November 2007


I am The Cyberwolfe and these are my ramblings. All original content is protected under a Creative Commons license - always ask first.
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Archive for November, 2007

Holy Crap! This thing is still here?!?

Posted in Life, Work on November 29th, 2007

Uh, yeah. Sorry ’bout ‘dat, I really should ramble more.

Entertainment of the Week: 5 (count ’em, 1-2-3-4-5) 45-mile round trips to a rural client. One trip was used to install RAM in 4 machines and replace a power brick on a laptop.

That one was funny all on it’s own. Box was delivered to user and open on her desk when I got there. What was the laptop pluged in to? You guessed it, the bad power brick. Fucking nitwit.

So, what were the other 4 trips for? Rebuilding a single computer.

That’s right, something like 15 hours of labor for ONE FUCKING MACHINE because the owner of the company is such a FARKING PERFECTIONIST that he is truly incapable of using a computer unless it works EX-FUCKING-ACTLY like the previous model.

Okay, some of that labor was spent in an Edisonian pursuit: I found a method to do something that doesn’t work the way I wanted it to. Restoring an Acronis image to another machine can be useful, but when the original machine has a few problems related to Windows, you’re better off building it from scratch. This solution is best used in “Oh fuck! The server is tits-up!!” situations, not mere workstation migrations.

But I swear to you, if I hear that ancient little frog mutter “this is unacceptable” one more time, I’m a-gonna break his legs.

The bitch of it is, the guy retired from an engineering job. I KNOW he has a decent brain in his skull, and at one point in time he was exceedingly capable of figuring shit out. (There is a circuitboard mounted in his living room with about a half-mile of solder trace on it, and he commented once that that board had kept him busy for a while.)

So why in HELL’S half-acre can he not deal with change on a computer?

I think the worst part of this is the fact that the Bossman has been enabling this client for years and not putting the smack down on him earlier. Most of these headaches would be greatly lessened if Bossman had simply said “it will take you ten minutes to learn how to do this differently, and it will take me three hours to break this new machine the same way the old one was. Which is more efficient?”

Of course, Bossman is also the guy who wrote our 398-line login “script” at the office…

I am so SMART! S-M-R-T!!

Posted in Geekery on November 8th, 2007

So The WBGF has been living on dial-up for ages (she gets her high-speed fix at work) but I’m an addict, and I sometimes get pinged for on-call work on the weekends while I’m at her place and essentially disconnected. I finally conned her into getting DSL, and tonight went over to set up the new modem.

Run the setup program on her PC, and it crashes the install. Gotta love stupid software. Hook everything up, install the filters, but the modem won’t train. Get out my wiring kit, trace the line back to the box, rewire to another pair and clean 30 years of corrosion off the jacks – still won’t train. Bite the bullet and call TS. Get nice, enthusiastic native-born-English-speaking lass on the phones who can’t have been employed long, as the disdain and lack of faith in her fellow man had not set in yet. Anyway, they try some things with Tier II, but still no love from the modem. Schedule a truck roll for Saturday. Ten minutes later, I realized that I had forgot to remove the line cord from the frelling dial-up modem.


Okay, re-arrange the wires, and the modem links up no problem. Back to the install software, which just never quite gets it. Being prepared, I whip out my trusty laptop and run the setup program from there – lo and Behold! We have Internet! (Yay!). Now to set up the wireless router. Look at the install poster, follow the instructions, and the software can’t figure a damn thing out.

Why am I not surprised?

Ditch the install disk, fire up the router, pull an IP address and Firefox to the admin page. Type the default password from memory, and bingo. Ten minutes later, new admin password, new SSID and one happily convoluted WPA key is programmed in and I have wireless.

And Tolerant’s first question (smart girl that she is) was “so, where’s the power switch on this thing so I can disconnect you when you get sucked in?”