Thursday, April 13, 2006

The force within ...

I am in the middle of the field. I call split double Z, fade right. From a corner of my eye, i could see my backup Peyton Manning, with an expression wishing he was the one with his hand under the center's ass. Beside him, my coaches Sergey Brin ,Larry Page and Bill Belichick, dreaming up the next great play. I call the play, fake to the tight end, the safety bites, I go long, connect with my receiver... touch down... the crowd is going wild... they are going crazy... "student" "student" "hey yo!! switch it off"

Huh! I rub my eyes, curse my flat mate and pick up my phone.


"Hey Student... don't you check your cell phone text messages?"

"Its 12:30 in the morning... don't you ever sleep?" i ask dreamy eyed

"Well... we have a problem... come over immediately"

Oh by the way, I work in the campus IT dept. I have worked with them since my freshman year and right now, I work as a senior network admin at my school. I show up and see the new software work study in there too. He proceeds to tell me the problem. He is seeing a spike in the network traffic in a sector of 25 Dell computers he worked on recently and showing me the network spike in his monitor.

All lights were green in infrastructure land, but performance had slowed to a bit of a crawl in that segment. Some diligent sniffing and log file snooping revealed the culprit.

Turns out Windows XP’s Automatic Update had defaulted to high noon on a weekday, and all 25 machines attempted to download several hundred megs of Service Pack 2 simultaneously and individually. Instant network clog.

The rookie used an older image of the OS on the new machines and set auto update on them instead of using WSUS (Windows Server Update Services).

Now i am pissed... first at my boss for calling me over this. He likes to call me over trivial issues even for not so widespread issues.

Next, I focus my attention on the rookie. I pointed my hand at him and he began struggling for air. He clawed at his throat, his eyes bulging as he slid of his seat and hit the floor. He convulsed briefly before the final stillness. "You're fired," I said.

"I am sorry, ... I should have known" the rookie says. I come back to reality, shrug and decide to storm into my boss's office to ask for a raise or give me firing rights. I decide against it and sit down in front of my computer.

Moral of the story: Just because your help is technical doesn’t mean they’ll behave with any more attention to detail than the average Joe. If network uptime is your responsibility, then take responsibility and manage what needs managing.


Scott said...

To play devil's advocate, the rookie using an old workstation image that was set to use AutoUpdate isn't his fault since the WSUS settings are set via Group Policy, not on the individual workstations. If the GPO is configured properly the workstation settings will be overridden and be greyed-out.

devry columbus said...

Welcome to the real life, that's what really happens here and it would be best if you think so many times before you do something.