Fun_People Archive
22 Dec
IBM Thinkpad Support Encourages Pizza and Beer

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From: Peter Langston <psl>
Date: Mon, 22 Dec 97 18:54:19 -0800
To: Fun_People
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Subject: IBM Thinkpad Support Encourages Pizza and Beer

[If you've ever found yourself in a situation like this and thought you were  
losing your grip on reality, take cheer, it's reality's fault, not yours...   

Forwarded-by: Nev Dull <>
Forwarded-by: glen mccready <>
[attribution removed by request]

 (paraphrased from a tech support call to IBM)

*ring*  *ring*
IBM: Hello, IBM thinkpad support.  How may I help you?
me:  My new 560X is crashing in win95 when I suspend.
IBM: Yes sir.  There's a known problem with suspend and PCMCIA cards...
     PCMCIA network and modem cards don't support suspend mode properly.
     They're not power-aware.
me:  ... *ponder* ... *think* ... You mean to say my Xircom network card is
     the problem?  Wait. The Xircom card suspends fine on my Toshiba notebook.
     How can the problem be PCMCIA cards not being power-aware?
IBM: Yes sir.  There is a workaround... Stop any PCMCIA cards you have prior
     to invoking suspend.
me:  Okay.  I can live with that for the short term.  Has this been reported
     to IBM engineering as a bug and do you have some idea of an ETA?
IBM: I'm sorry sir.  This is not a bug.  The problem is with the PCMCIA cards.
me:  ??!!  Fine.  Do you have a hardware compatibility list of PCMCIA network
     cards which do work?  I'll go buy one of those.
IBM: Yes sir.  Our IBM network and modem cards are supported and known to work.
me:  Great!  So the IBM cards will suspend properly?
IBM: I didn't say that sir.  The IBM cards are supported and known to work.
me:  Yes...  So the IBM cards will suspend and resume reliably?
IBM: I didn't say that sir.  The IBM cards are our supported cards for the
     560X and known to work.  You'll just need to stop the card services
     before suspending.
me:  So are there any PCMCIA cards which doesn't require being stopped in
     order for the 560X to suspend correctly?
IBM: No sir.
me:  And this is not considered a bug in the 560X?
IBM: Yes sir.  The problem is that the PCMCIA card doesn't support suspend
me:  Even your own PCMCIA cards?
IBM: I didn't say that sir.
me:  I can use both the IBM and Xircom cards in my Toshiba w/o suspend/resume
     problems... and this is still not a bug with the 560X design?
IBM: Sir, the supported IBM cards are known to work on the 560X.
me:  But not realiably?
IBM: I didn't say that, sir.

I relented at this point and let the poor support tech go.  obviously he
was under direct orders not to acknowledge a design flaw in the 560X PCMCIA
subsystem by management.

This was a perversely fascinating call and I think I'll go have a pizza and
a beer now.

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