Articles about on-call

Boss regrets pointing finger at chilled out techie who finished upgrade early

On-Call Friday is upon us once more, which can mean only one thing: it’s time for On Call, our weekly instalment of Reg readers’ tech support frustrations. This week, “Luca” tells us how his hopes of a chilled-out Friday – and possibly plans to kick back reading this very column – evaporated in the face of an angry boss. At the time …
Rebecca Hill, 17 Aug 2018
smoky backdrop emergency corridor

Phased out: IT architect plugs hole in clean-freak admin's wiring design

On-Call Welcome again to On-Call, El Reg's weekly column that offers readers the chance to vent about their co-workers' ineptitude. This week, meet "Oscar", who tells us about the time he had to clean up after an overly tidy sysadmin. At the time, he was working as a consultant and IT architect for a government customer that was …
Rebecca Hill, 10 Aug 2018
A man holds his heart, looks honest

Grad sends warning to manager: Be nice to our kit and it'll be nice to you

On-Call Friday has come around once more, which means we at El Reg get to regale you, dear reader, with tech support tales of the great and good in our weekly On-Call column. This time, we travel back to the start of the decade with “Mike”, then a fresh-faced grad holding a keen belief in good manners, and a taste for the mischievous …
Rebecca Hill, 3 Aug 2018
businessman shrugging - illustration via shutterstock

Sysadmin trained his offshore replacements, sat back, watched ex-employer's world burn

On-Call Why look at the calendar – it's Friday! Which can mean only one thing, namely the return of On-Call, your weekly instalment of tech support drama from El Reg's dear readers. This week, "Luke" tells us of the time he was able to wallow in schadenfreude after being laid off in favour of outsourced tech support. Luke's story …
Rebecca Hill, 27 Jul 2018
Kick me

Boss helped sysadmin take down horrible client with swift kick to the nether regions

On-Call Welcome once more to On-Call, in which Register readers share their stories of silly tech support incidents. This week meet “Jay” who told us that “Long ago, in a career far away, I worked in Field Service for Wang Laboratories in the Philadelphia, PA, area.” Among the products that Jay tended was the model 702 plotter. Jay …
Simon Sharwood, 20 Jul 2018

Tech support chap given no training or briefing before jobs, which is why he was arrested

On-Call Welcome once more to On-Call, the column The Register squeezes in before the weekend so you can revel in a fellow reader’s tales of tech support terror. This week meet “Zac” who told us the story of how “When I started as a computer engineer for a now defunct manufacturer everything was learned on the job (in the 'field …
Simon Sharwood, 13 Jul 2018
Three finger salute

Sysadmin cracked military PC’s security by reading the manual

On-Call Welcome once more to On-Call, The Register’s attempt to make Fridays tolerable by bringing you fellow readers’ tales of terrifying tech support jobs they somehow survived. This week, meet “Guy”, who told On-Call he grew up in the golden age of the microcomputer, meaning that by the time he joined his local Army National Guard …

Drug cops stopped techie's upgrade to question him for hours. About everything

On-Call Welcome once more to On-Call, The Register’s Friday foolishness in which readers recount tales of tech support jobs that went pear-shaped. This week, meet “Harry” who wrote to tell us of a job he was asked to do in the early 1980s. Harry was just 19 years of age at the time and tells us he was “pony-tailed and headband- …
Simon Sharwood, 29 Jun 2018

Trainee techie ran away and hid after screwing up a job, literally

On-Call Thank the Valar it’s Friday, because that means the weekend beckons and a new instalment of On-Call, The Register’s weekly reader-contributed tale of tech support tangles. This week meet “Theo” who offered us a story of a techie colleague who was put in charge of a trainee as they worked together on the “second fixing” a large …
Simon Sharwood, 22 Jun 2018
PS2 Mouse

User spent 20 minutes trying to move mouse cursor, without success

On-Call Welcome again to On-Call, in which The Register brings you readers’ tales of tech support traumas. This week, meet “Wanda”, who found herself called upon to some citizen sysadminnery when shopping. Wanda’s story started with a broken mobile phone and a desire to replace it. Said desire took her into a retail outlet where a …
Simon Sharwood, 15 Jun 2018
Automatic teller machine

Don’t talk to the ATM, young man, it’s just a machine and there’s nobody inside

On-Call Welcome again to On-Call, The Register’s Friday forage through readers’ memories of tech support jobs that became FUBAR*. This week meet “Robin” who back in the 1980s had a bit to do with a company called “Lion Systems Developments” – or LSD for short. Robin was around when LSD “won the contract to supply the communication …
Dot matrix printer with continuous stationery

Send printer ink, please. More again please, and fast. Now send it faster

On-Call On-come again to On-Call, The Register’s Friday column in which readers share tales of tech support oddities. This week, meet “Sam” who told us that back in the 1990s he had a job as “a fledgling tech support/programmer/whatever else was needed.” Sam’s employer “was the supply point for a number of others, most of which were …
Bank vault

Police block roads to stop tech support chap 'robbing a bank'

On-Call Welcome again to On-Call, The Register's Friday reader-contributed tales of tech support jobs gone wrong. We're mining a bit of a vein of emergency-services-related stories of late, so let's keep that going by meeting "James", who sent us a story from "way back in the 1990s when I was sent to a small branch of a foreign bank …
Simon Sharwood, 25 May 2018
Bomb on PC screen

Tech support made the news after bomb squad and police showed up to 'defuse' leaky UPS

On-Call By golly it’s Friday again! Which means a spot of R&R isn’t far off, once we get through On-Call, The Register’s weekly column recounting readers’ tales of terrible times in tech support. This week meet “Len” who told us he works “for a small but long-established IT company” n a major Scottish city. “We do a range of work …
Simon Sharwood, 18 May 2018
Cartoon fire truck

Fixing a printer ended with a dozen fire engines in the car park

On-Call Welcome once again to On-Call, The Register’s continuing column recounting readers’ tech support traumas. This week, meet “Rob” who told us about “a late night visit to British Coal to replace a hot-roll fuser on a massive laser printer.’ And not just any massive laser printer but the IBM 3800 printer – one of the first laser …
Simon Sharwood, 11 May 2018
Burning laptop

My PC is on fire! Can you back it up really, really fast?

On-Call Welcome again to On-Call, The Register’s weekly reader-contributed column in which we tease out tales from the trenches of tech support. This week, meet “Rick” who used to work for an outsourced tech support company that worked for several big technology brands. Rick answered calls for Microsoft, Iomega, 3Com, Dell, Corel “ …

Boss sent overpaid IT know-nothings home – until an ON switch proved elusive

On-Call Why look at that! The end of the working week is upon us, which means it’s time to dip into the mailbag to bring you another instalment of On-Call, The Register’s reader-contributed tales of tech support trauma. This week meet “Abraham” who was once “called in to move a big printer.” Abraham was a proper techie, not a …
Simon Sharwood, 27 Apr 2018
A fiber optic cable

CEO insisted his email was on server that had been offline for years

On-Call Welcome again to On-Call, The Register’s Friday column in which readers share tales of tricky tech support tasks. This week meet “Sam” who “used to work for one of those zombie web companies that limped along after the dotcom bubble burst because no-one had told it that it should be dead.” The company no longer had a proper …
Simon Sharwood, 20 Apr 2018

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