The Horror of The Ask Toolbar

How many times has this happened to you?

Photo by Viri GIt is 4:30 on a Friday afternoon and you are considering the endless possibilities that the weekend has to offer.  You skipped the birthday cake in the break room during the lunch hour; instead you spent the time waiting in line at the bank.  Why?  Because tonight is poker night!

The clock continues its agonizing crawl to the top of the hour as you muse on David’s tells. You already have the case of Heineken in your trunk.  It is probably going to be too warm to drink right away, but if you put the first bottle in the freezer right when you get to Peter’s…

The phone rings at your desk pulling you back into the corporate world.  The clock now reads 4:34.

“Hello,” you say hoping that the confusion in your tone is misconstrued as frustration at being torn away from an important project.

“This is Sally.  The C.E.O. needs someone from IT to come and fix something on his computer,” the voice on the phone relays.

Sally, of course.  “Someone from IT” has been you, since they let Roger go 3 months ago when the accounting department decided that a Sys Admin was the same position as help desk, and that the company would be better served by cutting out the “redundancy.”

“Sure Sally.  What seems to be the trouble,” you say in the I am just glad it was Roger tone you have learned so well.

“He says that you installed some kind of Ask thing on his computer, and now his internet doesn’t work correctly,” Sally says.

Oh, no.  “Ask thing.”  Did he download the Ask Toolbar?  

“Let him know that I will be right up,” you say, hoping that your voice isn’t trembling.

Three floors later, the chills in your spine have grown to the point of being at risk of causing a seizure.  If he installed the Ask Toolbar, and wants me to get rid of it I could miss the first buy in.

Stepping out of the elevator you see Sally packing up her bag.  She flashes you that smug “not my problem” smile and tells you to head on in.

When you enter Mr. Krupke’s office he is seething. “How many times have I told you not to install junk on to my computer without testing it first.  I need to download my tickets to Pebble Beach.  I have an 8:00am tee time tomorrow!”

“Sorry sir,” is all you manage to mutter while trying bring up a browser.  There it is, in all of its passive aggressive glory, the Ask Toolbar.
.  How could he have downloaded this?  Then you see the culprit, a new weather app on his desktop, broadcasting a Sunny 82 degrees in Pebble Beach.  Do you dare tell your boss how it really got installed?  How many registries must you o go through while the impatient heat emanating from his breath lands stale on the back of your neck?  Are you feeling faint?

Not if you have PDQ Deploy and a subscription to the package library.

Watch Lex as he easily removes the Ask Toolbar without feeling the need to cry even once.


   Photo by Viri G