You should never believe your users, if you do things like tech support or network administration.
Your users (unless you are in the strange situation of being an admin or support person for turbogeeks) usually know less than you, jump to conclusions and are not close enough to the system or to its NOC to really understand what is going on.
People in network administration get that all the time. The complaint is almost always about the wrong thing ... users will say "the web server is down", when in fact what has happened is that they cannot access the web server from their desk. But this could be due to many things:
- Their machine's IP stack is not well-configured, maybe because DHCP does not like them, or because someone played with the configuration.
- They have unwittingly disconnected the network cable.
- The web server is on the other side of the galaxy, and it is 11AM, and the Internet is clogged.
- Their machine is running RealAudio, ICQ, AIM, Napster, Scour, and it is sharing its disk with 200 people.
- and yes, the remote server could be down.
This is why, when you get a technical failure report from a naive user you should, respectfully and carefully walk him on the failure tree, suggesting simple tests and having him help you reach a reasonable diagnosis.