Microsoft Support Humor

Wednesday, January 01, 2020

 

Sometimes as an IT professional you need to engage Microsoft Support to resolve a production issue...normally a last resort.

 

I've had the pleasure of speaking with a number of Microsoft support engineers over the years, they average between very bad and OK.

 

They employ various tricks to quickly close the incident, the favourite excuse is "sorry, it's out of scope for this team".

 

Now I don't blame these guys, it's pretty hard stuck at your desk waiting for the next severity incident to turn up in the inbox and then expect to solve it within a matter of hours.

 

So cue the music, we have a spanking new Microsoft server with Analysis Services 2016 running in Tabular mode.

 

Migrated all our existing SQL 2012 cubes across and performance was looking sweet, 20-30% increase on average.

Flicked the switch and now all production queries are running on the new beast.

 

2-3 hours later I discover the Analysis Services service is now performing memory dumps like there is no tomorrow....this isn't good. Did this product escape the Microsoft Test team ?

 

Hmmm, quick check and its some exception coming from deep within the Analysis program...hmmm time to engage Microsoft Support.

 

Since we have Microsoft Partner status we enjoy a number of benefits, one of these is a number of free support incidents (geez...nothing is free in life they say).

 

Great, let us create an incident.

Microsoft allows you to determine the severity...OK, its Production and happy to work until this is resolved results in a Severity A.

 

It's pretty rare to create a severity A incident.

 

So the Microsoft engineer contacts me requesting the various logs, mini dump files, yadda yadda...

 

I receive a second call from him announcing that because this is a professional incident it doesn't cover analysing the dump files.

 

Analysing the dump files is done under the premium customer support so could I create a new incident under premium (oh, that's the thing which costs 35k pa!) .

 

Furthermore, the incident had a maximum allowed 5 hours and then he would need to close it .....

Apparently, these comments came the team leader.

 

Now if you read the support page there is no mention of "5 hours" and "analysing dump files" (Support Options for Business Users).

 

Which begs to differ how can they achieve a satisfactory resolution if they can't perform some basic analysis of the dump file under the existing professional support incident.

 

Oh well, looks like I need to dig out the debugger tools and identify the root cause myself. Guess it is not the first time :-)