back to article BOFH: Uninterruptible patsy supply

"What the fuck just happened?" the Boss garbles, crashing around Mission Control like a madman after dashing down two flights of stairs from the 4th floor boardroom. "Uh.... UPS failure," the PFY says calmly, glancing up from his monitor briefly. "Well aren't you going to do anything about it?" "I am," he responds. "I have to …

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Wait.... Is it thursday or friday?

I'm baffled! But a cheap UPS should fix it....

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Facepalm

Confused

I'm most confused too, I woke up thinking it was Friday, was disappointed when informed it was only Thursday, now I'm not so sure again...

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Thursday/Friday...

The clock is probably a mains-powered one, that also gets the timing from the AC. And the UPS is set to deliver 60Hz instead of 50Hz... Makes the days really fly past...

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Holmes

Re: Confused

No, it's definitely Friday, it's BOFH day, therefore it MUST be Friday.

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Pint

Agreed

I first thought yay BOFH and Friday then had blue moment when I realised wait not in dress down clothes DOH its Thursday :(

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Pint

Re: Confused

Not to worry...it's Friday in South Korea!!

So Beer-up everyone!!! Cheers.

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Re: Confused

Friday here in Oz too. And rest assured, I'll have a couple of coldies for you guys back in Blighty

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Eat your own dog food

It's taken me most of my career to learn the art of keeping a straight face while saying, "We're using the kit that you spec'd ...", during the ad hoc lessons learned meeting that is convened at 2:00 in the morning.

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Devil

Re: Eat your own dog food

".....the art of keeping a straight face...." I always find it helps to think of Bambi's mum getting shot at those points. Right before you pass on the email trail from the cretin in question in which you laid out the risks and they replied completely ignoring them. It then helps to say bumph like; "But pointing fingers isn't going to help here, so let's look at what we need to do to fix it." What you actually mean is "Let's look at how much extra consulting I'm going to charge you to fix it," which of course you will have - coincidentally, just as a contingency, of course - already have prepared in advance. Ah, good times, good times....

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Vic
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Re: Eat your own dog food

> "We're using the kit that you spec'd ..."

I *never* say that.

i always use something like "The kit specifically required by document <blah>". Then, when pushed on the question of "well, who wrote that document?", I have to mention that my memory is not what it once was, and I'd have to look that up.

All the time, the git in the corner who actually specified the crap is turning puce. It's about this point where he finally owns up (as he's going to get found out anyway...)

Vic.

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Re: Eat your own dog food

Heh. Many moons ago - the '90s actually - I and my wingman were told to build some servers, since it was cheaper than buying them. We went shopping and came back with all the parts, highest quality we could grab within the budget set. The owner nearly fainted though when he saw the cases we got. He insisted we wait while he dashed off to trade in the cases for far less expensive stamped pieces that were vaguely prismatic in form and which lacked right angles in any plane at any corner. The covers were also oddly non-Euclidian. Tightening down a cover caused the MB to torc, popping out cards and memory like a Las Vegas slot machine hitting a jackpot. Just sliding the cover on was OK, but of course left the innards exposed the inside to a fair bit of rapid cruft accumulation. The boss liked to bring in his Golden Retriever to work. The cases lasted until shedding season led to a strong odor of burning hair.

When asked what the hell WE did, we simply explained that 1) those cheap cases could not be properly closed up without causing equipment failure, so the covers didn't serve much purpose except to keep errant paper planes from shorting something critical, and 2) the hair that had caught fire and ruined the video card was not off OUR dog. Sadly, we had to rebuild everything.

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There goes another Boss? UPS-idaisy.

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Anonymous Coward

Icon fail.

Downvoted, because if ever a post deserved the get-me-coat icon...

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Happy

Heh heh heh

"...and an orange Ghostbusters light came on"

I need some of these!

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"Uninterruptible patsy supply"

That's the idiots who actually keep reading this drivel, right?

Honestly, the entire BOFH thing was tired & derivative of itself before it left Usenet. Stop it, already. You've been embarrassing yourselves for over a decade.

(Yes, I've been waiting for a suitable headline. No, I didn't read the bilge.)

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"No, I didn't read the bilge."

If only you'd gone one step further and not bothered commenting.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: "Uninterruptible patsy supply"

Nearly there mate! 10/10 for content. Now all you need to do is lower your standard of English and fuck off to a tabloid comment section.

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@AC 08:55 (was: Re: "Uninterruptible patsy supply")

::eyeballs redtop masthead::

::eyeballs "post your own message" section::

Seems to me I have fucked off to the tabloid comment section.

What was your point again? I think mine still stands ...

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Anonymous Coward

Re: "Uninterruptible patsy supply"

Do people still bother reading jakes comments?

I always thought it was quicker just to down vote regardless and move on to something more interesting

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Anonymous Coward

Re: "Uninterruptible patsy supply"

If I were you I'd ask for my money back.

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Rob
Go

Re: "Uninterruptible patsy supply"

I still read his comments, I think of it as doing my bit for 'care in the community'.

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Mushroom

Re: "Uninterruptible patsy supply"

So you were reading this before it became popular right? Back when it was still obscure?

Get on your fixie and go ruin someone else's pub.

Bloody hipsters.

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Re: "Uninterruptible patsy supply"

The BOFH will remain topical and enjoyable for longer than everything! Yahoo! will! continue!, then+ Google+ comments+ will+ endure+, longer+ than+ facebook...bitch will...bitch be...bitch annoying...bitch and until after the term freetard is no longer used for people with a difference of opinion.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: "Uninterruptible patsy supply"

"Get on your fixie and go ruin someone else's pub."

I am stealing this.

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Holmes

Re: "Uninterruptible patsy supply"

Wow, your comments do seem to get a LOT of down-votes, don't they. I have to conclude that you are either an elaborate troll, or an elaborate tool...

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Rob
Coat

Re: "Uninterruptible patsy supply"

I don't think there are any laws stopping you from combining the 2 so that you have a trolling tool, elaborate or not.

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Paris Hilton

Re: "Uninterruptible patsy supply"

A trolling tool.. a trool?

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Re: "Uninterruptible patsy supply"

how about 'an elaborate trooll'

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Coat

Re: "Uninterruptible patsy supply"

There is no Dana only truul.

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Pint

Re: @AC 08:55 (was: "Uninterruptible patsy supply")

Jake is merely bitter because he's a "boss" and discovered long ago just how much respect that earns him.

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Trollface

Re: "Uninterruptible patsy supply"

ODFO. If you don't want to read BOFH don't. Nobody is forcing you to. Perhaps you could spare your words of wisdom for a more appreciative audience?

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Black Helicopters

"Do people still bother reading jakes comments?"

Not really, and I don't bother downvoting them either. I'm of the belief that he does it deliberately in an attempt to get as many negs (read: "as much attention") as possible. Being the most unpopular person on a message board still makes you the most of something, after all. Far be it from me to help stroke his ego.

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Re: You've been embarrassing yourselves for over a decade.

Go crawl back under your rock!!!!

More than once Simon's tales have caused an uncontrolled mouthful of coffee spit out over my keyboard.

Now, just where do I send that bill????

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Go

Not a satisfying pay off.

Whilst boss-death is good, I was kind hoping for a summary execution at the hands of fuming board members sure to the boss's skimping on equipment and a subsequent triumphant rise in the IT budget. But I guess I'm too much of an idealist.

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Re: Not a satisfying pay off...a subsequent triumphant rise in the IT budget.

Which should be funded from the amounts docked from the Boss' pension fund as he is fired for incompetence.

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Anonymous Coward

Spooky. Just read this right after a brief power failure, and was considering getting a new UPS for my home system setup too..

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Pirate

Mmmm, uninterruptable pasty supply..

Read the title all wrong at first attempt. Now I'm hungry.

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SW
Pint

Re: Mmmm, uninterruptable pasty supply..

Upvoted as you beat me to the punch.

*Goes out to find a pasty (pastie) to go with my pint.

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Happy

Re: Mmmm, uninterruptable pasty supply..

".....Now I'm hungry." I used to know a tape monkey that used to warm up his Ginsters by putting them on hot equipment (SPARC servers and APC UPS units usually).

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Silver badge

Re: Mmmm, uninterruptable pasty supply..

Yeah I was expecting pasties as well.

Now where is the nearest Greggs to here?

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Happy

Re: Mmmm, uninterruptable pasty supply..

Not the kind of pasties i was thinking about, but this'll do.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Mmmm, uninterruptable pasty supply..

These are not the pasties you are looking for...Move along.

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Paris Hilton

Re: Mmmm, uninterruptable pasty supply..

I must ask my boss if she would start bringing in some every morning for the AM break.

<shock>

You said pastie, shit, I thought you said pastry

</shock>

OOPS!!! I bet that didn't go over too well.

Paris icon, because, well, she knows about pasties, I guess.

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Ah, electricity...

It's been too long since BOFH played with any serious electrical hardware (bring back the pinch-that-wasn't!). The only thing better would be a small fire. Or a bloody big fire.

They put a defibrilator in our office recently. I only had to look at it before the first-aider told me very firmly "No".

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Ah, electricity...

They actually trained the pfy and I on using it here. I think they wanted to show that the failsafes mean that no voltage can be delivered unless the heart is in vfib....

And I am sure that there is no way the safety measures installed couldn't be bypased in any way.... And the paddles definately couldn't get connected to the metal chair.....

Anon as we don't want those HSE lot poking around, some spots in the local woods are already 2ft higher than they used to be...

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Stop

There's no excuse for IT to bypass UPS issues.

In my experience, UPSs are, to the IT establishment, essentially a Cinderella technology--they've no idea how the technology works but they take it for granted until the midnight of its failure.

Few IT-ers have the vaguest notion about the chemistry, operation and charging of Planté's lead-acid cell, and probably only a handful across the whole country would have ever heard of the Nernst equation with respect to the charging of such a cell and that it's integral to the reliable charging and longevity thereof. Thus it's little wonder that this black-box is simply ignored until the morning after the disaster.

Methinks UPSs should be taken away from IT in the same way that incoming mains power is left to electricians and power distribution authorities. It's not that IT shouldn't care about UPSs, of course they should. Rather, others more suited to their management should be responsible for them and that IT should be told and *know* key parameters such as incoming power reliability statistics, UPS supply reliability parameters etc.; in addition, they should have immediately to hand emergency numbers for the those responsible for both incoming mains power and UPS maintenance. Such info should be well integrated into well-established emergency procedures to deal with power outages.

All too often, IT just buck-passes UPS issues. Procedures and policies thus should ensure that this cannot happen.

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Holmes

Re: There's no excuse for IT to bypass UPS issues.

You do realise that the BOFH stories are light-hearted and fictional don't you?

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@nuked -- Re: There's no excuse for IT to bypass UPS issues.

Absolutely. But when you've seen the buck-passing, threats of litigation etc.etc that I have with respect to UPSs, then I never miss an opportunity to proselytize the message.

It's an issue, otherwise BOFH would use another subject.

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Re: There's no excuse for IT to bypass UPS issues.

IT don't control the UPS systems where I am working. It's been given to the Site services team (eg. electricians).

So at the present, there are two water sprinklers from the fire control system in the server room; one above the industrial sized UPS, one above the mainframe sized telephone system. (I asked if the water was active and got a blank look; I still don't know)

The power input cables need to be replaced as they were under specced; it's been highlighted for 2 years and there have been 2 separate occasions in the past 4 months when they were going to replace them; but the wrong stuff delivered so project put on hold.

Add to that, there are 5 racks around the factory with UPS protecting them; 3 of these have flashing red lights indicating a fault. These have been showing the same fault since I have been here. I'm told that a request for replacement batteries was submitted and they are waiting for details of when this will happen.

I'm not saying that Graham is wrong; it is just down to the individuals concerned. Some do a good job, some don't; that is a fact of life. IT staff are generally no better and no worse than any others.

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