As usual, there's a simple explanation

IT manager pilot fish puts in an order with an internet provider to boost bandwidth and get a bigger block of IP addresses, and it looks like everything is running on rails.

"Forms were completed and everything was going smoothly," fish says. "I received a box with a modem on Monday as promised. I got it racked up and powered ahead of time.

"That way, when the ISP tech arrived on Wednesday afternoon, all he would really need to do is swing the connection from the old modem to the new one and call into the ISP's network operations center to have them assign the new IP block to the new modem. Then I could assign the IP addresses to our firewall."

It's the company's backup connection, so the work can even be done during the day. The ISP tech arrives as scheduled on Wednesday, works his magic and is done by 4 p.m.

But before he leaves, he tells fish it will be an hour or so until the IPs are available, and that fish will be notified by email. Fish figures that's fine, and leaves for the day.

No email from the ISP arrives that evening, and there's nothing in fish's inbox first thing the next morning, so he calls the ISP's tech support line.

That's when a support rep tells him that the order to build and assign the block of IP addresses never gets scheduled until after the modem is installed -- and then asks fish to supply documentation on his need for multiple IP addresses.

Flabbergasted fish fires off an email to his account manager: Tech replaced the modem at around 3:30 yesterday. We cannot connect on the old IP block, and tech support is telling me that we won't have the new IPs for 24 to 48 more hours?

The order should have included the bandwidth increase as well as the new IPs. Why on earth did the IP work not take place ahead of time or at least be in a queue to make it happen at the time of install?

Reports fish, "A few minutes later, I got this email in response: Because I work with idiots. I will escalate.

"It was kind of hard to argue with his reasoning."

Got idiots? Tell Sharky about 'em. Send me your true tales of IT life at sharky@computerworld.com. You can also comment on today's tale at Sharky's Google+ community, and read thousands of great old tales in the Sharkives.

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