

Watch out, the BlackICE is slippery
Posted 05/01/2001 by Anonymous Tech Supporter

We host a website for a Customers site, Let's call her C. C's son (Let's call him S) was designing a website for her, and when S finished it he started trying to upload it to our servers.

For some reason unknown to us he couldn't. Over the course of a week C and S spent hours of support time talking with various techs about this issue. The other techs did everything very well, checked username, password, server, etc. Finally I got on the horn with both of them today. I went through everything again, username, password, server etc. Now, S has three different DSL providers (Who knows why) and he was getting the same problem through all of them. His problem was that he couldn't get past the routers going to our machine. I asked for his IP so I could do a reverse trace ... a few seconds later I hear an odd beeping sound over the phone - His computer was beeping every time I traced/pinged his machine. "What's that noise?" I ask - S tells me it's just BlackICE [A Firewall program] - Asking if he wanted to block our server forever - he cancelled that time, then fell silent for a bit.... "Hang on" he says, so I wait.. a few silent seconds roll by and he exclaims "Oh My God! This is so embarassing..... A week ago I blocked connections to your server through BlackICE. I'm sorry!". His last words to me were along the lines of "Please don't tell my mother".

Just a note:

BlackICE is nice,

But ZoneAlarm will keep you from harm.

I don't talk just to hear the sound of my own voice!
Posted 05/01/2001 by Graham W. Boyes

I work in a small office with, at the most, (we are a volunteer organization, so it changes daily) 20 folks working at a time. The office has great accoustics, for example, if this one guy sneezes at one end of the office, you hear folks yell "Bless you!" way out in the adjoining warehouse. Anyway, it's easy to hear someone if they're yelling at you from the other end of the room.

This one day I had occasion to reboot the server. I forget what I was doing, but it would take less than five minutes anyway.

Me: (Much louder than a sneeze) HEY, ANYONE NEED THE NETWORK FOR THE NEXT FIVE?

No answer. In fact, I think I said this twice more. At least once more anyway.


I proceed to do so.

Then this guy all of, THREE FEET behind me goes, "Aw, Graham, did you take down the network? I was just going to print something!

Here's another one in much the same circumstance.

Me: Boss, the network'll be down for five. OK?

Boss: No problem, we're using [workstation] three.

I guess I could have explained myself a (I)little(/I) more clearly.

Posted 05/01/2001 by William Willard

I have been tech support for an ISP service for over 1 year now, and heard many many hilarious calls, but this one had to take the cake. After a long day anyways, I recieved a call from a gentlemen having problems connecting, and of course at beginning of the call I had to gather the customer information before troubleshooting the problem. After getting the email address of customer I ask "What's windows are you using sir?"...and of all the answers I could have gotten the customer replies "PlexiGlass". I almost said "Sorry sir we only support regular windows here" but I proceeded to hold my laughter and continue, but this just example of how fun it is to be a tech.

Moans And Groans :}
Posted 05/01/2001 by Anonymous Tech Supporter

This had to be one my favorite calls of all time, and man have I had some good ones, one night we had a major server outage and customers calling in left and right. The average hold time was round 20-30mins, so was a nice wait before customer could reach a technician. Well I got the call and said "Thank You for calling ________, how can I help you?"

All I could hear at first was dead air, so of course I was bout to release the call when I heard something, so I turned up my volume on the phone. Then I heard moaning at first, so I was curious and said my opening again, but still no response. Then the noise began to get louder and heard alot moaning and well Im sure we all heard the noises a women can make :}. I was laughing so had my supervisor came over and ask what was wrong, so I gave him the headset and wasn't 10 secs and he was rolling and called over a few more sups, so they all passed headset round to listen to this customer having sex with his wife. This had to be the most hilarious call of all time, jus goes to show you what people do while on hold for tech support.

I wish I knew the story
Posted 05/01/2001 by Anonymous Tech Supporter

I do telephone technical support for programmers. One day I took a case and called the customer back. I reached the receptionist and had the following conversation:

Me: "May I speak to Joe Blow?"

Her: "I'm sorry; he's not with us any longer."

[I look at the case log. It was called in less than 30 minutes ago]

Me: "Um. Yes. Well, I'm with BigSoftwareCompany and I'm calling back about a support call he placed with us."

Her: "Please hold."

[Listen to hold music until my ears start to bleed.]

Her: "Sir; I'm told you can just go ahead and close that issue."

Me: "Thank-----"

Her: --Click--

To this day I wonder just what happened in that 30 minutes between the time he called and I called back.

Palm Pilot - Stupid Tech!
Posted 05/01/2001 by adam

When I first got my Palm Vx, I was not too handy with it after a day. I had put some software on that I didn't want anymore. I didn't know about the easy way of deleting things, so I called tech support. After waiting on hold, I was connected to a "tech." (and I use the term generously.) After describing my problem, the conversation reached its highlight.

Her: Delete? You mean you don't want the software there anymore?

Me: Correct.

Her: Hmmm (thinks...) Well, I think you'll have to do a hard reset to do it.

Me:'ve been a great help...

In case you don't know, a hard reset deletes all data on your PDA! I later figured out how to delete stuff on my own, no thanks to her!


Brilliance in Action
Posted 05/01/2001 by Anonymous Tech Supporter

A manager was missing his modem cord for a non-RJ11 connector. We had just shipped him a repaired laptop. I told him we would send him the modem cord and he should hold onto his laptop. Instead he costs the company 140.00 in shipping charges by sending in his laptop for the modem cord to be attached and sent to him. What a lunkhead. It would have cost 8.00 to ship him the cord he needed.

Why are there not Licenses for Computers
Posted 05/01/2001 by Jeorge

I am a Tech for pacbell, & Swbell, and I deal with dumb people every day I go to work, I will tell you only one of the meny things that has happened to me over the time that I have been doing tech support for DSL.

lady calls up and says my dsl doesnt work, and whats so great about dsl anyways??

Me: what do you mean your dsl isnt working??

Lady: well I see no differance in my computer I thought it was supose to make my computer faster.

Me: Well itdoes make you internet connection faster.

Lady: Well its not making mine faster, there is nothing differant on my computer.

Me: Well okay bring up a web page and tell me what it says, and I will tell you whats wrong.

Lady: Web page?? whats that??

Me: okay bring up your internet browser so you can see your web page, and are you useing IE or Netscape??

Lady: IE, Netscape??

Me: yeah the thing you Browse the net with.

Lady: Oh I dont have them.

Me: okay are you useing windows or a mac??

lady: Im how would I tell??

Me: okay do you see a start botton or a hard disk??

Lady: a start botton.

Me: okay do you see a big Blue E by the start botton??

Lady: yes

Me: okay press it.

Lady: how??

Me: with your Arrow.

Lady: okay,

Me: did anyting happen??

Lady: Nope my computer is still doing nothing.

Me: did you left click on it??

Lady: NO, why would I do that?

Me: {getting very very upset by this time & almost to the point of yelling} SO YOU CAN OPEN YOUR BROWSER TO SEE THE INTERNET!!

Lady: oh okay, so do you want me to click on it now??


Lady: okay I did.

Me: did anything happen.

Lady: yeah but there is nothing in the window.

Me: okay bring up yahoo then

lady: whats yahoo??

Me: okay in the address bar I want you to type in

Lady: okay wheres the address bar??

Me: its at the...

Lady: oh where it says address??

Me: yeah {sighs}

lady: okay now what did you want me to type in there??


Lady okay how do you spell that??

Me: W W W . Y A H O O . C O M!!!!!!!

lady: wow are all techs as nice as you?? you are so pacent.

Me {thinks what the?? Im almost yelling at this lady and shes thinking Im nice to her??} Its okay I get paid for this.

Lady: wow you must make alot of money.

Me: not really.

Lady; now what do I do ??

Me: well did anything happen??

Lady: nope

Me: did you press enter??

Lady: nope.

Me: okay press enter

Lady; OKay


Me: did it bring up yahoo

LAdy; yeah

Me okay now any time you want to go anywhere on the web you just type the address in the address bar okay.

Lady: you mean the thing at the top ??

Me: yep, and thats all there is to it

lady: okay thanks bye bye.

She hangs up. and I go to lunch

come back an hour later and I take 2 calls then Poof I get her again. what are the odds of that??

this time she wants to know how to get onto the internet again.

I tell her okay now click on the E and then type an address in to the address bar.

She say OH yeah now I remember.

"CLICK" she hangs up

and that is one of the many many reasons they need to issue licenses for computers. oh and why does some one like that need DSL anyways??

"Click My Computer Please"
Posted 05/01/2001 by Adele

(True tech tales....)


A woman called into our ISP for technical support. It was obvious that she was an older woman. She stated that she had never had a computer and didn't know ANYTHING about them, that her grandchildren had gotten this one for her.

In the my troubleshooting steps, the tech asked her to double click on "My Computer". The tech would ask her what she saw, the woman said nothing happened....

Tech: Double click "My Computer" again please.

Cust: I am double clicking it!

(Tech hears a louder than normal clicking sound)

Tech: How are you clicking ma'am, are you clicking with your mouse?

Cust: Yes, I am using that mouse thing and clicking on "my computer" like you told me to.

(Tech still hearing louder than normal clicking sound)

Tech: Your not pressing a key on your keyboard are you?

Cust: No, I am using that mouse thing, I pick it up and am clicking it on the screen where it says, "my computer".

Tech: Pick it up? You mean you are taking you mouse and it is physically touching your screen, that is how you are clicking?

Cust: Well, isn't that what you told me to do?

Note: Customer broke her monitor.

*!&# Chinese
Posted 05/01/2001 by Adele

A customer called into our DSL ISP the other day, wanting to know why he couldn't connect. He explained that he was the technical guy for a couple who had the computer, and that he was assisting them and acting also as translator. I asked him his name and he did tell me, he spelled it. He said his name was: H-A-U-N-G. (pronounced Hung)

Without thinking, I asked him: "Are you Hung?"

He was clicking on the browser and couldn't understand why he couldn't connect. I asked him if he had the two green computers down at the right near his clocks, he said no. I explained that he would need to be connected before he could access webpages. Being a computer guy I guess he felt a little foolish.

His next comment was: "Damn Chinese!", then all I heard was some swearing in chinese to the people he was helping.

@ is for at and : is for colon.
Posted 05/01/2001 by Adele

Customer called in to ISP to set up her e-mail. Technician went through the steps to set up her e-mail. She kept getting the error message: "You have not set up a valid e-mail address...." Checked her settings several times, until the tech had her spell out everying in her settings. (Outlook express)

Tech: "Ok, what does it say there for your e-mail address? Spell it out please."

Cust: "j-o-a-n -a-t-"

Tech: "A-t?", you mean you spelled it out? Your not using the @ symbol above the 2?"

Cust: "Oh, was I supposed to?"

When trying to give a customer a URL so they can change their password, I give them the following:

Tech: "The website is: h-t-t-p-:

Cust: (typing&saying)"h-t-t-p-c-o-l-o-n.

Tech: "No, wait, don't spell out colon.....


The screen is out there ....
Posted 05/01/2001 by Donny E.

I've been working in the IT business for some time now, currently working for an ISP. I started out working for a small (but busy) computer shop, where we got a customer that ordered quite a heavy machine at that time.

Once the system was built, we contacted the customer to come and pick up his system. He was with us in 2 hours.

We showed him that everything worked perfectly (OS preinstalled etc...). We packed up the whole deal and he went home with the system.

Not an hour later the man phoned us that his monitor went black. All cables where plugged in correctly as he assured us. We asked him to bring it over and we would give him another one in replacement. Once the man left, we tested the monitor and it worked perfect. "Weird..." we thought, and forgot all about it.

Another hour later the man called again. This screen was going blank too ! "This cant be coincidence! " we thought, and asked when it happened. He told us that it occured only minutes after he had first turned it on. We had no clue what it could be, and we suggested it might be overheating or something like that.

At that same moment, something happens. His screen comes back to life ! The clue was that he didnt do anything for over 2 minutes, causing the monitor to go in "Save power" mode !

We where relieved that that was it...i would have never thought of that ;)

Sitting on a problem
Posted 05/01/2001 by John Hobson

At 4:15 last Friday afternoon, I got a call from a user: "I

have extraneous garbage coming out on my printer." I'm

thinking, "Great, just what I need, a call just before I'm

leaving for the weekend." But, I start taking information

from the user, and one of the first questions I ask is, "How

long has this been going on?"

He replies, "Since about 1:30 yesterday afternoon." Since it

is obviously not a major problem for him, I said, "OK, I'll

look at it first thing Monday morning." Well, apparently

company operations would come to a screeching halt because I

would not work on his printer right away. He demanded to

talk to my boss. So, I transfer the call to my boss, and

walk over to her office.

When I get there, Ruth is trying to sooth this irate man.

She gives me a dirty look when I walked in, and I told her,

"Ask him how long he's had the problem." She does, and when

he tells her, she said, "You've lived with it this long, you

can certainly live with it until Monday."

Computer Problem Report Form
Posted 05/01/2001 by Anonymous Tech Supporter

Computer Problem Report Form

Thanks to Oracle Humor Service!

1. Describe your problem:



2. Now, describe the problem accurately:



3. Speculate wildly about the cause of the problem:



4. Problem Severity:

A. Minor__

B. Minor__

C. Minor__

D. Trivial__

5. Nature of the problem:

A. Locked Up__

B. Frozen__

C. Hung__

D. Strange Smell__

6. Is your computer plugged in? Yes__ No__

7. Is it turned on? Yes__ No__

8. Have you tried to fix it yourself? Yes__ No__

9. Have you made it worse? Yes__

10. Have you had "a friend" who "Knows all about computers" try to fix

it for you? Yes__ No__

11. Did they make it even worse? Yes__

12. Have you read the manual? Yes__ No__

13. Are you sure you've read the manual? Maybe__ No__

14. Are you absolutely certain you've read the manual? No__

15. If you read the manual, do you think you understood it? Yes__ No__

16. If 'Yes' then explain why you can't fix the problem yourself.



17. What were you doing with your computer at the time the problem




l8. If you answered 'nothing' then explain why you were logged in?



l9. Are you sure you aren't imagining the problem? Yes__ No__

20. Does the clock on your home VCR blink 12:00? Yes__ What's a VCR?__

21. Do you have a copy of 'PCs for Dummies'? Yes__ No__

22. Do you have any independent witnesses to the problem? Yes__ No__

23. Do you have any electronics products that DO work? Yes__ No__

24. Is there anyone else you could blame this problem on? Yes__ No__

25. Have you given the machine a good whack on the top? Yes__ No__

26. Is the machine on fire? Yes__ Not Yet__

27. Can you do something else instead of bothering me? Yes__

Reasons NOT to upgrade
Posted 05/01/2001 by Graham W. Boyes

I work for a company that refurbishes computers. When a computer is ready, the employee that refurbished it prints out a report from a network printer. Then this day one cow-irker comes racing up.

"GRAHAM! I have a new printer for you! IT CAN DO DUPLEXING!!"

That would be great except that the reports are one page. And the fact that it takes two minutes and twenty-eight seconds to come out of sleep mode, so now we have bunches of employees just standing around the printer doing nothing as the other printer took no time at all.

But, the printer can print double-sided.

Format Complete
Posted 05/01/2001 by Jennifer

I do Quality Monitoring For a Major OEM outsource.

I listened to the following Office software support call.



A: "Thank you for calling ***** can I get your account Number please."

The customer gives the Number and the agent verifys all information then asks

A: "How can I help you today"

C: "I am calling back, I just talked to Tech support and they were helping me unistall/Reinstall Windows"

A: "So You have installed windows and all of its drivers, Right and you are ready to install your office software"

C: " Yes"

A: "Sir, What do you see on your screen"

C: "Enter volume lable or hit enter for none, Eleven characters"

A: "So you have installed windows and all of its driver's"

C: Yes I think so, But what Do i do here"

A: "(Long Pause) Im not sure can you please hold?"

After the customer was on hold a very short time the agent comes back and

A: "Sir, Just hit enter"

Meanwhile the customer is reading all the information from the screen, "Format complete" "volume in drive C: has no lable"

A: "ok Sir, Lets get out your office software, You have already installed windows and all of its drivers, right"

I Died when i listened to this call, The Agent finally talked to a mentor and they helped her understand the customer had nothing on his drive and the customer finaally got to the Proper OS support QUE

...Borderline Insane
Posted 05/01/2001 by Anonymous Tech Supporter

I do telephone tech support for a major P.C. Manufacturer and have taken my share of irate callers. This of course, grants me the luxury of knowing how to gain control of any given situation right??, WRONG!. There was one "mourning" a couple of weeks ago, where I got caught totally off guard by a particularly "Colorful" woman. ( In this call I am TECH, She is, well... IT ).

TECH: "Thank you for calling !@#$@#$^ may I have your first and last name please?"

IT: ( gave me her name ), "is it normal for your techs to hang up on people" ( why the alarm bells didn't go off here ... Beats me ).

TECH: "no ma'am, its not... did one of our people hang up on you??" I said, genuinely concerned.

IT: "I think so, I was talking to *&*^* and suddenly the line went dead"

TECH: "Well ma'am, we have been having trouble with the routing system lately" ( totally true, sometimes the entire floor would lose their calls, so I figured thats what had happened )

IT: "Well TECH, I'd like to start by saying that I am a difficult person, my friends and family even tell me that"

( Again, no alarm bells, I must have started my day by eating a plate of *Dumba$$* sandwiches )

TECH: "O.K, thats fine, what can i help you with today"

IT: "Well, everytime I turn my computer on I see a black border around my monitor screen, I want you to fix it"

-- From this point I got her SER# and made sure all info was correct , yada, yada...

TECH: "So... here is what I need you to do, I need you to explain to me exactly what you see, explain to me what happens from the time you turn on yer P.C., to the time you get into windows"

IT: "Actually, I'm not going to do that, historically men don't listen to women... so... you can ask me all the questions, you ask me the questions,and I will answer with a yes or a no, O.K.?"

-- This was the 1ST time a caller has EVER made me drop my jaw, and go completely silent. It was at least 5 seconds. I get this idea to call over my supervisor and have him plug in with me, so he can listen to this. I mute my phone as he plugs in.

IT: "Hello? ..."

TECH: "Yes, Im still here"

IT: "Is there some kind of conspiracy, that your company has?, to make equipment that falls apart after a few months so that we have to call in for tech support?"

TECH: "no ma,am there is no conspiracy" [ my supervisor starts giggling like an 8 year old school girl ]

IT: "Is it because it is made by *&*%^& ??"

TECH: "Ummm, no ma,am thats not the case"

IT: "So why is there a black border around my screen?" She demands, her voice rising a few tones

TECH: "Ma'am... I dont know"

IT: She pauses, and then states matter of factly "I don't believe you". [ my supervisors' jaw drops, then begins to buckle from the laughter ]

-- At this point, I'm totally defenceless, I listen to more of the "Conspiracy" crap, but shes got me on the ropes, hammering the crap out of me, Finally I snap out of the

"Sandwich" stupor I've been in.


IT: "I want to know WHY THE BLACK BORDER IS AROUND MY MONITOR" She almost yells at me.

TECH: "I ... Dont ... KNOW!!!!"

IT: "I still dont believe you"

Click. She hangs up.

-- I look at my supervisor, he was laughing so hard he was in tears, "what a piece of work she was".

I knew how to fix the problem, but I was taken so off gaurd by that comment, that it fried any chance of me gaining control of the situation. Must have been the coffee.

Computer Mouse
Posted 05/01/2001 by Mr. Accident

The school I attend has had these really crappy computers for the longest time. I mean these things were DINOSAURS! 100mHz at best, almost no RAM, wimpy little 2-gig HDs...

But anyway, we finally got a round of Pentium IIIs to replace them. (not the best, but it's a big step up) Unfortunately, the new computers did not come with hard drives, so we had to cannibalize the older scrap heaps. (can anyone say, "Low budget"?)

So we were opening them up, one by one, and removing the HDs. We get to about the fourth one, and upon opening it, we find (Big drumroll here)

...a mouse nest.

Nobody knows how it got there, because the cases had been sealed completely ever since the school purchased them. (Back in the Stone Age, I'm assuming) It would not have surprised me to see a small skeleton or two amid a pile of decayed fur and chewed wires.

Talk about taking the term "computer Mouse" literally.

Clueless in Seattle
Posted 05/01/2001 by Anonymous Tech Supporter

tech: how can I help you...

user: I cant connect.

tech: what seems to be the problem, are you getting any error messages?

user: I dont know, thats why I am calling you...oh, it did

give a message but I forgot.

tech: do you recall WHEN the error messaged occurred?

(maybe I can surmise by the timing)

user: huh?

tech: okay you have just sat down at the computer and

you turn the computer on, the icons show on the screen

you click on (isp) icon and what happens.

user: I cant connect.

tech: thats the error you got

user: yep just like that

tech: there is no such error message, could you be more precise?

user: its says, N..O..D..I..A..L..T..O..N..E..

tech: oh, your computer may not be connected to the phone line.

User: You mean to say I are supposed to plug it in?

Tech: Yes, how else are you going to dial out.

User: Well, I am going to have to cancel my account...

Because I dont have a phone line...I only have a cell phone.


I thought of giving her the phone number to Psycic connection. Maybe she can get on line that way...

I didn't think it would hurt - just once!
Posted 05/01/2001 by Teflon Lady

I have a house guest - who has lost computer priveleges and is about to loose cooking priveleges due to NOT listening to the simplest lists of rules.

I told her NOT to down load anything onto the computer. Two days later - I haul out the Quick Restore CDs because I can't get anything to open - no idea what happened.....I changed all the passwords so that she can only access the basic computer functions (games - NOT the Internet). I found some photo shots in the temp files that let me know that she was NOT sticking to "house rules". I have a seven year old who uses this computer....changing the security settings didn't work well enough.

I told her NO metal utensils could be used on the non-stick coated pans. Came home to wash dishes and found a metal spatula stuck in the pan with dried scrambled egg residue. Yes - there was damage to the non-stick coating (scratches, scrapes, and three small gouges). I asked WHY she used it when she had been told it was a major no-no. Same thing she said about downloading something incompatible with my OS and fillinf my memory with "funny photos" - "I didn't think it would hurt anything just this once!"

I could cringe....
Posted 05/01/2001 by Jackie

Here's something I did way, way back in 1994 when I had been on-line all of about five seconds. If this story has already been printed, I apologize for being redundant, but I wouldn't be surprised if the tech who helped me already posted it.

Tech: Thank you for calling (ISP), how can I help you?

ME: Hi, I'm trying to look up some information on the web on Jimi Hendrix for a term paper, can you help?

Tech: Er... okay. Do you have your web browser open?

ME: Yes, I'm looking at...(I begin describing the ISP's site).

Tech: Good. You would need to visit a search engine.

ME: Huh?

Tech: A web site that will search the web for you.

ME: Like Infoseek?

Tech: Exactly! At the top of the screen, type in "".

ME (with a HUGE attitude): Yeah, I did that BEFORE I called you. Nothing happens!

Tech: Did you hit "enter" afterwards?


Dont you guys know anything ...
Posted 05/01/2001 by Anonymous Tech Supporter

Back in 1997 I was working on the helpdesk for an ISP, on day this guy calls.

Client *very angry* Say he's calling for the **th time, but there is no log on his calls,so I register his name and phonenumber and start my routine questions.

Me: Whats you're problem sir.

Him: My connection doesn't work.

Me: Did you get any error messages


Me: Ok, then I will have to see if everything is in working order, what OS do you use ?


Me: *Baffled* Well uh is it Windows 3.x or Windows 95


Me: Well do you have a startbutton in the lowerleft corner of you're screen.

Him: Yes

Me: Ah then you have W95.

Him: Oh whatever.

(hoping my next question won't make him madder than he already is for whatever reason ask him my next necessary standard question.)

Me: What browser are you using, Netscape or Explorer.


He now goes in a cursing rage for about 5 minutes and then he hangs up.

I sat there compleetly baffled by so much idiocy in just one caller.


Another story went like this.

Caller: I am getting an error when trying to connect.

Me: I reconize the error as one that is most common when using an ISDN line, so I ask whether he has an ISDN line.

Caller: *quiet for a moment* just one moment please.

I hear the guy talking to someone else it went as follows.

Caller: Do we have a ISDN line here.

Guy2: I am not sure.

Guy3: Oh yes of course we have.

So the man comes back on the phone and says yes, but after hearing there conversation I am 100% sure he doesn't even know what an ISDN line is, but how do I tell him that whitout insulting the guy.

Me: Well Sir I heard the conversation and I can tell you that I you had ISDN you would kno right away, cause there would have to have been made some modifications in your home.

Caller: Oh ok then we don't have it.

Me: Ok, than lets continue

Ghee they decided they had something none of them even knew what it was, but they probably didn't dare to ask me.


Then this call was really strange, a woman calls and says that she can't connect to the internet and says that she gets an error message's saying .....

So I say well then lets check you're dial up connection, she says that she prefers me to explain it to her son since he's so much more technical.

I say ok if you like and she connect me with her son, I explain what I want him to do, he says he'll do that and asks me whether I have a moment, well I do.

Then there is silence for aprrox. 5 minutes or so, the son comes back on the phone asking me to give him the same instructions anew, he had forgotten them while underway to the computer.

The guy is on the 3th floor an his mother is on the 1st floor behind the computer, so I ask whether it wouldn't be wise to connect me to his mother again and he walk down and takes up the phone there.

He tell me thats a great idea (WELL DUHUH) and hangs up the phone without putting me through first.

Evil connection breaking robots!!!
Posted 05/01/2001 by Anonymous Tech Supporter

*ISP is a cable isp, so customers should be connected all the time*

Tech: Thank you for calling joeisp, how may I help you?

Caller: These darn robots keep breaking my connection every night!

Tech: Robots?

Caller: Yes! I leave my computer on everynight, and while I am asleep, the robots come out and disconnect me from the internet! Then, right before I wake up, they reconnect me!

Tech: Sir, I don't think this is a supported issue....

Caller: Do you think I should call Microsoft??

Tech: Yes, exactly, call Microsoft and they will help you!!!


PS. Yes, this story is true, I didn't take this call, a friend of mine did and I was nearby when he took it. The best explanation I have is either the caller had issues or he was referring to web bots, like the kinds you can find on IRC. I do not think it was the latter in this case.

What Operating System?!
Posted 05/01/2001 by Anonymous Tech Supporter

Me: What operating system are you running?

User: Windows 97.

Me: There is not an operating system called Windows 97. Are you sure it is not Windows 95 or 98?

User: Oh, Its Windows 98. Sorry.

Expensive Modem!
Posted 05/01/2001 by Anonymous Tech Supporter

Again, this happened to a friend of mine, we both work in a cable mdm isp.

Tech: Thank you for choosing joe isp, my name is tech, how can I helpm you?

Cust: Wow, your modems are expensive! They cost $700!

Tech: I don't understand?

Cust: Well, when you set me up, you said I get one free modem, so when I moved, they gave me another one, and it costs $700!

Tech: How many cable modems do you have sir?

Cust: I have two of them, the one they gave me for free, and the second one I have to buy!

Tech: Sir, when you were signed up, and they said you get a free modem, it is not yours to keep, it's that we are providing you with the one modem so you can use our service, when you moved, you have to give the modem back to us!

Cust: Really?

Tech: Yes, just go to your local Joe ISP office, show them your bill and bring the modem, and they will take the cost of that modem off the bill.

Nature (and computers) abhor a vacuum (cleaner).
Posted 05/01/2001 by Justin

My wife (then fiance) asked me to have a look at the family PC. It had been running really slowly, wouldn't boot into windows and they kept getting an "Out of paper"message when they tried to print. I figured the speed issue was an OS problem - they had loads of games and the system was clogged so a rebuild was necessary - easy enough. I then focussed on the printer issue: printer cable - no, driver - no, paper sensor - no, I could print from DOS but not from Windows and I could print on another printer they had, I disabled bi-directional communications - no. It turned out that my father in law, being a telecom and photcopier technician, had decided that the computer was too dusty to work properly and had vacuumed the inside with the vacuum cleaner that he used to clean up toner spills (highly magnetised) - he was lucky the parallel port was the only thing he fried.

almost the any key
Posted 05/01/2001 by Anonymous Tech Supporter

I work for a large national company and one of our techs had given a customer two phone numbers to contact different departments. The first number I didn't recognize but the customer claimed it was a mall somewhere. The next number was the company name. blank & blank blank. The customer then told me he couldn't find the & sign on his phone.

Fact can be stranger than fiction enjoy.

Women in the Workplace
Posted 05/01/2001 by Vitalifire

This is for all the techie-chicks out there . . .

I work in the tech support department of a very large printer/camera/copier/scanner/faxphone/multipass manufacturer.

Me: "Thank you for calling *****, my name is [Vitalifire], may I have your telephone number, area code first please?"

(I get the customer's information. He sounds a little peeved. Very old man with NY accent.)

Me: "Okay, sir, now I need the serial number from your printer. You'll find it on the back wall inside if you lift up the front cover."

(Customer gives me eight different numbers, none of which are serial numbers. We argue about this for a moment.)

Customer: "Well, the other technician I spoke with took that number!"

Me: "That's not a [namebrand] serial number, Sir. Please look for the one that is three letters and five numbers. It's the only number like that anywhere on your printer."

Customer: "Why do you need all this information again? Just let me speak to a technician so I can get my printer fixed."

Me: (now mimicking his NY accent out of habit) "Sir, do you want your printer fixed?"

Customer: "Yes!!!"

Me: "Well, I AM the technician, and your printer will not get fixed until you give ME the serial number."

Customer: "Oh, I'm sorry . . . [gives serial number]."

So we go through the call, and I succeeded in making him feel rather silly for thinking that I wasn't the technician because I was a FEMALE by being possibly the most knowledgeable technician he'd spoken with since he purchased his computer. He proceeded to do everything I said without protest.

Oh yeah, and his printer wasn't working because HE had inadvertently removed his own parallel port. So I got to tell him in the nicest way possible that he messed up his own computer and to call the manufacturer. My apologies in advance to the Dell tech that gets him. Sorry, boys :)

this used to be a techie job
Posted 05/01/2001 by Eric Tannehill

I did ISP tech support for a little over four years and hardware printer support for about 8 months. After years of toil in the trenches, I got a job in system administration. Of course this now meant that I was at the opposite end of the food chain when I would call the ISP my company was going through.

Being a small company, it had many offices all using DSL to connect to each other (no one say it, I know. -L-A-M-E- but hey, it's not bobbing) Since the DSl wasn't reliable enough to safely run bind on one of our servers, we had our DSL ISP do our DNS for our domain.

Normally with this company, you have a single domain name associated with a single username and a bunch of web based tools that allow you to modify the information yourself with the block of IP's they've assigned your account. In this case we had two domains each associated with a different DSL account. let's say the domain is associated with account (and block of IP's for) account x and is associated with the account and block of ip's for account y. The web based tools are restricted to the information they have associated with the particular account. We need to point to an IP that is in the block that belongs to account y, which cannot be done through the web based tool.

Simple answer, call ISP hosting domains, tell them that I want them to make a new A record for to point to the IP

*BLAAAAAAP* wrong... spend 30 minutes talking to some guy in front line support that doesn't have enough of a clue to understand what I'm even asking for. Get supervisor on the phone and spend 15 minutes telling me there's no way they can be hosting both of those since you're only allowed one domain per account.

Eventually get the clue through that it's a different account, and they transfer me to the second level support. Spend another 30 mins with second level support guy fighting and telling him they really do host both domains convincing him when I e-mail him a whois query proving it's pointing and an nslookup from their server proving they are authoratative for the domain.

Get transferred to supervisor, spend 15 minutes fighting with him telling him that any ISP that purports to host domains should be able to add an A record and him telling me that's not something they do. Eventually he claims to have worked things out with the NOC guys and they'll make an exception. he gives me a case number and tells me next time to directly ask for second level support since the first level weenies don't handle anything associated with domains. Everything good right?


this was on a friay, being nice I assume that most sys-admin types will blow off a late evenning request for DNS even if easy. Hey, I know how it goes, I do it myself. I wait until end of day tuesday and still DNS hasn't propogated, not even on their DNS servers. Too late to call, call wednesday morning with case number. Guess what? They can't find it. Spend 10 minutes with tech bobbette who eventually finds it under the correct username, (was looking under username y instead of x like I told her to) She starts trying to solve the problem, I ask for second level support, she says no. I remind her that she is supposed to transfer domain calls from what I was made to understand, she insists on trying to understand. 15 minutes of explaining with the sound of her voice giving the away the true deer in the headlights nature of her response. I start getting pushy and she gets her supervisor. who gets on and tells me the first level supervisors are non-technical and that for a domain problem I should go to second level support. *grumble* some more transferring later, I have to fight with another second level support weenie who has no clue what an A record is or what I'm asking for. Eventually I get to talk directly to a NOC guy who tells me "oh this? this is no biggie, we'll have this done today and will propogate within 8 hours.

Fortunately this time it got done, but it's annoying that I spent a total of 3 hours on the phone to these places talking with non-technical people to get something accxomplished that shouldn't have taken more than 5 minutes for someone to do. Worse, what was once "tech support" is leaving out the tech part. no one in the ISP tech support had a bloody clue what an A record was. *grumble *sigh* oh well, no more bobbing for me... until the next time I have to teach a tech what whois, nslookup, bind and an A record are.

Where's my email?
Posted 05/01/2001 by Josh

So I do tech support at a small liberal arts college that has a faculty that is composed of about 50% computer literate, and 50% dinosaur profs that only have a computer on their desk because the college puts it there.

SO its a routine day in the computer center and I take this call from a professor who can't get her email. This is one of the professors that makes us cringe when they call...yeah, so I ask her if she gets an error message and she says that it says that "there is no new mail" so I'm like maybe you don't have any mail...but she insists that her colleagues have sent her "very important mail" and she needed to access this "very important mail" So I open my email and send her an email and then head over to her office to check the Eudora settings.

So I get there and all of the Eudora settings check out, but sure enough the email I sent her was not received. So I call our mail admin and explain the situation and he pulls up her account and there was no mail in it.

So we go through this process of me sending emails from her computer and our mail admin watches it go into the inbox and then leaves. So he pulls up the account information and she had placed a mail forward on her email before she had spent a semester in Spain (didn't mention that). The idea of a forward was a completely foreign idea to this woman- despite the fact that she had asked for it.

So she asks how she is going to get her mail now. And I tell her that she needs the username and password of the email account from the school in Spain. and she looks at me with this blank stare and asks...

"What would they be?"

(Well, my guess is that the username is the email address of the Spanish school and the password is what you entered to check the account...?)

She looked flabberghasted when I told her that I didn't know that and she would have to contact the net admins at the school in Spain to get her username and password.

Found out later that to "fix it", she convinced the spanish school to set up a mail forward back to her email account on our school....thus making an infinite loop...of mail...

Posted 05/01/2001 by Scott

I am a student at a major university. We have a tech-support helpdesk / phone-line that is usually pretty helpful on the internet end of things. However, they are absolutely no help whatsoever on hardware configuration.

Come to find out, the help-desk people are not allowed to touch computers other than their own or public-access terminals. I had a dorm-room full of old computers and parts, and the helpdesk was just up the street. That evening, my good friend and I piled all the computers in the back of my vehicle, drove up the street, grabbed all that we could carry, and walked in the door to the help desk. There was this one station that had desks all around it, and only about a 2 foot aisle as the only access. We piled all our computer stuff in the aisle and on the desk, and literally had a captive audience. The guy couldn't touch our computers, and there was no other way out, so we bugged him for 15 or 20 minutes, while his companions at the help desk just kind of laughed at his predicament. Luckily no flak from the university either.

Posted 05/01/2001 by Anonymous Tech Supporter


just wanted to let u guys know that tech supporters can be just as blond as the rest of the lusers out there.

a national ISP here in denmark recently begun to provide DSL lines , they had 2 options , one using the Nortell Networks 1meg modem and another based on the Cisco 677 DSL router, which use different DSL protocols.

anyhoot this friend of mine was being upgraded from the NN1m to the 677 net and had the nad luck that the ISP´s USP bank blew up litteraly. anybody ever hear of that before ??? ;-) anyways , the interrupted power supply apperently screwed up their DHCP servers so he was alloted a wrong ip from the network and hence couldnt get online. however in a desperate attempt to rectify the error the ISP simply opened his port for all IP´s enabling him to pick his own IP.

but as i was saying he was being upgraded and through 1.5 months of patiently wainting and calling them every day while technicians ran in and out of his house meassuring cables for faults and checking configurations he finally got tired of it and decided it was time to take it out on the tech support guys who grated know aboslutely jack about computers.

here´s is what happend.

tech:) hello tech support

him:) hello i have a problem

tech:) yeah ??

him:) yeah , i cant get online

tech:) ok , whats your username

him:) its **** but thats not the problem

tech:) ok , whats the problem

him:) well i cant get online with my DSL router coz u havent updated the router yet

tech:) yes we have, there shouldnt be a problem

him:) no u havent, when i plug it in it cant find the net

tech:) ohh but u have to wait for a few minutes for it to find the line

him:) yes i know, but it doesnt work

tech:) try turning it off and the on again

him:) i´ve done that it doesnt work

tech:) yes it does, there must be something wrong with your network setting

him:) affecting the router, no i dont think so

tech:) let me walk you through them

him:) stop. the NN1m and 677 cant run on the same network now can they ???

tech:) ehhhhh no

him:) ok , now try to ping 212.242.***.*** (yes actual subnet mask)

tech:) (sounding very happy) yeah , i get nice reply´s from that

him:) well thats my computer your pinging. using the NN1m

tech:) ehhh no, that doesnt work

him:) well it is , ping me again and ill tell ya when i get traffic

tech:) ehhh ok

him:) traffic.....traffic.....traffic...traffic......traffic

tech:) ehhhh but that doesnt work

him:) yes it does becasue u havent upgraded my connection yet

tech:) ehhh it appears so

it ended with my friend finally threatening to kill their whole subnet in the area, by using the free IP they had given him, and taking the IP of their gateway. the poor guys never thought just killing the port and fixed the problem instead.

on a sidenote i once made a complete ass of myself while working as a web developer at a larger acedemic institution in denmark.

i came into the office one monday morning, booted up the comp and found to my dissmay that the screen wouldnt come to life.

now having worked with computers for as long as i can remember i started working on the problem, checking cables starting with the power cord and monitor cable. having checked that those where in place i swapped the cable i knew to be juice in from the comp with the one on the monitor. still nothing and nomatter what i did the damn thing wouldnt come on. so eventually i called tech support and told them my screen was dead and should i just take one of the other monitors in the office or what. well they told me to hang tight and wait.

well what happens. 5 minutes later the one female supporter comes down with the cutes female intern in toe, walks over to the comp and pushes the power button and preto the screen lights up. turns out that the cleaning guys had turned of the monitor during the weekend and i simply never thought of it being used to always having my stuff run on standby. talk about embarrsing.

well cheers folks


and what a cool ass site ;-)

Slow startup
Posted 05/01/2001 by Anonymous Tech Supporter

This happened to an associate of mine:

He had advised a friend on buying a new computer and then had shown them how to use it, including how to record wav files and to associate them with Windows events. The PC worked fine for several weeks until my friend got a call saying that the PC was taking forever to get into Windows. After troubleshooting for ages on the phone he went over and discovered that there was a 5 minute wav file associated with Windows startup but they hadn't got their speakers switched on so couldn't tell what was happening!!!

What to do if Microsoft announces bankruptcy?
Posted 05/01/2001 by Anonymous Tech Supporter

We have been on a tradeshow (it-business) where we offered our content management system. A middle aged woman asked me which basis our cms has.

First I didn`t really knew what she ment but then I told her that it is a windows-based cms.

Then she told me, that she heard in the media that microsoft was splitted and she asked me, what we`ll do with our cms when microsoft announces bankruptcy.

I was speechless...

Because I have nothing better to do....
Posted 05/01/2001 by Trill

I do internal support for a large non profit organization based in Dallas. I just got off the phone with this gem.

User calls in to say that her system's totally hung. I tell her all she can really do at this point is restart. She restarts and surprise! scandisk runs but tells her there may be bad sectors so it runs a surface scan. Now, I'm the only person here at the time this started, and there's calls backed up behind her, so I ask her to call back and reference the ticket number. She says "Will I have to wait on hold like I did last time?" I say "it's possible" and she says "no thanks, I'm not going to wait on hold while you help someone else." I resign myself to a long conversation with this woman who's already asked me several rather personal questions. But lo! it was not to be. She then says "I'm gonna put the phone down to call my stockbroker and check on my stocks." Clunk! about three minutes later she picks up the phone and says "OK, now I'm gonna balance my checkbook." Clunk! Four minutes later: "OK, I gotta go shower." Clunk! five minutes after that "OK, now I'm doing dishes." Clunk! Obviously, I'm too polite, everyone else here says they would have hung up on her the first time. But no, I stay on the line, only to get treated to this astounding statement: "See, look at what I just accomplished! I showered, washed the dishes, balanced the checkbook, and called my stockbroker. and what did you accomplish? nothing!" She goes on to boot into Windows normally and everything is working fine.

Needless to say, since we're a corporate help desk, I *can* escalate, and I did. Her office's IT staff are aware of what happened, and my supervisor suggested I submit this story here (hee!) and is now on the phone with the IT VP of her affiliate.

That don't mean nothin'
Posted 05/01/2001 by Rich

Many years ago, when I was a bench technician, one of my job duties was to calibrate our electronic equipment. As part of our arsenal, we had a very expensive "tertiary standard" calibrator, and an equally-expensive digital multimeter paired with it. Both were sent off quarterly to a lab with secondary standards which were traceable to the primary standards maintained by the National Bureau of Standards.

One day, the head technician of the production lab asked to borrow our calibration multimeter to check out one of their test stands. An hour later, he called me and told me our multimeter was "badly out of calibration." I dragged the calibration cart (with backup batteries and UPS--it weighed about 200#) up to the other end of the building and asked the tech what the problem was. He showed me our multimeter connected to his 100 Ohm standard, and noted that it showed 100.4 Ohms. He then hooked up his $99 multimeter, which showed his 100 Ohm (+/- 2%) standard as 100 Ohms.

I told him that my multimeter had just (two weeks ago) come back from a calibration. His response was "that don't mean nothin'." I then hooked up our standard calibrator, set it to 100 Ohms, and showed him that the two matched within about 20 parts per million. I asked him what the odds were that two instruments, calibrated by two different labs, both of which had standards traceable to the NBS, would both be miscalibrated to within 20 PPM. He just glared at me.

Two days later, my boss told me the Tech's manager wanted us to calibrate all the production lab's test equipment.
Posted 05/01/2001 by Josh

I'm a first level tech supporter for a large company that outsources others. Most of the people I deal with are secretaries from south of the mason dixon line. Needless to say they are not incredibly bright.

Today I got one such call where we were trying to figure out what internet browser this man had.

It went a little like this:

Me: do you know what kind of internet browser you have sir?

induhvidual: what?

Me: ok sir, when you goto look at the internet, do you know if you use Explorer or Navigator?

induhvidual: I don't know what your talking about, I'm just at your website.

Me: alright sir, if you look in the top right hand corner of your screen, do you see an "N", or do you see a little world turning around perhaps?

induvidual: I see an N.

Me: ok-

induhvidual: I don't see what this has to do with anything, I just go into aol and then go to your website, this has nothing to do with the internet.

my head exploded,

well, after we had this whole 'internet' thing cleared up the rest of the call went fine.

I can recall another episode where in it took me 10 minutes to deceipher that a customer was actually installing our software, rather than "downloading it on my network"

I beleive it was vittgenstein that said "the meaning of a word, is its use"

well, I think vittgenstein can go to hell.

still sleepin on the couch
Posted 05/01/2001 by Benny

My girlfriend alternately thinks I'm a moron and a genius. Here's an example. At a recent party a mutual friend of ours was complaining about her broken computer to my girlfriend (a programmer). GF tells the friend, "ask Ben, he knows more about that kind of thing" Kind of thing meaning troubleshooting, I guess. I tell the friend that I'll stop over later in the week.

I get to the friends apartment and get the required info (cow computer, bought from her brother who 'messed with it' and installed Win95 prior to selling it to her, etc) and started re-installing drivers. This girl has had the computer since August and has a dead printer, a monitor with 16 colors, no audio drivers, and no word processing programs BUT A T1 CONNECTION. Go figure.

The cellular rings as I'm halfway through, it's the girlfriend. We chat and she asks how it's going. I tell her I'm just reinstalling (or originally installing, I have no idea) the right drivers. She says "are you sure you know how to do that?"

RRrrrrr!! First she volunteers my services for free (not that I usually charge my friends, but hey) and then insults me by asking if I can install drivers from a system disk!


What Have I D7one7?7
Posted 05/01/2001 by Dave

As we all do, get some funny email, but this one is the funniest yet....

"D7ave, 7f7or some rea7son my keyboard keeps introducing the numbe7r s7e7ven and backspaces when I least expect it etc. What have I done? Sometimes7, it star7ts at the beginning of a 777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777777LP!7777777777777777 77777777777777777777777777777777777777 sen7tence when I'7m near t7he end. HE"

I love those new KB drawers...

No Title
Posted 05/01/2001 by GDucot

Im currently working in tech support for a major hardware company (not going to mention names but it starts with a C). Yesterday i got a call from a young woman, she must have been a blonde, having trouble with her scanner.



GD: the whole openig speil

C: im having trouble connecting my USB scanner

GD: What kind of trouble?

C: Ive looked all over my monitor for a place to plug it in and i cant find one

GD: OooKkk...Have you looked on the Computer part?

C: OH! You mean the actual box?

GD: Yes Ma'am

C: Ok, ill try looking there then


Kinda makes you wonder about the human capacity for stupid

Great site, keeps me from ripping my hair out at work

Here take my 500
Posted 05/01/2001 by Krusher

Long story short.

I work in a store which deals in laptops.

Had a nice gentleman come in told me what

he wanted to do and so on.

I showed him a laptop he played with it

for a little bit, then said "I'll take it"

I ring him up give him his laptop adapter

his licence, send him merrily on his way.

About 1 hour later i get a call from this gentleman

"I dont know if you remember me im john doe, I was

Just in there and bought a laptop, I have a question

tho. How do i open it?"

Names changed to protect goofy customers.

After telling him how to open it never heard from him again.

Backup is for those _other_ schools
Posted 05/01/2001 by Freshmeat CE

Love the site, great means for avoiding hw...

I attend a certain engineering college that has

been ranked #1 two years in a row by US News &

World. We have the best CE, ME, CO, CS, CH, etc

etc etc departments in the nation -- but our TSC

(Technical Services Dept) is lacking quite badly.

Case #1: Internet Connection Speed

Over the past two years, the number of students

attending the school has grown, and with the

increased popularity of various online services

(EQ, Napster,, et alia), use of

our external internet connection has risen

dramatically. Last fall, the new TSC head released

a study saying that internal network demand is

growing at an increasing rate, and that upgrades

to the existing infrastructure are essential. NO

mention was made of the dwindling connection speeds

to the 'net. A public forum was held so students

and faculty could ask questions.

The new TSC head was blasted -- he openly admitted

that he never considered the 'net problem because

"it wasn't an important issue." One of the profs

in attendance offered to help out and the TSC head

publically belittled him, literally saying the prof

didn't know what he was talking about.

Needless to say, two months later two new T1s were

connected and connection rates have increased by an

order of magnitude.

Case #2: Email server backup ("what's that?")

In early 2000, the school's email server had a small

crash that took out service for a day. To prevent

this problem from reoccurring, a backup was installed.

Over the summer of 2000, the backup died but wasn't

replaced -- "the primary is working fine, and that

little crash will never happen again."

They were right. When the email server crashed in

January, it wasn't little at all. Everything was

lost -- user IDs, rights, and all the other good

stuff that exists (note I'm a Civil Engineer, I

design things to keep computers off the floor (g)).

And that crash also affected the campus voicemail

system, which led to instances of one mailbox calling

another and students answering their phone to hear

"Hi, you've reached Mike's and Jim's room. We're

not in right now, please leave a message."

TSC ordered a new system to be shipped overnight,

and it arrived the next morning. A voicemail

message was left stating service would be restored

by evening.

The next morning, with still no email service, a

voicemail stated that some small problems still

existed and resumption of service had been pushed

back to that evening.

The next morning, still no email, but a voicemail

stating service would be restored by noon. Of course,

no email. And no more voicemail messages as that

system went bonkers.

Service was finally restored... NINETY HOURS LATER.

There were not many happy students on campus that

week, and the periodic outages that occur with no

notice don't do TSC's reputation any good (ditto

their "oh, your computer won't print? we'll have

to reformat your hdd" philosophy).

Enough ranting, I'm almost out of here for the

summer, when I can have fun...

Somebody turn a light on!
Posted 05/01/2001 by christina curtis

Recently our company installed security cameras and disposed of the security guards. The cameras were monitored at the secretary's station. Late one night our tech support guy got a call from a frenzied supervisor--seems one of the new cameras showed only black on the monitor. Needless to say, this was the camera that pointed to the glass exit door and it was well after dark.

The "Cup Holder"
Posted 05/01/2001 by Benjamin N. Schwartz

OK, I'm not a REAL tech support guy, but that is my job around my house and office.

One day my dear old mom called me up.

"Why does this stupid cup holder keep closing on me?!? It spills coffee everywhere!"

"Cup holder?"

"Yes, the cup holder! The one on the computer."

I was perplexed of coure. But I realized that, with her infinate lack of knowledge about computer, she was using the CD drive as a cup holder. I explained what it was, and I was glad she called before the coffee completely trashed her drive. That is, needless to say, one of the simplist problems she has had. Fixing the computer after she's played with it is a tremenous task.

Opening a folder...
Posted 05/01/2001 by Leslie

My father is a computer nerd and many times people call him asking for tech anyway, one day my dad gets this call from a close family friend of ours who just bought a brand new computer. He wanted my dad to come over and help him get started. So the whole family trucks over to their house and this is what happened.

We get there and my dad helps him set everything up and startup the computer. The guy obviously has no clue how to work a computer so my dad offers him a lesson sorta thing. They start with opening a folder....

Dad: Ok...let's begin with opening a folder.

User: Umm....i think I have a folder over on the desktop.

(my dad thinks he is talking about the PC desktop..)

Dad: ok let's take a look.

User: Ok I'll get it..

(he walks over to his desktop a comes back with a paper folder!!!!!)

Dad: I see we are going to have a very long lesson.

I cant log on
Posted 05/01/2001 by Wendyp113

I worked for a very prominent internet service provider forabout six months , my funniest call went something like this:

t: Thank you for calling technical support may I have your username?

c: Uhh yeah it's uhh _____

t: And how can I help you today?

c: I can't log in it keeps telling me invalid username or password.

t: Well what are you using for your password?

c: Shift eight,shift eight,shift eight,shift eight,shift eight,shift eight,

t: What??????

c: Well it had about six stars there when I was connecting before!!!!

No Title
Posted 05/01/2001 by Scott Hough

I used to work for internet. I got a call one day from someone who couldn't access his email.

I used telnet to check his email. It was there. I asked him if he can get online, and he told he he was on it right before he called me. I was puzzled. I went with him checking his settings in Netscape (His preferred email client). All the settings were correct, so I proceeded to check Internet Explorer just in case he meant IE instead of NS. No luck. I decided to check his DNS settings, those were right. I proceeded to check every setting remotely related to the internet. I was about to place a call on the mentor line, to see if they had ideas, when he said, 'Do you have to be connected th the internet to check your email?'

Mouse??! Or cat??!
Posted 05/01/2001 by Tech from Winnipeg

I currently work for a company that supports old DOS base systems and regular software for PC's/MACS.

Sometimes we have to ask these customers what system they are using to get more info to troubleshoot. Part of the questions we ask is if they use a mouse, as certain systems do not have a mouse.

One day, I had a caller that had no idea what she was using. (Software, DOS-based system...etc.)

So, I had her a simple question which was: "Do you have a mouse?". She immediately responded without hesitation or jokingly: " NO, I have a cat!!!"

I had the hit the mute button quickly because I started laughing so hard.

How to convert files
Posted 05/01/2001 by Anonymous Tech Supporter

I receive a call from a secretary:

"Good Morning, I've got some problem with Eudora"

Me: "What's the matter ?"

"I'm trying to send an email with a photo attached but it says that the attachment is too large"

"OK, what is the size of the attachment ?"

"Uhm... Oh yeah, here, 2.8 Mb"

"I see, well, I guess it's a .BMP file, isnt'it ?"


"Well Madam, .BMP files are usually too big to be sent via email we should reduce the size of the file converting it into another format"

"What do you mean ?"

"We should convert it into a .JPG file or a .GIF"

"I know this (annoyed) I've already did it but the file is still too large"

"Realy ? and what size is the .JPG file ?"

"2.8 Mb !"

"Uhm (a suspect becoming reality...) but HOW did you convert the .BMP file into .JPG ?"

"I renamed it, why ? It's not this way you convert files ?"


Short Mouse
Posted 05/01/2001 by Anonymous Tech Supporter

Had a user call me telling me that her mouse would no longer go to the bottom portion of her screen. I went to check it, and sure enough, when she got to the end of the mouse pad, the cursor was only half-way down the screen. I picked up the mouse, moved it to the middle of the pad, and 'lo and behold, she could now move to the bottom. She used to be a teacher.

how do you operate the pedals
Posted 05/01/2001 by Anonymous Tech Supporter

My son works for a large tech department and called me and couldn't stop laughing. Someone called in saying they got a new computer and couldn't get the foot pedals to work. At first he was stumped until he figured out they were talking about their mouse.

The mouse with only one ball
Posted 05/01/2001 by Anonymous Tech Supporter

I told my mother I wanted to buy a a new mouse - but instead of the old type I wanted the roll ball mouse. Trying to explain what it was I told her it had one ball on the top instead of the bottom and you don't have to move the mouse around. Of course she bought the wrong type, but went on to comment that the salespeople kept laughing when she asked for a mouse with only one ball.

Under Pressure?
Posted 05/01/2001 by inawe

I answer a variety of tech calls from individuals throughout the world. This particular call came from New Jersey. The customer gave me the necessary information to log the call, and then we got to the details of the problem. Now this was about their Toshiba Laptop that they were not able to get to boot. I asked what the error message was, and they stated, "keyboard bios error." Now from experience I knew that this error with a laptop could only mean one thing. I discreetly asked the customer if they had possibly spilled anything on the laptop. The customer said "NO, of course not!" I told them that I was not accusing them, but I was familiar with that error message, and it usually means that the keyboard has been introduced to something liquid. He simply stated, and I had to put the mute button on afterwards for a huge laugh, "Well, I didn't spill anything on the laptop, but I do have very sweaty hands...." I tried to tell him that it would take more than sweaty hands to cause this error, and he again just stated, "I have REALLY SWEATY HANDS!" So from there, I took it to the appropriate people for the work order. When transferring the customer to the service center, I had made sure to tell the tech there not ever to shake hands with this customer. He asked why, and I jsut said that he would understand more once he read the notes on the job ticket....

Cheap is never really cheap
Posted 05/01/2001 by Melissa

This story is actually from my cousin, Larry.

A few years ago he worked for a rather stingy company situated in an area known for it's lightning storms. They had a relatively new computer system written by the person who put in the cheapest bid. Larry had been trying to persuade them for months to put in lightning protection.

Most of you can guess the rest... Lightning storm fries the computer. No problem. Just restore from the backups. Cheap computer system... The automatic backups had never worked. Their entire billing system (millions of rands in transactions) had to be reconstructed from receipts etc manually. The company might have saved some money on a cheap system and saved the costs of lightning protection but they spent many, many times that amount on re-entering data and the fact that they could not claim many payments until a few months later.

Oh the misery
Posted 05/01/2001 by Susie

Hi! I am not a tech, but I do work with computers day in day out I know this is a long story but it did frustrate me to see how some people don't get it...

I work in a school in the computer lab during the day and at night the same lab is used as an Internet Access Centre so that people from the community can access the Internet at a reasonable price. One day a person came in and asked why he couldn't connect to Msn Messenger. I proceeded to verify the information about the connection, since we are using a proxy server I wanted to make sure that the info was correct, everything seemed okay but it still wouldn't connect... I decided to download Yahoo Messenger to see if it was doing the same thing... I set up everything and it was working fine... Couldn't comprehend why Msn Messenger was not working, still trying to figure that one out by the way LOL... The School and the Center have a very strict policy about chatting, No employees are to chat during works hours... When they hired me, my boss said, I know you chat at home and I want you to know that if you chat we will know... I told him that home is home and work is work... So Monday when I show up at work, he storms in the computer lab and says "You have been chatting and you are not obeying the school policy and this is the only warning that we will issue" I tell him that I do not chat at work and that I don't know where he got the idea that I was chatting... He said you downloaded yahoo messenger... I said yes I did but it was only to check if it was doing the same thing as Msn Messenger. He says well we got ya there missy, you have your user list in yahoo, so therefore you are chatting and please don't lie... I proceeded to explain to him the concept that if you have yahoo messenger at home and log on another computer with your name and password, your friends list will be there like it is at home... He said stop lying we know you are chatting etc... I actually had redownload yahoo messenger on another computer, and set it up just to prove that what I was saying was right... He tells me that he knows more than I do in computers and that he always had computers at home etc... I said okay I will download yahoo

messenger on another machine and show you what I mean... I proceeded to do so... once I showed him that I didn't add users in my list that my list was already there, he said it can't be you did something.. We know you are chatting ... We know you think we don't know but we know... And yes ladies and gentlemen the Truth is out there LOL...


P.S. love the site... keep up the good work guys

Striping and Mirroring
Posted 05/01/2001 by Graham W. Boyes

Here's a long one. Sorry...

Sometimes talking to my boss is like banging my head against a brick wall. He's so pleased with this new server - never mind that it runs off a single 5400RPM IDE hard drive - it LOOKS professional. Well, it will once we can get one of those "big rack things" to mount it in. Since the only hard drives that were available were 5400RPM ones I decided to put in a RAID controller - at least two drives would make the thing a *little* faster, albeit not as fast as our speedy, perfectly working server that we're using now. Granted it doesn't look professional, it just looks like another workstation. Not how a server should look.

Me: I'm going to put in a RAID controller because the hard drive's so slow. Striping two drives will make it faster.

PHB (Pointy Haired Boss): Good idea, then we'll have a backup drive in case one fails.

Me: Actually, I was thinking of disk *striping* which writes one unit of data on one drive, then the other unit on your other drive, then the third unit on your first drive again, etc. Half your data is stored on one drive and half on the other. Since you have two drives, reading and writing is twice as fast. But it doesn't do anything to improve security, in fact, if ONE drive dies you loose the data on BOTH.

PHB: No, RAID controllers mirror your data so that we can have a backup drive in case one fails. They write each disk the same so one can take over if the other breaks.

Me: Oh, yes, they can do that too, but that won't make it any faster. You can use a RAID controller in different ways, and those are two of them.

PHB: No, disk striping makes two copies. I'm sure of it.

Me: Here, I'll show you a dictionary definition. (GRR...)

I started warming up Webopedia. Fortunately he agreed with me about then. Unfortunately...

But, Graham, we aren't concerned about speed right now. First we need to get the server up and running, THEN worry about speed!

Me: Actually, this RAID controller can't convert the drive and still keep your data. If you want to change the configuration you have to reformat the drives and reinstall everything that was on them. So we only have one chance at this unless we want to do it twice.

PHB: The problem is, we really need to be concerned about security. I think it should take priority over speed.

Our current servers (we have two of them in case one fails, although neither has yet) have Ultra SCSI drives. These are a little faster than a 5400RPM IDE drive. Nothing EVER changes on the server. It's simply a resource for the employees to access. It would take two seconds to fire up a new server if there was a problem with the hard drive in its brother. If one overheats or something crazy like that, we can still fire up its brother. If the new server overheats, we're dead in the water because there's only one.

But, it looks professional.


This is the same guy who wanted to replace our 100BaseT hub with a 10BaseT one because the physical structure of the 10BaseT one "looked more professional".

I have to sign up first?
Posted 05/01/2001 by Anonymous Tech Supporter

I work tech support for a large ISP. Customers must use their full email address as their username to log on. Today I got a call from someone who wanted to set up a new email address. She had deleted out her old email address, typed in the new address she wanted to set up, and tried to log on with this new address she had just created. Then she calls me to ask why she is getting an invalid username error. DUH

Whinnie the Screw
Posted 05/01/2001 by EyeHateDell

I've been working for Dhell DIEmension hardware support for about a year now... I recieved a call from a lady from Tenessee complaining of issues with monitor discoloration. After running through our typical schpiel of reseating cables, degausing the monitor, and making sure the OSD controls were alright, I asked her if there was any objects surrounding the monitor. She assured me that her desk was totaly clean and that she didn't even have speakers attached or anywhere near her monitor. I also made sure that the monitor did work at one time and that the other side of the wall didn't have any major interfearence causing devices near it. As I was about to replace her monitor, she said "Whoops. Tigger fell down.". At this point, I was rather confused, so I asked her to repeat what she said. She then informed me that she had made some modifications to the monitor. Like supergluing flat pieces of metal to the front casing so that she could place Whinnie the Pooh refrigerator magnets on it. Suppressing my urge to kill, I requested that she remove the magnets. This only partially solved the issue. I asked how long they had been there. She replied that they were there for about 2 or 3 months, and the metal plates that were adheared to the monitor had become intensely magnetized. Naturally, I informed her that magnets make monitors cry. At this point I suggested that she proceed directly to Hell without passing Go or collecting $200.

Customer damaged part.

Do not replace.

I love my job.

Cab Files?
Posted 05/01/2001 by Heather

I am on the phone with this customer as I type this.

I work DSL tech support for a large ISP. I am walking this customer through uninstalling and reinstalling his Communications programs and before we started this process I made sure that he had his cab files.

During the reinstallation of the communications programs, windows couldn't find a file so I had him type the location


which is where you usually find the cab files and the file still couldn't be located. So we had to go back and search for his cab files again, this time noting the location.

The location? He moved them to a file he labeled "Stuff I Don't Use" The rest of the Communications installation went without fault. :) He and I are still laughing about it.

Is the fire out???
Posted 05/01/2001 by Jim

Well here is an example of one I was presented with. A nice lady called in when she turned on her computer her lamp caught fire. First thing I asked was did you unplug the lamp. With further questioning I found out her computer was plugged into a box with switches marked "A" "B" "C" "D" from there it was plugged into a box that would beep sometimes (uninterruptable power supply I assume). Then it got worse there was a thick black wire going from there through the wall ??? she had know idea where it went. I can only assume it was going directly to the power pole outside. After two hours I still had no way of knowing if it was the ABCD box, the UPS, or the possibility of being connected directly to the power pole that was the problem. Her husband had setup this wild power supply and was away with the army therefore I asked her to call back when her husband was home. The kicker is when I got home my girlfriend asked me if I had told her to put the fire out...DOH?????.

The moral of the above story is I cannot see if there is still a fire or what is on your computer or what is hooked up properly and what is not. I use my best guess.

The Softwood Problem
Posted 05/01/2001 by Graham W. Boyes

The Softwood Problem

by Graham W. Boyes -

We just bought a new cutting board for our kitchen. My dad brought it in and gave it to my mom. "Do you think it's going to work?" he asked. I said, "Um, Dad, how could a cutting board not work?" I had visions of Cutting Board Technical Support.

Tech: Thank you for calling the Cutting Board Hotline. May I have your name and telephone number starting with the area code please?

EU: Now you'll have to go very slowly with me because I don't really understand any of this crap.

Tech: Sure, that's what we're here for, to hear our area of professional expertise referred to as 'crap'. May I have your name and telephone number starting with the area code please?

EU: It doesn't work!

Tech: What, your phone?

EU: No, the cutting board!

Tech: (Loosing all hope of getting the user's information) OK, what's the problem?

EU: Well, it doesn't work.

Tech: Can you be a little more specific about your problem?

EU: Well, I brought it home and put it in my kitchen and nothing happened!

Tech: Do you know how to cook?

EU: Woah, you went way over my head just now.

Tech: I said, "Do you know how to cook". A cutting board aids you in food preperation, specifically the chopping and dicing of fruits and vegetables. It may be placed over any flat surface to protect the surface from sharp objects such as a food grater or kitchen knife.

EU: I'm not really a technical person...I just want my cutting board to cook me dinner!

Aloud I said, "Cutting board ON!"

My mom called to my dad, "Oh, don't worry, he's fixed it now!"

My dad goes, "Was it a hardwood or a softwood problem?"

As you can tell, we have a REALLY boring life.

Using a MAC
Posted 05/01/2001 by Matt Owen

I used to do general tech support work, people would phone me and i would arrange a time to go and see them.

This one woman called and said she had a problem with her computer, so i arranged a time to see her. I then went to see her and discovered that her computer was a MAC. I didn't have a clue has to how to use a MAC as i only deal with PC's. I did however manager to work out how to use the MAC and fixed her problem. So she was happy and i was happy!!!

Dumb LAN tech
Posted 05/01/2001 by Stephen Flook

I am currently in a public high school, where the techs aren't too smart. This one, however takes the cake. I was in history class doing some work on the computers with the rest of the class (about 20). We all had to do work on the same piece of software, but only about 3 or 4 people could get in to it. Since I was in the majority that couldn't get in, I decided to quietly investigate. I found out that they had installed the software on the server, and put shortcuts on all the workstations. Considering the history teacher probably wouldn't have listened to me because I'm not "certified", I just sat back and let her call in a tech (who is also the computer teacher) to look at the problem. She looked at it for a second or two, and told everybody to reboot their machine (that is her "solution" for EVERYTHING), including the people who managed to get in. Just as I had predicted, it was just a different 3 or 4 people who could get in. She tried the same "solution" 2 more times, with the same result, and walked out of the room completely stumped. She never did figure it out, and I never quit laughing about it.

Lanparty tech
Posted 05/01/2001 by Anonymous Tech Supporter

Once at a LAN-party, a guy sitting close to me had a problem with his mouse, the horisontal axis wouldn´t work on the mousepad, only on the right side of the mousepad, i found this kinda strange, so i unscrewed the screws and opened it, and tried again, now none of the axis´ worked.

I put the cover back and tried again, works perfectly.

He starts using it, same error.

After a few times back and forth i realized what the error was, the light-sensors inside the mouse was blocked by sunlight, the sun was only shining on the mousepad, not on the right side of the pad. So i cut a piece of paper and taped it over the gap between the buttons and the body of the mouse so no light could get into the mouse.

A story heard at the same lanparty as above, a guy who works with teaching people to use a computer told me about his greatest challenge ever:

The girl who he was going to teach computing had told him that she knew "nothing", he just thought that she ment that she knew what a computer was, but had never used one. Boy was he wrong...

He booted up a machine for her and proceeded to teach her how to use W95 basics. He asked her to move the mouse to the left, after wich she picked up the mouse, lifted it to the left and put it down again.


But it prints, too!
Posted 05/01/2001 by Derek McCabe

I was watching Star trek, minding my own lil' business when these two neighbors from accross the street came over.

"We think something is wrong. When we called our ISP and said we were getting memory problems, they said to delete stuff we don't need."

At this point, my eyes rolled. These people were obviously newbies. I mean the tech support. The girls, they were innocent. Anyways, I went over to see the memory problem. At first, I had no idea. I spent 6 hours reinstalling windows twice. I noticed that upon rebooting, there was a "memory error" detected, but being an old 486, I assumed that the BIOS was senile from old age. Later, I decided to try my luck with the RAM.

So, I removed it. Individually, it was fine, so I put in the 2 16 MB simms. All fine! Then I examined the 2 4MB Simms. The back said, in block caps "Printer Memory". After slapping myself I started up the system. It worked like a dream... Minus the fact it was a 486. They asked if it was needed to print. I showed them that it was fine, and that they had new keychains.

Slightly related easter Egg:


If you install windows 98, and it cannot register IE4 DLL's, and you use program manager as the UI (editing the system.ini, as Explorer won't work), the IE4 Control panel will have some messages you cannot normally see. Not really an easter egg, but it's kinda cool to see devloper messages :)

Oi!!! Oh the annoyance of EU Lazyness
Posted 05/01/2001 by Anonymous Tech Supporter

I have been working for a month as a phone tech support for a major printer manufactuer and I have noticed that the most annoying thing about EU's are their lazyness.

Last week I spent about an hour and a half trouble shooting this one mans printer. At the begining of the call i asked him wether he was connected paralel or USB from the printer to the computer and even described what the cables looked like. He told me that it was a USB cable (based on my description I might add).

After an hour and a half of troubleshooting the printer as a USB I ask him to pull the USB cable out of the back of the printer while we did some uninstalling.... His reply was "Should I take the clamps off the cable before i pull it out?". Perplexed I put the phone on mute and strated cussing to myself.... a bad habit I might add... I get back on and spend the next hour and a half troubleshooting the printer as USB... but it gets better..

I had also asked him which OS he was running (we only support Windows) He told me he had Win 95... but when we were restarting he says to me.. "Ummm.... I'm sorry to tell you this... but my screen says Windows 2000". GRRRRRRRRRR

More muting and cussing followed by another 30 minutes of troubleshooting.

3 hours and 30 minutes after the call began (most of our calls are less than 20 mins... printers are relativle simple).. He appologized for not actually looking at the cable and not actualy checking which OS he was running....

But you can't forgive ignorance that costs you your lunch and your break! :)

Keyboard Woes
Posted 05/01/2001 by Paula

I had a customer who's keyboard was not working correctly. I asked her if the keyboard had ever worked, and if so when she noticed the problem. She replied that she noticed the problem shortly after cleaning the keyboard with windex.

Scanner Film
Posted 05/01/2001 by Paula

I had a customer that was having trouble with her scanner. She was afraid it had "run out of film".

Wow you're dumb.
Posted 05/01/2001 by John W

I work for one of the largest broadband Internet service providers in the world and when someone calls in for tech support for a Cable or DSL problem, a message plays saying (in short) "Reset your DSL or Cable modem and computer to resolve most connection problems."

After talking to a cust who did that wondered why his email was still not configured.

Windows Millenium 2000 Edition
Posted 05/01/2001 by Bored Techie

I work as a Second Line techie for a English ISP got a call the other other day from a clueless (l)user when I asked them what version of windows they are runnnig they said Windows 2000 Millenium Edition.

Forward slash vs. Four slash
Posted 05/01/2001 by Anonymous Tech Supporter

I work for a very large telecommunications Help Desk at the first level. My CubeMate got a call where the user stated that he couldn't get to a particular website. We handle 9 states worth of URLs so nobody knows them all.

luser: I can't get to the contacts page

HelpDesk: what is the url for this site

luser: I don't know, I just know that I talked to ya'll earlier and was told to get a number off of this site.

HelpDesk: What is the website that they gave you?

luser: It's "H-T-T-P-:-4-/-4-/ .....

HelpDesk: was that http: forward slash forward slash?

luser: no he said 4/4/.

HelpDesk: I think that there might have been some miscommunication. I think that the technician was trying to get forward slash, not 4 /.

luser: Hey I'm there now, thanks for all your help

I don't think that anything more is needed to be said.

Yah, my TV is at home.
Posted 05/01/2001 by Nedzalife

Well, to make this short, I'm a tech support guy for one of the @home cable companies, and they have the IVR setup with both internet and tv tech support in the same menu.

Soooo... we ALWAYS have people pressing wrong numbers, but it's the reason that they do it that gets me...

T: You've accidentally reached the tech support for the internet service, please hang up and dial 0 to speak to an operator.

C: but my TV is at home!

the menu says "If your having problems with your @home service, pres **"

grr... 30sec calls no big deal. :)

Password Woes
Posted 05/01/2001 by Anonymous Tech Supporter

I used to work in customer service in my company, and although we

were not officially tech support, we had to support our customers. Here's

a fun call I had about a cusomter's password:

Me: Thank you for calling, how can I help you?

Cus: What's my password?

Me: You've forgotten your password, sir?

Cus: I think I never had one.

Me: Have you ordered from us before?

Cus: Yes.

Me: In order to place and order you have to create an account and you would have

been asked to choose a password.

Cus: Well, I don't know what it is. Can't you just give it to me?

Me: I'm not able to see your old password, but I can reset it to

a new one.

Cus: OK, what is it?

Me: What do you want it to be?

Cus: You mean I have to tell you the password.

Me: Yes, sir, what do you want your password to be.

Cus: But if I tell you my password, you will know it. I don't want someone knowing my password.

Me: I assure you sir, I change customer's passwords all day long, I don't remember yours.

Cus: Well, can I change it again after you re-set it.

Me: Yes.

He finally gave me a new password. Boy am I glad I don't work in CS anymore!

Don't phone home
Posted 05/01/2001 by Anonymous Tech Supporter

I was a network admin. for a small nursing home in Ohio. I was upgrading workstation and we where using a modem share program, it is a program that lets the workstations think that the sever modems is its own. It was my third one of the day and I could not get it to work. I checked everything three or four times. I was about to give up for the day and my wife, witch by the way just had our baby and was trying to rest, called and she started to tell me that someone was calling and hanging up. I said to her, could you hear anything, she said yes, It sounded like a computer on the other end. I checked the ISP number again and it was my home number that I put in. She was not happy that I was waking her from her naps. I told my wife I was sorry.

Well my wife did tell me to call and check on her, but not this way. From then on, I made sure that I had the right number in.

Dog won't come in the house
Posted 05/01/2001 by Justin

I used to work for a cable internet service and one of the strangest calls that I heard about was about a dog that wouldnt come in the house. The lady said "ever since we got the internet, our dog won't come in the house." She called several times but our tech support always told her that it was something we could not help her with. Finally one of our techs decided to help. He asked her many questions. She said that she would try to drag the dog in the house and he still wouldn't come in. He would run away yelping. After a long line of questioning the tech finally figured out what the problem was. Evidently the customer had one of those invisible dog fences that runs underground. When we installed the cable lines for the internet, one of our lines got crossed with the fence. This caused the signal from the fence to carry through the cable line and up to the house, making the entire house a forcefield so to speak. When they tried to drag the dog into the house it would get a shock from the fence.

Poor dog.

Yahoo! Porn
Posted 05/01/2001 by Jeff Basham

I was talking with a user, teaching them how to go to a website, and I asked him to go to our homepage, or as a test, the following is our conversation:

Me: Sir, please type in

User: What?

Me: Please type in in the location bar.

User: Why?

Me: We are testing your internet connection, before I hang up with you.

User: Why are you using a porn site as a test?

Me: Excuse me?

User: is a porn site.

Me: Sir, I think you are mistaken. is a search engine.

User: Oh. Thanks. It works. *click*

ID 10 T Savant
Posted 05/01/2001 by Anonymous Tech Supporter

I'm working as a temporary contractor for the US Postal Service. I'm helping their IS department deploy new workstations and helping with day-to-day support.

One of the first things we are required to do is remove the games from the standard Win2k install.

Two days after setting up a PC in a small post office I get a call that the computer won't connect to their "Time Clock" software.

I go out to the site to check the software, and Solitaire is running full screen.

I close it and check the software in question, it works, I put a new shortcut on the desktop and go in and delete sol.exe (O.K. maybe I forgot to remove when I set it up)

Less than a week later I get the same call from the same person. I try walking the guy through clicking the icon and telling me the error message, but he says that it’s too much for him. So, I run back out there. (about 35 miles one-way)

When I arrive, Solitaire is again running full screen, and the shortcut to the software is still there. I launch it, log in and it works. I (again) delete sol.exe and leave.

This happens again the very next Monday!

I searched the harddrive and found 20 copies of SOL.EXE hidden all around the disk.

I ask the user to show me what the problem is with the time clock software. He clicks the icon, the software asks for his ID and Password. He looks at me with a totally blank government employee stare and says, "This is where it locks up."


OK, type in your username and password...

"That's why I called you guys, I can't remember what they are. It works fine after you work on it until somebody turns it off."

I called the district admin to change the guy’s password.

Wrote his ID and new password down.

They can’t remember how to login, but they’ll find ways to play there games on company time!

Geez People
Posted 05/01/2001 by Cate

First of all, I work for the product support department for the largest ISP in the world. We get all kinds of people, usually the bottom of the barrel, incredibly stupid but very typical **L Members. The following is a typical call:

Tech: Thank you for calling Blah Blah tech support.

**L Mbr: Hello, I bought this program from you and it won't work.

Tech: Ok ma'am, can tell me specifically what the problem is?

**L Mbr: It won't do anything.

Tech: Have you installed it yet?

**L Mbr: No, it won't do anything at all.

Tech: (thinking the disc won't auto-run I take here through various means of getting the disc to install, with no success)


Tech: ok ma'am, take the disc out of the drive and put it back in

**L Mbr: What disc? You mean it has to be in the computer for it to work?

(slaps forehead)

Tech: Ma'am, put the disc in the drive, it will auto-run. Thank your for calling Blah Blah tech support, you have a nice day.

CLICK--these people never cease to amaze me

Pro-Active Tech Support
Posted 05/01/2001 by Gary

A little background is required for this one. I work as primary tech support/server admin/coder for an ISP. I had just finished writing a radius authentication daemon for our server and was watching the radius log file to make sure everything was working okay. I notice a user that keeps failing to authenticate because, you guessed it, their capslock's is on. Usually people either notice or give and call for help after 5 or 6 tries, not this one, they just kept trying and trying. After watching them try about 2 dozen times I decide to take matters into my own hands I pull their phone number from our customer database and call them. Below is the result.

ME: Hello it's Gary calling from Blah Blah Internet.

WOMAN: We don't want any.

ME We provide you with your Internet Service.

WOMAN: Don't need any we already have Internet Service.

ME: Yes I know you get it from us.


ME: Yes, I just noticed that you have been having some trouble getting connected to the Internet, the problem is your capslock key is on.

WOMAN: Oh I don't use the computer at all, I leave that to my husband.

ME: Perhaps then you could tell him that the capslock key on his computer is on.

WOMAN (speaking to someone else): Dear, the man from the Internet says that your capslock key is on.

MAN (in backgound): My what is on?

WOMAN (yelling): Your capslock key.

MAN (in background): Well I'll be damed so it is. How did you know that.

WOMAN: The man from the Internet told me. He's on the phone do you want to talk to him.

MAN (loud): God Damn right I do!

I spend the next 30 minutes or so convining the man that I couldn't actually see his computer.

Next time I'll wait for them to call me.

True Newbie!
Posted 05/01/2001 by Tara

I have now been wise to computers for some odd years and help many new users to the computer world, and when they start to feel so idiotic they want to give up, I tell them my newbie computer experience to give ANYone hope...

I bought my first computer from a friend around 1991, the new 486 Multimedia computers from Radio Shack. So excited to get started using the internet and AOL was brand spanking new, I hooked everything up and powered on. Remind you, I never used anything before but an old Commadore, I found the AOL icon and clicked on it,(believing I was online) it started doing odd things so I started reading what to do next when the screen flickered and a huge message scrolled across "Get The Hell Off Now". I panicked thinking someone was typing that to me and shut off everything including unplugging from the wall and vowed to never touch the internet again! I learned a few days later that the computer didn't even have a modem, let alone being on the "internet" and the message was a screen saver from the kids who had it before. I sure have come a long way since then so be kind to newbies when they need tech help is my motto.

128MB of not RAM...
Posted 05/01/2001 by Graham W. Boyes

I was at work today trying to get a Compaq server to work. (I HATE working on Compaq machines.) This particualar server had seven hot swappable hard drives on the front of it. This cow-irker comes up, points to the drives and goes, "That's not RAM, is it?"

Me: No, it's not, it's...

Her: (Interrupting me) Good. I knew it wasn't RAM, because this is a server, right?

Me: Uh, yeah, it's a server, but...

Her: And servers don't have RAM, right?

Me: !

I sorta glanced warily at my boss who was listening. He explained to my cow-irker, "Serfers haf RAM! Fun hundred und tfenty-eight megabytes uf RAM in dis serfer!"

Her: But I thought since it was a server it wouldn't have RAM...

I want a Refund!
Posted 05/01/2001 by BlankTim

I'm the lead Tech for a local ISP.

In addition to our normal e-Mail sevice, we run a free web-based mail service, like hotmail.

Since we're such a small company, with limited staff, and it's a FREE service, we don't officialy provide support for it, though we do make the effort if we have the time and/or it's an account used by one of our paying dial-up customers.

Recently, we experienced a problem with the service that requred taking it down for several days. We received several calls from people complaining about not being able to access their accounts. Normal stuff under the circumstances. Then I received this call:

ME: Thank you for calling, this is Tim.

CUST: I'm having trouble accessing my mail. (the free service)

ME: Yes ma'am, we're experiencing some technical issues with that software and we've had to take it down until we get an update.

CUST: (getting pissed) Well, it worked just fine yesterday!

ME: (big eye roll) Yes ma'am. And it's down today. It will be down until we get the update we're waiting for.

CUST: Well, I think I should get a refund then.

ME: A refund?

CUST: Yes, I can't access the service and I want a refund!

ME: (Slightly confused now. The service is free.) Do you have a account?

CUST: No, I just use the free service.

ME: The free mail service at, right?

CUST: Yes.

ME: Uhhmm, ma'am, that's a FREE service. It doesn't cost anything to use. I'm not sure what we would give you a refund for.


ME: (staring to lose my patience) Ma'am, the service is free. I can't give you a refund for something you haven't paid to use.


ME: (*SNAP*) Ma'am, the service is free. It's offered on an "as available" basis. If you can't use the service, you're welcome to go sign up for a hotmail account. We aren't charging you for the service, we sure as hell aren't going to give you a refund for somethng you haven't paid for.

CUST: Well, you don't have to be such an @$$hole about it! (click)

Sorry? Did I miss something here?

Does "free" now equal "money-back guarentee"?

Separate the Email
Posted 05/01/2001 by Anonymous Tech Supporter

I work for the third-largest ISP in the nation, and act as both as a DSL tech support rep and a DSL billing rep.

A gentleman calls about the charges on his account. I go over the charges with him, and we determine that they're correct.

CUST: "OK then, can I go ahead and quit using my email. It never seems to work right anyway."

TECH: "Are you using Outlook Express for your email?"

CUST: "Yeah."

TECH: "Sure, if you want to quit using your email, just quit using the Outlook Express program."

CUST: "Huh? No, I mean that I want you to turn off the email for my account."

TECH: "Well, we're not able to 'turn off' your email. If you wish not to use it, then just ignore that portion."

CUST: "Oh, I was hoping that if you could turn off my email to my account, you could reduce my monthly charge."

TECH: "Hmmm."

Unfortunately, there wasn't much I could do to help. :o)

Trailor Park ID-10-T
Posted 05/01/2001 by Kevin

This didn't happen to me, but when I was in training my trainer told my class a story.

As if the title of the story doesn't say enough. The customer calls in and wants to know why he can't get onto the internet. And of course like a good little 'programmed' tech support rep you ask when it started happening, the customer states it was working fine earlier, so the rep asks the customer what the error is, and the customer says error 680 no dial tone. So the rep asks the guy to check the connection to the back of the computer and it's fine, then he asks him to check the wall outlet.

The customer asks the rep to hold on, and the rep asks why, the guy tells the rep that his computer is plugged into his neighbours trailor 3 down.

What the guy was going was stringing phone line extensions over the trailors to his neighbours trailor, and somewhere along the way, the plug got disconnected...

How stupid can you be!

Power Power Power...beautiful power!
Posted 05/01/2001 by Chris Bulovic

Ok, we've all heard it....but, it happened.

I took a call one day for a lady who's pc "wasn't working". I asked her if there were any lights on her pc "yes"(???why she said yes I'll have no idea!). "Ok, what is on the screen?" I asked. "Oh nothing, it's black". Now, my first thought was that the pc may have gone into sleep mode, so I asked her to tap a key on her keyboard, nothing. Ok, maybe it's crashed while in sleep mode right? wrong. "Are you sure there are lights on your pc?". "No, there's nothing!" (interesting change of story!) "Ok, can you please switch the pc on for me?" "Umm..nothing's happening, there's not even any lights on the fax machine" (me goes ?!?!?!)"Ok, there aren't any lights on your fax machine? Are there any lights in your office?" "no, it's completely dark!" (Here I am having remembered reading a story like this ON THE NET, having it happen to me!) "Ok, you'll need to ring property services, I only fix broken pc's, not electricity." Her remark "Oh, oops".

Sometimes...sometimes I sit and how do they survive?

The paranormal is not covered under warranty
Posted 05/01/2001 by Anonymous Tech Supporter

I support travan tape drives and get a variety of odd calls. One that sticks in my mind was a lady who called me about 6 months after I started. She was at the end of her rope and just frantic that she had gotton an error message about her tape drive. Trying to be helpful I decided to calm her down by getting her to open up about her computer and see how it was she could get this stressed about such a small error code. Well this woman works from home and in her basement is her home office. She's had 3 computers of different brands in the last year and a half. All 3 had disasterous problems from failed RAM, to Bad Motherboards to crashed Hard drives so she had basically lived on the phone with tech support for a long time (hence the reason she got the tape backup). Anyway I'm asking her about certain things that could cause that many computers to go so terribly bad in such a short time. I asked her about temperature, humidity, static electricity, power spikes. Each time she would say that that had already been gone over and everything was fine.

So I ask her, "Can you think of any reason why you'd be having so many problems with computers?" She paused for a second and said "Well...the house is haunted." She then proceeded to tell me the story about how she left the house one day, locked the door behind her, activated the burglar alarm and left. when she came back the alarm had not be touched but the television had been turned on, switched to a different channel than what she watched last, and the door to her study had been locked from the INSIDE. So I helped her with her tape issue and before hanging up on her suggested she seriously think about renting office space as "that ghost knows where you live".

Posted 05/01/2001 by JamieT

I was working for a large regional ISP and received the following call from an elderly women:

Me: Thanks you for calling, how can I help you today?

She: I have heard all of the horror stories about people stealing your personal financial information from the Internet and I am worried about that.

Me: Well yes ma'am there have been instances of that, however if you are very careful about who you give your information to , you should be okay. Also many companies have a toll free number that you can call to give them your information. Blah.blah.blah

She: Well that makes me feel a little better, maybe I might like this Internet thing. How do I get it?

Me: No problem Ma'am, I can get you the discs that you need. Let me verify a few things first so that we won't have any problems. Okay?

She: Sure, that would be fine.

Me: O.K. first of all what speed modem do you have?

She: Silence......

Me: Ma'am?

She: What's a modem?

Me: (O.k. I have a real newbie on my hands here...) Ma'am a modem is the device that lets your computer talk to other computers.

She: Ohhhhh. I see! You need a computer for this Internet stuff...

Me: Uhhh yes ma'am......

IT is NOT the phone company!
Posted 05/01/2001 by sraun

Our CEO was having a fax problem at his home. He was trying to send a fax from his home to New York. He received a "circuits busy" error message. He then tried to send the fax to his office, which was successfull. His Admin Assistant then tried to send the fax from his office to New York, and it went through.

And this is an IT problem?

Cricket in a Printer
Posted 05/01/2001 by Amichai Rotman

-The LAser Printer on the 2ed floor of our companie's building was squicking for some time now.

People complained ablout the annoying noise and I, being the IT Support Rep, promised to use some WD-40 on the internals of the printer.

I was always joked there is a cricket inside the printer, because that's what it sound like every time the priter prited...

The mystery was solved before I got arround to it.

One of the SysAdmins came to me one day and showed me a cricket on the door ledge in the server room, near the printer...

Printing a test page, while looking at the cricket proved us right... There was a cricket - but not in the printer...

What is DNS?
Posted 05/01/2001 by Seneeb

couple gems from today:

first off and intro to myself

I work for *****Q doing first level teck support for a very large aircraft engine manufactuer. i mainly support win95 boxes on an nt4 domain. i am entering my third year at this job.

got a call earlier today from a guy who removed his dns settings because he read on a community support page that it would make his computer faster.

when he rebooted, his login script wouldnt run because he couldnt resolve the dns name for his login server.


got a call from an admin for a web site within the intranet. he was trying to remove a foriegn national publisher who's contract had expired. he ended up deleting his own admin rites.


No Title
Posted 05/01/2001 by Andy

I am currently at work, doing e-mail tech support for a major ISP.

I just opened an e-mail and HAD to submit it. Here is the complete text of the e-mail, pasted straight from it:

"I can't connect to my connection, Please tell my why ?"

Absolutely NO other information. Nothing about errors, what happens, why, etc.

"......thank you for writing the Psychic Tech Support Alliance....."

The @ sign and CD's that don't work.
Posted 05/01/2001 by Aaron

I am the System Admin for a local ISP. Back before I became Sys Admin I was in Tech Support. I had a lot of stupid calls, but these two made me go out side and scream.

Call One---

Me: Good afternoon. Tech Support. My name is Aaron. Can I help you.

Customer: Yes, I'm trying to get set up with XYZ Internet service.

Me: Ok sir. May I have your e-mail address? (For logging of calls)

Customer: It's bob americaonlinekeyword

(At this I had to do a double take)

Me: Excuse me?!? What did you just say??

Customer: It's bob americaonlinekeyword

(Silence from me for about a minute, while my jaw hung open)

Me: Uhhmm What do you mean Americaonlinekeyword?

Customer: That little A with the circle around it. Americaonlinekeyword.

Me: (After pausing another minute) Uhmm No. I assure you sir. That A with the circle IS NOT americaonlinekeyword. That is the at sign.

Customer: Oh. (Sounded disappointed)

After this I had to put the caller on hold for a few minutes.

Scream. Tell other techs. Scream again.

Call two---

Phone rings. I pick it up. (First mistake)

Me: Tech Support. This is Aaron. May I have your e-mail address?

Customer: It's

Me: Ok sir. How can I help you today?

Customer: I want to cancel my service.

Me: Oh. Ok sir. May I ask why? (Second mistake)

Customer: I got this CD from you guys and it doesn't work. Says it can't find some files or something.

Me: Ok sir. Well if you want I can help you get set up with us. First I need to know what the error message you are getting is.

Customer: Well I don't know. Some file can't be found.

Me: Ok sir. We can try running through CD again or I can get you set up without the CD. Let's get in front of your computer if you're not.

Customer: I can't. I'm at my friends house.

Me: Oh. Well if you can get in front of your computer I can help you get set up.

Customer: Well, I can't right now. I'm at my friends cuz my phone is turned off. I wanna cancel because this damn CD doesn't work.

Me: But sir. I can get you online without the CD. But I can't do anything without a phone line?

Customer: The phone line isn't a problem. I've called and taken care of that. This CD doesn't work.

Me: Uhmm sir when will your phone line be turned back on? (Yep. Mistake number three)

Customer: In the future.

Me: (pause) Ok sir. If you want to cancel you need to call this number... (gave him the number then promptly hung up and told my tell to my co-workers. Then went on a 20 minute break)

Tell me again why I haven't quit? ;)

Right Click on the Icon
Posted 05/01/2001 by chris

While telling a new customer to "right click on the dialup connection icon" that we had just created, I heard him pause for a minute and do something that was definately not typing/mouse scrolling. I then asked if he saw the little gray box next to the icon and he said "no, i see the word click". Puzzled at this, I asked him what it looked like. He said it looked like his handwriting to which I asked why. He replied, because I just wrote the word "click" next to the icon on the screen with a grease pencil.

If I've told you once...
Posted 05/01/2001 by Anonymous Tech Supporter

1. I know that it's popularly called a DSL or cable MODEM, but it's really a transceiver. The customer can't use it to dial into our private network. (Please trust me on this. If you don't understand what I just said, you aren't going to understand a technical explanation.)

2. When you finish the install, please drag the icon off the program group folder that opens up. When you close the program group folder and open Explorer, nine times out of ten you drag off a shortcut to the installation CD, not the program. (Not users in general, but one person in particular.)

3. The software will not run on a Mac. It will not run on an iMac. Not even with a Windows emulator. It will not run on a Unix system. The program is not TAPI compliant and needs to be able to access the modem directly. It will run on Windows 95, 98, NT, and ME and 2000 if you use Connection Manager. Yes, I know that many school districts use Macs and iMacs. I cannot help that. Why did we choose software that most of YOUR customers can't run? Because most of the rest of the world doesn't use Macs or iMacs. Are there other alternatives? Yes. When we purchased this software in 1999, that company had still not released a Windows 95 version. (You cannot run their MS-DOS app on an iMac either.)

4. Every time you come in for training and every time you call for support we remind you to reboot your computer daily. Again, I could give you a technical description, but if you understood it, you would not have these problems. Suffice it to say that Windows 95 hands out memory to programs for them to function, and generally fails to reclaim a part of it when the program terminates. All day long you switch back and forth between the operations program and the communications and database management program. On the side you are running Office and acting as your own server for your e-mail. You are going into Suspend mode. If you are going to listen to Elvis who tells you that Windows works better when it is not shut down, please do not be surprised if your mouse, cursor keys, tab key, or server app software refuses to work properly after running for two weeks without a reboot.

What security...?
Posted 05/01/2001 by Sparks

I work for a large aerospace manufacturer in Unix workstation support (IBM RS/6000's under AIX, to be exact). A little less than a year ago, two floors of the building my unit is in were cleared of their original inhabitants and made "secure" so the company could begin work on a couple of new products that were considered "sensitive" to the company itself. These were not government classified in any sense of the word -- just 'proprietary.'

The modifications consisted of adding a fairly expensive badge-reader system in three of the four building elevators, and on the entry doors to the actual work areas of two floors. As if the badge access wasn't enough, anyone entering these floors was required to have a special "matrix badge" which has no electronic encoding at all; just an array of blue-colored squares with numbers from 1-16 on them, and the badge holder's name.

Yes, we have a few workstations on that floor. Yes, they're used for the "sensitive" work. But consider this: Every last one of us, as SysAdmins, has full remote root access to any of those machines at any time. That, and we also have access to the network closets. It would be a trivial matter to hook up a Sniffer to any of the concentrators.

As a final joke, consider this: Every single PC up there has Windows 95, and no security other than that which authenticates user logons through the company's NT domain servers.

To this day, I remain convinced that the expensive and unnecessary "security" measures were done purely as a whim, and then only to make some mid-level manager look good.

What a waste...

We're installing WHAT?!
Posted 05/01/2001 by Sparks

I work for a large aerospace manufacturer in Unix workstation support (IBM RS/6000's under AIX, to be exact). Myself and a fellow cow-orker got handed a work order today to install a couple of machines and bring them up on the network.

Understand that my unit only installs and supports Unix-based (IBM, Sun, HP, SGI) workstations. We don't now, nor have we ever, nor WILL we (if I have anything to say about it!) bother with PC's. There's already too much of that commoditized

crap in the company, and the less I have to do with it the better I feel.

Anyway... we go up to the appropriate floor, and what do we find? Two PC's. IBM IntelliStations, to be exact.

I wonder what part of "We don't do PC's" slipped by someone?

What part of 'No...'
Posted 05/01/2001 by Sparks

I work for a large aerospace manufacturer in Unix workstation support (IBM RS/6000's under AIX, to be exact). On a recent trip to Arizona (Phoenix, to be precise), I decided to stop in at the local Fry's Electronics because the video card in my wife's machine needed replacing.

Having already gone through a nighmare trying (and failing) to make her existing Nvidia-based 'Vanta' card work, I already knew I wanted to steer well clear of anything else with Nvidia's name on it. While I was digging around amongst the available offerings, one of Fry's (in)famous sales droids

came by to offer assistance. I explained (clearly, I thought) that I was looking for an AGP video card that did NOT use an Nvidia chipset.

Apparently, even 'transparent' would look murky to a Fry's sales droid. The fellow kept handing me box after box, each one containing an Nvidia-chip based card. After going through this at least four times, and saying "No, that has an Nvidia chip on it" each time, I finally got

annoyed, and picked out (right under the sales droid's nose) an inexpensive ($40) S3-chip based video card, said "Thanks, this will do nicely" and walked off to pay for it.

Sure enough, that little generic card is rock-solid, and a champion peformer to boot. The look on the sales droid's face was, shall we say, a little crestfallen? Especially considering that he had just made a big thing of pointing out a $300+ card from Hercules (which, in his

favor, didn't use any Nvidia chips).

I wonder if Fry's sells hearing aids?

Friends retarded brother.
Posted 05/01/2001 by Ashwin

I went over to my friends house one day, and his younger brother came up to me. He said his computer would not boot up. Since I do tech support for an international ISP, he asked me if i would have any ideas as to how to resolve the situation. I asked him when the problem happened, and what exactly would happen. He told me the computer would keep asking for a boot disk, and that the trouble started after he moved EVERY FILE in C:\ into a directory called 'stuff'. After laughing for fifteen minutes, I assisted him in repairing computers. Needless to say, he no longer moves files around the computer :)

Tales From Technical Support Index

Tales from the Techs
May 2001
  1. Upgrading DOS

  2. That can't happen!

  3. Watch out, the BlackICE is slippery

  4. I don't talk just to hear the sound of my own voice!

  5. *Sighs*

  6. Moans And Groans :}

  7. I wish I knew the story

  8. Palm Pilot - Stupid Tech!

  9. Brilliance in Action

  10. Why are there not Licenses for Computers

  11. "Click My Computer Please"

  12. *!&# Chinese

  13. @ is for at and : is for colon.

  14. The screen is out there ....

  15. Sitting on a problem

  16. Computer Problem Report Form

  17. Reasons NOT to upgrade

  18. Format Complete

  19. ...Borderline Insane

  20. Computer Mouse

  21. Clueless in Seattle

  22. I didn't think it would hurt - just once!

  23. I could cringe....

  24. Dont you guys know anything ...

  25. Evil connection breaking robots!!!

  26. What Operating System?!

  27. Expensive Modem!

  28. Nature (and computers) abhor a vacuum (cleaner).

  29. almost the any key

  30. Women in the Workplace

  31. this used to be a techie job

  32. Where's my email?

  33. Student

  34. Tech´s can be lusers too

  35. Slow startup

  36. What to do if Microsoft announces bankruptcy?

  37. Because I have nothing better to do....

  38. That don't mean nothin'


  40. still sleepin on the couch

  41. What Have I D7one7?7

  42. No Title

  43. Here take my 500

  44. Backup is for those _other_ schools

  45. Somebody turn a light on!

  46. The "Cup Holder"

  47. Opening a folder...

  48. I cant log on

  49. No Title

  50. Mouse??! Or cat??!

  51. How to convert files

  52. Short Mouse

  53. how do you operate the pedals

  54. The mouse with only one ball

  55. Under Pressure?

  56. Cheap is never really cheap

  57. Oh the misery

  58. Striping and Mirroring

  59. I have to sign up first?

  60. Whinnie the Screw

  61. Cab Files?

  62. Is the fire out???

  63. The Softwood Problem

  64. Using a MAC

  65. Dumb LAN tech

  66. Lanparty tech

  67. But it prints, too!

  68. Oi!!! Oh the annoyance of EU Lazyness

  69. Keyboard Woes

  70. Scanner Film

  71. Wow you're dumb.

  72. Windows Millenium 2000 Edition

  73. Forward slash vs. Four slash

  74. Yah, my TV is at home.

  75. Password Woes

  76. Don't phone home

  77. Dog won't come in the house

  78. Yahoo! Porn

  79. ID 10 T Savant

  80. Geez People

  81. Pro-Active Tech Support

  82. True Newbie!

  83. 128MB of not RAM...

  84. I want a Refund!

  85. Separate the Email

  86. Trailor Park ID-10-T

  87. Power Power Power...beautiful power!

  88. The paranormal is not covered under warranty

  89. modem?????

  90. IT is NOT the phone company!

  91. Cricket in a Printer

  92. What is DNS?

  93. No Title

  94. The @ sign and CD's that don't work.

  95. Right Click on the Icon

  96. If I've told you once...

  97. What security...?

  98. We're installing WHAT?!

  99. What part of 'No...'

  100. Friends retarded brother.

Past Tales from the Techs:
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