Thursday, March 02, 2006

Career Change

I've made a decision. I'm getting out of firefighting.
The last few weeks have been nightmarish and it's not the way I want to live my life. Steps are being put in place so that I can spend far more of my time enhancing our network instead of running around putting out fires.

1. Mail routing is no longer going to be through France.
This is a major one. The least of my problems is the multiple points of failure - the real problem is their inability to admit that they're wrong. I've given up asking them to check things because I ak them. I now include reams of detail from the logs to prove my point and say "THIS is why you should check what I'm asking you to."

2. DNS is no longer to be hosted by Ozemail.
These guys are jokers. You really have no idea the trouble I've had with them. Goodbye Ozemail, hello Rosser.
As an aside, Rosser are the guys who look after all our comms needs. Hardware, config - these guys rock. Good option for anyone out there who needs a solution.

3. Secondary mail storage.
Our inbound mails will shortly be going through Mailguard. AV, anti-spam, content filtering and on demand reports for $4.95 per month per user. Very workable for a company our size. The big benefit is that if our net connection, firewall or mail server goes down then this company will hold our mail for up to five days. When the connection comes back up it all forwards across.

These are the major ones. I'm also playing with vbscripts to monitor our server health, but I won't tell you about those until they're ready. Goodbye headaches, hello interesting stuff!

Wednesday, February 15, 2006

There's always a tradeoff

Well, I've been enjoying this whole "being my own boss" thing at work quite a bit. Of course, there's always positives and negatives to everything and these last two weeks have been the negative. A DC that has random connectivity/authentication issues, mail server migration, a new site in Perth that requires setup and three new servers for our asset management system. Far too much to do and far too little time.
At any rate, I can see the light at the end of the tunnel. The DC has been fixed as of this morning (probably my biggest headache as this is a problem that is visible to everyone). The mail migration is complete on the back end, the only people who have not been reconfigured are those travelling overseas. Equipment has been ordered for Perth, and as I type this I am sitting at my desk installing 2003 server via a Remote Access card on server 2 of 3. Very nice. Now, if I can just get everyone at Prospect sorted tomorrow I can take Friday off to make up for the lost sleep.

Time to end another techy computer based post on my blog. One day I'll write about something more interesting.

Tuesday, February 07, 2006


"Like most IT people, I will happily spend six hours figuring out how to do a three hour job in ten minutes."

That is all.

Friday, January 27, 2006

ISPs are wankers

Ok - flat out busy at work. In fact, the only reason I have time to post this while I'm at work is because the ISP who hosts our DNS has decided to purge our records. For the uninitiated, this means that we're getting no emails. Nada, none. Not good - especially since we were meant to be doing a Domino migration over the weekend.

Anyhow, this ISP maintains that we have no account with them. This is despite the fact that I can provide invoice numbers that they have sent us in the past. Since they are a bunch of wallies I've decided not to ask them to create us a new account, but have contacted the people who host our website. They are quite happy to do it, but of course the modification automatically emails me details that I require to get up and running. Feels very much like I'm going around in circles. Meh.

On the bright side, my swanky new laptop has arrived. 2.2GHz, 2GB RAM, 256MB video card, 100GB HDD.... lots of goodness. We need to have a LAN party sometime soon - can't wait to see CS running on this thing.

Finally, a thought from a friend of mine - "the whole metro movement is about the feminization of men...and I am fighting for men to say no to becoming pussies". Very amusing.

Monday, January 23, 2006

Does my ass look big in this?

Finally got my suit sorted for the wedding. Bring on the post Christmas sales - certainly makes an expensive purchase slightly less expensive.
After trying on quite a few suits, I've ended up picking one that I like. Thing is, it's European so their sizing is yet another thing. American, my pants are 34. Aussie, they're 87. European? 52. Seems like they get the centimetre measurement, take off the inches and that's their size. Ok, so it's probably a lot different to that but it's still confusing.

Anyhow, trying on the suits was a tiring affair. Tiring in the sense of being really painful to get things just right in one style, then have to stuff around doing it all again in another - and girls think this kind of stuff is fun? At any rate, turns out that I have an 87 (34, 50) waist but a 92 (36, 52) ass and legs. Kind of amusing to think I have a fat ass. Guess it must be from the riding - at least that's what I'm saying.

On the geeky side of things, I got RIS working with my answer file. Basically means I can plug a computer into the network, enter a user name and password and Windows will install itself under a specific set of parameters without me lifting another finger. Very nice, and just in time for the rollout here.

Wednesday, January 18, 2006

Spending other people's money

So, since we're saving hard for the wedding I haven't had much of a chance to splurge which is very unlike me. To overcome this deficit I'm buying things for work using their money. To date I've spent around $120,000 this year. Not a bad start for half way through the first month. Anyhow, it takes the edge off wanting to go out buying things.

In other news, the server at Prospect went down on Monday. One of the channels on the RAID controller died which wasn't pretty... thought I was going to have a server to rebuild but thankfully it all came up when the replacement board went in.

Coffee news... nothing to report. Haven't been out riding in a while - the hobbies have been on the backburner while I try and get life done. Hopefully things slow down soonish. Oh, I haven't mentioned that we're moving back to the Hawkesbury. Looks like I'll have the opportunity to see more of people. Anyhow, I have a meeting to go to so I think I'll leave you with one final thought before I go - Quicquid latine dictum sit, altum viditur.

Thursday, January 12, 2006

Getting on with it

Well, 2006 is here and as of today there is four months until my wedding. Starting to get on top of things - I've picked out a suit, taking advantage of the sales to save myself $200. Liz is up in the Hunter today and tomorrow checking out florists, hairdressers and make up people (do they have a title?). She's also checking photographers... and I'm amazed at how much these people charge. Basic packages start from $2500 and just get more expensive as you want more things that any human would consider reasonable. Proofs of the photos in case people want to order? Sure, just add $500. Additional pages to your album begin at $150. I'm going to make sure my kid has at least a little bit of exposure to photography, looks like there is some serious money to be made if you can do it well, and you are in a prime location.

In other news, my coffee quest continues. Espressos are getting better, a doppio ristretto has become my drink of choice and sugar is only needed to cover a bad cup of coffee. It would be nice if someone rana coffee appreciation course so that you could learn the basics of cupping - much like they do for wine tasting. While I can taste differences between different beans, I can't actually enunciate those differences. Ah well, the quest continues.