Tree Closes For 0.9.8

Wednesday January 16th, 2002 has closed the tree to approved checkins only, starting as of 12am Wednesday, and will do so until 0.9.8 has branched. 0.9.8 will have a variety of new items including new natively drawn widgets on WindowsXP, Mac OS X, and GTK, when you are in the classic skin (We will have more on this later, including screenshots); the addressbook was rewritten, and now supports printing, a new "Get Map" button allowing you to query for a map based on a card address, and other stability fixes; Windows MAPI support; and a huge amount of performance and stability work.

Many believe this is one of the last milestones prior to 1.0, and that will actually have 1.0 following 0.9.9. 0.9.8 should branch sometime next week, with a release two Mondays from now. We'll keep you updated on both the branching and the release.

#96 Off topic : My Wild Guessing Tech Support story

by SubtleRebel <>

Monday January 21st, 2002 12:11 AM

You are replying to this message

I have had many problems with people trying to guess answers to my technical issues when they really did not have a clue. If someone is honestly trying to help then I can appreciate that, but they should also predicate their suggestions with "I really do not know, but maybe ..." It is always annoying if they state their suggestion as if they KNOW that it is the right answer. It is even worse when they go so far as to argue with you when you tell them that their suggestion is wrong.

One of the worst cases I have experienced was with AOL....

A while back I was configuring a firewall on a T-1 to the Internet for a client; there was a VP who was using AOL and so I had to open up the necessary ports for it, but I could not find any info anywhere on the web what ports AOL's software used (it is now on the AOL website, but it was not there then). Since I did not have a packet sniffer handy, I called AOL's tech support line. I ended up having to spending several HOURS calling several times because I kept getting ignorant answers.

A few of the answers that I was given :

1) We do not use one. 2) I can not tell you because that is an AOL trade secret. 3) It is randomly selected each time you start the AOL software.4) No one here in technical support knows; you would have to talk to the programmers, but they don't have phones. 5) You do not need to know the port number. It should go through the firewall automatically. 6) We can not help you with that, you need to talk to your network administrator. It is up to them to configure the firewall. (Me: I am the one trying to configure the firewall and I just need to know what ports the AOL software uses.) Well, then you need to call your Internet Service Provider. (Me: I am with the ISP) Sorry, we just can't help you if you do not know what you are doing.

What was extremely annoying was that no one would admit to not knowing the answer. They all insisted that what they were telling me was THE correct answer. Most of the people refused to transfer me to any higher level support and some said there were no supervisors or higher level support. Finally I got totally fed up and told a woman that "This is just bullshit!" She replied that there was no reason to use that kind of language (she acted as if it was the worst cuss word she had ever heard) and that if I could not be polite that she was going to transfer me to the "irate caller line" where they were trained to handle people like me. After being on hold for a minute or two, a man came on the line and said "I understand that you are unhappy with the support that you have received, how can I help?" I told him that I just needed to have someone tell me what TCP/IP port or ports were used by the AOL software. He immediately replied "We use port 5190." I politely said thank you. He asked if that was all that I needed. I told him yes unless he could also explain why I had to go through so many people making up answers out of thin air in order to finally get such a simple question answered. He had no answer for that.