This company uses a popular medical software package, and a pilot fish on the scene is tapped for the task of updating the software's data.

"I looked on the software company's website for information," says fish. "There I found a document that had complete instructions: 1) Do some preliminary work, then 2) run stored procedures 1, 2, 3 and 4.

"After searching everywhere in our systems, I could not find the stored procedures, so I opened a ticket with their support team asking for them."

And soon enough, fish gets a response: According to a software vendor support rep, the document is in error and shouldn't have been on the public site.

The stored procedures could even possibly do harm, the support rep says. The work-around: Vendor support will download and run the stored procedures on fish's company's system, once they've confirmed that fish has completed the preliminary work.

"Just do the preliminaries and get back in touch with us," support rep tells fish.

Two days later, fish emails the vendor's support group to inform them that the preliminaries are done and he's ready to continue with the data update.

The response from the same support rep: "If you have completed the preliminaries, then the next step is to run the stored procedures. Have you completed that yet?"

Sighs fish, "It took several more emails to straighten that out."

It only takes one email to tell Sharky your story. Send me your true tale of IT life at sharky@computerworld.com. You'll get a stylish Shark shirt if I use it. Add your comments below, and read some great old tales in the Sharkives.

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