Friday, 6 March 2009

Which one is the "Any" key?

This is just really to get started - I've been asked to set-up a blog to take part in a study organised by a big company. The study is to help them understand some of the issues involved in support and how it could be improved. Call me Mr Cynical, but I think that the best thing to help us would be a brain implant for all users!

This is a rough list of some of the issues that we have had to deal with this week. One of the directors had a problem with his home PC at the weekend - daughter downloaded a music file and it had a virus. Then another director put some home pictures on his laptop and he has a trojan horse. So we have had to deal with that for a couple of days

We've had about 7 requests for help with printing - 4 needed a new toner cartridge, 2 the print spooler had stopped, 1 had a piece of paper jammed in the device.

A lady in payroll took the week off; someone else had to go in to the work, and she needed help setting up the PC so that she could work with the HR / Payroll software. She also needed her phone moved.

There was a request to move / repair a network cable - it was a temporary thing that has turned into a more permanent solution. One of the staff also had to go to another site as we are cabling up a new building and he needed to do a second lot of work on patching cables up.

I had to deal with a site in France - the VPN link went down again (their connection is dodgy). We have also been trying to get the DNS server transferring zone data, and I finally got that resolved.

They had a query with setting up a new email account that will be shared; this was made more difficult as they have both Office 2003 and 2007 and the proces is slightly different on each. I had to set-up a copy of Office 2007 so that I could create screenshots to help demo the process.

They also asked about potentially running an EDI process, however it turned out that was actually not what is happening, plus we are implementing a new ERP solution, which makes it academic anyway.

I've been carrying a massive series of updates on the new ERP - spent almost 3 full days on that alone. One of my staff runs an automated process for patching, but it can't do the ERP.

I'm also trying to get a server set-up to act as the DC for a child domain of the groups main domain - this is the brainchild of my opposite number in Germany. Unfortunately, it's made a bit difficult as the guy that looks after their network doesn't reply very quickly to emails. I'm still waiting for a response to a mail I sent on Tuesday.

We are putting in a new autoloader tape drive for backups; it's now in, and we seem to be getting the tapes working. We'll see how it works later. It's linked to an MS DPM server which we all think is the dog's nuts - it backs up all our servers on all sites and the recovery is a piece of cake. We are so impressed with this product.

In addition, one of the guys is developing a web based portal for use by our staff and customers - he has been trying to develop something to reduce the amount of Excel spreadsheets that are being used on another site.

Mid week I went to a vendor presentation - early start (5:00 am) and later finish (10:00 pm). We are way down south and it takes ages to get anywhere.

Hopefully that's enough to get started - more later.

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