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Monday, June 30th, 2008
12:24 pm - Introduction

Hello everyone, thought I would post and introduce my self.  I was looking for a community with people in the IT/IS field to read about and share with.  I work for a state contractor in Oklahoma as an IT/Systems administrator. 

I have no other IT co-workers thusfar, as we are just making our way into Oklahoma. This will fill that void hopefully, as Im used to working in groups of techy type people..  

 I have 5 offices under my wing, 1 large facility, and 4 smaller remote offices across northeast oklahoma.  I handle everything from desktop issues, server maintenence, to IT purchasing..  I really look forward to hearing from you guys.  

current mood: amused

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Wednesday, November 28th, 2007
2:32 pm - Yay Support Cases!

I love work.... without work, I wouldn't have nuggest like this. It's a direct quote from a support case regarding email:

"Ok It's working sort of. Why is all my sent mail from me? I have the same problem on my Motorola Q."

I couldn't make these things up! Tired technicians...


Thank you for contacting technical support!
As we are sure that you know, Cold Fusion is very unstable on a shared environment. This we believe this is the reason for your site outages. We would recommend theta that you consider moving your site to a VPS (virtual primate Server). This would meek a dramatiic in a your stem wtaioo
If there is anything else we can assist you with at this time, please don't hesitate to contact us.

You can guess how the customer responded:

"By the way, it’s “virtual private server,” not “virtual primate server.” A primate is a mammal in the monkey family."

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Friday, May 12th, 2006
12:30 pm

Today is Friday... this week sucked! Ok, a lot of things about this week sucked, not everything. Some very memorable moments this week too. I do need to rant about the occurrences this week thou.

I had big connection issues across our network here at work. I will now list the problems, and what was done with them.
  • DSL dropping connection intermittently - SBC came on Wed after I fought with them about the DSL having a problem. The SBC Technician found that a wire from one twisted pair and another wire from a different twisted pair was being used to bring dial-tone to our DSL Modem. He set the dial-tone to another pair and DSL started working even better than before.

  • Linksys Router would not upgrade Firmware - Called Linksys, ran through all their tests, was told "the router has gone bad." I went out and bought a new Router. (Hoping this would resolve the LAN connection problem, nix. I've never heard of a router just 'going bad' and yet, this router won't upgrade to their latest firmware either... hmmmm)

  • WT Clients could not connect to Server - Worked around it by moving all the databases to a separate machine, re-attaching them to the other machines SQL MSDE service.

  • WT Server show signs of MS SQL MSDE Server failure - WT Support sending me a 4.3.002 Install disk with updates for the server. (Overnighted on Thursday)

  • DHL Package arrives... not the one WT Support sent out - DHL Delivered the wrong package, that should have gone to Canada. No one knows where WT Support's package has gone. DHL will return to recover this package and hopefully the can recover the package intended for me.
So, we're all back and working. I'm concerned about leaving it this way over the weekend. This solution doesn't allow the server to perform it's daily backup correctly. I left the databases on the main server, and so we'll only loose a few days data if we need to run a backup. Not horrible, just not good practice.

current mood: dorky

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Tuesday, December 20th, 2005
12:04 pm - Hating Windows More

I hate Windows XP on a whole new level today. This isn't really a Work Story, as much as a hateful rant toward the stupid that is Windows XP. I hate the Registry! I always have, and sure, I understand why it's there! I still hate it. And when it gets currupted (c:\windows\system32\config\system), it's even more hateful!

current mood: aggravated

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Wednesday, December 14th, 2005
1:37 pm - When IT gets too much coffee...

My response to a perfectly normal email:

Thanks for the info! I like being in the loop. Much better than doing the Hookey Pookey and turning yourself around.

-----Original Message-----
From: Shannon [mailto:ShannonS@******.com]
Sent: Wednesday, December 14, 2005 1:28 PM
To: Chris@*****.Com
Subject: Hours Budget Comp Report

Ruth is still looking at this, she agrees something is not right with that report. I will have some more info shortly. I just wanted to keep you in the loop.

Shannon *****
Support Analyst

current mood: Vanilla Dopio con Pana

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Wednesday, June 22nd, 2005
9:14 am - The Continuing Overtime Saga

I got an email this morning, finally, in regards to the overtime issue I had posted about.

There Email, names removedCollapse )

My ResponseCollapse )

I know this isn't new... OYE! I used to test ColdFusion scripts before they went live on an HR website. They were written by a team of 4 Russian programmers. No one just willy-nilly, oh I bet that will work just fine I don't need to test it, tosses things into production! Who are these people?

current mood: annoyed

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Monday, June 20th, 2005
9:50 am - Draging Feet

Oh boy, this is taking way to long to resolve. The company I work for bought a new operations program (built in modules for AR, Work Orders, General Ledger, PAyroll, etc etc..) and I was hired to get it up and running and help them migrate over to using it. I have been working with the support team for the new software on various issues. Everytime, I feel like I have to fight them. Now our company, we run a little different. Since 95% of the employees start work at like 10 PM and work 8 - 10 hours, they have set the start of the day at 12 noon. So we had to get them to adjust that in the software. They had a module to adjust for split shifts, but it only allowed entries from 0:00 to 8:00, not 12:00. Ended up manually feeding the value into the database.
Now we're testing how the system clocks and calculates overtime. Now, being in CA, we have to process overtime specifically. The rule is any hours over 8 in a day or more than 40 in a week. Example given from tyhe Labor Law Digest:
Time-and-one-half: If the employee is traveling while time-and-one-half is due (for example, the ninth hour of a day), he/she would recieve overtime pay per hour.
This is important cuase we pay our employees travel time pay to travel from the shop to the job site and then regular pay when they are doing their regular duties.
Now, we had to dig this up and prove to this software company that this is the LAW! They stated that they have tons of customers in CA and have never had to do deal with travel time like this. It's been a fight every step of the way. Friday I faxed them an Hours By Employee report that showed a mis-calculation of overtime hours. It showed an employee driving to work, 1 hour. Working for 10 hours, and driving back to the shop, 1 hour. It should break down to 8 hours regular time, and 4 hours of overtime (1 + 7 + 3 +1). It doesn't! It shows 9 hours regular time, and 3 hours of overtime. They wrote back today:
Ok, we’ve looked at the Hours by Employee report you sent and it appears to be showing and calculating the overtime for regular and travel time correctly. What would really help is if you could send us the outsource payroll file you sent to your payroll company and an Hours by Employee report for the same time period for Darrell to look at.

Let me know if you have any questions.

current mood: frustrated

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Wednesday, June 8th, 2005
8:26 am - What the hizzy?

Being in software development, I am acutely aware of how important it is to TEST your software thoroughly BEFORE you allow it to be exposed to the outside world. In fact, we're in the early stages of the testing phase of a very large, very expensive application. Which makes me even more sensitized to the concept.

Adobe (you may have heard of it) seems to have forgotten the importance of testing. We bought some Adobe server licenses earlier this year - March I think. They sent me an email confirmation - 12 times. About a week later, I got an apology for the duplicate emails. I thought nothing more of it.

Over the weekend (3 months after buying the licenses), I received 12 more copies of the same confirmation email. "WTF? I thought", and then just deleted them thinking "someone's ass is on the line".

This morning I found 26 duplicates of the original apology email sent in March. I guess now they are trying to tell me that they are really really really (ad nauseum) sorry for their mistake,

I expect someone is looking for a new job today. pfffffft.

x-posted to imaboo

current mood: amused

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Tuesday, May 10th, 2005
4:32 pm - Bothersome Email Issue: Resolved

Our server started having a unique email issue. Emails, sent to specific domains were getting delayed in the SMTP delivery queue on our local Exchange Server. I couldn't figure out why. I started the logging service and watched traffic. I reviewed the options and settings for the Exchange server, users, and IIS, nothing out of the ordinary. I read help files to get the specifics of options I was unfamiliar with. I contact the domains of the recipients and got them to log or share their logs with me to see if messages were connecting to their servers. I reviewed all the error codes like such:
Your message did not reach some or all of the intended recipients.

Subject: FW: Yep!
Sent: 5/6/2005 10:21 AM

The following recipient(s) could not be reached:

'****@****.com' on 5/6/2005 7:23 PM
You do not have permission to send to this recipient. For assistance, contact your system administrator.
thebrain.corp.******.com #5.7.1 smtp;550 5.7.1 Unable to relay for ****@****.com
I read corresponding tech info on Microsoft.com over and over again, nothing I did effected the issue, let alone resolved it. It was just frustrating.

So today, unlike other days, I got an alert on the server from Symantec Anti-Virus. It basically stated that the message could not be sent becuase of reason #blah blah blah, click here for more information. [EDIT: I found the link in my history http://service1.symantec.com/SUPPORT/ent-security.nsf/docid/2004061009504348?Open&src=_mi&docid=2002071214123606&nsf=sharedtech.nsf&view=docid&dtype=&prod=&ver=&osv=&osv_lvl= ] I clicked and read the Symantec article... it outlined how users often get this message when an email does not have permission yada yada and it had a section on servers. I read how there is a add-on for servers for Internet Email Auto-protect. I could feel the warmth from the light above my head. I went into the SAV installer and modified the installation. I removed the Add-on. Upon enabling all connections, every delayed queue checked green. Oh yes! I switched back over to my terminal and sent test emails to the domains in question. Return Receipts came back within minutes. Oh joy!

Until I saw that alert, which had never sprung up before, I had no way to determine that the problem was outside of the Exchange. I hate conflicting problems like this. SAV did not report any virus' or problems, so I have no idea why it restricted the delivery of those messages. At this point, I'm not looking into it any further. Problem solved, notes taken.

current mood: cheerful

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Friday, April 29th, 2005
10:16 am - Not work related, but close...

Oh I love my Mac! *best GIR voice* I love it sooo! :)

Why I love my Mac today: Wireless bridge made easy like a click of a checkbox. It's dreamy~~~

Here's the story, (if you didn't think I was a major geek before....) I have not yet wired the ethernet from the router in the front room of the house to my room, in the back of the house. The router I am using is wireless, and my laptop and Mac have wireless, so no biggy. Work sends me home with a laptop, that doesn't have wireless, so I can test new VPN tunnels. So I am fiddling with an older wireless router to see if I can get it to create a wireless bridge for me, and that's just becoming a huge hassle, but I will keep trying. So while I am working (read that as pulling my hair out), it occurs to me, I have a Mac. It has a wireless card and a built in NIC. ~Doesn't Mac OS X have built in connection sharing?~ Yes... yes it does! *bounces over to computer with glee* Control Panels>Sharing>Internet!!!!

A bright happy patch cable, and we're bridged! Yes, Windows has Connection Sharing too, but god damn this was easy like toasting bread. No networking I have ever done has worked so smoothly the FIRST time in Windows. It was heaven!

X-posted to: welovegeeks

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Wednesday, April 27th, 2005
12:51 pm - Common GURUness

I have a friend who is the art director of her place of business. It gets dumped on her to maintain and fix/create/update their website. She does not know a lot of HTML, she doesn't understand a lot about how Javascripts or anything. She often runs to me to help her solve problems. She is really good about learning things and getting my help. The following is an instant message conversation we had that pissed me off. One of her co-workers had tried to take over the website a few months back and now we're dealing with the results.

Website WoesCollapse )

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Monday, April 25th, 2005
10:47 am - Print (social) Queues

I went most of the weekend without sitting at my computer for too long. I had a hell of a lot of work around the house to do for our housewarming party. Stupid computers anyway! Something didn't work with the Tivo Desktop software, so I couldn't show off the pictures of the house before we did all the work.

Ok, back on topic. Why is it that people think if you're having a printing issue, that just sending the print 100 times to the printer will fix it? We all do it at sometime. Every network printer I have setup has eventually lead to someone trying to priunt when the printer went offline for whatever reason. They don't see the print job arrive and send the job a few more times. When they see nothing, then they come find me. When the printer goes back online, there are 50 print jobs waiting in hiding on their computer. Of course, they only told me they tried print something and it didn't print. With the printer back online, boom, printing frenzy.

It always comes back to me, why did it print 50 copies of my document? I don't know if my words ever stick, but I share with them the folly of their ways.

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Friday, April 22nd, 2005
10:43 am - The bosses porn

When you have been working in offices, you're bound to find it someplace. This was about 6 years ago at another company I worked for. Pre-story, they hired me to manage a wharehouse and ended up taking me on after that project. They wanted dedicated highspeed internet, an Exchange server, a file server, and VPN. I provided all this for them.

Along with being seated at the front desk, I got called on to fix any computer problems in the 12 person office. This included installing new software and cleaning up old software. The owner of the company and my boss, had a PowerBook G3 that he kept in the office and took on the road with him. He would complain that his computer was slow and having lots of problems with crashes and bombs.

I never liked working on his computer when he was there. He had tons of porn on his computer and in his cache. When I would go to clean things up, he'd have tons of cookies, tons of cache files and of course movies and JPEGs all over. It wasn't too dirty of porn, but there was enough of it that I wasn't always sure what was porn or temp files. Checking and opening a hardcore porn file in the middle of the office was never a good thing.

I always had to be elusive about it too. When he would ask why he had hard time writing CDs or why things were slow, I had to explain that he had a large amount of files and that he would need to remove some amount of files to make more space on his hard drive. I couldn't say he had too much porn stuffing up his computer and forcing his computer to run with too little free space on the drive.

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8:30 am - "Email doesn't work"

Brief personal introduction: I work at a school district part-time, and I basically tackle all manner of odd jobs throughout the district in an effort to keep the help desk down. I'm normally kept out at the high school where most problems occur.


I was informed that the cafeteria manager's email was not working. When I went over to investigate, she told me that they were being "cut off" part way through the message. This seemed very odd to me as I could think of nothing that would account for such anomalous behavior.

I opened Outlook, and everything looked alright. It started up quickly, connected just fine. I noted the blue AutoPreview text beneath the email titles (as the Preview Pane is the devil's workshop) and thought to myself No... it couldn't be...

I opened up an email. It looked just fine. I opened another one. It too looked just fine. I called the lady over and opened an email.

"How did you do that?!?"
"I... double-clicked...?"
"Show me how to do that." (and so I did)

In all the time she had worked at the school, she had never opened an email... she had only read the blue AutoPreview text.

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Thursday, April 21st, 2005
1:39 pm - Backup? What backup?

I was reminded of a customer I had when I was doing consulting and service freelance, about 3 years ago. The customer was an older guy, nice, knew what he wanted to do. He owned a Mac for a long time and had a lot of finacial information stored on the computer. The computer, and hard drive had gotten old, but he resisted getting a new computer.

He called with a common error, "when the computer starts, I see a blinking Mac with a ? on the screen." I walked him through a few things over the phone and nothing got the (SCSI) hard drive to mount back up. He was starting to get frantic over the phone when he shares with me, he doesn't have any other copies of the tax information that is on the computer. I agree to come over and try and rescue the drive.

I run through a lot of utilities but nothing I have will even see the drive. I open and chack all the cables and connections. The drive is either toast or the partition table is destroyed beyond what I can fix. I inform him that I could do nothing more and that he should take his Mac into service center.

I call up the place that he wants to take the computer and discuss what is needed to be done. I tell them to do whatever they can to recover any data from the drive and burn it to CDs. Once that is done I wanted them to zero the drive and reformat it. When the customer got the computer back, it was working and had a fresh copy of OS 8.53 installed on a freshly formatted drive and one CD with the recovered data.

The customer called me up furious. The CD had the same exact contents as his hard drive. The Service Center had formatted the drive and installed the new OS and then burned a copy of the drive in that state.... everything was gone for sure now. I told the customer that he would have to take it up with the service center that he had chosen. Poor guy.

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11:07 am

So, I started my new new job here at the begining of the month. I was setup at a desk with a laptop that they said was having some problems. On of the sales guys had used it before, in the office and out on jobs. It became clear from the amount of user profiles on the computer that it was handed down from the boss, to vice, to the guy before me.

I began by running the basics that were on the computer, NAV, disk-defrag, error checking, etc... Antivirus found this:
DateFilenameThreatOriginal Location
4/12/2005 9:58A0048898.dllTrojan.StartPageC:\System Volume Information\_restore{11B4CBB0-31B0-483C-A4FE-D6E9E8C1A928}\RP569\
4/12/2005 9:58A0048897.exeDownload.TrojanC:\System Volume Information\_restore{11B4CBB0-31B0-483C-A4FE-D6E9E8C1A928}\RP569\
4/12/2005 9:58A0048896.exeTrojan.SinkinC:\System Volume Information\_restore{11B4CBB0-31B0-483C-A4FE-D6E9E8C1A928}\RP569\
4/12/2005 9:18mtwirl.dllTrojan.StartPageC:\WINDOWS\SYSTEM32\
4/12/2005 9:05fynbn.exeDownload.TrojanC:\WINDOWS\
4/12/2005 9:04ccc.exeTrojan.SinkinC:\WINDOWS\

After cleaning all that up and waiting forever for the defragmentation to finish, I ran SPybot Search & Destroy wich found about 45 items to fix. Cleaned it, rebooted, cleaned again, rebooted and cleaned a third time, and finally got almost everything off.

Today, I installed a fresh copy of Windows Media Player 10. After it installed it did a search for media to add to the playlist. It found some intersting movies at: C:\Documents and Settings\(Owner's Name)\Desktop\My Documents\My Documents\My Videos\ and C:\Documents and Settings\(Owner's Name)\Desktop\My Documents\My Documents\My Videos\My Other Vids. The owner of the company had downloaded and saved about 20 various videos from http://www.stileproject.com/ ... Ahahaha! most of them were motorcycle accidents, but it will be interesting to see what else I find.

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