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Striking a good nerve

I dropped off my compy at IAIT earlier today to get the HD replaced. 'Twas simply the time. I got back, and they asked me to change my password. While normal procedure, I was miffed that a ton of data was missing - they only pushed My Documents, not Program Files, LiteStep, nor anything that might store settings.

As it sank in that I was going to spend countless hours tweaking everything into shape, I got terribly frustrated. My data was there, just fine, and I didn't have it. So walking back down, I asked for the above directories. On that topic, "Yeah, that's not gonna happen" was said. Typical tactless tech support. The guy was reluctant to give me my files, like every file was extra work and a precious task. I ended up making a screenshot of my Program Files directory. Then when I got back, I realized that there was simply too much to fix.

So I vented for a short bit, then settled and remembered what my AP Lang teacher mom had said to her: "Social grease makes the world go 'round." I needed data, and I knew the drive was fine, so I figured I could image it myself.

I went back, and they were going to send me to the same guy, then someone suggested Eric instead. He helped, a lot, and my HD is backing up right now. Tomorrow, I'll go back, get the drive swapped out again, and finish. Makes me happy that he was so ready to help, and it contrasts nicely against the guy I got earlier.

At the very least, I won't have to reorganize my bookmarks. That's what really bothered me. That and resetting every darn thing. I've no will to go through that right now...

Also, I found this an enjoyable comic to peruse: Reman Mythology - pretty good fantasy with a neat premise.


Wait--was your hard drive broken?
No, but it was beginning to fail. I probably had a week or so more to get out of it, but it was definately beginning to die.
Wait--so you went to have your hard drive voluntarily reloaded/replaced without making a backup, signed the form that said what we would backup and what we wouldn't--again, without making a backup of your own of your non-academic material--and then you got upset that they didn't backup non-academic stuff?
No. See, I knew that since you work there this would tick you off. It easy to forget the frustration of being on the other side of that desk.

I had a backup of the terribly important academic data. My full hard drive backup the night before failed because it is incremental and the partition filled, and I was afraid to wipe that drive of the data is already had (I needed to make space, and the backup software I use does the backup as a form of synchronization.)

Since the hard drive was not dead yet and still operable, I figured they would simply image it, as had been done in the past, without bothering with picking out only that one directory. That's part of the reason of dropping it off in the morning, sometimes it helps.

I wasn't terribly worried, since I figured I would always have the opportunity to do it again myself. What's irritating is that I have to loose nearly all of my seetings and programs when I bring the computer in.
I was very surprised that I had new software loaded. That had not happened before.

But mostly I was irritated that I was told all data was recovered, when that was very much not the case. I don't install stuff to the My Documents folder. Eric was very amicable to helping me image the drive, but for the guy I had at first, it was like pulling teeth, as though it was frivolous to ask for something not in My Documents, and that he'll humor me a bit and hope I just go. (Certainly it would have been faster to just let me to search and move the files I thought I needed, but the customer is assumed to know nothing, and on the spot I couldn't think of a way to demonstrate otherwise.)

I am fairly certain the form does not say they will not recover anything outside My Documents. It merely says they will work very hard to get that specific directory. On ocasion, my drive comes back fully imaged, no problem.
No, Andrew--I would be amused and disappointed at this even if I didn't work there. I know the frustration of being on the other side. Remember when Gregory seemed to have lost all his data? Remember when Jed did? I worked damn hard to try to get their data, and I failed. I was with Gregory just about all of that weekend when he didn't have his data. I've lost data on a hard drive of my own before. I've dealt with stupid tech people. I've dealt with tech support policies where they won't get any of your data.

You are correct that the blue form does not state which directories they will backup. My mistake. It is usually stated by the HelpDesk person, however, and has been the stated policy of IAIT since the beginning of this academic year. I remember when the all.campus email was sent at the end of last summer. My Documents, Outlook, Desktop, and Favorites. If they see you use Firefox instead, they'll usually even find your Firefox stuff and save that off, despite the fact that Firefox isn't in our standard load.

So when they said they got all your data, they were correct: they got all the data they were obligated to and that they stated they would.

In 99.5% of the cases of a voluntary reload/replacement, the person also wants a fresh install of Windows. That's safer for everyone, as it removes any malware infecting the machine. It's also faster (for the end user), as all the little things cluttering Windows start up will be cleared up. If you want the drive imaged, that's odd enough that it should probably be stated. Maybe that shouldn't need to be stated (and is something I will make an effort to remember when a case like your comes in), but assumptions were made on both sides in this case.

But do you know how many people complain that IAIT doesn't back up program settings, illegal music, downloaded movies and television shows, pornography, installed programs, and anime?

That holds up one of their desktop machines to move the data over to it, then to move the data off of it. Just reloading a hard drive (without data recovery) takes 30 minutes. Moving 10 GB of data takes over 30 minutes on top of that. 30 GB takes more than three times that. It was getting to the point where people would ask for 40 GB of files all over their hard drives, leaving long lists of random files everywhere, some academic, some not. And heaven forbid if IAIT couldn't get one or missed a file.

Naw. You have the ability to back up data. If you have data you are afraid of losing--which should be all academic data and any super-special settings you care dearly about--why not back it up regularly if you know that (especially on our models!) hard drives can fail horribly and suddenly with no ability to get back the data? All the yelling in the world won't help when your hard drive won't initialize.

IAIT has stated that they have no responsibility to get non-academic data. They aren't there to recover your game saves, they're there to keep your machine in working order so you can complete your studies. From their perspective, it may be something approaching frivolous to get anything else. It is very frustrating to deal with the typical Rose student sense of entitlement (which you'll note, leads to the "Typical tactless tech support" you mention) where students believe IAIT exists to scrape every version of "Debbie Does Dallas" off their hard drive when they treat their machines like crap.

You're right, though: it was tactless for someone in a service job to say something like, "Yeah, that's not gonna happen." While the customer may not always be right, being polite to the customer is always the right thing to do.
I've spent a lot of time doing the tech support bit, from helping teachers, setting up systems, to spending a week cleaning the inside of every computer in a lab. You're preaching to the choir here. My data is backed up - but moving it back is hard. I had to go back three times before someone helped me with what I needed - but that's because I'm too passive, and will not insist on what I want. Imaging the drive has failed in the past, so I backup individual files; but these conversely do not a bootable computer make.

But do not lecture me on how it works. I'm frustrated that no matter what, I have a lot of work to do. I learned to have a special hatred of computers, and right now it's showing through. I wish you would just understand that I'm mad at the situation and not the people - they just did their job, but I still have to periodically redo everything. If it were their fault, I'd write to them, not an LJ post.

That sucks no matter how much you know about the situation.
You're right: it does suck to have to set up a computer all over again.

This must be one of those times where I, alas, misunderstood the purpose of the post. My apologies.
No worries. I am substantially less peevish than yesterday.