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Old 05-06-2012, 19:39   #1
srhoades
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Let's talk about your dumbest clients

We had a pretty good thread a while back about our dumbest mistakes, let's turn the tables and talk about the idiots that we have to put up with.

I had a client who not only refused to empty his "deleted items" folder, he had an entire hierarchical organization with tons of folders in his deleted items. I tried to explain to him that if they were that important, he should file them in his inbox folders instead. This was a constant battle as he was always flirting with the Outlook 2GB .pst size limitation. I had to force him to go through and at least delete the "real" deleted items such as spam.
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Old 05-06-2012, 20:03   #2
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I cannot tell you how many people i have dealt with that think the monitor is the computer...They turn it off every night....

Also, people do not understand a letter drive is only a label it has no bearing on the content.
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Old 05-06-2012, 21:43   #3
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Or how about paranoid bosses that don't understand the concept of an administrator and insist on keeping a password list of everyone in the company.
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Old 05-06-2012, 23:31   #4
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This video pretty much sums it up:



Probably the worst one was where a friend from church recommended me to her boss and he called me in when their regular guy was "conveniently unavailable" during a crisis.

They had their own Exchange Server and apparently their contracted "IT Guy" who was super smart and well trusted built it on a RAID 0 configuration.

I took one look at the issue and recognized that one of the drives had failed. I attempted to re-seat the drive and it still failed to be recognized.

I then asked where they kept their backups and the owner told me that all of the backups were stored on the server... I asked "Stored on this server?" and he replied, "Yes, why?"

I let him know that once a hard drive failed on a RAID 0 system, without some backups to fallback to, it was probably not possible to recover the data that they lost without sending the failed drive to a Data Recovery Center for a very expensive recovery attempt, but even then, the chances were slim that they would be successful.

The boss basically berated me and cussed me out, insulting my IT knowledge and accusing me of making excuses for my lack of skills.

I kindly told him that once he got a second opinion, I would be happy to come back and help them.

Two days later, he called and apologized and gave me a check for $400 for a consulting fee (out of guilt, I guess). Turns out, the owner's brother was their "IT Guy" and they found out the hard way why that was not good news.

The story did have a happy ending for them, I got them set up with a nearly bulletproof solution that has provided them zero downtime since.
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Old 05-07-2012, 00:29   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gemeinschaft View Post
This video pretty much sums it up:

The Website Is Down - Sales Guy vs. Web Dude - YouTube


Probably the worst one was where a friend from church recommended me to her boss and he called me in when their regular guy was "conveniently unavailable" during a crisis.

They had their own Exchange Server and apparently their contracted "IT Guy" who was super smart and well trusted built it on a RAID 0 configuration.

I took one look at the issue and recognized that one of the drives had failed. I attempted to re-seat the drive and it still failed to be recognized.

I then asked where they kept their backups and the owner told me that all of the backups were stored on the server... I asked "Stored on this server?" and he replied, "Yes, why?"

I let him know that once a hard drive failed on a RAID 0 system, without some backups to fallback to, it was probably not possible to recover the data that they lost without sending the failed drive to a Data Recovery Center for a very expensive recovery attempt, but even then, the chances were slim that they would be successful.

The boss basically berated me and cussed me out, insulting my IT knowledge and accusing me of making excuses for my lack of skills.

I kindly told him that once he got a second opinion, I would be happy to come back and help them.

Two days later, he called and apologized and gave me a check for $400 for a consulting fee (out of guilt, I guess). Turns out, the owner's brother was their "IT Guy" and they found out the hard way why that was not good news.

The story did have a happy ending for them, I got them set up with a nearly bulletproof solution that has provided them zero downtime since.
I know lots of folks who hear the word 'RAID' and think their system is automatically protected, no matter which level of RAID is implemented.
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Old 05-07-2012, 07:35   #6
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Wait? RAID isnt a backup?
I just had this happen2 weeks ago, a company called me with a down server.
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Old 05-07-2012, 10:00   #7
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I should add that I ended up mapping their MX DNS record to Google and they are running on GMail through Google Apps.

Basically, all of the employees are still using Outlook on the frontend, but they are able to leverage the infrastructure of Google for stability. Their SLA is 99.9% Up-Time with no downtime due to scheduled maintenance.

Here is a write-up that I put together - Improve the Reliability and Scalability of your IT infrastructure
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Old 05-07-2012, 16:25   #8
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OK, this takes place in the mid 90's.
Picture a SGI Onyx2 that with extras cost $950,000.00.
This is a computer for doing movie special effects and it has 2 monitors, one keyboard and 1 mouse.

A customer, a major university in the south, bought 4 systems from us.
I did the install and trained their sys admin, well kind of he was not really a Unix person.

A few weeks later he quit and the new sys admin was a grad student in film studies. Sigh. No, it's not '6' it's V. I. In joke, do you get it?

I spend the better part of a DAY working her through setting up the SGI Octane that was the admin system to use PPP. Old guys, imaging setting up PPP with a person who doesn't know the difference between a text editor and a work processor. Like I said, most of a day.

With PPP I could now manage their systems and do some serious training with the film student, who went on to be a serious and VERY well paid sys admin. lol

I came home that night and drank heavily.
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Old 05-07-2012, 18:14   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gemeinschaft View Post
This video pretty much sums it up:

The Website Is Down - Sales Guy vs. Web Dude - YouTube


Two days later, he called and apologized and gave me a check for $400 for a consulting fee (out of guilt, I guess). Turns out, the owner's brother was their "IT Guy" and they found out the hard way why that was not good news.
I cringe every time I hear that the bosses son, or the bosses nephew, or someone related to someone in the company is providing IT support (usually on the side apart from what they actually get paid to do for a living).

They are always a schmuck, they always do things half-baked, and you can never get a hold of them when you need an important password.
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Old 05-07-2012, 20:17   #10
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This issue has come up multiple times where I work.

Apparently a few people at my job seem to think the Deleted Items folder in Outlook is just as good as the Archive Message button. The reason is because it's quicker to delete than archive.

It's only an issue as long as you don't forget to hit No upon exiting Outlook when it asks if you want to delete what's in the trash. Of course, said people apparently forgot to hit No since they asked us if there is any way they can retrieve their important emails from a backup.


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Old 05-07-2012, 23:23   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gemeinschaft View Post
I should add that I ended up mapping their MX DNS record to Google and they are running on GMail through Google Apps.

Basically, all of the employees are still using Outlook on the frontend, but they are able to leverage the infrastructure of Google for stability. Their SLA is 99.9% Up-Time with no downtime due to scheduled maintenance.

Here is a write-up that I put together - Improve the Reliability and Scalability of your IT infrastructure
I have considered that route but I do not see any stability issues with Hosted Exchange through Microsoft and i can resell the service and make recurring income.
Google also had a crash a year or 2 back and lost clients emails. No recovery was made if I recall.
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Old 05-08-2012, 06:32   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Glock!9 View Post
I have considered that route but I do not see any stability issues with Hosted Exchange through Microsoft and i can resell the service and make recurring income.
Google also had a crash a year or 2 back and lost clients emails. No recovery was made if I recall.
Google has a reseller program as well. I am not sure about the crash 2 years ago, I guess I was unaffected.
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Old 05-08-2012, 18:19   #13
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I had a friend here in Austin that worked for Dell. He told me there is people that will send back their PC's because they could not find the "any Key". You know hit or push any key.
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Old 05-09-2012, 07:30   #14
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I had a friend here in Austin that worked for Dell. He told me there is people that will send back their PC's because they could not find the "any Key". You know hit or push any key.
Haha...I remember about 1997 working in a server room at small local company. We had been doing some regular backup on a floppy drive (cant remember the details). The floppys kept disappearing, no one could find them. Everyday I would go look for them and finally found a pile half way across the room behind a desk! They were ejecting at a rather high rate of speed!
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Old 05-09-2012, 07:40   #15
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Did you know that, when your laptop is docked, if you plug a USB cable into the ethernet port of your laptop, it will short out the ethernet port on the docking station?
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Old 05-09-2012, 10:19   #16
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"Can you install my new UPS for me? I don't know how."

Not sure if mentally handicapped or just lazy.
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Old 05-11-2012, 11:16   #17
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I don't have clients per se (not in IT), but I used to help out family and friends with PC issues over the years. I'll still do it for my parents, but no one else now. I've always loved the ones who would delete random things to free up space on their drives. Doing things, such as deleting entire program folders to "uninstall" them. Sorry, it doesn't work that way, and that's why your computer is slow as molasses. The best is when they flat out deny visiting any questionable sites that they could have picked up any malware, yet it's right in their history. Warez sites in particular.
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Old 05-13-2012, 08:01   #18
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I used to work on the tech support phone lines at a local Internet Service Provider (ISP). I could probably stop the post right there and you can imagine the kind of people that called.

But the winner -- THE most ignorant one -- was the one that called because of a "No Dial Tone" error when trying to dial in to get connected.

Yes -- it happened. They did not realize they needed to plug o a phone line into the modem. Plugged it in and they were on instantly.

Other ones:
* Calling the entire PC "the modem"
* Calling the monitor "the computer"
* Trying to log in using their entire email address instead of just User ID
* Looking everywhere on the screen for the 'Enter' button but not finding it
* In the early 90's, my then-boss called me in because his laptop, running Windows 3.1, said the hard drive was full. I checked it and found THOUSANDS of temp files.
Back then, Windows would create a temp file when it started. When you exited Windows properly, it would delete the temp file. If you did not exit from Windows, but just powered off, the temp file was stranded. Doing that eventually filled his hard drive. I deleted those and taught him how to shut down properly.

So many ou there that just don't get it.
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Old 05-13-2012, 08:46   #19
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I have a full time job but still do freelance work for pre-existing clients.

I had a small business client that I had to fire last year. She was so cheap that it was costing her so much more in the long run and was playing banjo on my last nerve.

She wouldn't listen to my advice about a backup plan. She lost data, I recovered the data and it ended up costing her if I remember right somewhere over $300 for the data recovery. She asked me to setup a backup plan which I took care of and gave her some training. About a year later, she called me with another crash. I couldn't find the backups. She said they hadn't done them in some time. I suggested she sign up for a backup service to automate the backups and offsite storage for her. The service was about $12 a month. She cited costs and declined. About a year and a half later, the computer crashed. No backups. She called me but I was busy with another project and couldn't get there in time. She had to call a data recovery service who charged her over $1300.

Last year, to save costs she told me she no longer needed my services as her webmaster. She did an exchange of services with a graphic artist who had no web design or web server experience. I bowed out after transferring the domain at her request. Not long after, she and the artist called me up wanting my advice without paying for it. I declined and told her that you get what you pay for and that I can no longer do any work for her. She still called from time to time but I don't answer. Last time I checked, her website was still down.


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Old 05-13-2012, 15:10   #20
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