Wednesday 10 December 2003

From Eagle Eyed to Watching West Side Story

At Work
The boss has an interesting saying - "Imagine, you could be a hero if you solve this problem"
Give me a break, my name already means hero; why strive for what you have always been since birth?
Before you get any ideas, I choose the things I want to be heroic in very carefully. I do not do heroics for stunts
Anyway, we have had this intractable problem for ages, I was told we had an STM1 pipe to a foreign site, which meant oodles of bandwidth for file transfers which should average 50MB per minute or more.
Help me, for days I was getting under 2MB per minute, it was painfully slow I could have run there and back faster.
So we sent our network gurus out there to find the gremlin gumming up the works. They narrowed it down to a section and then needed the clincher.
Per chance the boss walked over to comment about the installation process which as taking ages to complete and missing essential components.
I delved in to have a look and noticed things were just too slow then observed a number of interesting discrepancies which had escaped all of us.
In Tech-speak, the server which had the role of domain controller, DHCP server and WINS server was in the same subnet as the addresses being doled out for the DHCP service but they had different subnet masks.
Also, none of the addresses of servers were excluded from the DHCP range; theoretically, this should still be OK, but in practise a lot was wrong.
  1. Change subnet mask of server
  2. Exclude server addresses from the DCHP scope
Suddenly throughput shoots up 20 times.
That was a good result, credit to all concerned, we more or less saw it at the same time.
At play
Every once in a while I treat myself to some cultural fare, this time West Side Story was in town. I had to book tickets.
Sometimes I wonder why some organisations think displaying numbers as 0900-CALL US NOW is an easy nnemonic - you have to look for C, then A, then double LL and so on. Well that is easy.
Take Dutch where IJ is really a "two-character" letter of their alphabet, sorry, the phone keys do not come in the Dutch alphabet. I is 4 and J is 5.
In the case of 0900 CARRELIJN you would have come unstuck.
My advice - call 09002525255, we call numbers on phones not letters.
It was a good show.

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