This morning, I walk into the office to a ticket labeled “Broken Laptop”. Clicking it open, it’s from a manager that is well known in the IT Department here for being technologically illiterate. And even more so, most of the folks he manages are as bad, if not worse than he is. The ticket text is completely blank, so I figure it’s not hugely urgent. Brew my morning cup of coffee, and then swing over to the lab area where he and his employees work.
I find him pacing out in front of one of our smaller labs. He explains that this is a critical issue, as one of his employees can’t work at all. I nod, ask him who, and he points over to the corner of the room. Gerald (not his real name, of course), he says.
As we begin to walk over, he begins to elaborate. Apparently this month, they are doing cross-training between receiving, technical support, booking, shipping, and ordering. So all of these employees will be jumping from workstation to workstation. Something slowly begins to tick away in the back of my head. That something is very wrong in paradise.
Now, this warrants a little backstory. At my place of employment, we use Dell Laptops exclusively. Each laptop has a monitor, keyboard, and mouse (on occasion a USB Hub or set of Speakers as well) hooked up to a docking station. We primarily use Latitude E6400’s and up, so for the most part all of our laptops use the same docking station. However, there are a few cases where they do not. For example, the folks in shipping use Latitude D630’s. One of our older employees in Booking uses a Vostro.
As I walk over to the machine, around the corner and up the slight incline, I can already see the issue. But, hearing it from this manager’s mouth just really put the icing on the cake.
“When Gerald came in today to work in Booking, his laptop wouldn’t fit on the docking station. I figured it was just weird, like there was a piece of plastic in the way or something.”
Continuing to walk forward with this explanation, the laptop is indeed on the docking station. A Vostro. On a D630 Docking Station.
“So, I figured a little elbow grease would do the trick, right? Got over there, and pushed. It was a tough little sucker, but it finally went on! But now the monitor won’t light up. I have no idea what’s wrong.”
I pick up the entire unit, laptop and docking station, removing the wires from the dock. The laptop is skewed from the back of the dock at about a 10 degree angle. There is a faint rattling sound as I lift the machine into the air. And the machine really, really is not coming off of the dock.
Picture Source: [Jeff Sandquist (CC)]