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This is a guest post by Brad Anderson, Corporate Vice President, Enterprise Client & Mobility.

Over the last month you’ve been submitting some pretty amazing/terrible/hilarious stories to the “Tales from Tech Support” contest.

I knew there would be some great stories to tell – and the IT community did not disappoint. 🙂  As my team and I read these, there was no shortage of laughter, disbelief, and pity.

Now that the submission phase is over, it’s time for the real decision making to begin:  Starting today and running through next Friday (Feb. 27), voting is open to determine The Best Worst Story of Them All (the winner gets a Surface Pro 3!) from a carefully selected group of 10 finalists.

[Using awards show voice]  Here… are the nominees:

  • Unplug That!  A story about a server room with an unreliable power supply – and an imperfect solution for future outages.  Read it here.
  • High-touch User.  When passwords get lost in translation the further they move up the corporate ladder, a story about what “equals” success.  Read it here.
  • Tight Security.  An account of the struggle between the most technologically sophisticated security and mankind’s earliest writing instruments.  Read it here.
  • Password File.  A tragic tale of the public (and ostensibly well-intentioned) public sharing of usernames and passwords – and the chaos that followed.  Read it here.
  • Failing Backups.  A tragicomedy (yes, that’s a word) about the titanic struggle between floppy disks, magnetism, and ignorance.  Read it here.
  • Delete the CEO.  A story about spearfishing, deleted emails, forgetting about deleting e-mails, promising that no e-mails were deleted, and the merits of data recovery.  Read it here.
  • Dubious Back-up.  A story of the least sophisticated corporate data backup we’ve ever seen.  Read here.
  • The Wrong Time.  In the tradition of all great speculative fiction, a story that goes far beyond circumventing IT – this is a tale of one accountant’s attempt to eliminate time itself.  Read it here.
  • Grandma WoW.  An unexpectedly heartwarming story about how one computer support professional made sure a guild had its healer for the big raid.  Read it here.  And then call your grandma (or someone equally adorable).
  • Lockdown Bypass.  In a world with highly secure lockout policies, one IT Pro struggles to control an impossible threat:  Analog watches.  Read it here.

I think you’ll really enjoy reading the nominees on that list (which, to be clear, is in random order).  There were a couple other great stories that would have made that list, but they included the names of companies or people, and, well, we don’t want to embarrass anyone, right?

Once you’re done reading the nominees, go here to vote.  Voting is limited to once per day so that you don’t try to American Idol this and vote 7,300 times for your favorite (and/or yourself).

The winner gets a Surface Pro 3 – the same machine I use every day!

If you have a favorite, or want to highlight the one that made you laugh the hardest, let me know!

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