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 Share you IT and computer horror stories

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dwatina
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PostPosted: Wed Nov 30, 2011 12:43 pm Reply with quoteBack to top

Quote:
What's wallpaper?...

In the old days, the desktop picture (or background picture) was called "wallpaper" by some folks.

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Ms Mockinatrix
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PostPosted: Wed Nov 30, 2011 1:26 pm Reply with quoteBack to top

I used to work for a well known UK based Entertainment company (now in liquidation). My job was to support the clubs/pubs etc with their back office and till network.

One morning 'Dave' or Dangerous Dave as I renamed him, called me in a panic. "my computer won't work" after going through the usual tech support 'stuff' turning off/on again, fuse/plug/socket stuff it turned out that he'd decided to have a 'tidy up' of the C:\.

He'd never once used the files hanging about in C:\ in all the years he'd been there he told me, so moved them to a folder called 'odd files'. "it worked fine this morning until we had a power cut" he told me........

I told him never to remove/move/delete any file off the computer ever again and if it needed looking at I'd do it remotely for him!


In another 'unit' there was a repeated power outage problem with the tills. Now the till network was a separate ring from all the other electrical items and all the tills used a 3amp fuse. After many many weeks of eliminating EVERYTHING we could think of, electricians called etc, nothing......went to site to see it for myself. Got there early.......bar staff arrive, one with wet hair. Promptly unplugs the main till and plugs in her hairdryer.....

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Morgain Le Fay
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PostPosted: Wed Nov 30, 2011 1:57 pm Reply with quoteBack to top

Nailgunner wrote:

My saddest failure was losing a ton of photos on an external drive that died for no reason.



So you are saying my external drive could possibly die! O, joy of joys!

I was using a popular online service to backup my computer, then thought an external backup system would save money. I did move and save all my pictures to discs but it sounds like I might need to add another step to backing up or going back to the online service.

What does everyone else do?

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bait_my_hook
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PostPosted: Wed Nov 30, 2011 3:18 pm Reply with quoteBack to top

had a mate who's external died HD - all his photos on it,
turns out to be the only copies! so I gently explained the concept of an external B-A-C-K-U-P to him . . lucky for him it was the pcb in the housing, £12 for a new housing and it was fine, worrying as he is a senior telecomms engineer - there again he's also a rock drummer, nuff said

another mate needed me to help get a new Garmin device working, I got him to log into my remote control site, eventually! my login name had 2 underscores in it, problem was that eventually I realised that he didn't know what an underscore was, so told him to hold the shift key and press the key between the '9' and the '='
. . kept telling me it's not working after 10 minutes he said "all I'm getting is a little line" banghead

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PostPosted: Wed Nov 30, 2011 6:27 pm Reply with quoteBack to top

Morgaine, back up to multiple hard drives on other pcs, or burn your stuff to dvds...or both. Wink

I once had 500 cockroaches come out of a pc onto the table when I opened the cover. I yelled, "Hey, did you know you have real "bugs" in this computer?!!" I was in a pet store. They didn't think it was that funny, it was even horrifying, but I was LMAO. Laughing

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Morgain Le Fay
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PostPosted: Wed Nov 30, 2011 7:17 pm Reply with quoteBack to top

^^ I used to use Carbonite, that online back up service. It usually costs about $59/yr however through several organizations I belong to I got it for about $49/yr.

Cockroaches? Yuck. One time where Quinn works (aircraft refurbishing) they had an airplane come in from India which had been sitting idle for several years. After other incidents with refurbishing India airplanes, they fumigated this one. A couple days later thousands of cockroaches and mice came tumbling down from the overhead areas and areas where there was computer equipment. Double yuck!

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PostPosted: Wed Nov 30, 2011 9:35 pm Reply with quoteBack to top

^^ I've been recommended to use MyPC backup. Any experience there?

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PostPosted: Wed Nov 30, 2011 10:00 pm Reply with quoteBack to top

About 12 years ago, the office I worked at had an official IT team consisting of four managers who knew nothing about computers. So I was one of the unofficial support team who everyone else went to when they had a problem.
One day all four were standing round a PC scratching their heads. after about five minutes curiosity got the better of me, and I wandered over. Glanced at the error message, ejected the floppy disk, pressed the "Any" key, and walked away without saying anything.

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PostPosted: Thu Dec 01, 2011 5:16 am Reply with quoteBack to top

Not really computers but line-of-sight microwave links: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cZkAP-CQlhA - always makes me think of Scrat in Ice Age ...

I found a mummified mouse in my Athlon box one day. Put it on Ebay. Got bollocked by Ebay and called "sick" and "depraved" on a large number of forums. heh Laughing

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PostPosted: Thu Dec 01, 2011 5:56 am Reply with quoteBack to top

One time two of my role-playing buddies were trying to write a program for game purposes and it kept crashing. Now, I know nothing at all about programming, so I kept clear.

Then I wandered up to the terminal to kibitz, and asked, "Compex? Is that supposed to be there?"

There was a moment's silence, the guys looked at each other, and then shot me a combined glare of pure venom.

The word was supposed to be "Complex".

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PostPosted: Thu Dec 01, 2011 8:53 am Reply with quoteBack to top

^^^^^
for back ups, if not too many then I'd suggest use DropBox

at least for latest stuff, big advantage is that it happens automatically until you get round to archiving them to DVD etc.

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PostPosted: Thu Dec 01, 2011 2:51 pm Reply with quoteBack to top

I am in no way an IT person but I know a little bit about computers. My gf came home from work and asked me why the computer clock was always wrong. I told her the battery needs replacing. The next day she passed that to the asst. manager that claimed to have some flavor of computer degree and she allowed there were no batteries in a computer.

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PostPosted: Thu Dec 01, 2011 3:05 pm Reply with quoteBack to top

bait_my_hook wrote:
^^^^^
for back ups, if not too many then I'd suggest use DropBox


I would suggest TrueCrypt before storing anything in the cloud, not that you have anything to hide.

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PostPosted: Thu Dec 01, 2011 3:28 pm Reply with quoteBack to top

^^Hmmm..PF, yes. You might be right. Read these articles recently:
http://news.cnet.com/8301-31921_3-20072755-281/dropbox-confirms-security-glitch-no-password-required/

http://www.zdnet.com/blog/bott/sorry-dropbox-i-still-dont-trust-you/4173

Encryption locally before uploading to any cloud backup service would be a good idea.

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Benjamin_Franklin
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PostPosted: Thu Dec 01, 2011 4:51 pm Reply with quoteBack to top

This isn't so much of a horror story as it is something that I experienced back when I was at a medium sized manufacturing company doing web development and helping with network support.

We had this gal who was a controller for one of our facilities. She had a reputation for being a hard ass and often lacking patience. She wasn't a bad looking woman, but she wasn't a head turner either. As time went by I had many good conversations with her, looked at the pictures of her family that sat on her desk, etc. The two of us got along fine.

Well this one day back when Windows NT Server was common, as a result of a problem unrelated to that woman, our network admin and myself needed to see everyone's network passwords. There was a utility available that could crack the file, though it took some time. So we ran that and were able to solve the issue. But we were curious about how many people had really dumb passwords like "password" or "abc123". As we browsed through the list we discovered the word "horny" on the list. Then we saw that it was being used by the gal I mentioned. We were just like, "uhhhh" and had a bit of a laugh. A few months later we had to go through the same process with the passwords and of course we checked on that gal's again. It had changed to some other sexual-themed word.

Here's a horror story, but it actually occurred within the IT department. This was at the same company as above.

The same network admin (I'll call him Ed) and I who had done the password stuff were fairly close. Religion, politics, gaming, and many other topics were regularly discussed in our conversations. One day he pulled me aside and we walked outside to talk because he was really struggling with how to deal with the other network administrator (I'll call him Jim).

Apparently Jim was hardly getting anything done, so Ed was having to pick up the slack, and it was wearing him down. Plus he was sick of the fact that what little work Jim did was poor quality. Well after my discussion with Ed, the matter seemed to go away for a few weeks. Then one day Ed came to me and said he needed my opinion. The internet connection for the company had become very slow. At first we had attributed it to increased traffic with new hires, more data going in and out for EDI and other stuff, and so on. But with the help of a 3rd party consultant checking out our network remotely, and then another tool that Ed used, he discovered that most of the bandwidth was being used by one computer - Jim's. So Ed had come to me to ask my opinion about secretly and stealthily installing a remote access tool onto Jim's computer in order to watch what he was doing. I told him to go for it and I would back him up if our supervisor said anything.

The next day Ed came to me to let me know that he had done the install. A bit later he discreetly said that we needed to talk with our boss immediately while Jim was still "working" on his computer. We casually walked out of our office under the guise of going to help someone. Ed had his laptop with him. We went to our boss and Ed showed us what he was seeing on Jim's machine. The man was sitting there with Limewire (I think...it may have been a similar program) downloading porn, movies and pictures in the background, and zero work being done. His download queue was nothing but lots of porn. And some of the file names indicated that the content of the movies was too disgusting for any of us to stomach.

I think Jim was fired two days later. Afterward we realized that there were some signs that he was a bad hire. For example, he had done some work mounting hardware in a rack. It was terrible. The equipment was not level, and the bolts had been put in forcefully so the threads were pretty much ruined, making it hard to remove them. The monitor on Jim's desk was turned away from everyone else, and he often would rest his hand on the top of it - but he was just trying to shield anyone from seeing what he was doing. When someone came to him for help he typically would say he didn't know, or he would get Ed to do the work. We had to assume that he had gotten his certification by memorizing the answers ahead of time - one of those MCSEs who has little practical knowledge nor experience.

We laughed about that whole saga many times, but at the time it was just terrible. We couldn't believe that was going on right under our noses.

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Jim Morrison
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PostPosted: Thu Dec 01, 2011 6:24 pm Reply with quoteBack to top

^^ did you get it on with her? Very Happy

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Benjamin_Franklin
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PostPosted: Thu Dec 01, 2011 6:54 pm Reply with quoteBack to top

^^^ Laughing Nah, she was/is married with kids. For me that's off limits.

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Jim Morrison
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PostPosted: Thu Dec 01, 2011 6:59 pm Reply with quoteBack to top

^^ so you are not a back door man

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BearSeason
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PostPosted: Fri Dec 02, 2011 3:05 am Reply with quoteBack to top

Another horror story I just remembered:

Back in my college days, I was sharing an apartment with a couple of people. One of my roommates didn't want to pay for his internet so he liked to use the wireless networks that others in our building had. Of course, this was a problem when those networks were turned off. One day, he called me at work and asked if he could use my desktop computer to check his e-mail. I told him he could use my computer any time he needed to as long as he absolutely, under no circumstances, downloaded anything to it, ever.

Now, this was back when I wasn't particularly responsible about protecting my computer. I had anti-virus software but I never updated it and I never ran any clean-ups on my hard drive. So, naturally, my computer had a tendency to run pretty slowly. Apparently, my roommate did not like this very much. He complained to me about it all the time. Never mind that I was doing him a favor by letting him use it in the first place.

One day, my computer started popping up with random error messages and periodically crashing. I called my dad for free tech support. He came to my apartment to check the problem for himself and descovered that some Malware had been downloaded to my computer. The name of this file? "Winfixer". My dad questioned me about it and, of course, I had no idea what it was. At that point, my roommate came into the room and said, "Oh yeah, I downloaded that because your computer was running so slowly. I figured that would fix the problem." Evil or Very Mad

Needless to say, my dad and I were both livid. My dad lectured him for what felt like hours about the dangers of dowloading unsafe files. Once my dad finished with him, I took over and lectured him about the physical dangers of messing with my property without my permission. After my dad fixed my computer and left, I immediately password protected it and have never let anyone (friends, family, anyone) have access to my computer without me being present again.

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bait_my_hook
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PostPosted: Fri Dec 02, 2011 9:10 am Reply with quoteBack to top

@ Benjamin_Franklin
ah. l0ftcrack, proved to me on more than one occasion that the seniority of people is usually inversely proportional to the strength of their passwords (= Dilbert in RL)

@the esteemed pastor
I agree about TrueCypt, I have one in my Dropbox but since we were discussing photos** etc, for these I don't encrypt (nor actually for my 419e stuff - forms etc. - anyone looking would just go WTF? Laughing)


** though guess it depends upon what sort of photos you take Shocked

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----------------------------------------
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PostPosted: Fri Dec 02, 2011 11:09 am Reply with quoteBack to top

@bait_my_hook I'd definitely have to encrypt my scambaiting folder. In fact when they brought in those "extreme porn" laws I had to delete a few files that used to "accidentally" get sent to lads instead of the WU scan Smile

And on the subject I've a similar story to @benjamin_franklyn. I worked at a place once where we were running a bunch of tests at the weekend and noticed a lot of activity on a computer belonging to someone in Marketing. A bit of digging around by the network guys revealed an awful lot of porn featuring actresses with four-footed leading men being downloaded.

Next day he was gone but amazingly three days later he was back! Turns out the company didn't have an "unnaceptable use" policy for the internet and so they had no grounds to sack him and he'd threatened to sue. Mind you I believe he left a few months later as he grew tired of people making barking and whinnying sounds whenever they passed him Very Happy

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bait_my_hook
Master of Master Baiters


Joined: 03 Aug 2010
Posts: 857
Location: God's own county, UK


PostPosted: Fri Dec 02, 2011 11:38 am Reply with quoteBack to top

^^^^^^
Laughing
can't beat a bit of public humiliation eh?

slightly different subject; one place I worked a shop floor supervisor was always nicking & eating a colleagues sandwiches when they were on night shift - place was a very remote industrial site so no chance of buying replacements easily

so one day the vic brought some new sandwiches in, they were nicked & eaten - then he was asked "like those new ones eh?"
reply "oh yes"
"good 'cos that was cat food"

I can report that meows could be heard throughout the shop floor many months later - revenge served cold, in this case cold sandwiches

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N N N
Master of Master Baiters


Joined: 26 Sep 2008
Posts: 689


PostPosted: Fri Dec 02, 2011 1:23 pm Reply with quoteBack to top

slightly off ... but worthy of repeat.

We had an IT support manager called Roger, his services were in constant demand, he was pretty good at his job after all, no complaints there.

The only way to get hold of him (back then) was to put a call out for him over the office tannoy system. This was run by the switchboard ladies whom to a lady were the sweetest most demure people you could wish to meet.

Protocol for a call over the tannoy was to use title, initial and surname, quite properly.

Sadly Roger's surname was Sare ... Laughing
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Jim Morrison
Elite Baiter


Joined: 12 Mar 2010
Posts: 1848
Location: Taking a face from the ancient gallery


PostPosted: Fri Dec 02, 2011 6:29 pm Reply with quoteBack to top

@ sunshine: what laws against extreme porn? *begins to pour gasoline on the computer*

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bait_my_hook
Master of Master Baiters


Joined: 03 Aug 2010
Posts: 857
Location: God's own county, UK


PostPosted: Fri Dec 02, 2011 7:50 pm Reply with quoteBack to top

^^^^^^^^
another stupid law from the last UK government (it included cartoons FFS)

_________________
Easter Egg 2012 Closed lad accounts x lots x few Sand Timer x3
Mass Clown Bait 2011 HERE: clownsX5 cupidsX3 fishers-of-menX1 baptismX1 bunnyX1 circus-skillsX2
Nativity 2011 bait (with lots of goats) is here

----------------------------------------
AMU NNA GI = YOU BIG COCK
Am not comfortable with this western union thing any more - Kelvin Smith
...i will get you down you asshole f*cking shit - Tom Bruce the hitlad
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