Tales from Tech Support

Everyone who works in IT has probably had to help someone out with their computer problems at some point in their life. Whether it’s a part of your job or you’re just helping a friend, the challenges that get thrown your way can often take you by surprise.

For your humour we’ve trawled the internet to find some of the best stories from tech support. If you’ve got any great stories that you want to share send them to us and we will put them up here as well.

I’ve Been Shut Out of the Website

desktop_usb_1I handle IT for a small-medium company of <200 users. This one happened to me a couple of weeks ago.

I’m settling in at my desk, starting my PC up, and before I can take my first sip of coffee my cell starts ringing. It’s the Assistant Manager of a branch a few towns over. I pause, wondering what would warrant a call this early into a shift, and I answer:

Me: “Good morning, what can I–“
AM: “I’ve been shut out of the new website. You need to fix it, now! I can’t access any of my files!”

It’s worth mentioning that the company recently migrated its entire internal operation from one platform to another. Ironing out the kinks this has caused has become commonplace at this point. I begin brainstorming all of the possible causes for them to lose access as I proceed:

Me: “Ok, let me help you figure out what’s going on. Am I correct in understanding the login screen is denying you access?”
AM: “It’s not letting me do anything! I can’t get in!”

At this point, AM is approaching something near hysterical, and it’s clear communicating the issue verbally is beyond their abilities. At this point I figure it will be easier to remotely connect to their desktop to get to the bottom of the issue.

Me: “Ok, don’t worry, we’ll figure this out. I’m going to have you enter this URL in your browser, which will enable me to link up with your PC.”

I provide the URL.

AM: “It’s not letting me type it.”

I begin wondering if there’s an issue making the PC freeze up. Is there a browser conflict? Or perhaps there’s something else confusing them due to the recent Windows 10 upgrade to their computer. But first I think to explore one other alternative, and my heart sinks at the thought, because I have a strong suspicion that it’s probably right…

Me: “Could you please open Notepad for me? I want to have you try to type something to see if the issue with keyboard input is confined to your browser, or if it’s happening system-wide.”
AM: “What’s Notepad?”

Holy facepalm. I proceed to explain what Notepad is and where to find it. They open it and try to type.

AM: “I’m in Notepad. No. Nothing. I can’t type anything with this either.”

I ask myself if it could really be possible…

Me: “Ok. Please do me a favor and take hold of the cord coming out of the back of your keyboard. Follow it with your fingers all the way back behind your computer tower. Double-check and see if that cord is plugged in all of the way.”

I hold my breath. About 15 seconds pass; I hear rustling and shuffling over the phone line, and then:

AM: “Ahem. It’s working now. Never mind, I’m all set. Thanks.”
Me: “It’s no problem, have a good day.”
AM: Click

I proceed to take a sip of cold coffee and ponder life.


– Reddit user, ctnvtch

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