Reply to post: BOFH FAILed here

BOFH: Everyone deserves a little DOWNTIME

Fatman Silver badge

BOFH FAILed here

Sorry, but I don't buy this shit!!!!

BOFH's ALWAYS leave themselves a BACK DOOR if they are any good.

It can be nothing more than an old analog modem connected to a RS-232 port on a POTS line.

Years ago, I worked (according to TPTB, it might be a case of 'fucking off' rather) at a radio station. 1970's cheapo telemetry equipment often went bonkers at the most inopportune time, and if the transmitter site based remote unit lost "sight" of its studio counterpart, it was programmed to kill the transmitter, shutting down the station. That were (IIRC) the rules (according to the Federal Crucifixion Commission) in force at the time.

Getting control meant a 25 mile drive out to the transmitter site, and power cycling the remote unit to 'reset' it. The station's engineer didn't like to do that, so he created this 'black box' that connected to a POTS line. You "call" the 'black box', it answers with a tone, you punch in a (user selectable) authorization code to get a second tone. Then you could press one of the 12 buttons on the DTMF pad and send a command to open/close a relay. He had the "*" button set to cause a one second pulse to trigger a power drop relay on the remote units' power connection. Power goes out, and one second later, it comes back on. Another minute for the two ends to handshake, and all is good. The studio end was programmed to flash a light on the audio control board informing the operator that the telemetry unit had gone off line, and the operator better power cycle the remote end within 15 minutes of the light coming on, or else.....

Nothing pisses off a station owner than the prospect of DEAD AIR.

Now, our BOFH should NOT allow this disaster to be "wasted". Time to get out the spreadsheet, and con persuade the Boss into approving the necessary kit to improve resilience in such situations.

POST COMMENT House rules

Not a member of The Register? Create a new account here.

  • Enter your comment

  • Add an icon

Anonymous cowards cannot choose their icon

Biting the hand that feeds IT © 1998–2019