Help Desk Technician

Help Desk Technician


Augusta, GA

Male, 25

I have been working with technology for about 7 years now in different facets but all involving costumer facing duties. I have been an Instructor for the military on computer networking. Worked as an independent consultant for small to medium sized networks and now am in a position of working at a help desk on everything from Servers to Desktop computers to your phones not getting email for the 3rd time this month because its out of space...ask me anything.

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16 Questions


Last Answer on January 08, 2015

Best Rated

Just how secure are military networks and telcom? Do they use higher encryption standards than everyone else?

Asked by PaulusHook about 7 years ago

I cant get into regid detail on military networks and telecome because the job requires a clearance blah blah but I will say that the military does maintain its networks to the highest of standards and you can buy any of their equipment if you have the cash to do so from a vendor. Which is why most individuals that work in an IT field for the military transition into civilian positions rather easily or end up doing the same thing for the government after they get out at double the rate. 

So as someone who worked in tech with the military: is Snowden a hero or a traitor?

Asked by kitteh about 7 years ago

Sorry for the delay here. This is outside the scope of helpdesk questions. I do find that any individual that leaks information that is otherwise considered confidential is breaking the trust of its government. That man was cleared to do a job and it did not include releasing information. We know there are spies. We spy on other countries, we spy on our allies and us as citizens’ spy on our neighbors. His actions are his own and the consequences are self-inflicted whatever they may be.

Are people usually appreciative when you actually help them figure something out or do they kind of treat you like a support monkey?

Asked by B Loeb about 7 years ago

SO this is fifty-fifty. I get the user that is upfront and honest about the fact that they tried loading something and it didn’t work. They are generally appreciative and understanding. Then there are those who break stuff and do nothing to help me remedy the issue. They provide little to no feedback, give you a hard time when you’re trying to get them to take the next step and give you a poor survey score because they need to further assert their innocence and confused state. The second group can disappear from existence for all I care. Know that is a rough thing to say but you people (if the shoe fits) make my job hard and unrewarding, the first group however I hope you win the lottery.

Does it get aggravating answering what you perceive to be people's dumb questions all day long?

Asked by Olaf1 about 7 years ago

You know I do at times get....frustrated for a lack of better words with the absence of knowledge that some people have over simple concepts. If the light is not on the power is probably off...printers dont print without paper. Those things to me constitue issues that are derived entirley from human error that could be avoided if you didnt just pick the phone up and call me because it did not work for 5 seconds. 

The upside to this though is that I do legitmatly understand that some people ask questions and truely do not know the answers. I feel sorry for them more so than aggravation and make every attempt to help them better understand what an issue is in plain English. However I did laugh after muting my microphone one time when a lady told me her applications were uninstalled...I found that the icons were no longer on the desktop and needed to be restored... 


What's the closest you ever came to losing it on someone you were helping?

Asked by nightmark about 7 years ago

I had a group with printer issues...which we all know are the Devils gift to IT professionals. They were having problems with network connectivity on this device and after the general turn off turn on, check cables routine I decided there was nothing I could do remotely. So I wanted the lady I was working with to give me the serial number on the printer and get me in touch with a supervisor in regards to approving onsite support from a third party. (They are 5 plus hours one way)

Long story short this supervisor was new and wanted to make a point so she starts drilling me on contractual obligations and not providing onsite support and we should not sign contracts with people if we can’t do the work...this goes on for a few more lines. Anyway I convey to her that us providing support by involving third parties that specialize in printer issues outside the generic was standard policy. She wanted a full report by the end of the day. I got off the phone with her and escalated the ticket to management. I did volunteer to drive the 5 plus hours one way to confirm that the printer needs a specialist touch and then drive the 5 plus hours back billing her the $125 an hour plus expenses just to make me feel good. Management denied the request and I never heard from her again.

I don’t read your companies contract verbatim but I know the just of its contents, I know how to do my job and you taking the time to chew me out over verbiage will only get you on my short list of people I don’t go out of my way to assist.

I'm trying to completely wipe my hard drive and a lot of products are labeled as "military grade" erasers. Does that actually mean anything? What's the best way to make all data 100% unrecoverable? What if I just smash it with a brick?

Asked by Ted about 7 years ago

Don’t use third party software. If the data is that sensitive format the drive once maybe twice if your paranoid.

You may want to remove the drive and plug it into another machine so you can follow these steps. Be careful though. Once it is formatted at least once dismantle the drive and remove the platter. You can then melt the metal shiny thing (which is the disk itself) and you can sleep easy know your data is not recoverable. You could also just take the thing a bury it on a distant relatives property after you format and dismantle it and you may be good as well. Otherwise don’t download illegal things to your hard drive. (Joking)

Do the stats actually back up the "Mac's never get viruses and crash way less than PC's" thing? I've heard that it's complete BS.

Asked by bax about 7 years ago

Okay and Macs are okay friends. I have garnered a healthy respect for them seeing as I have been forced to work with them in this position. I will say "ehhh" in regards to do they get viruses. On the scale that Windows machines get viruses no but there is a likely hood that they could but it’s a small chance. I do know that the Kernel that the OS is built on is one of the oldest and most secure. Plus most malicious software is built for Microsoft operating systems and is probably designed on Macs...go figure. However I think if you left a Mac with a group of Russian hackers long enough we would have ample issues.

By now, do most people understand that you shouldn't open attachments from unknown senders, or do you still get a ton of work from people who don't understand that they shouldn't open secret-report.exe?

Asked by Sunir about 7 years ago

You know I ask myself this same question but the problem is you do indeed still get these people. We have luckily trained ours to call and say "Hey I got an email on money that I need to collect by wire transfer..." and we tell them "No". However my favorites are the ones that call and say "Hey...I just did something and think it was bad...can you help me..." these are nice to. Long story short TONS, as long as there are people who use computers they will open D35troy3r_OF_W0r1DZ.exe any day. 

I always wondered this: my office has a SHARED drive (S:) that bets backed up like every 4 hours, but can they also see / access / snoop on what's on your LOCAL desktop?

Asked by Agent0 about 7 years ago

Depends on how permissions are set up. If your C: drive is shared with everyone then I can \\your computer name in explorer and maybe see your drives content. However your best bet is to treat your machine like its not yours and don't save anything you dont want seen on it. I think it's crazy when my end users save photos on a machine and they get lost. My main concern is data that is business critical and that does not include your 42GB of family them elsewhere.  

What do you think of the current trend of company's outsourcing their help desk personnel overseas? I know it saves money, but it's crazy to me that when I call my own employer's computer help desk, I'm getting someone in India!

Asked by god about 7 years ago

I know that it is a trend but recently major corporation are pulling their IT back in house. This is due to the very reason you just mentioned. Not having staff in house causes a loss in efficiency and timezone difference make it more difficult to align IT and business goals. In short though I find it annoying when companies outsource IT 100% you should, in my opinion, have boots on the ground.

Do you ever interview junior techs and what kind of interview questions do you ask?

Asked by Ted about 7 years ago

I have sat in on a few interviews but I often like to ask open ended questions. For instance describe for me an issue that you worked through and the solutions? How would you handle a client that has X issue and seems upset? I would ask questions about basic terminology and concepts to insure that they have a strong baseline. However if the tech does not post specific software knowledge on their resume then I find it unfair to question their interactions with it. You can always teach someone who understands the basics about your specific software.
Long story short if they say I have basic experience with Cisco switches then ask them basic questions but don’t ask CCIE level questions expecting expert responses.

Have you ever found something embarrassing on someone's work computer? Are you required to report anything suspicious or potentially illegal?

Asked by QQ about 7 years ago

So this is a question that runs through my head day end and day out...what if I find a stash of porn on your machine. Here are my rules of engagement. If it is a laptop or computer that you own and work from I ignore it IF the contents are not illegal such as child porn or obviously demented content. I am not the one to judge and point the finger in a case of legitimate adult entertainment. However if it is a production machine or you are looking at the materials in the office then I must report it to my supervisor and it is in his hands after that. I do not spread rumors and I do not believe in ousting people for their personal choices to watch or view...provocative materials.

Do companies typically require any particular certification to get hired for their internal tech support team? If I wanted to get one certification, which would carry the most weight across the board?

Asked by Ted about 7 years ago

This one was tough and it honestly depends on what you will be doing. At the time I interviewed for a position and had a CCNA, MCITP, SEC + and NET + but could not land an entry level position that required an A+ (A basic hardware and Troubleshooting Certificate). I also at the time had just gotten my Associates in Networking. So it was probably a very basic position but HR would not budge on having an A+. So really if your just starting and want a good fundamental certification I would get an A+ for internal technical day to day type stuff. You can build off of that knowledge from there.

Are the Best Buy Geek Squad and Apple Genius Bar staff actually competent, or is anyone who's any good at tech help working in-house at a company?

Asked by Deryen almost 7 years ago

To be honest I have met some really well rounded and competent people working for Apple's Genius Bar. Best Buy Geek Squad I have heard various details on their abilities but I cant confirm or deny anything. That said though, sometimes all you can get after a layoff is a job with a retail chain installing AV and fixing the computer that "Isn't" used for questionable acts, but just so happens to be ridden with malware. Sometimes very educated, competent people land those jobs and other times you get complete idiots with god complexes because they built a 12,000 dollar supercomputer in their moms basement....

Are your calls all recorded and are they used to evaluate your performance?

Asked by Sumatra about 7 years ago

From what I understand all calls are recorded, but they are only evaluated when a customer has a big complaint...they make sure the customer isn't blowing smoke... 9 out of 10 they are looking for something free.

Why does my Windows 8.1 keep offering me the same update, say it succeeded and then offers it again, and again, and again. I've tried every solution I could find via microsoft. Typical, right?

Asked by mcmjuly almost 7 years ago

McMJuly sorry to hear the updates are giving you issues. I would start by going to the Windows Update screen and on the left you should see something like "View Update History" typically when they repeatedly ask to be installed there is an associated failure with that update. Right click the update that is supposedly failing, which should be the case once you click view update history and see what it is, and click on view details. There should be an associated error message that you may be able to search for and get the needed information. Hope this helps.