Haywood: Is there a firewall on the computer?
Mrs. Customer: No
Haywood: OK, (taking the customer at her word) what IP address are you showing?
Mrs. Customer: How do I know that?
Haywood: Go to start>run and type in w-i-n-i-p-c-f-g
Mrs. Customer: OK
Haywood: Switch to your Ethernet adapter and tell me what it says for your IP address
Mrs. Customer: A.B.C.D
Haywood: OK, press release - not release all, but release.
Mrs. Customer: OK. It says 0.0.0.0
Haywood: Now press renew
Mrs. Customer: Now it says A.B.C.D
Haywood: I still cannot ping you. It's almost like there is a firewall on your computer.
Mrs. Customer: Well, Zone Alarm is turned off.
Haywood: Then that is your problem. You need to set Zone Alarm to not load at startup.
Geekspeek: Do you have a firewall on your computer?
Translation: Is there a firewall installed on your computer?
It's not a hard question, and they almost always know if they have one installed... I did not ask "Is there a firewall RUNNING on your computer?" I asked "Is there a firewall ON your computer?" By customers not telling me the truth about their routers and firewalls (and believe me, they LIE all the time...) that leads me to wonder if they will EVER tell the truth about ANYTHING????
Clueless customer: OK, whenever I am on with < ISP.net > I get, well, here is a perfect example, I get a box that says 'mumble, mumble, and if you are using mumble, mumble, your internet is not secure, mumble, mumble'
Haywood: Do you get lotsa pop-ups?
Clueless customer: Yeah, that's what I am trying to tell you.
Haywood: Do you get them when you are not even on the Internet?
Clueless customer: Oh yeah, like yesterday when I walked away from the computer for 1/2 an hour, I came back and there were like 43 Internet Explorer windows open and I didn't do anything!
Haywood: Well, it sounds like you are infected with some spyware/adware/trojan type of thingee.
Clueless customer: What's that?
Haywood: Basically, someone, not us, is watching what you do on the Internet and probably trying to target ads to you. This is essentially a program that is running on your computer, and something that we, your ISP, have no control over.
Clueless customer: So how do I fix it?
Haywood: You need to find and remove those programs. You likely have more than one on the machine.
Clueless customer: Really? Someone is watching what I do on the Internet.
Clueless customer: How did they do that? Haywood: You probably accidentally installed something without realizing what it was. Do you have Kazaa or Morpheus, or any Napster-like programs on your computer?
Clueless customer: I don't know. I just know how to turn it on and check Email.
Haywood: Check your Add/Remove Control panel for any unknown programs and uninstall them. Also go to download.com and search for Spyware and see what comes back. One of those programs should be able to help you out. This isn't anything that we can support.
Clueless customer:Oh. OK.
Try telling that to Tier 1. Somehow they just aren't getting it. We get these types of calls escalated all the time. And most come from the same (sub-contracted) call center in Augusta, GA. I think we should plan a trip out there and see if we can Ed-joo-muh-cate them southern folks on what we do and do not support... If I sold computers they would come pre-installed with Ad-Aware.
I think I figured out why this page was loading sooooooooo slowly... That satire search news ticker was the fault (it's down right now...). I have commented it out and the page loads like it should. Finally! Let me know if it still loads slowly for you... While a very funny addition to the website, it is not worth that long a wait... Sheesh!
Clueless Customer: They connect me to your Hotline.
I'm thinking "My hotline? When did I open a hotline?" So, I ask for his phone number and he gives me one that isn't pulling anything up in any of my tools. Now, he has already talked to Tier 1 before me so the theory goes that they would have looked up his info. I ask if he has another phone number that might be in my database and he tells me in this I-so-wish-this-could-be-my-main-phone-number-kinda-voice the "other" number. Of course that one works.
Clueless Customer: I cannot get an IP address. I get a message that say "An operation was attempted on something that is not a socket."
Me: Well, that is something I can't really help you with. This is an OS problem and we don't really troubleshoot OS issues. Is this a Dell or Gateway?
Clueless Customer: It's an eMachine.
Me: Well, you need to call them. This isn't something that your ISP can help with, as it is a computer issue.
(Have I mentioned that I LOVE that line???)
Why do customers think that the louder they complain, the more willing i am gonna be to help them?
It doesn't work that way. You just end up pissing me off more, and forcing me to put you in a Penalty Hold. Once you have cooled off a bit, I will talk with you but you better stop yelling. It is not helping!!!!
This cust has the idea that there is some setting in Windows that is holding him back:
Clueless Customer: Where can I set it so that I am getting all the speed I can? I am paying for 3 Mega-bytes (sic) and am only getting 1. I would at least like to get 2.
Haywood: You mean Megabits, right? And there is no "guranteed speed" you will recieve. Those numbers are the highest speed you could see. Not the speed you WILL see...
Clueless Customer: Well, I just want it to go as fast as possible. Can you uncap the modem so I can see how fast it really is going?
Clueless Customer: Uhm, no. I cannot do that.
Clueless Customer: So what setting do I need to change to get this thing moving faster. It is only testing at 1095 Megabits.
Clueless Customer: Windows XP is usually pretty good about the default settings being sufficient, as long as you have the "go fast" box checked.
Clueless Customer: Really? Where is that box?
Clueless Customer: I was just kidding. There is no such box.
Clueless Customer: Oh, well, I guess that I will have to live with this speed.
We ended up suggesting he try another NIC or Cat5 cable, but I couldn't pass up the chance to sneak that one in... And he fell for it!!!! I knew he would. Mwahahahahaha
Clueless Customer: After I reinstalled Windows, I cannot get onto the Internet.
Haywood: This sounds like a Windows problem...
Clueless Customer: OK.
As if to say "That doesn't matter, I still expect you help me". I mean, there could not be a clearer cut case of where to turn for support than in this one. Customer could get online before making changes to the computer, and now, all of a sudden, after "updating" Windows, he cannot get online. Hmm.... where to turn for support? Obviously, this is a problem with your ISP.... NOT! It's a problem with your computer and you need to call Dell, Gateway or whoever tricked you into buying that box!
So I figure, being the nice guy I am, and already having an out should we not be successful, I'll do a little probing and see what he has going on, because it's possible that it's something he is overlooking like a loose cable or something.... I mean, the guy did hold the line for over an hour just to talk to me... *grin*
Haywood: What kind of cable do you have connecting to modem to the computer
Clueless Customer (emphatically): ISB
Haywood: ISB? Do you mean USB?
Clueless Customer (nervously, with some trepedation): uhm, yeah, that's it. USB.
Haywood: Are you sure?
Clueless Customer (completely submissively): Yeah
Haywood: Thank you for calling < ISP.net >, this is Haywood. I can help you.
Clueless Customer: OK, do you know what the problem is?
Clueless Haywood: Nope. Let me put on my Carnac hat and see if I can guess what the problem is.
Clueless Customer: OK
Clueless Haywood: I'm gonna guess that you cannot connect to the Internet
Clueless Customer: Yup.
Clueless Haywood: OK, did Level one give you a ticket number?
Clueless Customer: Yes.
Clueless Haywood: Should I guess that too?
Clueless Customer: No, it is....
later on in the call....
Haywood: OK, click on start then run.
Clueless Customer: OK
Haywood: Now type w-i-n
Clueless Customer: wait a second
I mean, come on.... W, I, N.... It's not that hard to remember... That one always gets me. I usually pause for a second or two after Start > Run, to make sure they are with me and I would say 80% of the time I hear that "Wait!" or "Wait a second" as I am in the middle of the word...
Customer goes on and on about his problem in all this "high class techno-speak" phrasing.
Clueless Customer: I wanted to make sure my modem's not 'losing the channels it is being assigned.' Especially with all this blaster stuff going on...
Clueless Customer: So if you're tying to query any additional information from it
Clueless Customer: Let's see if i can get the same problem enacted here.
Clueless Customer: After the techs and i change some things around or something of that ilk the page feeds are as they should be.
Clueless Customer: no matter where i go it seems to drop out and not work at all.
Clueless Customer: i am getting good page loads on all my bookmarked pages here.
Clueless Customer: Much better then when it was busy.
Clueless Customer: It would dig up this IP and that is more or less where it would die at.
All of these phrases were written down verbatim, as he was just talking, talking talking, it was all I could do to keep up... There was no way I would have remembered all that crap he was spewing...