Fringe Fixes – The Case of the Slow Application

Fringe FixesAs we care for and maintain our clients’ technology, we regularly encounter situations and solutions that are a wee bit… strange.  “Fringe Fixes” will occasionally feature some of these scenarios.

We recently took over IT management of a specialty insurance company, and their chief complaint was an intermittently slow and lagging line of business application (the primary piece of software everyone uses, all day).  At random times, for various users, everything would grind to a snail’s pace… Information entered into the app would take a long time to appear, if it appeared at all.  It was a major annoyance and a drain on morale and productivity.

The previous IT service provider had diagnosed this problem as a failing hard drive on the server that hosted the application.  They’d begun to work on the issue, but to no avail.  When we installed our server monitoring software, we too found that there was, indeed, a failing drive.

But one day, as Primary Consultant David Ferszt was in a shared remote session with our key contact, she exclaimed, “See! It’s doing it now!  It’s taking several seconds for what I type to appear on-screen!”  But, on our end, there were absolutely zero issues, with no latency or lagging.  Furthermore, since we were connected remotely and the session was working perfectly, that was further evidence that the issue was not network or server based.

On an educated, experienced and informed hunch, David asked, “Do you have a ‘wired’ keyboard that you could try and use?”  They did, and once it was plugged in, all slowness issues were resolved!

As it turns out, this company had purchased numerous models of the exact same wireless keyboard and mouse, and they were all interfering with one another (which should NOT be the case with Bluetooth technology).

A search is now on for a more permanent solution, but an accurate diagnosis of the problem has us on the right path! And, most importantly, the client is relieved and grateful!