Without reference to specific posts but touching most subjects.
It is a true general chalenge helping to rectify a problem when they are not honest as to what caused it. I know as I have wasted several hours because of it throughout my career. I have even caught friends lying (OS logs/history don’t lie when exclusively used by one user) and is no fun at all as I expect honesty, at least when I help them out of the mess for free.
From time to time they can not be blamed as the following true phonecall shows “-”= customer “+”=me:
-Hi, my laptop is dead. It it simply does not work.
+So nothing happens if you press the power button?
+You do not see the HP logo on the screen or anything else?
+That means it turns on, what happens next?
+Hmm, so it just hangs then.
+No windows logo
+You do not get a blue screen with some text instead of the black?
+Good, that means it boots. Did you install any devices or software yesterday.
+So you did not attach any scanner, camera or similar.
… (getting information = patience)
At long last I found out that he had indeed attached his camera and inserted the original CD which by then was very old which installed an old driver causing the bsod.
What if I say that this customer was right?
In his view, nothing happened as he was going to write an e-mail and in that context nothing did happen. The blue screen did not make him able to write that mail now did it?
Helping out is also a drag when they come back a month later and insinuate that it is your fault that it is dead again because they only used it once or twice. Again, the computer logs and history are our best friends and I [B]do[/B] enjoy telling them how many times their computer [B]has[/B] been used making out the ‘one or two times’ they have used it. Even though I should not, I do help them out…
A friend of my brother-in-law asked how much I would ask to build him a game-rig if he bought all the parts. It was around christmas last year and I said he could have my work as a surprise christmas present from me. I gave it my best shot, even advicing him in all stages of the buy-in. Because we open presents on Christmas eve, I drove the finished rig to him in the morning and wished the family merry cristmas gaming.
Then on New Years eve, we were invited for a party and I met him again. He thanked me and said that my installation was great. In my mind, that is an alert and so I replied: My installation was December 24th, when you started it for the first time, it became your installation.
I have met him one more time later and he said that my responce had caused him to rethink the way he respond even at work!?
I do not know what he meant by that, I only replied that what I said was true and I really mean that, December 24th ended [U]my[/U] installation.
I could go on forever with such stories as four more has come to mind already, but I’ll skip. The above should be enough to paint the picture.
The bottom line: Unless you are ‘thick skinned’, don’t help friends!
…fwiw, it will only put wear on friendship.