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This is a question IT Support

Our IT support guy has been in the job since 1979, and never misses an opportunity to pick up a mouse and say "Hello computer" into it, Star Trek-style. Tell us your tales from the IT support cupboard, either from within or without.

(, Thu 24 Sep 2009, 12:45)
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This question is now closed.

Testing! Testing!
A few years back, we used to have an IT filter on our PCs at work. You'd try and look at anything inappropriate and get blocked.

Now, we also had an extremely aggressive Head of Department in one bit of the company, who was renowned throughout the building for the bollockings he liberally distributed and his no-nonsense manner. He was also a boozer and schmoozer,,and Thursdays and Fridays were lunch days. Let's call him Jim Clark (not real name).

One afternoon when he was out on the lash, his Department concocted a test to see just how scary he was. They would email various people round the building with ridiculous requests and see how quickly they were complied with.

So someone walks into his office and sends the following from his terminal.

To: IT SUPPORT
From: JIM CLARK

I've just some back from lunch and sat down at my computer, and when I've tried to go on a site, I've got a message saying 'This content may be inappropriate, etc, etc. etc., ... contact an IT Supervisor if you need to access for work reasons.'

I'm Jim Clark. I'm Head of Trading. It's a Friday afternoon, I've had six pints, and I've got the fucking horn.

If there aren't pictures of tits on my monitor in the next five minutes, I'm coming up there.

Jim

Five minutes later, everyone crowds into his room and someone refreshes his inbox. Sure enough, there's an reply sent 2 minutes after the original email, from the Head of IT, no less:

To: JIM CLARK
From: HEAD OF IT

Jim,

Apologies for inconvenience, filters removed.

Regards,

Andrew

Thus proving conclusively that this man really was rather scary....

The follow up? An email to Facilities with 'SENT FROM MY BLACKBERRY' appended to the end, saying 'I'm stuck in the door to my office. Send someone to free me, NOW!.' (he was a bit of a porker...)

Sure enough, two blokes in overalls turn up five minutes later, looking apprehensive, to find a department in hysterics and no Jim Clark stuck in the door.
(, Thu 24 Sep 2009, 14:01, 6 replies)
The whole of the internet
This is a bit geeky. In 1995, I'm fairly positive I had a copy of most of the internet. Or specifically, the world wide web.

I worked for a (at the time) large IT support company, about 250 people all doing telephone suport for loads of companies too lazy to do it themselves. We were pioneers of the outsourced support really. Anyway, thats 250 people, all quite clued up and with quite a lot of kit.

We supported loads of things, and two in particular caught my attention. 1 - a new fangled web crawling program, and a program that would combine all the free space on networked PC's and use it as a giant, fault tolerant NAS - (quite brilliant really, and I've never seen anything like it since. I think someone could clear up wiht a decent modern version). Oh and we had a fucking awesome internet connection - I believe it was 128Kbps over ISDN. That, in 1995, was, as I said, fucking awesome.

There was only one thing for it. We should make a copy of the internet. We did some maths. You ready?

In 1995 there were about 200,000 websites, and we assumed 2Mb for each of them - thats 400GB. Trivial these days to store this. In 1995, the harddrives were about 1GB in decent PC's, and we had about 700 PC's knocking about.

Downloading 400GB over 128K is a different matter. in fact its about 10,000 hours. Never mind, we had time and more importantly a system administrator who was in on it and happy to oblige.

The internet access was shit at work for about 2 years.

It never really finished, the internet changed far to quickly for us to keep up.

However, for a lot of that time we had a local copy of the internet that we could search. You could find a website locally in about 3 to 4 hours. Beat that Google.

So, utterly futile but a fantastic waste of time and a hell of a learning curve.

Tell that to kids these days, and they wont believe you.
(, Thu 24 Sep 2009, 15:06, 7 replies)
The Mug.
My old IT Manager was a great bloke. His name was Chris and he was an avid Arsenal supporter, he commuted to Salisbury from London everyday and was always perky and happy to help - I assume he was always perky because of the vast amount of coffee he consumed on a daily basis, and that swiftly brings me onto his coffee mug. As Chris was a monster Arsenal supporter, he had a monster Arsenal mug; this thing was HUGE and you usually knew what desk he was working at when you saw THE MUG. Now about a month after the mug had been introduced it started going walkabout. Due to its gargantuan size some of the guys in the office had taken a shine to it so started stealing it from the kitchen in the mornings and using it themselves… this made Chris rather upset.

Sorting out my computer one afternoon I asked Chris where his mug was, he told me someone in the phones office had it. I asked him if it pissed him off that people kept taking it and he said it was driving him nuts but he didn’t want any confrontation about it - he was actually considering buying a replacement. I thought that was ridiculous and told him as much and said he should just tell the guys to buy their own sodding mugs and take it back. He pondered this suggestion, said he would have a think and sulked off back to his cupboard. The next day I came back in from lunch to the sound of raised voices in the phones office. I wandered in to find Chris holding his mug triumphantly in the air laying into a guy called Steve. Chris was going ballistic at him. Spit flying freely from his open mouth, eyeballs bulging, forehead reddening, finally he stormed off out of the office slamming the door behind him. I asked what had just happened and everyone started telling me how Chris had just snapped at Steve because he found him drinking out of his beloved mug. Feeling very guilty I snuck back to my desk and hid.

Five minutes later I received an email from Chris… Subject heading: Thank you. Feeling highly embarrassed I opened up the email and read what Chris had to say. Turns out he had taken my advice. He had pulled Steve to the side earlier in the day and asked him if he wouldn’t mind telling people not to use his mug anymore… Steve agreed but decided that the guys probably wouldn't listen to him either and hatched a plan for Chris to go mental at him in front of everyone, thus nailing the point home that Chris was a bad ass and not to be fucked with. Well it bloody worked, and office gossip as it was, by the end of the week the accounts team had been told that Chris had apparently beaten Steve in the face with his mug and verbally bashed everyone in the office. From then on no one took his mug and it was always clean and in the cupboard when Chris wanted it. :)
(, Fri 25 Sep 2009, 11:56, 6 replies)
PCs and the evil mouse
I was there, the day the first PC came into our office. We'd managed very well until then with dedicated green-screen terminals, which only had a single Big Red Switch on the front, that simply powered up the monitor. The Department Manager, her 2IC, and three Team Leaders were all standing around this PC, wondering why it wouldn't work. They weren't impressed. This was rubbish! It wouldn't even turn on!

It was running Windows 3.1, just like my home machine. This booted remarkably swiftly from a hard drive, but the system had two On switches - one more than they were used to. The power switch on the base unit was a big, solid, up/down toggle switch, exactly like the one on the base of the monitors of the green-screen terminals. The monitor switch was a tiny, square switch, of exactly the same colour as the plastic around it, on the monitor itself. I listened to the whirring noises from the HD that told me when Windows was ready, then reached over and pressed the switch on the front of the monitor, which came on immediately to display the Windows desktop. There was a genuine collective gasp of amazement, and I was the IT guru for the entire department from that point on.

That, in and of itself, had its drawbacks. They asked me to write and present the course to train the entire department how to use the PC, plus Word and email. Yoink. But okay, it could be done, although I hadn't realised how much I'd absorbed in 10 years mucking about with computers since the days of the ZX81. Mostly, it wasn't too bad, and I actually learned a lot about dialling my assumptions way down when training.

But there was one guy I nearly killed. I delivered the course individually, as we only had one PC in the department, and they wanted everybody trained on PCs before they went to the expense of rolling them out to everyone. Now Allan was apparently intelligent enough to hold down a role at a major life assurance company, but he could NOT grasp the idea of the mouse. Everybody else had taken 10 seconds to grasp the basic idea of 'mouse = cursor'. Then a few minutes more to go over single-click to select, double-click to execute and right-click for secondary menus. They were all smart cookies. But Allan did not get it. He'd look at the mouse, and mentally measure some distance, then move the mouse that distance. Then look back at the screen, see how far he'd fallen short, or over-shot, look back at the mouse, move it again, look back at the screen... I could not make him watch the screen while he moved the mouse. Three times, he walked away from the training, because he got so frustrated that he couldn't make the PC do the simplest thing. It was shit, it was evil, it hated him - oh my word, the language he used.

On the fourth attempt, I brought in a shoebox, and cut a small hole in the end. I put the shoebox over the mouse and made him put his hand in the hole so he COULDN'T SEE THE MOUSE while he was moving it. I saw the clicky happen in his eyes as he realised he didn't need to. After that, File Manager, Word and email held no terrors for the poor chap.
(, Sat 26 Sep 2009, 10:47, 3 replies)
The Downfall of Adam, Self Proclaimed King of IT
In most of my jobs the IT bods have been pretty decent people, but at one place I worked there was this nasty little gobshite named Adam in charge of IT support who looked like a younger, skinnier version of Lurch.

He was basically a bit of an arsehole – being the most unhelpful, rudest, pompous fucker on the planet Earth. He’d been known to reduce members of staff to tears with his smarmy, ballistic tirades. Bit weird, really, when this fella earned his wage because he knew how to fix all this shit and no one else did. He’d fuck about for ages trying to look importantant, spouting off all this shit about how he possessed the greatest IT mind in the universe, keeping whichever poor fucker it was waiting while he fixed the power converters, sorted the warp drive, fiddled with the flux capacitor – whatever the fuck it was he was doing. He needed an audience. Everyone else just wanted to get on with their job without the computer-thingy breaking down or doing odd bollocks. And Adam had this special way of winding up this audience, what with him having the charm and people skills of roadkill splattered with dogturds. Basically, whenever Adam came into a room you knew you’d have to use all your zen-like powers not to punch the fucker out.

And, to make matters worse, he’d always had it in for me after the time I delivered one of the company laptops back to him in a carrier bag... well... two carrier bags... after an incident involving a reversing Vauxhall Astra and me putting my laptop case down at the wrong moment after being distracted taking a phonecall. Adam never forgave me for that. The phrase “stupid,” used in conjunction with the word “cunt,” was banded about for a while. He went crying to management about that, suggesting I pay for a new one (just not the done thing). But Adam was always going to management about something or other – telling tales on people who’d been violating company internet policy, people who’d changed their desktop to a photo of their wife and kids, an endless list of petty bollocks that most normal IT people would let slide.

But Adam was a jobsworth cunt.

So, one Christmas Eve my mate Dave and I came up with a plan. The plan to knock Adam off his shiny fucking pedestal of Microsoft-inspired cuntdom. Fueled by the stongest coffee known to humankind (this stuff was basically black sludge you could stand a pencil up in), we systematically went round the office and did a spot of petty sabotage. Being on the early shift it was only the two of us in; we had an hour and had to work fast.

Roll on nine AM. All the others start turning up, wanting desperately to get home. And when they went to switch their terminals on they realised something wonderful – they wouldn’t work. None of them. Neither would the photocopier, the fax machine – even the kettle and microwave in the kitchen were absolutely fucked.

The MD was going into apeshit mode and Adam was called forth from his grotty little store cupboard. He ponced about like a superhero about to do a great deed, then he went over to the first PC – nothing. Then the second – nothing. And so on. By the time he got round to the seventh terminal he was starting to panic a bit.

“Must be an electrical storm,” he mumbled. The MD pointed out that the lights were working and so were the phones. Eventually the rest of us IT-illiterate tosspots were allowed to go home and start Christmas a littler earlier than normal – we couldn’t do any work. Leaving Adam to pull what little was left of his hair out. The self proclaimed King of IT was stumped. It was a real Kodak moment.

Once we got outside, my mate Dave and I stopped off at the rubbish bin and dumped the pocketfuls of fuses we’d removed from all the plugs, then we went to the pub for a double baileys (just to get into the Christmas spirit). And the best part was we knew, we just fucking KNEW that when Adam finally realised what'd happened, he'd be too fucking proud and embarrased to tell anyone in management.
(, Fri 25 Sep 2009, 16:07, 4 replies)
tenuous at best
One morning I realized that my internet and cable TV was down and having tried all possible fixes I decided it was time to give the Virgin helpline a call. I also wanted to know why my cable box had taken such an offensive disliking to me:


Turned out they were carrying out maintenance in my area and the problem was sorted shortly, but they couldn't tell me why my hardware became so rude!
(, Tue 29 Sep 2009, 20:17, 5 replies)
RX35 Switch
I work in IT support for the military, so if you read any further I will have to kill you.

A few years ago I was stationed on a large warship.

Now, you might expect IT security on the shipwide control system to be pretty tight, and indeed the firewalls to prevent external attacks are very secure (you don't really want some geek with a wireless laptop hacking in and controlling the ship lol), but if someone can actually get onto the ship, there are network ports all over which they can plug into and gain access to the whole control path.

One time when the ship pulled in a small vessel which was suspected of smuggling, the shit-for-brains marines failed to search it properly and a handful of ne'erdowells then sneaked aboard, plugged into the network, and proceded to arse around inside it. As well as mucking about with the data on the brig, thay also managed to blow a fuse on the waste control circuits, which meant I had to take a trip out all the way to home base to get a replacement RX35 switch from central stores.

As it turns out this was quite a lucky break, because while I was away this same bunch of chancers blew the whole ship up by firing some proton torpedos down the main reactor exhaust pipe.

Phew!
(, Fri 25 Sep 2009, 9:40, 6 replies)
Heads talking about head and the delicate pink caterpillar
“Do you know what I’m going to do to you? I’m going to take you into the store cupboard and lick you ‘til you’re hard, then I’m going to slowly tease my tongue round your cock and rub my lips on your shaft...”

Now. It was common knowledge in my office that the Head of International Corporate Sales – a rather foxy lady in her late thirties who looked like Goldie Hawns sluttier, chestier sister was knocking off the Head of Finance (the lucky, lucky, lucky BASTARD).

And she continued, the Head of International Corporate Sales, sat in the conference call room on her break opposite her fuckbuddy: “I’m so fucking horny for your cock. I want you inside me so desperately. Do you want to know something?” She asked slyly.

“Go on then,” said the lucky, lucky BASTARD – (he looked like Wally of Where’s Wally fame, for fucks sake).

And then the Head of International Corporate Sales said it. She breathed lustily: “I’m not wearing any knickers...”

BBBB-AAAA-NNNN-GGGG !!!

Moments later I saw my mate Dave, the IT support layabout walking through the office rubbing the back of his head, looking a little flushed. He’d been under the table the whole time working on some cabling for the big conference call later that afternoon.

"Her quim looked like a delicate pink caterpillar wearing a little black fez..." he said, with a silly far-off glint in his eye (and a rather alarming bulge in his trousers).
(, Thu 24 Sep 2009, 14:33, 6 replies)
Why are there fish?
A few years ago I was working at a PR company. The Managing Director, a former lobby journalist, had never got round to using computers - in fact he was a bit scared of them. He got his PA to do all his typing and dictated stuff to her.

Anyway, one week his PA is away on holiday and there is a really important document to write for a client. So he calls me in.

MD "I need to write this document. DS, how is your shorthand?"
DS "I can't write shorthand."
MD "OK, I will write it out longhand and you can type it up."
DS "I'm not your PA, right? Why don't you just use the computer?"
MD "I'm worried I will do the wrong thing and break it."
DS "It's just like a typewriter. You type here, see, and the words come up there, just like on a sheet of paper. But it's better because you can go back and change things if you make a mistake."
MD (not convinced) "OK, I will give it a go"

So I leave him with a laptop in his room. After a while there are happy tapping noises from his direction and I think I have finally won him round to the wonders of modern technology.

About two hours later I hear a lot of swearing and he comes bursting out of his office.
MD (furious and hyperventilating) "I just stopped typing for a bit and something terrible has happened. I have lost EVERYTHING. EVERYTHING is FUCKING RUINED. The computer is BROKEN. It's YOUR FAULT. I shouldn't have started on the computer. NOW I HAVE TO START EVERYTHING AGAIN. FUCK"
DS "Calm down, tell me what happened."
MD "The screen is BLACK and there are STRANGE THINGS"
DS "Hmm, that doesn't sound right. Let me see."

So I go into his office and there is the laptop, with the screensaver on.

MD "LOOK, FISH. WHY ARE THERE FISH?"
DS "Oh, that's just to protect the screen"
MD "Protect the screen from what? Is it some sort of game? what a fucking waste of time. I didn't know we had GAMES on the computers. WHAT THE FUCK IS GOING ON, WHY ARE THERE FISH? THERE ARE NO WORDS - WHERE HAVE THE WORDS GONE?"
DS "The words are...well, they are behind the fish."
MD "Well, GET THEM FUCKING BACK. Get rid of the fish. What do we do to get rid of the fish?"
DS "Well, you just push any key really.."
MD "WELL WHY DOESN'T IT FUCKING SAY THAT ON THE FUCKING SCREEN?"
DS "Because most people would know that already..."
MD (banging various multiples of keys - which mysteriously do not shut the screensaver) "FIX IT, FIX IT. FOR FUCKS SAKE MAKE THE FISH GO AWAY"

After that - I kid you not - he got me to go round taking the screensavers off all the computers in the office so other people wouldn't get freaked out.
(, Sat 26 Sep 2009, 4:27, 2 replies)
Once at work
we couldn't find the milk, and our scones and jam were corrupted. We had to call 'igh tea support.
(, Sun 27 Sep 2009, 13:50, 5 replies)
How I got the sack from IT Support
Re-written and reposted from the "Onosecond" QOTW

I arrived for my shift one day to find the grown-ups in our department running around in small circles pulling out their hair and shouting "It's fucked! It's fucked!" because our hugely expensive computer network had decided to take a day off.

Eventually, somebody decided the best course of action was to turn it off and back on again, and after several hours, the behemoth roared back into life and the batphone from the MD's office stopped ringing.

The boss stuck his head round the door and said with huge smile on his face: "Scary - do us a favour - send an on-screen message to all users to let 'em know the computer's no longer fucked."

So I did.

"ALL USERS: COMPUTER NO LONGER FUCKED"

We laughed.

Then, I dropped my coffee mug. It landed on the Enter key.

Our network had several hundred users in many varied locations round the world, some of whom earned mind-boggling sums of money and had the ears of movers-and-shakers in both industry and government.

I was no longer one of them.
(, Thu 24 Sep 2009, 15:20, 5 replies)
Can I Just Say
That people who work in IT, IT/Support and hate their jobs? Fuck off and get a new career.

I've now got over 25 years service in and I can't think of a better career....

I've seen things you people wouldn't believe. Sun-servers on fire over the shoulder of Ryan. I watched tape-reels glitter in the dark near the Mailgate. All those backups will be lost in time, like tears in rain.

Time ... to die.

Cheers
(, Tue 29 Sep 2009, 14:52, 13 replies)
Chest what you need.
Many years ago (OK, 20+) I worked for a small IT company that had a problem customer. She kept ringing us and complaining that her PC (an IBM XT with 20MB hard disk) was typing random characters in Word Perfect.

We visited site, replaced her keyboard and asked her to test it, perfect. A couple of days pass and she's on the phone again, same problem.

Having already replaced the keyboard with a refurbished one (yeah, they used to be worth fixing) we decided to give her a brand new keyboard because, it transpires, she's the MD's secretary. Problem solved.

No, not that lucky, she's on the phone again and she's *not* happy.
By this time we're getting a little desperate, we start to suspect the hardware so we back up everything onto floppy (5.25") and re-install MS-DOS along with all her applications onto a loan PC. Her machine works flawlessly in the workshop, passes all diagnostics, even survives the office scut monkey typing rude words on screen and laughing uncontrollably.

Meanwhile, she's reporting that the loan PC has the same fault. This, we conclude, is impossible, it's completely different hardware and a fresh install of all the sofware so I'm dispatched with another engineer to her desk with the instructions 'Find out what the fuck is going on and don't leave until you have worked it out.'

So I'm sat there, she's an older woman (mid thirties to my late teens), rather attractive in MILF sort of way. We're chatting, she's taking phone calls and the PC is behaving. Then, after a couple of hours she gets a folder from her boss, the MD, containing a document he wants typed up, lots of pages of handwritten notes.

Watching her typing is entertaining, she jiggles in a most comely way as the speed builds up and she's a good typist. No problem with the PC though, until that is she reaches forward to turn the page on her copy holder and her ample chest hits the keyboard and types a bunch of random characters...

I'm not sure who was most embarrassed, me trying to explain why the random characters had appeared or her for causing them.

Length? About 38D I reckon...
(, Sun 27 Sep 2009, 0:09, Reply)
In my school
I'm something called a 'Student technician', So like the student version of IT Support. I love it! i get free hardware, can ban people AND Get told to fuck up the school network.

There is one thing i hate about my 'Job'

Chavs

Nearly every fucking period that we get to use the PC's, i get shouted at. "DAVE, HOW DO I DO IT." and "DAVE ITS GONE WRONG" and "DAVE MY PC HAS FROZEN HELP" are all the fucking questions i get swamped with every day.

But there is one Chav, who is the queen of all chavs.

Trixie

She wears pink, constantly. Always sucking on a fucking lollipop, wears 20 tones of make-up all the time, wears MASSIVE High-heels and smells like booze and weed everytime we come into contact.

Anyway, I was writing some instructions on word as part of my course-work. i could hear her shout to the teacher, "OI, MISS, HELP ME" constantly for about 10 minutes. My teacher just ignored her, good for him! But the inevitable happened

"OI, DAVE! COME ERE"

Being the helpful type and the fact that i had finished everything i had to do, i thought Fuck it. And went over to her.

"DAVE, How can you type so fast, and i do it so slow *kisses teeth*" She said
"Well, its practice really" I said
"No its not, you're cheating i can see you"
"Err, no im not, i can just type fast, Google touch-typing and learn yourself! Its really easy"

Now, i think this is a reasonable response, yes?

"NO DAVE, YOU ARE CHEATING, TELL ME OR I WILL GO FUCKING MENTAL" She shouted back at me
"Woah, just learn"
"NO TELL ME!"
"I just did!"
"FUCK YOU!!!"

At that moment, she ripped out the keyboard from the back of the PC And smashed it into the Monitor,

"FUCK YOU DAVE YOU MASSIVE BOFF" She screamed at me and then smashed the key-board on the table. By this point every person in the room was looking at her. It took about 4 people to restrain her from doing anything else. She caused about £300's worth of damaged, and got pissed 'Because she broke one of her expensive nails' (Yes, really) But my teacher put the icing on the cake when she said

"Trixie, you really are a retard cunt"

The entire class erupted in laughter, She then proceeded to storm out of the class, and then out of the school. I never saw her again.

Well, that was hilarious.

After the lesson, my teacher and i was called to the heads office to explain what happened. I gave my statement and so did he. The head piped up to say
"Mr. xxx, it seems you called trixie an obscenity after this event" said the head
"Yes, im sorry i did. I have to admit to that." My teacher replied. My teacher is ace i wouldn't want him to be suspended after a little cunt had a go at me

But then, the head shook his hand and said

"Good man!!" We all laughed and went on about this stupid excuse for a person for about half-an-hour. At the end she gave me a Permanent early lunch pass, meaning i get to cut the que at the canteen.

One of the best days ever. :)
(, Thu 24 Sep 2009, 19:49, 8 replies)
If a user told you they could only send emails to people that lived within 500 miles, and emails to people who lived further away
got rejected, you'd probably think they were crazy.

Not so, amazingly. www.ibiblio.org/harris/500milemail.html?

Sorry, no knob jokes - it's more interesting than funny.
(, Thu 24 Sep 2009, 14:38, 3 replies)
Our Current IT manager..
...just answered his phone with, "Hello, erm, sorry, i'm going to have to call you back. I've got a crisp in my eye."
(, Wed 30 Sep 2009, 14:28, 2 replies)
Floppy backups
We had a customer who was making data backups on floppy disk. The old 5 1/4" disks that were thin and really actually floppy.

They had to restore from one of these backups and it didn't work, so we told them to try a previous backup. None of the backups they tried worked, so I went down there to see what the problem was.

They presented me with their backup archive - a ring binder with dozens of hole-punched floppy disks.
(, Sat 26 Sep 2009, 22:00, 4 replies)
how civilised
I used to work in Dubai. We had an odd mix of nationalities in the office including a decent smattering of us lot from Blightly. There were of course a fair few Muslims in the office as you would expect. Culturally, it does take a little while to adjust to the different ways of working – weekends are Friday Saturday, Sunday is actually Monday, clients will shout and bawl in meetings, talk amongst themselves, make phonecalls and lie straight to your face - little things.

But I soon settled in. Whenever I’ve won a new client or completed a big job back in the UK, it was customary to go out and get pissed, at least it was in every other place I’ve ever worked. Not in Dubai though. Early on we won a major pitch once and I sent round a ‘drinks are on me over in such-and-such a boozer after work’ email, as you do. This caused massive consternation. Not as much though as when one of the girls was leaving and she decided to produce a bottle of Champagne (she had even asked the MD if it was OK as all her colleagues were ex pats). Unfortunately one of our more ‘fervent’ employees in another office got wind of this. A rambling, long winded, badly written, spittle flecked rant was sent round the whole office and the MD had to make a grovelling formal apology. That’s not to say Dubai isn’t a non-stop party town. Going out to overpriced bars, getting completly battered and shagging some vapid bint on the beach is pretty much the only thing there is to do. But then no one said Dubai is not a land of lies and hypocrisy.

So as soon as I adjusted to Thursday being the new Friday it was business as usual. The usual suspects would (quietly) arrange to go for drinks after work on a Thursday (there were of course a few there that were not supposed to be drinking but that’s none of my business). My usual drinking buddy was a big Geordie bloke, I’ll call him Matt Hale – because that was, and still is his name. Matt didn’t give a flying fuck about anything as far as I could establish. He was our IT guru and also a MASSIVE boozer. I did say Geordie didn’t I? In addition to all this, I was one of the lucky ones that had a licence to shop in one of the few hidden away, legal off-sales, so we would always have a bottle of something stashed away for late nights in the office. Port was popular because the Arabs didn’t seem to grasp it was a fortified wine so it wasn’t as ridiculously overpriced as say – a bottle of Jack Daniels. We kept a bottle in a small storeroom next to the kitchen. It was not unheard of to nip in for a quick sip to warm the cockles in the excessively air conditioned office.

So this arrangement worked just fine – come the end of another hard, dusty week we would try and bugger off as early as possible down the battle cruiser. That is until one Sunday morning we had a problem – there had been a complaint that non-drinkers were being ‘excluded from office social events’. Heads were scratched and imaginary beards stroked until a ‘genius’ plan (mine) was hatched that we would invoke the quintessentially British and utterly harmless tradition of Afternoon Tea. An email was sent inviting all and explaining the nature of this quaint British tradition. That way, everyone could get together for a cuppa some faffy little sandwiches and little pink cakes – then those who wanted to could bugger off to the pub. We even bought a bone china tea service some doilies and some of those little three tiered cake stands that we stored in same cupboard we kept our illicit hooch in – admittedly a recipe for disaster. Nevertheless the plan worked a treat we even had a laugh imposing ridiculous made up rituals and etiquette. Matt and I continued to have heroic sessions most Thursday evenings and there were no more complaints. All was well.

One evening I was working late (again). I was the only one in the office. If I do have to work late I actually quite like that arrangement as I can have whatever music I like up full blast and have no one to bother me. I sent a large artwork document to the printer, which I knew would take bloody ages to rip – so I decided to do what any sane person does at such times – dick around on teh internets. Not so easy as it sounds in Dubai where so many sites are barred. Then I remembered the Port! Bellowing along to ‘Smack my Bitch Up’ I toddled off down the stairs and breezed into the store room.

Now I should say that I have never actually soiled myself as an adult, but at that point I came bloody close. On the floor was a lifeless body with a large pool of slick glossy blood formed around the head, lying motionless on the bare concrete. Fuck! I have no shame in admitting panic set in. But the real heart attack moment came a second later when the ‘body’ groaned and rolled over. I nearly fucking died, then i looked at the claret stained features and suddenly realised - it was merely (a completely paralytic) Matt Hale from the high tea sip port cupboard.
(, Sat 26 Sep 2009, 15:10, 6 replies)
.
Secretary calls me over. "This is wierd, watch this"

Sits quietly for 5 minutes, her screen goes blank.

"See, it switches off! But I've worked out how to switch it on again".

Thumps her desk, really hard. Computer magically switches on.

I suspect it might just be that when she thumps desk, her mouse moves. I didn't tell her though, it was quite funny to see her whack the desk 6 times per day, and it also annoyed everybody sitting around her as a bonus.
(, Sat 26 Sep 2009, 9:17, Reply)
The wrong cartridge
We had an ink-jet fax machine in the office and one day its cartridge ran dry. Our helpdesk guy headed into the stationery cupboard and emerged after a few moments with a brand new cartridge in his hand, then spent a few minutes trying to install it without success. When he finally admitted defeat he looked at the cartridge and noticed that it was emblazoned with the brand name “Brother”, whereas the fax was manufactured by Ricoh, so the two were clearly incompatible.

Now, what would a normal person do at this point? Surely the sensible thing would be to put the Brother cartridge back into the cupboard and find a Ricoh cartridge instead. The IT guy however decided to spend several minutes looking at the old and new cartridges side by side from various angles in order to try to spot where they were different. After a while he saw that the only difference was a small plastic lump on the top of the Brother cartridge, which he proudly pointed out to all of us. Then, as an idea clearly dawned on him, he dashed out of the office and returned with an angle grinder which, for some reason, he kept in his car. Surely he wouldn’t, we thought.

He disappeared into the kitchen and after an initial whirr from the grinder we heard his scream, then he ran into the office covered in ink, the wildly squirting cartridge still in his hands, crying “MAKE IT STOP!” as he ran towards our pristine white shirts and suits.
(, Thu 24 Sep 2009, 19:41, 8 replies)
Oi, Dover!
You're old and antiquated, and nobody wants to use you any more. And you have this funny smell. Only kidding, just winding you up :-)
(, Thu 24 Sep 2009, 13:20, 6 replies)
IT adventures
I was once hired by a swanky London meeja agency as their resident nerd because I ‘looked good bending over’. Having great tocks generally doesn’t send a girl geek to the dizzying heights of IT support mastery, but it got me a job and that job paid for beer.

One of the reasons that they needed a fine filly to crawl around underneath desks was because of their high-profile clients. These were international stars, genuinely some of the biggest names in the world. No multi-hojillionaire man with fine taste in silicone and sports cars would ever want a computer monkey that looked like a potato stuffed in a dirty sweat sock, right?

~~~~~

I was once blindfolded when tasked with fixing a star’s home computer. I was bundled into a van, confused by the driver through some deft swerving maneuvers and manhandled inside this man’s doorstep. It felt a bit too much like a kidnap; I was ever-so ill-at-ease until I was then informed I had to also fix his computer without the essential benefit of sight. He angrily hissed into my face, “There are things on this computer you aren’t allowed to see.” Like, apparently, the screen. I did my best to convince the man that, in fact, I required the sense of sight and couldn’t do my job without it. I was bundled into a car and again sent back to my office. Meanwhile, the lawyers hashed out a contract which would grant me the power of vision. Back I went, again blindfolded. I both fixed his computer and found out why he was so concerned about my peeking in his files – porn. Now, I’m partial to a bit of todger porn myself and, I figured, if the rumours were true, I might just catch a glimpse of a 9+. No, oh no, his entire porn collection was full of the 70+. Ahem.

~~~~~

I received another laptop in from an international star. The laptop was caked in sperm. It was splodged everywhere, and there wasn’t any way I was going to bloody touch it. I decided to have a word with the MD of the company:

“I understand that X is a very powerful man, but he submitted his laptop and it was covered in…white stuff.”
“Ah, don’t worry, TheSnark. He’s got a bit of a problem with cocaine.”
“Ah, erm, ah, no. I meant that every damned inch of his laptop is covered in ejaculate.”

An ungodly amount of antibac wipes and rubber gloves later, I found out that his laptop was well and truly fried after a year of semen seepage. Did he never consider cleaning up after himself?

~~~~~

There was another man who did always play it straight. Girlfriends, denials of sexuality, kiss-and-tells – he was 100% heterosexual male and he had the credentials to prove it. I received his laptop to fix and was excited with the frisson of hot manliness that came with it. Find out, the hot manliness also extended to the contents of the computer – the desktop image was this gentleman with his boyfriend. I mean, I’m pretty sure they were together, as he had his hands all over the other man’s soldier and submarines. It quickly came to note that the computer was entirely full up. This star had come up with a rather good porn indexing system based on hair colour and sexual acts, i.e., brownhair_fisting001.mov and blondehair_snowball034.mov. It was merely that he overdid it and probably shouldn’t have downloaded that last chain gang penetration video. He can be as gay as he likes, but I’m still rather annoyed when I see him with a new girlfriend misrepresenting himself so he can pull in the big bucks. Girls: consider yourself very fooled. Gay men: oh, you lucky sods, you.
(, Mon 28 Sep 2009, 15:25, 17 replies)
Dull but true.
We recently changed our email software from from "MS mail" to "Notes".

I am in my lab along with my boss called Gary (who is a nasty right wing shit whom I hate) and a few students. Gary is meant to be teaching the new students a few research techniques.

Without warning our IT technician, Vijay comes in and asks for my password so that he can changed something on the server so that I can access the new "Notes" system.

"I cant tell you my password with all these people here" I say but I am already going bright red.

"S'kay" says techncian "just change it to something new in about 30 minutes"

"I'll write it down for you" says I.
I find a piece of scrap paper and write out "GARY is a CUNT"

Vijay doesnt even blink, takes paper and goes off to do his job.

about 25 minutes later I get an email from Vijay- no message just a title "YES, he is"
(, Fri 25 Sep 2009, 12:35, 7 replies)
What the FUCK does it all MEAN???
A woman in my office was told she could accessorize her laptop by the IT guy. She was overjoyed. She came in the next day and had painted flowers and bees and all types of girlie shit all over the fucker. The IT fella took one look at the machine, which looked like some kind of forgotten relic from Woodstock and stammered: “I meant you could add your own software if you liked...”

This is for the IT bods – how I, as your average computer illiterate fuckwit, view a few of the computer terms I’ve just found in one of the handbooks I found lying round the office:-

ACCESSORIES: Incudes earrings, bracelets, beads, baubiles, hand bags, and navel and clitoral piercings.
ACTIVE WINDOW: This term is used to discribe an open window, thus allowing the regular flow of fresh air to circulate round the office.
BAUD RATE: The time it takes to nod off when the IT expert person is attempting to impart their wisom (which in my office usually involves being told why Buffy the Vampire Slayer would kick the shit out of Superman in a bare knuckle fight).
BIOS: Fuck knows – something to do with chemical warfare?
BIT: You end up like this when you try and stroke a squirrel in Regents Park. Those little fuckers look cute but have got the mentality and voracity of a fucking rotweiler on PCP.
BOOT: An item of footware or the act of kicking something very hard.
BUG: A sort of insect.
BYTE: To eat something, as in ‘to have a’. If you pig out in a Rick Waller kind of way, this is called a Megabyte.
CACHE: Moola, spondoolicks, currency, cool-hard-orgasm-inducing MONEY.
CARD: Something you get your mum on mother’s day.
CASCADING MENU: When you go to one of those dead fancy restaurants (the sort where they don’t have the list of food on the wall), they give you one of these. Takes a degree in geometry to figure out how to unfold the fucker; worse than tackling an AA road map.
CLIENT: What prostitutes have, usually members of parliment, the clergy, or my Uncle Gino.
CLONE: Never to be mentioned, as in ‘Attack of the’, a shameful, terrible period in everyone’s life that needs to be purged from the soul, possibly by means of exorcism.
CONNECTION: What happens when you go out and meet someone and exchange telephone numbers which, with any luck, will lead to a frank and thorough exchange of bodily fluids at some later date.
CPU: Something about getting a kick out of watching other people urinate.
DEFAULT: This is how Ali G, or the entire population of London under the age of sixteen, would tell you that you are to blame for something.
DOS: To mess about or generally be a lazy cunt.
DRAG (as in mouse): Dressing a small rodent up to look like Shirley Bassey.
DRIVER: What rich people have so they can get smashing out of their faces on coke and booze and not have to get the tube home afterwards.
FIREWALL: Fuck knows... Sounds impressive, though. Probably the codename for the stealth fighter or something else butch and manly.
FREEWARE: Items of clothing you steal or have given to you, such as hand-me-downs (doesn’t work too well when you’ve got an older sister, that one). Routing through bags left outside charity shops also technically counts as freeware (but if you find some grundies I recommend you wash the crusty gussetmarks out first before slipping them on).
HARDWARE: What happens when you put too much starch in your wash, you need to pannel beat your pants with a hammer before you can put them on in the morning.
ICON: Usually gay, like George Michael or that fella on that Dr Who spin off thing who’s always getting arrested in Cardiff for being pissed off his tits.
LOSSY COMPRESSION: Dunno... got a mental picture of that famous dog from those old films being trapped in some kind of industrial crushing device.
NETWORK: Essential for fishermen.
POP-UP: Ho! Ho! Ho! nudge, nudge, wink, wink...
RAM: A male sheep. Or the act of engaging in very forceful sexual intercourse, ‘to RAM’ one’s cocker-spaniel in and out of the moneyslot vigorously.
SERVER: Something to do with tennis.
SPAM: A type of tinned meat popular with vagrants and people who watch daytime television.
SPYWARE: X-ray spectacles that allow you to see boobies and other interesting bits (Caution: not to be used in old peoples homes or primary schools).
TCP: Anticeptic – comes in cream or liquid form. Tastes better than most spirits currently available on the market.
UNZIP: Requirment just prior to having a piss or a wank. Note: Never attempt to piss and wank at the same time, just about fucking impossible and hurts like a muthafucka if you actually manage it.
WARM BOOT: Footware that has recently been removed and left to air.

Suppose what it boils down to is this: different people do different jobs. I'm apparently an expert at what I do, so I'll leave it to other people, the experts, to sort out my computer-related twattery...
(, Fri 25 Sep 2009, 10:31, 6 replies)
Although I'm not strictly on IT Support, as a trainer I get a fair few helpdesk calls bunged my way.
Back when I worked in Northampton one guy could not for the life of him get into one of his systems. We'd tried resetting his password, even deleting his account and creating a new one, all to no avail.

Finally we decided there had to be a hardware issue somewhere, and paid him a visit.

Whereupon we found the reason he couldn't log in was that he was spelling his name wrong.
(, Thu 24 Sep 2009, 14:51, 3 replies)
Caps Lock
Place i used to work dealt with security printers, the type that print cash and the like. We sent these printers all over the world with pretty serious servicing contracts with them so nice trips abroad were regular.

One time we recieved an irate call from Bangkok, Thailand shouting that they could not access there system and demanding an enginer visit and sort it ASAP. We explained that if a visit was the result of them either breaking or misusing the system they would be liable for all costs, this they agreed.

Thus my buisnes class flights from UK to Bangkok, nice hotel then visiting the printing plant, being ushered through security to the idle printer with all the management looking on. On walking up to the PC that ran all the software to run the machine i proceeded to turn off the CAPS key, input the password and he printer came back to life..... The look on their faces was priceless.

Thus a few days in Bangkok having a lot of fun ensued with a stopover in Dubai on the way home all on them.
(, Fri 25 Sep 2009, 13:55, Reply)
Again, this is when I worked for the americans
Users got three goes to enter their password. Three strikes means you're locked out, they'd then have to call us and get it reset.
"Sure, that's no problem, the computer has randomly generated a new password for you, you got a pen?"
"yes I do"
"N U M P T Y"
"is that uppercase?"
Yes it is, you have a nice day now"

That crazy random password generator, it seemed to generate the same password every time.
(, Sat 26 Sep 2009, 0:26, Reply)
In my last job
My chairman was the most IT illiterate person I had ever met. Bearing in mind this is a 68 year old, very shouty greek bloke (named Spiros) with a temper as long as his (probably) tiny cock. I suffered questions such as:

WHAT ARE ALL THESE PICTURES ON THE TV?
(translation: Desktop icons. What are they? Why do I have them? Why does X down the corridor have more than me? I want more of them. People seem to have a lot and I have only got 7).

WHY ARE ALL THE PICTURES ON THE TV GETTING SMALLER?
(trans: The gas arm holding his 28" TFT was slowly moving away from his seated position. It really was a distance/perspective issue)

MAKE THIS WORK! (handing me a DVD titled Asian Fuckholes Vol7)

MY PHONE DOES NOT WORK (he called me to tell me this)

WHEN I AM AT HOME I CANNOT GET MY EMAIL
(trans: I left my laptop in the office)

Etc.
(, Fri 25 Sep 2009, 13:15, 3 replies)
A funny thing happened the other day
I've just been trying to bridge two network interfaces on one of our storage machines. I made sure the right modules were loaded, changed /etc/conf.d/net so that bridge_br0 included the right interface names, but whenever I brought the interface up and started dhcpcd, all I got was a UDP storm, which made our Cisco router light up like a Christmas tree.

Imagine my embarrassment when I realised I'd forgotten to enable the spanning tree protocol! I added "stp on" to brctl_br0 and everything was fine.

True story
(, Thu 24 Sep 2009, 15:05, 10 replies)
An IT expert friend of mine did a bit of moonlighting working on a sex advice line
He only lasted one shift. Apparently his sage advice: “have you tried turning her on and off again?” didn’t go down too well with the punters...
(, Wed 30 Sep 2009, 10:08, 5 replies)

This question is now closed.

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