Everytime the Cisco Toolbar Appears, God Kills a Kitten.


Go and visit Bob Plankers at http://lonesysadmin.net/. He did it. But I said it on @etherealmind.

In my defence, I didn’t mention a God.

Here is my more heartfelt criticism -†http://etherealmind.com/cisco-web-site-rubbush-why-rebuttal/


#fw-ft-enhanced { display:none; } in your userContent.css makes the problem go away.

Jeremy at Packetlfe has a detailed post on using Greasemonkey to block the toolbar.

But most Corporate Desktops are locked down and don’t allow such techniques. I would like to see a setting in my profile to disable the toolbar.

Oh, and make the site faster. Cisco.com got a lot slower and harder to use after the recent upgrade.

  • http://aconaway.com Aaron

    It’s amazing that a technology company like Cisco can have such a a terrible web site. It’s always been horribly slow to navigate, and any enhancements just make the experience even worse. Good job, Cisco!

  • JasonG

    Thanks for the CSS tip!

    It seems this topic comes up every few months on the Cisco-nsp mailinglist. I certainly wouldn’t buy Cisco stock when they are ignoring the basics like this. It’s a pattern: piss off the high-end users enough and they stop recommending; soon, the clueless stop buying the product and the house of cards collapses. Then another great Co. comes along. Rinse and repeat every 20 years or so…

  • http://www.jeremyfilliben.com Jeremy Filliben

    Don’t forget about the floating Time Life operator that follows you as you scroll down the page… It’s certainly getting tougher to find what you need!

    • http://etherealmind.com Greg Ferro

      And the cheesy “1970’s Porn Star wallpaper” in header bar.

      What’s with that ? And those floating heads of models that glare at you from every page.

  • http://lonesysadmin.net/ Bob Plankers

    I love seeing the backlash by technical people, who are already customers and don’t need to be marketed to, against marketing-driven web site design. Good marketing departments know their audience, and know that people accessing support sites probably don’t want Time Life operators trying to help them. If your web site is so screwed up that you need the equivalent of the MS Office Paperclip to help people you need to focus on other things.

    Just one more entry on the growing list of reasons to short Cisco stock.

    And yeah, the God part is mine, I felt it was more consistent with the original Domo-eating-kitten graphic. :) I was already in Photoshop so I couldn’t help it when I saw you say that. Keep sputtering good quotables, Greg!

  • Gd

    While I wholly agree Ive found that just minimising it works well enough for me

  • http://blogs.cisco.com/webexperience/ Martin Hardee

    OK, first off, speaking for the Cisco.com team, I do have on good authority that no kittens were harmed by the toolbar. Honest.

    That said, as Gd points out, the toolbar is collapsible — just look for the arrow at the far left and click it. The toolbar will remember to stay collapsed across sessions, via a cookie setting. (If you delete your cookies, just collapse it again afterward.) We’re working on some newer and less xx approaches for this kind of thing

    To Greg’s point on the “floating model”: We actually do get a fair amount of interaction with floating chat window , including a fair amount of questions on technical specifications of products. I know this because we analyze the logs of the questions so we understand what kinds of product content need to be created or modified on the site. But, you have a quite valid complaint if it is popping up a lot, and there are some rules we can adjust to make it appear less frequently for regular visitors. Give me descriptions and we’ll investigate.

    I hope some of the navigational changes we have made recently have actually been a help vs a hindrance. We tested these pretty extensively with experienced customers before we updated the site, and got pretty universally good feedback. Some of the recent navigational enhancements are:

    * Hover menus to all the major product, support and training categories from most all pages on the site (so you don’t have to keep navigating back to the home pages or gateway pages)
    * “Quick links” on search results so you can jump directly to relevant data sheets, downloads, etc (see http://blogs.cisco.com/webexperience/easier-search-results-on-cisco-com/ )
    * Links in the page footer to commonly accessed areas

    Greg or Bob, if you have a higher-def version of the kitten picture, I would love to print one out for our hallway.

    • http://blogs.cisco.com/webexperience/ Martin Hardee

      for “xx” above, insert “obtrusive” — I was searching for the right word and hit ‘reply’ too soon :-(

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  • Phillip Remaker

    Epilogue: The Cisco Toolbar has been removed.

    Lessons learned on Martin’s blog post at

    • http://etherealmind.com Greg Ferro

      I’ve blogged about that elsewhere. And also added comments to say thanks to the team on the blog post at cisco.com.

      I look forward to further improvements.

  • arizbeth janai

    ke padre