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Clients from Hell

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I perform web hosting duties for a large university.  My team’s clients are university developers...

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I perform web hosting duties for a large university.  My team’s clients are university developers who you’d think would know the deal by now.  The website in question has a M-F 9-5 support window, is the QA instance, and was recently upgraded.

Client: (emailing at 6:30PM, Friday afternoon) Hey, the email function worked on the old version of the site, but it’s not working now.  Can you look into this as soon as possible?

Me: Sure, I’ll look at it first thing Monday morning.

Client: (emailing 7:55AM, Monday morning) It looks like the email function is still broken.  Please address this as soon as you can, I need to demonstrate it this afternoon.

Me: It is the first thing on my list today.

After about an hour of troubleshooting, I discovered the problem and how to fix it. It required a reboot of the site, so I emailed the client to let him know that there would be a short bit of downtime.

Me: Hi! I’m going to need to restart the site at noon today to resolve the email delivery issue.  Please let me know now if that will interrupt your work, if I don’t hear from you I’ll restart at 12:00PM sharp.  Downtime will last about 5 minutes.

Client: Is this proposed downtime going to affect your progress with troubleshooting my email issue?

Me: The proposed downtime is to resolve the email issue.

Client: Okay, let me know when it is done.

Noon comes and I restart the site. I received this update immediately after starting the reboot.

Client: Hey, I’m getting a temporarily unavailable error from the site, what’s going on?  When can I expect the site to be back up, I have a demo of the email function this afternoon, also, is the email function fixed yet?  I really need that as soon as possible.

Want to know if freelancing is for you? 

Source: Clients from Hell

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