A random irritation (if that's allowed)

  dagbladet 08:59 24 Jan 07
Locked

Not sure where this belongs, maybe helproom, maybe here, maybe nowhere.

After repeated occurrences of a particular issue over the years I thought I would put my thoughts on ‘paper’. The crux is the ‘help’ offered in response to questions regarding software issues, in particular older versions of current software. I will use Acronis TI as an example, but this equally applies to any software (or indeed hardware/graphics cards etc).

Q. I have Acronis TI 7 and for the following reason (detailed explanation goes here) I can’t make a back up to my ext HDD. Where am I going wrong?

A. You are using the free version, they never work.

A. Acronis 10 is only £xx, you need to upgrade.

A. I have Norton Ghost, and it works fine.

Regarding the first answer, whilst I accept that updated versions generally are improved, surely that doesn’t mean that if a software version is superseded it no longer works. I mean, they were probably quite pleased with version v1, v2 was even better, by the time they got to v6 it was the best thing since sliced bread, for a back up programme to have then achieved a v7 then you would think that by now it had the capability to actually er…back up.

Second answer. Once again that seems to be an easy way out and fails to answer the original question. If the poster is doing something fundamentally wrong there is no guarantee that v10 is going to work for him/her either.

Third answer. Imagine going on a car forum and asking; “I have a Ford Focus and I can’t get the heater to work, can anyone help?” to which someone answers, “I’ve got a Vauxhall Astra and it works fine”.

Please do not respond with advice on how to make Acronis TI work, as stated before I merely used that as an example.

Just an observation.

  microcoder 09:18 24 Jan 07

dagbladet good examples of helpers reflecting their quest to help others.But,don't really know the answers or in many cases not actually reading the problem posed.

It can be very frustrating and sends one onto the wrong path but can one really critisise the honest efforts made by some?

Yes,I suppose you can.

Hope you get that Acronis TI 7 to work soon!!!

  Simsy 09:22 24 Jan 07

another post that I quite enjoyed ':}

Regards,

Simsy

  laurie53 09:22 24 Jan 07

You are so right.

If you can't post anything helpful, why post anything at all?

Some people seem to feel the need to comment on every thread, just for the sake of it (I'm not talking about obvious debate threads, where the more views the better)

Laurie

  anskyber 09:23 24 Jan 07

It's the way things are with help desks.

I can be absolutely certain if there is a post about IE7 there will be a rush to post "uninstall and it will roll back to IE6" without any attempt to deal with the question instead the answer coming as a reflection of the posters "prejudices"

The other stock answer is "use firefox" or "use opera" again without any attempt to answer the question which often has a simple remedy. Some are left with a less secure IE6 as a result.

On the other hand the helproom is not populated with IT experts although there are many who offer expert advice and it is up to the thread originator to take a view on the advice given rather than slavishly follow whatever is suggested.

  microcoder 09:25 24 Jan 07

Simsy....lol

  Simsy 10:57 24 Jan 07

microcoder

I hoped someone would get it!

Regards,

Simsy

  Kate B 11:06 24 Jan 07

I'm guilty of saying "use Firefox" - mostly because IE (my particular bugbear) is so poor compared to it. I'd rather get someone using a good, flexible piece of software and have them happy with it than spending ages trying to sort something out that nobody needs to spend too much time on. The car analogy is a good one but it falls down with browsers, which are free and it requires little effort to try an alternative.

  dagbladet 11:20 24 Jan 07

"On the other hand the helproom is not populated with IT experts although there are many who offer expert advice and it is up to the thread originator to take a view on the advice given rather than slavishly follow whatever is suggested."

"what I actually post is 'sometimes trial versions have facilities disabled. Are you sure this is available?' Or, no. 2, 'there have been many posts about this software and I'm afraid the conclusion usually reached is that you need to upgrade'."

"The car analogy is a good one but it falls down with browsers, which are free and it requires little effort to try an alternative."

All fair points.

Simsy, I'm not getting it yet, but give me time.

  anskyber 11:26 24 Jan 07

There are many Firefox supporters and that's great, I happen to prefer IE but I am not trying to say it's the best, simply the best for me.

It's fine to point to alternatives in a " if you still have trouble" or " had you thought of using" type of way particularly having tried to address the problem that the TO has selected.

It's the evangelists I have concerns about who seem to see it as a mission for them to get everyone around to there own way of thinking on matters like a browser for goodness sake(!)

All of that said we must all remember that the Helproom is populated by those freely giving their time so I and others must accept it includes those who I have described as being part of the scene. Ultimately it's much better they are there than not.

  Kate B 11:26 24 Jan 07

It's a good point to raise, dagbladet.

This thread is now locked and can not be replied to.

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