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Overheard conversation about a new server

"So why do you need a four processor machine?"

"I've got poor circulation.The single processor one didn't keep my feet warm enough."

(The server lived under his desk).

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Re: Overheard conversation about a new server

I used to use my laptop as fan heater when working in a client's unheated office. Sadly, Dell placed the vent on the left hand side of the machine, and I used my right hand for the mouse.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Overheard conversation about a new server

I once worked in a small office with a server room next to it. When the central heating failed in the middle of the winter, I found that despite the cooling, the warmest place in the office was in the server room, behind the exhaust of a big pile of servers.

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Re: Overheard conversation about a new server

At my last job, only one other person had a key to the server room, my boss.

If he was away, and I had a particularly boring day, without much work on, I'd go and have a nice kip in there.

If it was a hot day, I'd roll a chair right under the aircon and doze there. On a cold day, I'd curl up behind the main rack, gently drifting off to the sound of a bunch of fans screaming along, wafting warm air over me.

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Re: Overheard conversation about a new server

Dunno why it is, but I often suffer from insomnia and have trouble sleeping in a decent bed at night the quiet starts my mind ticking over, but put me in a room full of servers behaving, or somewhere an engine is ticking away and working sweetly and the white noise and warmth can send me to sleep so quickly sometime I have to fight to stay awake sometimes.

I have arrived for long overnight work thats going to involve a lot of sitting round at night on my own in something like a server room with a packed sleeping bag, rollmat and pillow.

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Re: Overheard conversation about a new server

And I bet you would wake up instantly, if there was a slight change in pitch or loudness .....

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Re: Overheard conversation about a new server

Pretty much yeah. :D

But sometimes you get pitch chages as they do things they are supposed to, you know you probably have spent to much time with this sort of stuff, when you subconsious recognises that and doesn't wake you, or wakes you when it doesn't.

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Re: Overheard conversation about a new server

>> the quiet starts my mind ticking over

Search youtube for "star trek sleeping", or if star trek isn't your thing there are plenty of other types available too, nature noises and what not. Or just put on some music. I've been sleeping with music, though mine is heavy/black metal, for nigh on 25 years now (:

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Re: Overheard conversation about a new server @ Grifter

I have tried something like that before but weird as it sounds it doesn't work, dunno why, I think its because its a recording and just doesn't work because of that. Music sometimes works, I have tried to persaude the other half to drive a car round for the night so I can crash in the back seat, but the answer to that is alway no.

I might try that one though it's very ambient low level.

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Re: Overheard conversation about a new server

Sounds just like sleeping on a boat at anchor ...

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Re: Overheard conversation about a new server

Waiting for Cousteau, part 4 - 45 minutes of wave and scuba noises.

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Re: Overheard conversation about a new server

"star trek sleeping"

Rather neat, I hadn't thought of searching for a loop of the ships background noise, though just listening to a couple of minutes of it made me realise it would probably drive me nuts trying to sleep to it due to its unnatural monotony.

For many many years I used to listen to Tangerine Dream to help me get to sleep, auto-reverse walkmans were a godsend, but now we're in the age of video playlists on pcs so it's familiar films or tv shows I usually crash out to.

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Re: Overheard conversation about a new server

Sounds just like sleeping on a boat at anchor

That is basically mogadon for me.

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Re: Overheard conversation about a new server

@JulieM

A long time ago, when a 25-50MB rack mountable Winchester disk had a "voice coil" when I was running routine data jobs, I didn't need to look at the screen, the gentle melody of read/writes told me that everything was good. I did have a couple of spectacularly loud hard disk crashes which gouged the oxide off the platter though...

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"the large cylindrical plastic tube that I never worked out what it was quite for in my standard issue IT toolkit" - I believe it's for keeping safe the screws and other components that you extract with other parts of the toolkit.

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But if you store them in the tube, you can't stand them on the desk in a logical pattern related to their original location and reassembly order. (Not that it ever worked out well for me.)

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When dissembling a device, you can sketch it on a piece of cardboard. When you remove screws from the device, pierce them into the cardboard in the appropriate place.

Obviously this trick is only suitable for screws of a certain size.

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laptops.....get little triangular stickers about 5mm on a side of different colours

get some old jam jars

put triangular sticker pointing to screwhole of all screws that are the same size, put them in the corresponding jar.

makes it a doddle.

for cars though, the carboard idea above is the best

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When dissembling a device, you can sketch it on a piece of cardboard. When you remove screws from the device, pierce them into the cardboard in the appropriate place.

I have a colleague who used to do that, one day when he was dissambling something for some reason, his missus walked past saw (to her) a loose sheet of paper, picked it up and threw it in the bin, distributing lots of tiny screws all over the front room and the shag pile carpet.

Apparently it was his fault.

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Why so much trouble. They always put extra screws in as evidenced by the leftovers once everything is reassembled.

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RE: But if you store them in the tube

Surely they're to be stored in that strange little cage in the pc case that seems to suck them in from the desk above and holds on to them harder than the black hole at the centre of the galaxy and no amount of shaking or poking will get them out?

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Re: RE: But if you store them in the tube

My view is that if it still works with several screws left over then it was over engineered.

I rarely feel the urge to take things apart again to put the additional screws back.

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"I have a colleague who used to do that..."

Ouch! Was this used as evidence in the subsequent divorce?

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The last time I had to completely disassemble a laptop, I poked each screw into a flat piece of expanded polystyrene packing in a matching position.

Didn't lose a screw. On the other hand I couldn't resurrect the laptop either!

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Re: RE: But if you store them in the tube

Sounds like the story about the VW Beetle when you'd put the little motor in the kitchen sink to work on it. There were always a few pieces left over when you put it back together. After a while, you'd have enough parts to build a second engine.

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Anonymous Coward

I can attest that.

Ancient IBM PS/2 Aptiva desktop. Took it apart to change an HDD, back in the day. 32 screws.

Put it back together. 18 screws, even using 2 screws in CD-ROM drives and bracing mounts and whatnot.

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PJ's tale about the Telemetrix CAD machines reminds me of Hot Millions.

One of the earliest films about computer crimes. The cleaning lady uses the mainframe to warm her tea, which enables Marcus Pendelton aka Ceasar Smith (Peter Ustinov) to finally break into it.

"Anyone can steal. Everybody does a bit. I've been embezzling!!"

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Anonymous Coward

The English Electric Deuce mainframe was all valves. Apparently you could walk inside it. A way to warm you up if the room itself was too cold.

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I've just looked at the Wikipedia page for Hot Millions (1968), it could well be of interest to fans of late sixties London culture... apparently one character shops at Apple Boutique (a clothing store owned by the Beatles), and another drives a Jensen Interceptor.

Hmm, I now have images in my noggin from the film Bedazzled (1967) starring Dudley Moore, and featuring Peter Cook as the Devil, Raquel Welch as Lust, and Barry Humphries as Envy. Naturally!

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Maggie Smith (as Patty Terwilliger Smith), Bob Newhart (Willard C. Gnatpole). Even the Jensen can't help him in his clumsy attempt to seduce Patty.

Classic: the scene between Marcus Pendleton aka Caesar Smith (Peter Ustinov) and the french real estate agent. All the time they talk completely at cross purposes and yet arrive at exactly the deal both want to achieve.

Oh, and Heathrow airport. New, shiny, very few passengers, lots of parking space... incredible.

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Anonymous Coward

"Raquel Welch as Lust, "

sold !

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Re:The English Electric Deuce mainframe

I have seen pictures of the Colossus workers in Bras and Panties during summer decrypting.

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Re: Re:The English Electric Deuce mainframe

My mum used to be in charge of a decrypting room during WWII, and she told a similar tale. Washington DC gets intolerable in the summer. The room she ran was so tip top secret that she had the authority to keep anyone, including Admirals, out.

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Hmm, I now have images in my noggin from the film Bedazzled (1967) starring Dudley Moore, and featuring Peter Cook as the Devil, Raquel Welch as Lust, and Barry Humphries as Envy. Naturally!

Spot the reflection of the TARDIS in a shop window in that film!

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IBM 2260 (display) control units had things called NiCr delay lines (basically electric-fire wire in a flat metal box) made great toast - no problems either.

A factory in Worcester in the early 60's had a Leo II which ran on 'acorn' valves - they installed ducting from the computer room and heated the whole factory.

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I work in a UK Bank DC which also has a emergency failover office. Should there be a major event.

The DC provides all the heating for the office holding over 400 staff. Does all the hot water too.

But generally all that free heat is just for me and about 10 other shift workers. Yay !.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Re:The English Electric Deuce mainframe

The assistants in our local Maypole store in the 1960s were all women. They all wore long white cotton coats as they prepared and sold butter and ham. In the summer heat they used to wear just bras and panties underneath the coats as the shops were not air conditioned.

Then management modernised the outfit to white nylon coats - which the women quickly realised were unfortunately almost see-through.

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Re: Re:The English Electric Deuce mainframe

Is it just me, or has anyone else now got a terrible image in their minds of flabby hairy middle aged men in bras and panties?

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Headmaster

There is no such verb as "to helm"

Repeat after me: there is no such verb as "to helm"

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Anonymous Coward

Re: There is no such verb as "to helm"

Except that there is....

https://en.oxforddictionaries.com/definition/helm

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Anonymous Coward

Re: There is no such verb as "to helm"

Regardless of the mis-directed pedantry, you get a downvote for the using the phrase "Repeat after me". Such requirement to condescend is rarely warranted and just elicits schadenfreude when also wrong.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: There is no such verb as "to helm"

landlubber

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Re: There is no such verb as "to helm"

Yes there is, and now the fog's cleared I'm off to do it.

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Re: There is no such verb as "to helm"

Looks like Mr Dogshit has stepped in a mess of his own making.

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Re: There is no such verb as "to helm"

OK, but what about the contributor (above) who refers to "dissembling" a computer?

This reminds me of a chemical equivalent (no pun there for chemists); one particular lecturer I recall was always very insistent that ionic compounds disassociate in aqueous solution rather than the slightly shortened version that was in common use.

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Pirate

Re: There is no such verb as "to helm"

Go to helm.

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Re: There is no such verb as "to helm"

Avast behind

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It's the EM field!

Many years ago, in the early days of PCs in the workplace, I worked for the local County Council.

There was one young guy in the office who, after finishing whatever he was doing on the one PC (a genuine green-screen IBM AT!) would always push himself away from the computer desk, & ride his chair as far as he could towards his own desk.

One day I found myself stood right behind the machine as he did so, and quickly pulled the monitor power lead out of the socket on the PC; he noticed the screen go blank as he was rolling away, and expressed his surprise.

\I moved around to the front of the machine & pretended to investigate the problem without success, before the penny dropped that I'd read about this sort of thing happening. I explained to him that a PC monitor creates a strong electromagnetic field around itself when it's working, and that it can extend out from the equipment by up to 2 or 3 feet. By moving away from the PC so quickly while fully-immersed in the field, he'd actually pulled it away from the computer and broken it! If we were really lucky it might still be enveloping him while sat on the chair...

For the next 10 minutes or so I had him flinging himself and chair at the PC at various speeds and angles in the hope that the EM field would be hurled from him back into the monitor - which it eventually was, when I slipped the cable back in...

He still believed what I'd told him years later, probably still does.... ;-)

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It really was the EM field!

Scene: 1994, office with synthetic fibre carpet and wheeled office chairs with which to sit at desks bearing computers running Windows 3.11.

If one scooted the chair across even a moderate stretch of carpet, a static charge built up which was quite painfully discharged once one touched an earthed surface. I got into the habit of discharging by touching my wedding ring to the metal desk frame, (which produced a nice fat spark but no pain!), and noticed that doing so would frequently lock up my PC. For a while we worried about the quality of the electrical earthing, but all was well there. We conclusively demonstrated that moving the keyboard a foot or so up off the desk prevented the lockups: apparently the discharge through the frame induced a voltage spike in the keyboard that was transferred to the PC (keyboards had PS/2 connectors then, not USB) and the motherboard didn't like it.

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