Wimminz – celebrating skank ho's everywhere

March 22, 2014

Broken things.

Filed under: Wimminz — Tags: , — wimminz @ 11:39 am

Take a look at the new HP Procurve switches, or more specifically, the OS….

Out of the box set up is about 6 things you have to select by console, then you get a http gui that actually works, not a “it’s all there somewhere if you know the nomenclature” sort of web based gui you get with Draytek, but with visual representations and iconography and mouse click and drag select for a whole bunch of ports etc.

Of course you should disable the web gui from the console once done, but as a management tool it rocks.

Petersen in the states did a book years ago for HD, what fits what, can you put shovel barrels on a pan bottom end? and a knuck head on that? and so on? The Petersen book would tell you…… bit like the arcane knowledge that the old Bedford 6 cylinder petrol pistons would fit a BSA 440 single, with a minor mod in the lathe.

In my day job not a day goes by when I do not see questions such as will an 1921 ABC work in place of an 1921 BCD, and will IOS 124.22.t5 work in place of IOS 124.24.t3?

Of course the answers are that a lot of the times these things do work OK, provided you never unexpectedly hit an edge condition, where suddenly and unexpectedly it all just stops working….. yesterday’s two jobs were a bit like that, 29xx series Cisco with various ehwic cards, including a xdsl one for the adsl line, on which hangs 12 desks, all with a desktop PC running Citrix cloud, and a VOIP phone… the wonder in many ways is that it works at all….. the fix was as arcane and mystical, replace the apparently not faulty ehwic, rj11 cable and microfilter, oh, which just happens to mean powering down and restarting the system…. yippee, it works.

The Engineer in me weeps like a tortured soul, no smoking gun was found, so no fault can be declared to have been found and no fix declared to have been implemented, but with parts and all that’s 500 quid that cost someone…

The Engineer in me sees that Citrix / XenApp works when the client machines are running an office app, and that office app is word or excel or outlook, not powerpoint, and no other massive data streams like big powerpoints or streaming video in a browser, hello youtube, iplayer, or most fucking commercial websites now with flash video, just the basic three office productivity apps and NOTHING ELSE, you want about 256k per desktop, which is 5x what Citrix say is the minimum, even though Citrix refuse to answer this question with anything except “it depends”.

So 4 per meg, so you go to a adsl site and it’s getting 12 meg… DOWN, the a in adsl stands for async, so it’s getting 1.2 meg UP, so no more than 5 desktops running the basic 3 office productivity apps, or it gets sluggish…. and into this they have 12 desktops AND 12 VOIP phones.

Of course everyone lied to make all those sales, so saying “Guys, you need a 10 meg up/down line, either EFM or fibre” makes all those earlier sales lies obvious lies…. so whereas the xdsl connection is 30 quid a month for “12 meg”, a “10 meg” EFM circuit will start at 350 a month, plus install fees etc etc etc.

For a 12 desk office this is a pound a desk a day, which should be a no-brainer when it comes to productivity, but all the bean-counters see is 12 x 350 = another £4,200 a year blown out the window.

The cost of the office, light and heat, the desktops, the voip phones, the cisco kit itself, the managed switch, the vpn, blow all this away, somewhere in there is 12 x bags of meat on salary.

Fact is, NASA ****RAN**** the fucking Mars rover over a 56k connection with *staggering* latency, so really, 12/1.5 meg xdsl *is* enough to run a small 12 desk office, even one routinely dealing in high quality photos such as an estate agent / realtor.

1.5 mbit/sec = 5 gigabytes in an 8 hour day, it really is enough.

Provided you don’t play with broken things.

There is good anarchy and bad anarchy, what I see every single day of my working life is bad anarchy, there is no discipline, no order, no consistency, no integrity, no pride in workmanship, so instead of saying 12/1.5 is actually plenty good enough for a 12 desk office, provided we do shit right, so lets do shit right and make doing shit right a core part of the employment contract, what I do see is a bunch of separatist isolated groups all looking to their own ends and not quite in open hostilities with each other, but he who gets the most bucks wins.


In a previous life as a Marine Engineer I used to work for millionaires and billionaires, fixing their yachts, a conversation I had time and time and time again was regarding the full time engineers on said yachts, if they could do their fucking job, I would not have had one, so I did not complain.

That shit is OK when it is some rich asshole’s private floating palace, that shit is not OK when it is every commercial ship on the sea, plane in the sky, or train on the tracks, or truck on the roads.

Name me one of any of the above, shipping company, airline, railroad or trucking company, that does all their own maintenance and repairs… go on… just name me one…

USED to be so, ain’t any more.

And now it has come to the telco’s and providers and everyone else in the digital age, enter yours truly, representing a different high street comms brand every day, depending on job and location.

This is BAD anarchy.

You’ve all heard of BT, British Telecom, well lets say I work for ACME corp.

Let’s say WalMart get into business as an ISP, effectively reselling a BT product, business connectivity.

So we have the end user, Wibble Enterprises, buying / renting “a thing”, that thing being internet connectivity etc, but that thing itself being comprised of a consortium of different folks, BT, WalMart, Cisco, Citrix, etc etc

Nobody in that consortium can fix the shit they supply, they can’t do it in house, they outsources and externalised all that shit getting lean and mean, they go to AMCE corp, who deploy me.

Last week I heard a guy, in his 50’s, ex BT, ex Kingston, ex Compaq, and he alone could do every single job from running the new cable from the street cabinet into the premises right up to configuring the switch and router and imaging the pc’s and everything else, and he was talking about “the good old days”… those good old days being when he could earn 2.5k in a single months.

Really, 30k a year is the fucking good old days for a guy as multiskilled as that? who could actually walk the walk?

ACME corp of course don’t value him, or me, as much of anything, minimum wage slaves who should be grateful for a fucking job.

So you tell me, when this shit breaks, which it will, because nobody gives a fuck about a rental car, and I mean breaks properly, not the ongoing attrition of anarchy that we have now, who is going to fix it?


ACME can’t, it’s not their property, all they have is a head office somewhere, and they don’t do shit unless they are paid anyway, and that anarchy too, the guys at the bottom away from that head office get fuck all, the guys in head office get spectacular salaries.

BT can’t, they don’t have the skills in house any more…. and of course there are other players that have to be included, you’ll need some Cisco kit, you’ll need some HP kit, some Avaya kit, some RAD kit, some Dell kit, and some copper to join it all up, and the last copper wire factory in the UK shut down years ago, so basically the only thing that doesn’t need importing is yours truly, dumb shit of the month ACME employee.

Which all means shit gets done without committee meetings and project scoping and management and costing exercises and estimates and quotes and job tickets and work orders and invoicing and billing and suppliers and couriers and a whole load of other shit I can’t be bothered to type.

Which is basically the worst possible model you can have to try to remedy catastrophic failure.

And even that, that depends on the catastrophic failure being an isolated event, not just one in a chain of cascade failures, because then they simply cannot even fix one single isolated failure, because other failures have removed their ability to do that.


Honestly, you have to see the utter helplessness that is a modern office, with cloud compute and VOIP phones, when the internet connection goes down, there is literally NOTHING they can do except drink coffee and chat and update fuckbook on their mobiles.

Then *I* will be dispatched on to site, and even here, in 2014, in the western world, with 4g on my phones right here as I type and a 100 mbit down 10 mbit up home cable connection right here as I type, I will get on site and wait two hours for the courier to bring the new Cisco box, and then I will discover that not only is the IOS on it wrong, none of the 630 IOS bin images I have on my laptop is right either, and there is no data signal for my work mobe on site, so no way to download the 40 meg IOS file or the 50k config file or to allow the 3rd line support guys in Mumbai to team-view in, and that shit happens at least once a month…. and this is when there isn’t a crisis and the mobe network does actually work, so I can get in the car with laptop and mobe and drive a mile or two until I can get a 3g signal and download the IOS and config…. no 9/11 / new orleans here thank you very much.

And right down at the end of that chain of bullshit, you get guys like me and the other fucker whining about the good old days when he could pull in a whole 30k a year, yeah, we could actually fix that shit, but we are unemployed, so it would be trespass, and let’s face it, no fucker would listen to us anyway.

LRFH, just noticed, on the left of this wordpress page, the menu, bottom item “Collapse menu”… yeah, always was a sucker for wordplay.

October 8, 2013

Stuck in the RAM

I have had jobs where sites stop being able to connect to the mother-ship, usually these are sites using an xDSL modem to log into the mother-ship, and login is of course by the trusty Radius server.

The problem isn’t that the cheapo xDSL modem is dead, though that is always the second thing investigated, or the cheapo xDSL line is dead, though that is always the first thing investigated, the problem is the Radius server just stopped working, and you can “fix” it by making a change that simply should not make any difference, changing the Radius password on the Radius server and xDSL modem / router.

I’ve had this on Cisco kit too, you need to TFTP a patch across so configure terminal and then give it an IP address, give your laptop and IP address and as a final sanity check before starting the TFTP you attempt to ping each box from the other, and it doesn’t work, and you can repeat the process ten times, and it won’t work, but if you reboot the Cisco box it will work first time.

Neither of these problems should exist, within the framework of “things as they should be” or rather “things as they are taught”.. for example it is heresy to suggest rebooting the Radius server, so it is discounted as a source of problems when a client site cannot log into a mother-ship, and for example it is heresy to suggest that any console / command line output from Cisco IOS is less than 100% truthful, and yet, if either of these statements were true, the fixes I used would not work.

When asked what the problem was, I say something “Was stuck in the RAM“, which is of course meaningless *and* inaccurate, but it is an explanation of sorts, and it is *far* closer to the truth than the official answers.

I’m not a coder, but I suspect the truth could be found somewhere in the realms of buffer overflows and bounds checking.

However, nobody calls a senior coder in when a remote office fails to connect to the mother-ship, (which one way or another is what 99% of my day job is about, making two sites connect to each other) so as a result you get anything *but* the truth.

As an aside, before I continue, if you are thinking that these are only problems encountered because I am working with cheap ass kit on cheap ass contracts for cheap ass clients, you would be as mistaken as you can possibly be… I absolutely guarantee that even if you have never set foot in the UK you will know 50% of the end users by brand name and reputation alone, even if they do not have a presence local to you.

Most of the kit is relatively speaking not very much money, anything from 500 to 5,000 bucks a box, and that is not a lot of money for a site that is turning over a million a week or an engineer that costs the end user 250 bucks before I even leave MY home, much less turn up on site… the kits itself is very mediocre quality, hardware wise, and that is me speaking as an engineer. Trust me on this.

Cisco kit sells because it all runs IOS, and finding people with Cisco qualifications who can write / edit / troubleshoot the config files, which are the files that tell the IOS what to do, is about as hard as finding a web designer, worst case scenario is there are several tens of thousands available for not very much about 90 milliseconds away in Mumbai.

This, by the way, is the SOLE reason everyone loves the cloud and virtual machines, virtual machines don’t have ANY hardware, so you NEVER need a field engineer to turn up and move a patch cable, power cycle to unstick the RAM, do an actual install or upgrade, or anything else…

So, back to the plot…

It’s down to ETHOS, car brakes were basically designed so the default state was that they were off, truck brakes were designed so the default state was they were on (and it took air pressure to keep them off).. so you pressurise a car system to make it stop, and you leak pressure out of a truck system to make it stop.

Ask yourself two questions;

  1. Which is safest.
  2. Which is cheapest to make.

Suddenly everything becomes clear.

Unless you are the bit of NASA writing the actual code that directly controls the spacecraft flight hardware, or the bit of GE writing the actual code that directly controls the control rods in the nuke pile, or… and I cannot think of a third fucking example…..  then option 2 always gets a look in.

Most of the time the bottom line is the bottom line.

“Good enough” (mostly)

By definition you are excluding the “one in a million” event from your calculations.

Which is great, *until* that event comes along… luckily for humanity in the sphere of my job until I fix it that means someone didn’t get their wages, someone didn’t get their stock in trade to sell, someone didn’t get a product or service that they were going to re-sell to someone else.

It can all be very serious and even life changing to the individuals concerned, but, the small print can cover that shit, nobody got killed…. fuck em…

We have had quite a few “cascade failures” in teh intertubez, they aren’t yet as serious as the power grid blackouts we have had, but then again the power grid is everywhere and literally in everything, and the net is still a relative newbie, chromebooks running exclusively on data living on a virtual machine in the cloud somewhere and 100% of fast net connectivity even to boot up into anything useful are still rare.

But the times, as Dylan said, they are a changin’

I am seeing, as a result of these changes, where the 1st, 2nd and 3rd level responses to problems simply do not work, because the RAM that is stuck is not in the local machine, it is in a central machine that MUST NOT be rebooted, or worse still, in a cloud virtual machine.

At that point the on the spot field engineer (me) can no longer just ring the remote server engineer, compare notes, agree on a likely cause and course of action, and resolve the problem.

I saw this happen, in the flesh, before my own eyes, for the first time, personally, yesterday, NetApp, unfortunately there were so many levels of virtuality that the server guy couldn’t diagnose which layer or virtual RAM was stuck, or where, and there was no possibility of simply rebooting as that would take the entire enterprise down and trash that whole day’s production, which was already sold and due to be in the shops tomorrow, or changing chap/tacacs/radius logins and resetting the problem that way… no worries, a whole new virtual machine was created, problem ignored.

Fuck it, I still get paid either way.

Asking people like me about my opinion on such things, well, that would be like asking a doctor about disease, fuck that, ask the pharma marketing machine, they have their eye on the bottom line.

June 3, 2013

If you build it, they will come…

Talking to a friend of mine, in a steady but boring IT admin job, been talking about bailing for years.

Along side my day job in IT, I have a side job, running my own business in IT.

I do the day job because the business doesn’t get enough custom.

The business is thoroughly professional, competent and economical with stunning service… its job is to convert gasoline into motive power.

The day job is total wank, a knackered old v8 intermittently firing on each cylinder, but who cares as its job is to convert gasoline into noise…

The thing my friend doesn’t get, the thing many hopeful small business owners don’t get, the thing many men don’t get, is this….


If there is ANY GAP WHATSOEVER in between the engineer and the end user, then whoever is in that gap, and it can be a layer cake 27 levels deep, is not interested in either the engineer or the end user, only in their own slice.

Let me tell you something about Cisco kit, it basically *is* the internet, a vast product range with an equally vast software and licensing range, basically quite small boxes, and you look at some of the small business stuff and it is a small box that retails for 10k, and the prices go on up from there.

But, with Cisco stuff you need three things;

  1. The Cisco box itself, e.g. the hardware
  2. The correct version of the IOS for both the box and the job in question
  3. The correct configuration file for the box, IOS and job in question.

It is as simple as that, three things, have them all on site when you turn up and the job is a piece of piss, even better, two of those things can be delivered electronically as an email attachment.

(OK, to be specific the IOS cannot be corrupt, and the config cannot contain any errors, both these are routine in real life)

You would think, that as the bottom layer in the cake the on-site guy like me would not have to ask those three questions about EVERY SINGLE FUCKING JOB you go to, you would think all the layers previous to me would get those three simple ducks in a row, you would think that BETWEEN all those layers it would be impossible for the job to progress down to me without those ducks in a row.

But no, since NO-ONE in those layers is concerned in any way with either the engineer or end user, only their own slice, I almost NEVER get all three handed on a plate to me, and if I do, items 2 or 3 are probably incorrect.

This is a TOUGH lesson to learn if you are an idealist, or naive, or young, or a man, but you better fucking learn it or your ass gets hung out to dry.

The lesson is nobody else gives a fuck, so you better not either, not beyond anything except covering your own ass, which means the ONLY fucking part of your job that matters is getting the paperwork straight, signed and filed.

You cannot correct this without removing every single layer that stands between the end user and the engineer, in effect, this means removing business/corporate from the playing-field, it ain’t gonna happen, it’s like asking for a hot dog minus the onions and sauce and bread, it’s a fucking sausage, not a hot dog.

It’s why the NAWALT thing is bullshit.

Take away all those components that make wimminz like that and what you have left is a drooling retard in adult nappies.

Those of you thinking hard times will cure this are equally delusional, hard times will decimate the layers in the cake between the end user and the engineer, but there are still going to be layers in the cake.

I’m reminded of the (true) clip in the film where Barnes-Wallis went to the War Department to ask for the loan of a Wellington bomber to run some prototype tests on the dam-buster bomb.

The clerk asks him why the fuck he thinks the war department will lend him a valuable Wellington bomber to play with

Perhaps, because I designed them (Wellington bombers)” says BW

So even in the darkest days of war there were layers of cake getting in the way, and they were the most incompetent and parasitic layers, all the semi useful ones got shit-canned.

Those of you trying to survive, or rebuild after an FRA etc, better get this shit straight and cold before you even think about going into business for yourself.

Sure, the local firms that endure a series of fuck-ups may well call you in to fix X at zero notice, and then they will go straight back to the layer cake, you will NEVER get your way in and carve your own niche, not while there are any layers there.


May 23, 2013

I see cunts everywhere

In some ways I must be careful what I say for obvious reasons, but in my day job I go to all manner of workplaces, from the local tyre fitters to government offices, and it was at one such quasi governmental office last week that I saw something.

A moderately fuckable late 30’s early 40’s slut, no bra and a gratuitous view of her cleavage as she bent over to grab the server room key from the bottom drawer and hand it to me.

She was dressed as all wimminz are at “work” nowadays, appropriately for being on holiday, or relaxing at home chilling with a bottle of wine, but it was when I returned the key after my work there was done that I noticed the bitch was barefoot.

It reminded me of a gig I had about a year ago where I was contracting for big blue at another office, this time a personal finance / insurance joint, again mainly staffed by wimminz, dressed like they were on holiday.

This dump had a “dress down friday”, so of course all the wimminz came in dressed like sluts, and all the niggerz came in feeling very rad in their stonewashed 501’s.

*my* job was humping desktops out of storage, deploying the OS and software bundle and adding them to AD etc etc, then putting them back into storage ready for install, some 2,000 desktops, boring repetitive work at minimal money but hey…

So one of these bitches dressed like she is on holiday pulls me about wearing jeans on a tuesday, I just looked at her and said “I’m a contractor, not an employee, and you know what you can do with your dress code

Predictably, she didn’t like this answer, and made threatening noises, I told her straight, “There are 2000 desktops to build, the job is already 6 weeks behind schedule, and you think big blue are gonna delay it even further and can my ass for wearing jeans while carrying boxes?

She stomped off, never did know if she took it further, but I never got canned…

So I was thinking about the barefoot bitch, driving home through my home town at around rush hour, and I notice something.

Most of the faces behind the wheels of the cars coming the other way are wimminz, and without any doubt whatsoever, all of them were commuting from “jobs” as valid as the barefoot bitch and the dress code nazi, in the economic sense I am sure they are a huge proportion of what passes for the economy, but it in the productivity sense you could line the lot of them up against the wall and shoot them, and then dynamite the offices they “work” in, and nothing of value would be lost to the TRUE economy.

I wish I felt at liberty to post pictures of the things I see at work, being an old hand, I take pictures of everything, as I found it, what I did, as I left it, because we all know the last bloke out the door was the one who broke it, and nothing covers your ass quite as well as extensive photographs and other stuff such as putty logs.

The reason I wish is because years ago you could gain some sort of notoriety for posting a pic of a particularly nasty and messy server room or cabinet.

Now, it is the norm, and the standards are dropping, FAST… so far in 2013 I have seen ONE properly done, neat, tidy, workmanlike rack, and bear in mine some days I can be at two or three sites.20130523_095410

Server rooms used as dumps for boxes of papers, tables, chairs, cabling like snakes on acid fucking, things just thrown on job of one another or leaning against other stuff, no power conditioning, no HVAC, sprinkler valves sitting DIRECTLY above racks, HVAC systems leaking water that is running across the floor…..

I can’t post the pics because sooner or later someone would identify the locations, and soon after that, me, and I’m out a cushy little no responsibility job.

There is something DESPERATELY fucking wrong when the average guy’s home setup is far more workmanlike and neat than a so called commercial installation, and no, the added complexity of a commercial installation makes no odds whatsoever.

Of course if you want to see a fuckup of things that barely work plugged in at random and so on then go to any wimminz house and look at the tangle behind the flat screen telly / sky box / pvr / etc

Pic above is a recently acquired second hand HP Media Smart EX470 NAS, I paid not much more than beer money for this, it’s actually a nice little bit of kit (which is why HP stopped making them, HP, run by a wimminz…) and runs WHS which again I have to admit actually works very well indeed, so I bung three WD 2 TB disks at it at 75 quid each (these old ones won’t run larger than that) and hey presto, it is a good little NAS box.

So, the past day or two I have been running freefilesync sync jobs between my older and more obsolete NAS boxes to this thing, so this thing becomes the main online NAS and the others are now snapshot backups that can go offline.

I am now where I wanted to be, which is a single small portable box that contains all my digital shit, for around 250 notes I have 6 Tb (expandable to 8) of fairly responsive NAS storage.

It’s not seven sigma / five nines or any of the other crap out there, but in sheer functionality terms, and indeed in terms of how quick and cheap can I get back up if it all falls down, it blows away anything I see at work.

My home network uses two cheap gigabit switches, neither is fully populated with RJ45 cables, and neither is cable of running the entire network of available RJ45 end points, but if one dies I can just move a couple of patch leads and everything essential carries on running, until I go out to the local hardware store and buy another cheapo gigabit switch.

Make no mistake, I have surplus Cisco kit here, ranging from obsolete 877’s (obsolete but still being deployed…lol) through brand new 887’s through 1920’s to high end stuff, but none of it is real cisco, it’s all made in china or eastern europe, and so 50 quid TPlink / DP stuff does me fine, and if / when it dies I pop out and buy another one.

See, my guiding principle, and I employ this at work as well as in my home, is before starting any task I look at what could go wrong, and take steps to ensure that in the worst case scenario I can roll back to where I started, not think I can, but actually be able to do it.

Put me on a job with cisco kit and the very first thing I do is take a copy of the running config and the contents of the flash (the IOS and patches in other words) and sure it takes a few minutes, but what the fuck, I’m not paying for the time.

Contrast this to some of the younger engineers, who buy into all the gung ho GO GO GO GO GO corporate wimmiz and niggerz bullshit, and they dive right in and do a write erase and then try to apply the new config, which just happens to be broken, or apply the new IOS patch, which just happens to be corrupted (yes, it happens) and suddenly they find themselves with a site that is hard down and no way to get it back up without looking like an asshole and involving others finding and sending them the required files, assuming they actually have them, often they don’t.

Which all brings me neatly back to the barefoot bitch and cars full of wimminz driving home from the McJob at rush hour.

There was an old axiom that was drummed into me in my engineering days.

The differences between theory and practice
are far greater in practice than in theory.

But it doesn’t just apply to engineering, it applies to everything, except we now live in a world where thanks to the wimminz and niggerz, everything is theoretical to them, when it comes to practice and something fucks up, well, you make a support call and I turn up, and you STILL DON’T FUCKING GET IT, because you haven’t been made to clean up your own mess.

I can remember being about 6 and playing with a penknife, my dad warned me, “all knives are sharp“, which is theory, practice was me being a smartass and saying “this one isn’t” and proceeding to prove this by running the blade across my hand, only to find out that it may not have been sharp, but it was sharp enough to break this skin and draw blood…

Dad just looked at me and shook his head.

I’m sure my lip trembled a little and my mouth scrunched up, but you DO NOT CRY OR SHOW IT HURTS when you fuck up like that in front of your dad…. because you didn’t want him to see you as a baby, or worse still, as a girl, bad enough you just made yourself look stupid.

Bitches be protected from ever coming into contact with practice, they live in a world of theory, a world of make believe, a world of no consequences, or if there are any, it ain’t your fault baby.

I work for a company that is starting to disappear up it’s own ass with paperwork and tracking of this and tracking of that and forms to fill in, so I fill em all in, and bitches in the office send me an email asking me shit that was written on all those forms and photos I submit at the end of every job, not every day, every job, because it is fucking easier than looking at what I have sent in.

Then when my (eventual, I feel no sense of urgency) response points out that all they had to do was look at what I sent in already, they coo in wonder about how I am all organised and shit.


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