There's always a reason

CEO's laptop dies, so this pilot fish rush-orders a new one for him. But there's a complication or two.

"We're just starting to use Windows 7 here, and his replacement was only the third Windows 7 PC we've worked with," explains fish. "And for too many reasons to coherently explain here, he also has to log into our network in a different way than we have used for years, but with the same password."

Fish has already created a small program to handle the network login and mapping, so the network login process will look similar to what everyone has used before. And it runs fine on Windows XP -- but for some reason it won't work when for the CEO on his new Windows 7 laptop.

For a full day, punctuated only by a few new fires to put out, fish works frantically trying to figure out what's different between XP and Win 7 on the login. But he comes up with nothing.

At 5 p.m., the irritated CEO calls. He wants to know when it's going to work. If it won't, he says, "Send the laptop back."

Fortunately for fish, the next morning two new PCs with Windows 7 arrive. Fish tests his login program with the two new machines, using the IDs for himself and two of his co-workers -- and the login program works fine.

"Finally the light dawns!" fish says. "I go onto our server and change the CEO's network password so I know what it is. With the new password, everything works fine. I deliver his laptop and have him login with his new password.

"Then, after all the grief I went through, I still manage to tactfully explain that the problem was that he was using the wrong password. His only response was, 'Hmm, how'd that happen?' as if I was the one responsible for him not knowing his own password."

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