If you're looking for the funniest stuff, I suggest starting with the Steve, Don't Eat It Homage and then the travel category. You're on your own with the older posts that have yet to be categorized.

Thursday, April 24, 2008

Computer Alzheimer's

As of a few weeks ago, my work laptop had 512MB of memory. After innumerable Microsoft security updates and a new virus scanner, just running Outlook and a browser used up all my memory. I looked online and found an upgrade to 1GB would cost about $50. What follows is a description of what it takes to get a $50 memory upgrade at my company.

Person 1 (me) asks Person 2 (my manager) if an upgrade can be procured. Person 2 okays it. Person 1 calls the help desk and speaks to Person 3 who takes the information (i.e. User needs more memory) and creates a ticket. The ticket is sent to Person 4 (PC support) and Person 4 does something that generates a "request for approval" from Person 2.

After Person 2 approves, Person 4 calls Person 1 to determine computer type (and hence memory type), current memory and new memory. After discussion, Person 4 determines that two 512MB modules will need to be ordered. Person 4 indicates to Person 1 that this generally takes two days. Person 4 places an order with some company for the memory. Person 4 closes the ticket, indicating a new ticket (for installation) will be opened when the memory arrives.

Patient Person 1, after 1 week, sends email to Person 4 asking what is going on. Apparently, this is a violation of the prime directive. No response is received but the following day another person in PC support (person 5) creates a ticket stating that Person 1's department has already been charged for memory and nothing else. As a side note, the correct procedure is for Person 1 to call the Help Desk (now Person 6 but had Person 1 done this Person 6 would be Person 5 and Person 5 would be Person 6) and have them open a ticket.

Almost another week passes and patience-wearing-thin Person 1 is kicking himself for not ordering the memory and installing it himself. Even paying for it out of his own pocket seems reasonable at this point. But out of the dungeon of PC support comes a phone call. It is Person 5. "Person 1," he says, "we have your memory."

Glory be and hallelujah! The Messiah, in the form of two 512MB SO-DIMMs, has come.

"Just bring your laptop down and we'll install it."

But person 1 is working. And person 5 is a minute walk away. Plus person 1 needs to close all his programs and shutdown his computer. Ideally, person 1 would do this just before lunch, dropping off the laptop at PC Support (which is right by the cafeteria) and picking it back up after lunch saving countless minutes.

But PC Support is closed during lunch, probably to play Dungeons and Dragons.

So Person 1 spends 5 minutes shutting things down and another 5 walking to the dungeon. Person 5 takes the laptop, installs the new memory and boots it back up to ensure all is well.

"Your laptop doesn't seem to like the memory," says non-anti-statically grounded Person 5.

Person 1 is wonders how he can write his letter of resignation without his laptop while Person 5 applies Computer Fix #1.

Remove and re-install.

As usual, Computer Fix #1 works and Person 5 returns laptop to Person 1 who walks 5 minutes back to his office, boots it up and contemplates how a company can survive when a $50 memory upgrade requires $1000 of labor.


Anonymous said...

Don't get me started. I am trying to get a monitor.


talljay said...

C'mon. Can't you do your work without a monitor? Maybe you're just not trying hard enough.