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Below are the 9 most recent journal entries recorded in Stupid Helpdesk Tickets' LiveJournal:

Wednesday, September 27th, 2006
11:52 am
[frostyw]
[Ticket 81691] NAME REDACTED - Network Associates
Customer complaint: The is a filter in email where is recognizes .com from an email address and does not delivery the message! This is very annoying...

-----Original Message-----
From: MAILER-DAEMON [mailto:MAILER-DAEMON]
Sent: Wednesday, September 27, 2006 5:23 AM
To: NAME REDACTED
Subject: Network Associates Webshield - e-mail Content Alert

Mail from <ADDRESS REDACTED> to <ADDRESS REDACTED> <ADDRESS REDACTED> with subject "RE: TBGS Instrumentation Location" was blocked by our mail gateway because of "Executable attachment .com". This is a precaution to prevent viruses and inappropriate messages from entering our network. If appropriate, please use an alternative way to deliver this message. For assistance send an email to VirusMaster@DOMAIN REDACTED.


BWUH?! What the hell is this guy on, and can I have some? What makes him think that the "Executable attachment .com" has anything to do with his e-mail address?

Disposition: I sent this right back to the Help Desk with the following commentary:
09/27/2006 11:49:34 Christopher Saia (CSAIA) Phone 1-508-549-####
Message is blocked because of a .COM attachment, not because of .COM in e-mail address!!! Please re-read error message. (Besides, this is the remote side not accepting it. Nothing we can do about that. And sending out *.com files is not acceptable by IPS e-mail policy, should have been blocked by GroupShield, which is a Messaging application.)


Current Mood: banging head against desk
Monday, June 12th, 2006
7:03 pm
[frostyw]
Something I found on DSLReports that made me chuckle.

Indeed, the user is stupid for not reading the e-mail, though I have to wonder who says putting Line 1 on the Handsfree/Mute button as normal?!

http://www.dslreports.com/forum/remark,16288590
Monday, February 13th, 2006
3:55 pm
[feren]
From Helpdesk:

Ticket: 252349
Sent: Monday, Feb 13 2006
From: [redacted]

Description:
I cannot access Outlook through my VPN since upgrading to Outlook 2003

Well, let's see here. The user never provided his username, thus it doesn't meet basic informational requirements and so never should have been made into a ticket -- but I have my friends in the Stupid Helpdesk who are more than willing to pass this dreck on to me so it's in my queue now. That's okay, though, I found him after 20 minutes of searching our various VPN concentrators. Sure enough he has the "email" profile assigned to him so this isn't a matter of the VPN system preventing him from accessing the e-mail. And then I re-read the problem! Ah-hah, it all becomes clear!

I appended the following note and punted it back to the Stupid Helpdesk:

HELPDESK, think about this:
- if he was able to access e-mail via Outlook across the VPN fine
- and then he upgraded Outlook
- and then he COULDN'T access e-mail via Outlook across the VPN
...
Q: What has changed here?
A: Outlook!

So I submit it is probably an Outlook problem and not related to VPN at all. This should go to the PCTechs to review that he has the proper settings in Outlook and has his HOSTS file configured, etc etc etc etc etc etc.


Current Mood: frustrated
Monday, January 30th, 2006
2:39 pm
[feren]
You people make me sad.
Ticket number: XXXXXX

Problem Description:

Per [redacted first name with last initial]. Tech needs to set up his ourlook for VPN access.

[Redacted first name] requires the same VPN access as the DBA team.


Let's recount where things went horribly wrong here:
  • I dunno who [first name with last initial] is. Is he this person's manager? VPN access requests have to come from a manager.
  • What the hell is "ourlook?" I'm sure you meant "Outlook" but how is Outlook going to get this person VPN access?
  • "Tech needs to set up?" Which tech? I'm an engineer so I'm sure you don't mean me. Do you mean PCTechs or did we hire some poor bastard with the name of "Tech" and I haven't seen the new hire form for 'em yet?
  • Giving me the user's first name and only their first name does not provide sufficient information to actually create the VPN login.
  • Our DBAs don't have access to Outlook through the VPN, so obviously this guy does NOT need the same level of access.


The procedure for what information is necessary along with how the ticket must be routed to properly request VPN access ... well, that procedure has been in place for three years here. Why, suddenly, inexplicably has it broken down? Oh wait, that's a new name under the "Ticket Opened By" field. Looks like I have another drooling moron to train in the ways of reading documentation. I may also ask what "ourlook" is while I'm educating them with a nailbat.

Current Mood: working
Wednesday, May 11th, 2005
10:38 pm
[feren]
Dumb, dumb helpdesk.
I thought I'd share a piece of my professional hell with you all. Heck, you might get a laugh out of this e-mail I sent to the manager and supervisor of Helpdesk Operations here at my office. The backstory is ticket #205035 landed in my queue. I worked it, and e-mailed the Helpdesk to ask that it be reassigned to the PCTechs for finishing work with the staff. The Helpdesk chose to create a new ticket on my behalf (ticket #205963) with my "please reassign this ticket" as the problem description, and then assigned that new ticket to the PCTechs queue.

I found this out when I got the "thank you for opening a ticket" missive in my inbox. Hilarity ensues, as you will see below.


--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
From: Feren
Sent: Wed 5/11/2005 10:14 PM
To: [REDACTED] - HD Supervisor; [REDACTED] HD Manager
Subject: RE: Help Desk Ticket 205963


[REDACTED]/[REDACTED],

I didn't ask for a helpdesk ticket to be created and assigned to the PCtechs, I clearly asked for ticket #205035 to be reassigned from my queue to the PCTechs queue. In what seems like a cruel twist of fate, it even says "please reassign this ticket to the PCTechs" in the problem description of this new ticket (#205963, quoted below).

This is the third time this has happened in the last couple of weeks. Is anybody down there even reading these e-mails, or are they being automatically turned into a ticket regardless of their actual content? The other times when I ask for a ticket to be re-queued it goes ignored for weeks on end until I raise a fuss with one of you over broken behavior.

Pestering the two of you about this stuff is a waste of my cycles as well as yours and doesn't seem to be resolving the overarching issue at hand. So I ask, what can we do to un-break this process? I'm willing to just start assigning the tickets to other queues myself if that's what it takes (Heck, maybe that actually the new process and I am the one exhibiting broken behavior). While the currently defined process says I am to send a notice to the Helpdesk and have them requeue, I'm concerned that trying to follow that procedure is having quite the adverse impact upon the quality of service we're providing to the userbase, so it seems to be in our best interest to move away from it.

Thoughts? Should we look to redesign the flow of ticket handoff between teams when tickets like this must pass from one group to the other to complete the overall request?


-------------BEGIN QUOTE OF NEW TICKET-----------------------------------
From: Help Desk, [REDACTED]
Sent: Wed 5/11/2005 5:39 PM
To: Feren
Subject: Help Desk Ticket 205963


Thank you for contacting the [REDACTED] Help Desk. Resolving your issue is very important to us. We have opened ticket number 205963 written at 2005-05-11 16:38:15 in order to process your request more efficiently. Please use this ticket number for any future reference to this subject.
Within this ticket we have documented your issue as follows:

Problem Description
#-----Original Message-----
#From: Feren Sent: Wednesday, May 11, 2005 10:48 AM
#To: [REDACTED] - User
#Cc: Help Desk, [REDACTED]
#Subject: HelpDesk Edit Ticket 205035
#
#Helpdesk, Please reassign to PCTechs for installation of Secure Client on these developer's laptops. Thanks!
#-JFO@0946CDT.5.11.05
#
#Description:
# -----Original Message----- From: [REDACTED] - User
#Sent: Friday, May 06, 2005 10:22 AM
#To: Help Desk, [REDACTED]
#Cc: Feren
#Subject: VPN Accounts Please assign to Feren
#Please create VPN accounts for the following developers:
#[REDACTED], ID [REDACTED]
#[REDACTED], ID [REDACTED]
#[REDACTED], ID [REDACTED]
#Please set them them up with the same access privileges as [REDACTED]. Feren - I'm forwarding you the approval from [REDACTED] for your documentation. Let me know if you need #anything else. Thanks much.
#
#Resolution:
#Accounts created as requested. Forwarding to Helpdesk, request reassign to PCTechs for software install. -JFO@0946CDT.5.11.05

A member of the staff will be contacting you. If you need further assistance do not hesitate to contact the Help Desk.

[REDACTED] HelpDesk
helpdesk@[REDACTED].edu
helpdesk@[REDACTED].edu
support@[REDACTED].com
Toll free [REDACTED]

Current Mood: frankly, amazed
Monday, November 22nd, 2004
9:32 pm
[frostyw]
We need to liven things up around here a lil' bit.
This is probably only of interest to those in computing professions.

And this guy is our global mail administrator.Collapse )

Current Mood: amused
Friday, August 13th, 2004
1:31 pm
[feren]
Stupid helpdesk ticket number 156165....
Apparently this user becomes alarmed when the phone functions as expected. You see, if somebody calls and hangs up the phone will indicate a missed call. This is how all our VoIP phones work, and how they have always worked since we installed the system. It doesn't matter if it rings once and stops right away, or rings thirty times before the user hangs up. If the phone has rung and the phone's owner does not pick up the handset before the calling party hangs up, it says "Missed call."

Evidentally the user thought this indicated some sort of "malfunction" and raised a stink. This is especially annoying since the HelpDesk is on this same VoIP system and know how it behaves, yet they opened this ticket anyway with the following problem description:




-----Original Message-----
To: HELP DESK
Subject: FW: Phone

Hello,

We are having another phone issue today.
Please advise.
Thank you,
[redacted]

> -----Original Message-----
> From: [redacted]
> Sent: Friday, August 13, 2004 8:44 AM
> To: [redacted]
> Subject: RE: Phone
>
> The phone rang once then stopped and it indicates that I missed a call
>
> -----Original Message-----
> From: [redacted]
> Sent: Friday, August 13, 2004 8:30 AM
> To: [redacted]
> Subject: RE: Phone
>
> What kind of problem?
>
> -----Original Message-----
> From: [redacted]
> Sent: Friday, August 13, 2004 8:09 AM
> To: [redacted]
> Subject: Phone
>
> Had some sort of phone problem missed two calls




Yet if I were to kill the helpdesk techs for opening this ticket I would be the criminal. There's no justice, I tell you.

Current Mood: apathetic
Tuesday, June 22nd, 2004
6:33 pm
[feren]
This one is another of my personal favorites. It's a few months old, but still indicates exactly what can go wrong when diseased monkeys man the phones...



I can't believe the Help Desk let this get through. Actually, I take that back -- I am Jack's complete and utter lack of surprise that the Helpless Desk let this get through. Why do we always hire idiots?

So ticket number 120366 gets plunked into my queue with all the speed and grace of a brick that's been knocked off a tenth-story window ledge, and I shit you not when I say the entire problem description is this:

Could you please check the Administrative port # 6 on the switch at the DVUC in Miami.

Thanks-Bob


After repressing the urge to go down to the helpdesk and start swinging a hatchet around I calmly typed a reply:

Checked Miami DVUC switch, admin port six is still there. Ticket closed, have a good day. -JFO@0813CST.2.19.04


Current Mood: cynical
Thursday, May 27th, 2004
12:59 pm
[feren]
Today's stupid helpdesk ticket
Ticket Number: 142152
Priority: Low
Tech Assigned: Feren
Type: E-mail
User: C. Koop
Category/Subcategory: Network / Connectivity Problems

Problem Description:
C. Koop wants WS_FTP access for new DVUC ioptimize Support Manager T. G. Walter




Well, that's great! I have no idea how this made it past the help desk -- either they did a terrible job transcribing this e-mail into a ticket or they just stopped caring about trying to filter out requests that make no sense. Once I figured out how to parse a run-on sentence with no punctuation I came to understand that the DVUC division has a new employee named T. G. Walter, with the title of Support Manager for the "ioptimize" System (whatever the hell that is). I know what WS_FTP is -- I have been awake this last decade -- so I can guess he wants FTP access to something. There's just two critical pieces of information I'm missing... WHAT does he want access to and from where? This ticket never should have been created without that information, but there it is, big as life and twice as ugly. So now I'm left to magically divine through my Spooky Engineer Powers what the hell it is this user needs and if I can help him or if this ticket needs to be rerouted somewhere else. I don't install FTP clients, so if he needs WS_FTP installed he's pretty much SOL until one of the PC Technicians has a minute of free time to visit his desk. If he wants FTP access to a server from home I can set up a VPN tunnel for him, but if he wants FTP access to a specific server internally we have to determine if it's being blocked by the firewalls or if there is a local ACL on the server in question.

Of course, to do that I would need to know where he's trying to reach, which places us firmly back at square one with "not enough information."

Naturally the user is not returning e-mails or telephone calls, so I have no idea what it is that he wants and thus can't route the ticket. So for now it sits in my queue, mocking me, laughing at how easily I've been thwarted. Thanks a lot, guys and girls of the Helpdesk. I know that at $9.75 an hour you're not really inclined to put too much effort into making these tickets informative, but I think this probably falls under the category of "not even giving a shit about giving the appearance of trying anymore." The only saving grace is they had the good sense to make this a "low priority" issue.

Current Mood: confused
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