0627: "Tech Support Cheat Sheet"

This forum is for the individual discussion thread that goes with each new comic.

Moderators: Moderators General, Prelates, Magistrates

taza
Posts: 2
Joined: Mon Nov 24, 2008 9:13 am UTC

Re: "Tech Support Cheat Sheet" Discussion

Postby taza » Mon Aug 24, 2009 5:48 am UTC

There's a major problem with this one.

What if the person doesn't speak the language the interface is in?

... and this happens often, given I'm not from an English-speaking country.

speqter
Posts: 13
Joined: Mon May 12, 2008 8:01 am UTC

Re: "Tech Support Cheat Sheet" Discussion

Postby speqter » Mon Aug 24, 2009 5:57 am UTC

I think this flowchart has been hammered well into the brains of gamers everywhere.
Or do you guys think that intuition is inborn?

User avatar
beinsane
Posts: 42
Joined: Wed Sep 27, 2006 4:41 am UTC

Re: "Tech Support Cheat Sheet" Discussion

Postby beinsane » Mon Aug 24, 2009 6:05 am UTC

Returning from oblivion to say: yes. This is exactly why when giving computer instructions over the phone, my first instinct is to tell the other party "look, it'd be faster to fly me out there and let me fix it myself."
Hello, this is bein, and I pronounce "bein" as "bein".

achan1058
Posts: 1783
Joined: Sun Nov 30, 2008 9:50 pm UTC

Re: "Tech Support Cheat Sheet" Discussion

Postby achan1058 » Mon Aug 24, 2009 6:09 am UTC

So true. It works 90% of the time. Only on rare instance you can't find something, or that you find that it is actually M$'s fault or something.

User avatar
diotimajsh
Posts: 658
Joined: Wed Nov 14, 2007 7:10 am UTC
Contact:

Re: "Tech Support Cheat Sheet" Discussion

Postby diotimajsh » Mon Aug 24, 2009 6:18 am UTC

So been here, so done that.

You could also add a "post question on various tech forums through the interwebs" box somewhere.
Osha wrote:Foolish Patriarchy! Your feeble attempts at social pressure have no effect on my invincible awesomeness! Bwahahahaa


Blog type thing

User avatar
headsign
Posts: 10
Joined: Mon Aug 24, 2009 6:06 am UTC

Re: "Tech Support Cheat Sheet" Discussion

Postby headsign » Mon Aug 24, 2009 6:19 am UTC

I will have to translate this to my native language (german) so I can hang it over my desk, put it into my window, send it as an email attachment to anyone who is constantly asking me for tech support despite the fact that all I have ever done was a playful try and error approach to both their and my own technical issues, which obviously and surprisingly qualifies me as a computer expert, tech genius, nerd, etc.

ouin
Posts: 19
Joined: Wed May 02, 2007 6:59 am UTC
Location: Paris (FR)
Contact:

Re: "Tech Support Cheat Sheet" Discussion

Postby ouin » Mon Aug 24, 2009 6:21 am UTC

Thank you Randall, this is like a vaccine against dumbery!

I hope my dad will love his new wallpaper.
I don't like signatures.

tsujiku
Posts: 1
Joined: Mon Aug 24, 2009 6:17 am UTC

Re: "Tech Support Cheat Sheet" Discussion

Postby tsujiku » Mon Aug 24, 2009 6:23 am UTC

A shirt of this would go perfectly with my "No I will not fix your computer." shirt from ThinkGeek. >.>

Cal27
Posts: 25
Joined: Mon Mar 23, 2009 4:12 am UTC

Re: "Tech Support Cheat Sheet" Discussion

Postby Cal27 » Mon Aug 24, 2009 6:29 am UTC

There should be a part about error messages and reading them...
It's far too often that somebody says something like:
"Whenever I try to do something, a thing comes up that says 'Error, no sound device found.' What does that mean!?"

User avatar
The Smithmeister
Posts: 11
Joined: Thu Aug 20, 2009 10:20 am UTC
Location: UK

Re: "Tech Support Cheat Sheet" Discussion

Postby The Smithmeister » Mon Aug 24, 2009 6:36 am UTC

I think i will have to set this as my mum's background. Amazing!

User avatar
LuNatic
Posts: 973
Joined: Thu Nov 20, 2008 4:21 am UTC
Location: The land of Aus

Re: "Tech Support Cheat Sheet" Discussion

Postby LuNatic » Mon Aug 24, 2009 6:39 am UTC

I think this one is going up on my door.
Cynical Idealist wrote:
Velict wrote:Good Jehova, there are cheesegraters on the blagotube!

This is, for some reason, one of the funniest things I've read today.

User avatar
gothick
Posts: 10
Joined: Wed Nov 14, 2007 8:22 am UTC
Location: Bristol, UK
Contact:

Re: "Tech Support Cheat Sheet" Discussion

Postby gothick » Mon Aug 24, 2009 6:48 am UTC

crazdgamer wrote:... I'm guessing pressing F1 is out of the question?


Well, it's certainly getting less and less helpful, especially in MS applications. Mostly you seem to end up with some broken-indexed piece of crapware that takes half an hour to load, requires an internet connection, and then produces what look like the results of searching some old Microsoft forums using something that's not Google.

And don't get me started on the help in the development environments. I mean, MSDN as a source of information is generally quite helpful, but the software that puts it on the end of the F1 key has gotten more buggy and hard to use with each passing generation of the tools...

User avatar
folkhero
Posts: 1775
Joined: Fri Aug 01, 2008 3:34 am UTC

Re: "Tech Support Cheat Sheet" Discussion

Postby folkhero » Mon Aug 24, 2009 6:50 am UTC

I gave this to my Mom, who said "I'm at about a third grade level with computers." I told her that with the flowchart she's now at a fifth grade level. Too bad it's still much too complicated for my grandmother, at 88 though the fact that she can sometimes get e-mail to work without anyone's help is not too bad.
To all law enforcement entities, this is not an admission of guilt...

Thibaw
Posts: 34
Joined: Tue Dec 02, 2008 11:32 am UTC

Re: "Tech Support Cheat Sheet" Discussion

Postby Thibaw » Mon Aug 24, 2009 7:25 am UTC

This is so true!

But I think "they" know that it works this way, and are just to scared to pick random buttons themselves - it could kill their computer.

pjt33
Posts: 11
Joined: Wed Jun 11, 2008 10:38 am UTC

Re: "Tech Support Cheat Sheet" Discussion

Postby pjt33 » Mon Aug 24, 2009 7:41 am UTC

taza wrote:There's a major problem with this one.

What if the person doesn't speak the language the interface is in?

... and this happens often, given I'm not from an English-speaking country.

Google Translate.

Related anecdote: I fixed network settings for people so often that I could navigate the Windows 9x/XP network settings dialogs without reading the buttons. It used to impress people immensely when I appeared able to read technical terms in Chinese, German, etc. despite claiming not to know the language.

Thibaw wrote:But I think "they" know that it works this way, and are just to scared to pick random buttons themselves - it could kill their computer.

Exactly. The key element is the confidence that you'll be able to undo whatever you've just done.

User avatar
Link
Posts: 1356
Joined: Sat Mar 07, 2009 11:33 am UTC
Location: ᘝᓄᘈᖉᐣ
Contact:

Re: "Tech Support Cheat Sheet" Discussion

Postby Link » Mon Aug 24, 2009 7:42 am UTC

halp my turminel emmelater duznt haf menyoos

Hah, this comic is awesome and true! Loving the title-text, too.

pyromuffin
Posts: 11
Joined: Mon Dec 10, 2007 8:55 am UTC

Re: "Tech Support Cheat Sheet" Discussion

Postby pyromuffin » Mon Aug 24, 2009 7:49 am UTC

Is there a joke in this comic?

mdhughes
Posts: 2
Joined: Wed Jul 02, 2008 4:40 am UTC

Re: "Tech Support Cheat Sheet" Discussion

Postby mdhughes » Mon Aug 24, 2009 8:04 am UTC

I did this 7 years ago:

http://kuoi.com/~kamikaze/Hacker/genius.php

Mainly circulated on alt.sysadmin.recovery, dunno how much further it went.

graeme
Posts: 2
Joined: Mon Aug 24, 2009 7:53 am UTC

Re: "Tech Support Cheat Sheet" Discussion

Postby graeme » Mon Aug 24, 2009 8:18 am UTC

Yes.

I left my parents' home last year, so I don't get this as much as before. But it's strange how often your parents expect you to know how to do something in a program you've never used. Then when you start clicking exploratorily, they ask "do you know what you're doing?" Or worse, they won't let you take the mouse because they want you to talk them through the steps.

See also the descriptive vocabulary of parents approaching zero whenever a computer problem occurs.

"What's this?"
"What's what? I'm in the other room."
"This."
"What is it?"
"This thing on the screen. I can't possibly describe it to you, you'll have to drop what you're doing and come and have a look."

Then you go to their computer and find the screen has a message box saying "click OK to continue" or some such.

This is why helpdesk and support personnel having remote access to the system being troubleshooted is seen as a good idea. The alternative is talking them through it over the phone, which is clunky at best (for a command line interface, you have to implement the accursed bash-over-telephone protocol), and near-impossible at worst ("click on the button that looks like an arrow going through a door... if you have that button, it depends what version you're using...").

The worst I've had, though, is when parents automatically go for the "talk to someone" strategy without even spending half a second thinking about the problem for themselves.

"Can your computer print over the home network to the printer downstairs?" says mum, clutching a USB stick with something she wants to print on it. "My laptop won't print over the network for some reason."
"No," I reply. That's technically correct - my computer isn't, in its present state, configured to do it. I'm aware that setting up my Linux machine to print over the network to a printer attached to a Windows machine is probably technically possible, but involves a world of pain. There must be an easier way to solve this problem.
"Could it?" says mum, obviously wising up.
"Possibly. I've never set up a Linux computer to be able to print over a network to a Windows machine, and I'm not really sure where I'd start. It'd take a while..."

Then a thought hits me...

"Mum, have you tried taking the USB stick downstairs and printing on the machine that's actually connected to the printer?"
"Well, I was going to try that next."

Aaaaaaargh!

adamadam
Posts: 3
Joined: Thu Jul 23, 2009 9:47 am UTC

Re: "Tech Support Cheat Sheet" Discussion

Postby adamadam » Mon Aug 24, 2009 8:30 am UTC

pjt33 wrote:Related anecdote: I fixed network settings for people so often that I could navigate the Windows 9x/XP network settings dialogs without reading the buttons. It used to impress people immensely when I appeared able to read technical terms in Chinese, German, etc. despite claiming not to know the language.

Hate to burst your bubble but:
Windows Button+R
CMD
Enter
ipconfig /release
ipconfig /renew
Works for all XP machines, assuming you have the privilidges.

User avatar
Iteranium
Posts: 8
Joined: Sun Feb 01, 2009 9:42 pm UTC

Re: "Tech Support Cheat Sheet" Discussion

Postby Iteranium » Mon Aug 24, 2009 8:43 am UTC

Yeah, this one is great, that is how we do it!

milN
Posts: 18
Joined: Mon May 04, 2009 12:53 pm UTC

Re: "Tech Support Cheat Sheet" Discussion

Postby milN » Mon Aug 24, 2009 8:44 am UTC

Don't worry, THEY will never learn to read flowcharts! Our secret is safe..

Sappharos
Posts: 22
Joined: Wed Jul 15, 2009 6:34 am UTC

Re: "Tech Support Cheat Sheet" Discussion

Postby Sappharos » Mon Aug 24, 2009 8:45 am UTC

Hah, priceless! So often, my dad calls me down to help with a program I've never heard of, and expects me to know everything about it. Dad, there are millions of programs out there. Literally. NO-one can know every single nuance of every one of them. So I do programming. So what? That doesn't raise me above the ranks of ordinary people. How can it make up for a poor UI in one of your many applications?

And yes, if I ever get a high qualification in any subject, I'll credit Google.

Oh by the way, I don't have a printer. What do I do?

User avatar
Iteranium
Posts: 8
Joined: Sun Feb 01, 2009 9:42 pm UTC

Re: "Tech Support Cheat Sheet" Discussion

Postby Iteranium » Mon Aug 24, 2009 8:52 am UTC

Sappharos wrote:Oh by the way, I don't have a printer. What do I do?

Wallpaper / Screensaver

Rigas
Posts: 1
Joined: Mon Aug 24, 2009 8:54 am UTC

Re: "Tech Support Cheat Sheet" Discussion

Postby Rigas » Mon Aug 24, 2009 9:07 am UTC

Fantastic and also true :P

User avatar
aeris92
Posts: 43
Joined: Wed Mar 25, 2009 4:03 am UTC

Re: "Tech Support Cheat Sheet" Discussion

Postby aeris92 » Mon Aug 24, 2009 9:13 am UTC

I never thought I'd say this but Randall Munroe, get out of my head.

User avatar
TheGuyWithTheHat
Posts: 322
Joined: Tue Jul 21, 2009 1:15 pm UTC
Location: 127.0.0.1

Re: "Tech Support Cheat Sheet" Discussion

Postby TheGuyWithTheHat » Mon Aug 24, 2009 9:57 am UTC

Ha, that's great! This is my favorite one I've seen recently!
If English teachers teach English and Maths teachers teach Maths, then Head Teachers must teach...
Live in the UK? You must click here!

velocipirate wrote:but the question is, which cheese would a velociraptor choose?

User avatar
Raptor Jesus
Posts: 81
Joined: Tue May 05, 2009 11:52 am UTC
Location: Everywhere, and Nowhere
Contact:

Re: "Tech Support Cheat Sheet" Discussion

Postby Raptor Jesus » Mon Aug 24, 2009 10:02 am UTC

Hah this is so true, altho I have been doing more in depth work on my grandmothers PC. She nags me constantly and I'm only 15 but at least I know how to do all of it.
It is a mad world for anyone to think cellardoor is the most beautiful of all words. :D
“ He went extinct for your sins to save you from Satanasauras Rex”
~ Cretaceous 3:27
“ You Just Lost 'The Game' ”
~ Raptor Jesus
Image

User avatar
TheGuyWithTheHat
Posts: 322
Joined: Tue Jul 21, 2009 1:15 pm UTC
Location: 127.0.0.1

Re: "Tech Support Cheat Sheet" Discussion

Postby TheGuyWithTheHat » Mon Aug 24, 2009 10:09 am UTC

mdhughes wrote:I did this 7 years ago:

http://kuoi.com/~kamikaze/Hacker/genius.php

Mainly circulated on alt.sysadmin.recovery, dunno how much further it went.


Ha that's great too!
If English teachers teach English and Maths teachers teach Maths, then Head Teachers must teach...
Live in the UK? You must click here!

velocipirate wrote:but the question is, which cheese would a velociraptor choose?

pretzil
Posts: 20
Joined: Wed Jun 17, 2009 7:20 am UTC

Re: "Tech Support Cheat Sheet" Discussion

Postby pretzil » Mon Aug 24, 2009 10:21 am UTC

I tried this and got stuck in a half hour loop while trying to use word 2007, I would see the button that should do what I want to do, I would click it and it would not work, I would then start over again, see the same button and try again in a loop since I never got to the google box, this continued until the >half hour condition occured.

bobp
Posts: 2
Joined: Wed Jun 03, 2009 9:37 pm UTC

Re: "Tech Support Cheat Sheet" Discussion

Postby bobp » Mon Aug 24, 2009 10:29 am UTC

graeme wrote:"I've never set up a Linux computer to be able to print over a network to a Windows machine, and I'm not really sure where I'd start. It'd take a while..."

stupid- letting your parents run linux like that- dont you know it will blow their minds. and it looks like you could use the flowchart- its about 1 minuite in a distro like ubuntu cos they all share the same print protocol
anyhoo- great comic

User avatar
TheGuyWithTheHat
Posts: 322
Joined: Tue Jul 21, 2009 1:15 pm UTC
Location: 127.0.0.1

Re: "Tech Support Cheat Sheet" Discussion

Postby TheGuyWithTheHat » Mon Aug 24, 2009 10:33 am UTC

bobp wrote:
graeme wrote:"I've never set up a Linux computer to be able to print over a network to a Windows machine, and I'm not really sure where I'd start. It'd take a while..."

stupid- letting your parents run linux like that- dont you know it will blow their minds. and it looks like you could use the flowchart- its about 1 minuite in a distro like ubuntu cos they all share the same print protocol
anyhoo- great comic


Yep just like this http://xkcd.com/456/ :lol:
If English teachers teach English and Maths teachers teach Maths, then Head Teachers must teach...
Live in the UK? You must click here!

velocipirate wrote:but the question is, which cheese would a velociraptor choose?

XQwerty
Posts: 1
Joined: Mon Aug 24, 2009 10:38 am UTC

Re: "Tech Support Cheat Sheet" Discussion

Postby XQwerty » Mon Aug 24, 2009 10:41 am UTC

Actually.... to find a tuto how to print an image on the web seems hard :)

Roxymoron
Posts: 1
Joined: Mon Aug 24, 2009 10:49 am UTC
Location: Kent, England

Re: "Tech Support Cheat Sheet" Discussion

Postby Roxymoron » Mon Aug 24, 2009 10:55 am UTC

Image

How can I ever repay my gratitude?

User avatar
NeoMagicwarrior
Posts: 4
Joined: Mon Aug 10, 2009 1:25 pm UTC
Contact:

Re: "Tech Support Cheat Sheet" Discussion

Postby NeoMagicwarrior » Mon Aug 24, 2009 11:38 am UTC

Squid Tamer wrote:Great comic! There should be a flowchart for every task!


strangely enough, with a few edits, this chart can work wonders for my job in "customer care" (its not service anymore...apparently, we "care" but don't "service"...and most times, i don't even care.)

OT: awesome comic today....keep em coming

moped
Posts: 3
Joined: Fri Aug 01, 2008 11:27 am UTC

Re: "Tech Support Cheat Sheet" Discussion

Postby moped » Mon Aug 24, 2009 12:09 pm UTC

I have a dollar that says at least one person who set this to somebody's desktop background is going to be asked "How do I change my desktop background?" by the end of the day. When that happens, please don't kill yourself or the person doing the asking. Even if your faith in humanity just hit zero.

Ocker3
Posts: 78
Joined: Fri Jul 11, 2008 4:58 pm UTC
Location: Australia

Re: "Tech Support Cheat Sheet" Discussion

Postby Ocker3 » Mon Aug 24, 2009 12:40 pm UTC

I was considering sending this to my boss, but now I'm worried he'll hire someone at half my wage to just follow the chart all day . ..


and I've recently realised that I'm not in IT because I Really care about computers, it's because I find them easy to use and figure out. I dunno, perhaps it's the Years of tech support jobs that are wearing me down :(
"why change something that's broken in a way that you know it's broken" - Brett McGrath

User avatar
SirMustapha
Posts: 1302
Joined: Mon Jul 21, 2008 6:07 pm UTC

Re: "Tech Support Cheat Sheet" Discussion

Postby SirMustapha » Mon Aug 24, 2009 12:49 pm UTC

People are actually thinking this flowchart will ACTUALLY be helpful, and are ACTUALLY sending it and printing it?...

...

... listen. What's wrong with you?

LSN
Posts: 56
Joined: Fri Jul 04, 2008 4:41 am UTC

Re: "Tech Support Cheat Sheet" Discussion

Postby LSN » Mon Aug 24, 2009 12:56 pm UTC

Ronfar wrote:I think we need a poster-sized version.


seconded

User avatar
Chromana
Posts: 77
Joined: Wed Aug 29, 2007 10:45 pm UTC

Re: "Tech Support Cheat Sheet" Discussion

Postby Chromana » Mon Aug 24, 2009 1:21 pm UTC

Roxymoron wrote:Image

Age of Empires 2 rocked!


Return to “Individual XKCD Comic Threads”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: Yahoo [Bot] and 27 guests