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Beware the three-finger-salute, or 'How I Got The Keys To The Kingdom'

Martyn 1

Back in the days when I was a VMS operator I just happened to look over the shoulder of one of the trainees as they were typing:

$delete [*...]*.*;* /before=-90

(delete everything on the entire disk older than 90 days)

I just stopped him before he hit <CR> and asked what the hell he was playing at "Eric told me to delete everything older than 90 days...", I stopped him in his tracks and went to ask Eric (the boss) about it, his response was "We're short of disk space and the users don't need anything older than a couple of months so we're gonna play tough and delete anything older than 90 days and then we'll have loads of space", I pointed out that as well as user data that disk also held the executables for the production system and he would end up deleting the entire code and the whole world would come crashing down and a heap of brown smelly stuff would hit the fan.

It was pure chance I was looking over the guy's shoulder at that moment and we were only a <CR> away from compete disaster. No doubt about it - Eric would have been on the streets if it had happened, but although he was an idiot he was a nice bloke and I didn't want to be around trying to pick up the pieces anyway.

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