Adobe Customer Support Experience

I’m trying to install the Adobe Digital Editions program for a customer. I need to install it on about 40 computers, so I’m going to use the automated system I have in place. However upon testing the install I found that the silent install mode (the mode intended for automated installs of software, which asks no questions, and just uses default values) pops up a screen during the install offer annoying junk ware (software that you don’t want, and will probably be detrimental to your system). In this case it was something from Norton. There is no way around unchecking the checkbox that indicates you would like to install the offered junk ware, and then clicking the button to continue the install. This isn’t a silent install.

Annoyed by this stupidity, I decided to contact Adobe to see if they had any solutions.

My first attempt at contact was via the “Chat” support. After much back and forth regarding whether I had an Adobe account, and whether I needed an Adobe account in order to ask a question, I was told to wait 1-2 minutes while he checked my account. I was eventually told there were no “specialists” who could help with my problem, I needed to go to the Adobe forum. I quizzed the support person as to why there where no “specialists” available to ask, and what was the point of a chat support if they couldn’t offer support for their products, but he gave no further details.

With no help there I checked the forum as instructed. I found one existing question regarding my issue, however there was no resolution. The only solution involved adding settings in the guts of Windows to tell it that I had already declined the Norton offer twice, which would then cause the program to install silently. A terrible hack! It might work around the issue for now but what about when they change the junk ware product?

I hunted about for more support avenues and found the “Adobe Tech Comm Support team” email address (tcssup@adobe.com). I emailed them thinking I had found the right people; these must be “specialists”. I was disappointed by the reply I received, apparently “Phone/Email support is not available for Digital Editions”.

Sullenly considering my options I had a brain wave! I’ll file a bug report. I hunted down the Adobe bug reporting/feature requesting site. Great! No! There’s no option for submitting bugs for Digital Editions.

So there is no support for this broken product, and no way of reporting this broken feature!

I have settled for filing a bug report under a different product area in the hope someone will offer some help, and I also asked a fresh question on the forum. I’m not expecting anything useful back but stranger things have happened.

As a last resort I have “tweeted” this rant to the Adobe Customer Care (@AdobeCare) twitter account.

Expanding

I’m excited to announce that Limey Solutions is in the process of expanding.

Sadly a good friend of mine, who is also amazing at IT, is imminently losing his job at Coldwater Creek. It’s not the saddest of news for me as I’ve been wanting to get him working with me for quite some time, and this has given me that opportunity.

He has been getting a feel for the job over the last couple of weeks, and will be going out on his own (and sometimes with me) as of next week. Initially he’ll be working a couple of days a week, but hopefully as the business grows further that will increase.

Move to Sandpoint

Back in January my family moved from Priest River to Sandpoint, so I am now more conveniently located for my Sandpoint, Sagle and Hope customers, but don’t worry Priest River and Newport, I’m still over that way regularly.

Internet Explorer 11

Well Microsoft have started pushing out a Windows update for IE (Internet Explorer) 11 causing more of the same problems as with IE 10.

Two customers called me within 20 minutes of each other to say they could no longer access web-sites vital to the functioning of their businesses. One reported that their browser had been updated that morning, and the other was getting a message reporting incompatibilities with IE 11.

After talking them through uninstalling the update to IE 11 they were back in business. I had previously uninstalled the update to IE 10 from all the computers at one of these companies for the same reason.

It seems to me like Microsoft are trying to encourage web-site developers to ensure their web-sites are compatible with browsers other than IE. That way my clients will be able to switch to more reliable browsers such as Google’s increasingly popular Chrome, or Mozilla’s Firefox, and not have to put up with compatibility issues every time there is a new browser release.

If you are having problem with IE 11 compatibility issues you can follow the uninstallation instructions here.

CryptoLocker

You’ve probably already heard about the virus CryptoLocker, that is holding PC user’s documents, pictures, videos, etc to ransom. If not you can read about it here.

I recently heard of the Sandboxie software, and that it can help to protect you from malware (malicious software). It stops selected programs from being able to make changes to files outside of designated areas. So you would isolate your email program (or browser if you are using a webmail service) using Sandboxie, and then if you get the CryptoLocker trojan (or another virus) it wouldn’t be able to access any of your documents or the Windows system files.

The downside is that any attachments you receive in emails or downloads from the web will be in the ‘sandbox’ to, but you can move them out to the regular document area when you are happy they’re safe.

Of course if you want to set this up, but need some please call us.

Saving XP exploits

I recently heard that it’s commonly supposed the ‘bad guys’ are saving their potential exploits for Windows XP. It makes sense. After investing a lot of time in finding a weakness in the old operating system, why would you then put it out there just to have it fixed by Microsoft after a week or two, when you could simply sit on it for a few months after which it will be available forever?

It’s estimated that when XP’s support ends in April, one third of computers will still be running Windows XP. That’s a lot of potential targets for malware to infect.

It was also pointed out that a lot of vulnerabilities affect all/most versions of Windows, not just one. So given that we know the ‘bad guys’ reverse engineer Microsoft’s patches (they work out what the weakness was from the fix) they will be able to find new openings into XP from the fixes that come out for Vista, etc once XP is no longer receiving those same fixes.

All in all, it’ll be a dangerous time to be using XP on the internet.

XP support ticking down

With Windows XP now having less than a year of support left, I have been recommending people to start considering what they will do to replace it. Some are just going to buy a new PC with Windows 8 (not sooo bad with the addition of Start Menu 8, which makes it just like using Windows 7), others are considering Macs. Then there are those that cannot afford a new PC, and are considering the free option of Linux, which is also my operating system of choice (I’m currently using Linux Mint, which a derivative of Ubuntu, which is a derivative of Debian).

In light of all this, this article seemed somewhat relevant. Enjoy.

http://www.extremetech.com/extreme/155392-international-space-station-switches-from-windows-to-linux-for-improved-reliability

Site move

Appologies to anyone who had trouble accessing the site today, I was moving it from one hosting company’s servers to another. A pain, but it’s done now. =)