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Abandon all hope - shadows of echoes of memories of songs — LiveJournal
Abandon all hope
Every five minutes, my machine goes "ping". It's out of "profile space", and it pops up an alert box to tell me so. There's nothing else I can delete to free up profile space; the culprits are Acrobat and NS7, both of which I need for my job. The Helpdesk can't give me more than 8MB profile space, and they said they were going to try to exclude NS7 from my roaming profile but when they said they'd done it there was no change.

So, every five minutes, my machine goes "ping", in that annoying Windowsy way. I went to turn the volume down (since I can't fix the problem, fix the symptom). No 'Settings'. No Control Panel. We are locked out of TURNING DOWN THE FUCKING VOLUME on our computers in case by doing so we Break The Internet.

Apparently the rationale is that if we have access to Settings, we could accidentally remove a program or something Bad like that. But it doesn't seem to have occurred to them that perhaps their role as a "Helpdesk" could be better fulfilled by, say, helping the people who need the help, the people who accidentally do dumb stuff (by, perhaps, fixing the problem for them, and maybe even teaching them how not to do it again) rather than by wilfully obstructing the people who don't need their 'help, the people who are actually capable of USING A BLOODY COMPUTER.

Rachel's comment says it all, really.
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karen2205 From: karen2205 Date: June 15th, 2004 03:02 am (UTC) (Link)
Yep - Helpdesk people are like that. I had to phone mine to get them to install a new version of Outlook simply so that I could send plain text email!
sesquipedality From: sesquipedality Date: June 15th, 2004 03:46 am (UTC) (Link)
It's strange, really. I've always felt a far more productive approach is to say "we'll take off the trainer wheels if you want us to, but if you fall over, you're on your own". The only people who lose out in this scenario are prats who think they know more than they do, and hopefully they also learn a valuable lesson - that they're out of their depth.
j4 From: j4 Date: June 15th, 2004 03:53 am (UTC) (Link)
Yeah, that'd be the other option. But I think they're worried that somebody without stabilisers (and without brain) will do Bad Stuff to The Whole Network, at which point saying "You're on your own" won't get The Whole Network fixed. Though stringing them up outside the office might at least make an example of them... ("They thought they knew better. Any of the rest of you chumps think you know better? Good. As you were, then.")

Of course, it could be argued that only incompetent admins would leave The Whole Network wide open to inadvertent attack from random dimwits who don't know how to use the Control Panel, but I wouldn't make that accusation, no.

Though actually to be honest I don't know if it would be possible for them to, say, allow us to do minor admin stuff like change the volume, but not to delete shared software... I'm prepared to believe WinNT/2K really is so cacky that you can't make fine distinctions like that. But, if so, well, still ARGH, just a different sort of ARGH.
nja From: nja Date: June 15th, 2004 04:06 am (UTC) (Link)
Our W2K network policies certainly allow you to change the volume (and a whole lot of other stuff including the desktop, display resolution, sound schemes etc). PCs which are part of that network are among the most secure on the campus, so I suspect your people are being slightly paranoid. On the other hand, saying "you're on your own" isn't always an option. I'd love to do it to certain people, but unfortunately they have the clout to insist on having enhanced rights and the clout to insist that I fix things when they screw them up.
olithered From: olithered Date: June 15th, 2004 04:20 am (UTC) (Link)
The W2K group policy settings do allow very fine grained control. It's just a (non-trivial) matter of working out exactly which things you want to enable...
From: rmc28 Date: June 15th, 2004 07:48 am (UTC) (Link)
They have a partially-unlocked option which I managed to qualify for after about a month of bitching at them, which allows such magic as changing your desktop and letting Windows-E work.

I don't mind their extreme lock-down for the plebs, I just hate that it takes so much hassle to get any alternative.
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