The Un-Help Desk Blues

My company uses a Bluetooth network stuffed full of Symbol's Gemini handhelds, running Windows CE with an assortment of *NIX apps, all of which are exceptionally touchy and persnickety.

Naturally, as an hourly peasant, I am in charge of of keeping them up and running, and dealing with any issues that arise.

I have a big (insert exceptionally bad word) problem.

I believe I have some type of file corruption, and I have spent three weeks fighting with the Help Desk, staffed by the most stupid, moronic, arrogant idiots it has ever been my pleasure to meet.

New units coming into the store must be booted into our system, and download a lengthly set of drivers and files.

A new unit will connect at full signal strength, download all the files, go through the final reboot and never talk to the system again, unless you are within 20 feet of an antenna.

"It's the radio card," the Help Desk says.

They sent me a new unit.

It was a possibility, and I believed them.

I began to doubt them when the second did the same thing.

The next one was a brand new unit, direct from Symbol, with a serial number from a completely different series than we had been getting.

It did the same thing.

Called them back.

They let me talk to Symbol.

The Symbol Help Desk, slightly brighter than our Help Desk, discovered that the unit seems to be talking to the system, but not receiving. New Unit told them it was connecting at 5.5Mbps; it told me it was connecting at .5.

I told them that if it was a person, this would be a good moment to begin thinking about organ donation.

They patted me on the head and diagnosed it as a bad radio card.

I expected this.

I had already ordered another, and it came in that afternoon.

I called the Help Desk again, and with a group of three new Geminis, proved successfully that all three of them were ready to offer up a kidney.

"Oh," the Help Desk told me. "I've never seen anything like this."

Patiently I again explained that the fact that all three of them are doing the exact same thing, behaving in the exact same way, and doing it as a group, would seem to indicate that there is a problem with the files they are downloading.

"Oh," the Help Desk told me. (Sounds of typing, paper shuffling, coffee drinking.) "It must be a software issue."

I told them I wasn't sending back any of them until the problem was resolved.

I have been referred on to Programming.

Anyone want to bet they tell me it's a bad radio card?


Yabu said...

I wouldn't take that bet.

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