Thursday, April 24, 2008
Wednesday, April 23, 2008
Monday, April 21, 2008
Saturday, April 19, 2008
Tomorrow afternoon will have the vendor exhibits going on and in the afternoon I will be giving my Response Point presentations.
Oh yes, Zenith Infotech apparently supplied 4,000 bottles of Backup & Disaster Recovery water. That's a lot of water for a group of 400 people drinking mostly coffee, soda and chai tea. I know, picture is rotated. Just can't figure why? and don't feel like fooling with it.
Friday, April 18, 2008
Wednesday, April 9, 2008
Tuesday, April 8, 2008
In going through my accounting records while preparing for my accountant to do his job for my Income Taxes I noticed a repeating charge from Microsoft Live Office for $40 per month for about the last 12 to 14 months! These charges have been paid when presented but this was the first time I had actually reviewed the detail and noticed this one. When I called MS Live Office customer service I was told that this was for my premium Live Office Account. I do sign up for free offers, especially when I think I can learn about a service that might be helpful for my clients in my consulting practice. But when I see that the free trial period will change to a paid service I mark my calendar so that I don't forget to cancel the service if I don't want to keep it. Customer Service said they were sorry but all they could do was cancel my service and refund the one month that I was paid ahead. When I asked who else with a higher authority in service I could appeal to the answer I was give was - no one. When I expressed incredulity to this and asked if I could write a letter or email to someone I was advised to address my letter to:
1 Microsoft Way
Redmond, WA xxxxx
I asked if this was the complete address and was told it was. I asked if there was a person's name or department to direct it to and was answered - no, there wasn't.
Now I don't know about you but with the rest of the way I have seen MS operate I was skeptical as to whether addressing a letter to no one could get more results than actually talking to someone on the phone. I was picturing the mail room guy having to read my letter and then react appropriately. Seemed kind of iffy.
A few days later when I had a few minutes to spare and was in the mood to get frustrated I called Live Office customer service again. The guy I spoke with told me that he knew that I was sent an email letting me know that the Live Office service had changed from beta to production and I would start being charged. I asked if you could demonstrate that I had seen this email (even though I don't believe seeing it constitutes agreement). He said he could not. He went on to tell me that I had replied to the email and accepted the terms. THIS really got me. I knew that I had not seen the email and there is NO WAY that I had agreed. I asked him to produce a copy of my acceptance email and he said these were only accessible for 60 days - and at about 1 year we were way past that. I asked him who could retrieve this email and he suggested I call 1-800-microsoft and get to the billing department and they would help me. He added that he could credit my account for 2 months worth of charges. I am a little confused why he did this based on the rest of his story?
THEN, a week or so ago, while driving to Nashville to see one of my daughters, I got a call from Sheila, my TPAM. After we talked she asked if there was anything she could do for me. I thought for a minute and told her it would be great if she could get me in contact with someone in the Live Office customer service area that was a little more enlightened than the front line telephone people that I had been dealing with. I explained what the issue was and she said she couldn't promise anything but that she would try.
TODAY, I got a call from Josh at Live Office and he said he was instructed to get in touch with me and take care of refunding my money. WOW, I got what I was looking for and I didn't even have to knock myself out.
Friday, April 4, 2008
After a while I arrived at the error message in my second screen shot here. This is the product intended for the HOME user. Does this tell you enough about how to proceed? And what's with the OK? I think it's not OK but there is no other choice.
Because I work a lot with this vendor's software I know I can search their database and look for solutions. I did find KB 939218 and it is not pretty, particularly if you try to imagine the home user (mother, father, child) trying to follow it. The problem was that this KB (which was the only one which related to my symptoms) did not fix my problem.
I did find a message forum that discussed similar issues where the KB didn't help but some other steps did. I am reposting from it here -
Basically, it is reloading the WHS restore service driver. The tricky part about it is that it only exists while the restore is in progress.
So, you have to have Device Manager opened up with the System Devices section opened up and then do the restore. Early on, at about 3%, you will see the Home Server Restore driver pop up in the DM list. Right click it and uninstall it. Then cancel the ongoing restore process in the connector software. Get out of everything that needs to be closed and restart the system. When it boots again, retry the restore process and it should work - at least mine did and still is...
This forces a reload of the restore driver and is tricky becasue the restore driver is added and deleted as part of the restore process and you cannot find or see it at any other time.
This did work. Again - probably not for a happy home user.