Saturday, January 14, 2006

Support problems

The only thing that is reliable about computers is that they are unreliable! And trying to do everything we do within a very very limited budget only makes it more difficult. We have Internet radio stations that operate 24 hours a day, Internet TV programmes for viewing, websites, e-commerce sites, email systems etc etc etc

We have a system that monitors everything and sends a text message to the mobile phone of the person on duty, in theory, within 15 minutes of a problem developing. As you know from following this blog we have tended to have problem after problem after problem with systems. This week we had a minor problem with one server. Sadly the problem became greater because the person on duty ignored the alert thinking it meant something else.

What we realised as a result of this is that sometimes we get so many messages from 'clients' reporting faults that we cannot see the wood for the trees. I say messages from clients reporting faults... but what we found out is that only about 25% of the messages we recieve are reporting faults. The rest fall into the category of either administrative messages or personal support messages [where the 'client' has a problem, but the problem is not ours but theirs!] or where the client is asking for a new feature rather than reporting a problem.

So... how to manage things? Administration is not my strong point. And we have just come to the end of another year, which means I/we have to do an end of year report including the end of year finances. We always find the end of year reports a pain to do... and yet find when they are completed they are really helpful in seeing how much we have actually achieved. So... coming up is going through the finances and going through the logs to see what we have done.

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