Real-world tales of IT adventures

Readers share their IT experiences in InfoWorld's Off the Record.

"Got amazing IT tales, lessons learned the hard way, war stories from the IT trenches, or an instance when something went very right?"

These are the questions we ask to get InfoWorld readers thinking about their personal adventures in IT. We then publish those stories in our Off the Record blog, keeping the writer anonymous. In the Comments section, readers react to the "been there, done that" aspect of the stories, and often weigh in with further insights.

[ Want to cash in on your IT experiences? Send your story to If we publish it, we'll send you a $50 American Express gift card. ]

In June, the collection of IT tales included "bang-your-head-against-a-wall-in-frustration" tech support calls and an IT contract from hell. So here they are. And we look forward to reading about your own IT experience -- send it to


* Channeling the tech-challenged user means it's time to rethink basic assumptions.

* In "IT contract from hell," the question is, Why won't the boss let me do my job?

* The printer won't print, so call tech support -- seems simple enough. But it turns out to be just too simple in "Computers? not my job."

* Operator error? This 2 a.m. tech support call turned out to be less than an emergency.

* Getting a VPN up and running for an injured employee turns out to be more complicated than it first seems.