My PC's going to Hospital

OK, luckily, I saved up quite a bit and managed to get a 80GB IDE hard disk from Computer war for RM152. Since I had a bit left (from not eating lunch again) I got myself a 2GB Transcent thumbdrive. So, tomorrow, its going back to the Hospital where my friend will attempt a brain transfer.

I know my Tecra is slow and reformatting and reinstalling the Windows XP is quite tempting but I cannot. There are a lot of reasons:

1) I lost the Win XP CD and one or two digits were scratched away from the XP sticker under the Tecra

2) I have some (yes, SOME) original software which needs to be verified on-line again, which could take days or two weeks since I was so busy, Internet connectivity for me is a bit sporadic.

3) Our office Dell notebook, which is the backup, needs to be reformatted soon since most of its registry went nuts or something like that. And when it is down, my Tecra MUST be working.

4) My Wife will definitely kill me over and over again if she finds me spending more time with the Notebooks.

The black box is a USB hub and 19in1 card reader
double-side taped onto my Tecra, OK?

You've been doing what for two years?

The customer called us today to locate a backup data line which was "missing" for quite sometime. The problem is, this is not an ordinary line but a ISDN BRI line which you can test for voltage but in order to get it verified as the correct line, you would need an ISDN equipment which, we do not have. Anyway, the customer has informed us that the Telekom technicians were there earlier and has left some markings indicating that line.

Now, all we have to do is to locate the correct cable and connect it to... to... er, heck we don't even know what to connect it to. But no matter. Because its time to play Detective again.

The problem is a very simple one: Find the missing line and connect it back

So, the first thing is, to ask a lot questions. Never mind if it makes you think you're bothering the customer. Because if you did not ask, you would not be able to complete your job and this would really bother the customer. First thing is, to ask and verify that the number for that missing line is correct. Then, ask what it is being used for and where or what equipment it was last connected to before going AWOL and so on. One you have asked all the correct questions, you would by now, have enough information to start your work.

From all the clues, we discovered that the line was meant for an ISDN NT1 device. This was then made easier by calling on their IT guy who provided all the necessary pointers (I mean, the floor was filled with both useable and non-useable modems) and after detecting the only workable modem with no "Live" line, we got our suspect cable. This was very important because we have been tracing the cable for nearly the whole afternoon, near the Telekom junction box but with no success.

Only when did we discover this cable from the equipment side, the whole story unfolded. The customer did some renovations two year ago and the contractors cut a lot of "uneccessary" cables, like all contractors do. And once the renovations were completed, it was completely forgotten and the customer has been paying for this unused missing line for two years!

[Update: 19042008]
The customer's IT guy called up again and told us that it was not the correct line. So, I told him to arrange an appoinment where all parties concerned would be at that site to locate, comission and test the line. It is better this way so that no party has the chance to do any finger-pointing. This would mean loss of time for everyone and created animosity between parties. We don't want to create any politics but just to solve a problem.

See the cables dangling? This is where some people
saved time and money and hoped everyone would
forget about it. Ha. Ha. Ha. Not funny

Sharp angled cuts on the cable means
is not the work of a rodent

Was it Luck or Customer Service?

Although we are lucky to get this wiring job, sometimes, I really think that my techs take their job for granted. For you see, if a customer wants our service, there must be a reason why they like us. Out there, the competition is great and by doing such shoddy jobs, we're no different from them. So, we have to show that we're better. We have to show that the customer is right in choosing us.

The customer also have the right to terminate our services and look for another company. It is because of our standards and the ability to quickly solve their problems that impresses them and not because we're good at talking.

See the competitor's work? They used metal trunking
for the computer network cables while my techs just
threw the cables across the roof. I had to get them to
redo the cabling and this time, use PVC pipes

Anger Mangement

Please, please, please! Whatever your issue is, do not take it out on the poor innocent Toshiba phone. This is a thirteen year-old phone and its plastic is a little bit brittle. If it shatters, its going to create a lot of sharp edges.

Not only that, you will feel more pain when we hit you with the repair bill as this phone series is no longer in production. And this is the time where you will regret your angry actions

Judging from the size of the cracks, the fist is a child's