crisavec: (Default)
It kinda makes me feel like an idiot when I spend 2 hours hunting down a problem in a webapp upgrade only to discover it was due to the difference in how windows and linux handle slashs.

Windows demands c:\webapp\install, linux like all unixlike OS's wants /usr/webapp/install, so when the app wants c:/webapp/install and I don't know this it causes...issues. Atleast now I have stage 1 of the upgrade done, now on to stage 2.
crisavec: (Default)
I'll be working on a data center move with a client tonight. Its going to be an all hands thing, the client's entire IT Dept plus all the breakfix techs and engineers from my shop as well as reps from IBM, Dell, and several other vendors. This is the first data center move I've done, there have been the usual "We're building a new data center and copying data from the old servers to the new ones in the new data center" but this is the first "We're going to unrack every server in this data center and move it to the new data center in the other building." that I'll have worked.

I've been in the IT industry for 17 years now, and this is a first for me...the last opportunity I had was when IAI moved all their gear out of the old Bank of America space into a Colo room at ATU(now ACS). Unfortunately they didn't tell me I was working that one till the day before and I couldn't get leave so I could work all night(I was still on Active Duty then). That was back in '99 some its been 10 years since the last opportunity to do this came up.

Tonight is going to be "interesting". Atleast we got the services of someone from my company whos sole job is moving datacenters to coordinate all this(yes, as a company we do this often enough that we have a guy at headquarters that ONLY does DC moves for clients)


Dec. 24th, 2008 12:17 am
crisavec: (Default)
14 weeks of Project, 10 weeks of flying around the state, 30 sites, 2 gobacks, nearly 15,000 miles flown around the state.

And its over...finally. I wrapped up the final site last week, and it was a bear of a site. For that matter so was the one before it. Both had lovely network issues, one losing network, cell service, and off-island landline access all at the same time, but still having DSL service at the kiosk machine. The other lost network halfway though the install with a half built server and only a third of the PCs built...and didn't come back until 1030am the next day.

I've been the breadth and width of the state, one Saturday I was in Ketchikan, the southernmost city in the state, and then following Monday I was in Barrow, the northernmost city in the state. I've been up and down the panhandle, out in the bush, in any real population center there is around the state.

But now its travel bag and backpack are unloaded and put away, I've filed all my expense reports, and helped the last site with its minor conversion issues. Didn't unpack my tech bag because I'll need that shortly, but thats it. I'm tired though...exhausted tired in the way that lots of sleep won't fix. Even in the evenings when I'm trying to unwind its not coming...I'm just brainfried.

Fortunately I have 2 and a half weeks of PTO coming up...hopefully I'll be able to unwind and get my brain back.


Dec. 12th, 2008 04:06 pm
crisavec: (Default)
I got back to my site this morning after grabbing a few hours of sleep, and they'd managed to get the server up and running once they got comms back to the site. I ran the site though testing and everything came out great.

Whew! No delays requiring me to stay longer. I had time to grab breakfast and then go hang out at the seaplane dock for a few hours since I had no where else to go and no place to leave my bags. Tromping around Craig, small is it is, is not something I want to do while carrying a 30lb camera bag and 15lb backpack. I got to watch the seas(wind driven) go from above to below minimums and back probably half a dozen times while I was waiting, and the flight across from Craig to Ketchikan was rather bumpy bouncy due to winds aloft but we made it in.We had to land at the private dock due to too rough seas at the state dock at the airport. Its interesting that the airline's private float dock is more sheltered than the state dock at the airport.

Looks like I'll be home about 0115am though..or atleast landed then.
crisavec: (Default)
When not only do the cats not try to hang out in your luggage, they don't really even seem to notice you're gone anymore.

That, and you get the same room in the same hotel in Ketchikan for the third or fourth time, and you're not asking for it specificly.


Oct. 14th, 2008 11:13 am
crisavec: (Default)
Made it to Wrangell safely. I managed to cop an upgrade to first class all the way down...that was really nice.

I have to admit that I'd always been puzzled as to why the Alaska Marine Highway ferrys and the cruise ships went up along the Wrangell Narrows to the west of Mitkoff Island rather than down the much wider passage though Dry Strait to get from Wrangell to Petersburg....until I overflew the Dry Strait and the mouth of the Stikine River area when it was clear enough to see down. No more wondering...for all that its wide, its nearly mudflat shallow. Makes lots of sense to me now.

I also have perfect timing it seems. I got in town last night for an install tonight, and discovered that GCI has a big crew here(in the same lodge I'm in) cutting over the whole town from Satellite to fiber. I just hope they're 100% operational tonight...because being on a dial backup while I'm replacing a dozen PCs would suck horribly. I was on the phone with [ profile] angie_di last night and didn't notice that the TV went out till later..i thought it had just sleep timer shut off, but actually the cable box went black with no signal and the TV was on with a black screen and a faint hiss of static I almost didn't hear.

I think I'm going to go grab J and wander around town for a bit, we don't have to be at work till about 3pm or so. Tomorrow is going to be sort of sucky, we have to fly to Petersburg on the 1037am flight so we need to be at the airport by about 9 or so, and working till 3 or 4 am and being at the airport at 9 is evil.
crisavec: (Default)
Friday afternoon I headed out to Eagle River with a coworker to visit a client. We're driving down Old Glenn just about to pass the North Eagle River Loop road there where the two gas stations are, and I slow to let someone ahead of me turn and notice the white work-van behind me have to STOMP on his brakes to back down and avoid hitting me. I comment on this to my coworker C and he said that he'd seen it too. We get to the turn to AlaskaUSA there and I again see the same van stomping on his brakes....except this time, he didn't get stopped in time. BAM!

Pulled into the next parking lot and examined the damage, and discovered my bumper had performed its duties and was bent down rather nicely, but had prevented any other damage. Since I was on the clock I had to call 911 and have an officer come out and do a report, and get the other guy's ins and all the rest. Fun stuff there...discovered my phone's emerg mode(it won't let you make any other calls after a 911 call until you explictly take it out of emerg mode.

Waited about half an hour, talked with the officer and got the case number and everything and went on our way having decided that we were going to call it a day and not worry about the client until Tuesday. We were talking about it and I said "you know, I've had the whole nearly hitting someone thing happen to me before because I was too close, but I'm usually paranoid and hyper alert for at least the next 20 min after it happens...guess he wasn't." Right about then we both noticed...the van was behind us AGAIN.....and was wayyyyy behind us now. heh...

I am slightly irritated with my ins company though, the claims line says they're closed for the holiday and to file a claim online, but when you submit online it says that there is a systems error and has you call a phone number...which says they're closed for the holiday and to file a claim online.
crisavec: (Default)
So was fun. I was flying to Kodiak, but it was a lateish flight for once...didn't have to be at the airport till 945 or so. It had started thinking about snow falling when I left the house, and was going full bore by the time the plane finally was ready(two mechanical delays in two days, not good).

So I get down there and do the work thats needed and go explore a bit since for the first time this project I have slack time. Went out and saw a few spots on Kodiak I hadn't been to, and then went to one I had and got chased off the beach by a herd of Bison(yes, actual plains bison). I made it back to town in plenty of time I thought, and when I went to turn in my rental the woman at the counter told me I really needed to go check in and see if my flight was even going to go since the flight before it hadn't even taken off from Anch yet. Ack...

I get checked in, and wait...and wait...and wait some more. Finally they announce the eminent arrival...of the flight before mine. argh. Ends up that my 1045 flight didn't even take off from Anch til 11pm, and didn't land in Kodiak till 1230. So I did not make it home until 230am. bleh....

And to top it all off, I get to the truck where I left it on the top level of the parking garage(because thats all that was available) and it looks like this

Guess who didn't have a scraper )

And yeh, no scraper since I was borrowing [ profile] kokuten's truck and he'd dewinterized it already. Took me 20 minutes to clear enough snow off with the sleeve of my jacket that I could see to drive.
But then I got home and found this waiting for me...
Awww... )


Apr. 24th, 2008 11:39 pm
crisavec: (Default)
Went to Unalaska/Dutch Harbor today to install a PC and reimage a second PC. I was worried about having enough time to get this done, as I landed at 1230 and was on the 4pm flight out(all that corp res could find me). I got the the airport and checked in and asked about a later flight, like maybe 5 or 545pm but the counter rep said there was no 5pm flight. Crap....

I go down to the boarding area, and realize "He only said 5pm..." so I ask the rep there and she looks and turns out there is a 530 flight. I beg for a flight change and she was happy to do it(Gotta love regional carriers and their willingness to move you around on commuter flights without change fees). But then the problems flight out was supposed to leave at 0935 but it had a mechanical issue that needed to be dealt with. We ended up not leaving till just after 11...ack!

I got into Dutch at 1430, much later than I'd hoped, and the client picked me up and I got to work. I had everything laid out in my head for the most efficient way to handle everything and I blew through it. The install was done less than an hour after landing(my best time is 40 min, but my worst was 4 hours..all depends on how long the firmware push from the helpdesk takes) and the reimage was underway. I got it to the point where I no longer needed to interact with it(I'd configured everything needed, but the patching agent was installing some later updates) and made sure the user had mail access and got signoff on it all. I was amazed, because what I'd expected to take me 3-4 hours? I'd done in 2. I had LANDED at 1430, and I completed work at 1630...not too shabby at all.

My team lead was sure I was going to have to overnight it...guess I proved that wrong :-)

Ahhh...and now to get an actual nights sleep! I think I've avg'd about 5-6 hours a night all week, but tomorrow my flight is midmorning instead of early morning.

New places

Mar. 12th, 2008 06:51 am
crisavec: (Default)
We got into Sitka and headed for the client site first thing(after a brief detour that ended us up out at thr Ferry Terminal). The install went swimmingly and we had time to go get lunch and then set out exploring Sitka(with some advice from [ profile] sionainn as to what might be interesting to see). Ended up back out at the north end of the road and the creek/bird viewing area tromping around. Then we headed back in to town and photographed Mt EdgeCumbe before it disappeared into rain clouds. Kept working our way south till we hit the end of the road where the Blue Lake Reservoir was at and looked around a bit before it started raining enough that we went back into town and met up with M's little sister and hubby for dinner. That was about the end of the exploring because we ended up spending the rest of the evening hanging out with them.

I need to go back to Sitka...I think there is alot more to see than what I had time to go look at, and its gorgeous what I did see.

Should I???

Mar. 4th, 2008 04:12 pm
crisavec: (Default)
So, Im stuck in Juneau until I have to return the rental car at 7pm...

My delemma is, should I go out and DO something or hunt photos or whatnot...or acknowledge I'm bushed and feel like being a slug and hanging out in a coffee shop across the street from the client I was here to see.


Jan. 24th, 2008 11:47 pm
crisavec: (Default)
I caught a break in the weather and managed to make it into Craig with no issues, get the systems install done, and get back out.

When I got to the floatplane dock and saw the weather I was pretty all looked good. When the pilot was loading everyone on he opted to put me up front,and I looked at the sky and said "Hold that thought" and grabbed for my bag and dug out my camera. I think I got some really interesting shots out of it too, lots of low fog in the Straits and Channels, and the snow transition line was at like 10 feet which made for some interesting effects. As we got near Thorne Bay(had to drop someone there) I started seeing a LOT of floating platforms with houses and workshops and whatnot on them. I was a bit surprised by that.

Craig went quickly, other than taking FOREVER to boot the systems and logon(lots of updates pushed, and since its remote its a small circuit. I got done and got a ride to the floatdock there with about 20 minutes to spare...cutting it close, but there wasn't much more I could do to shave time off it.

Coming back we took a slightly different route, and had to stop at the State Float Dock on Gravina Island(Ketchikan's airport is on Gravina and you have to take a ferry to roads) to drop someone at the airport. I was sort of amused that they flew straight down the runway, circled back, flew past their own dock downtown, and landed at the State Dock and then took off and then took off north before looping back to land at their dock down town. I can't object too much because it flew us past all the ferry docks and barge docks and 3 different Ferrys in port. Got a couple of interesting shots I think.

Unfortunately my luck both did and didn't hold...I had to do some work a t a client and got the hotel shuttle down to the client site, only to discover that the manager had moved and was now at the clients other location at the far end of town. I was pretty chagrined by that...had to call the shuttle driver back and get a ride out to the other site, but atleast it was a whopping 5 minutes of work.


Jan. 24th, 2008 12:06 am
crisavec: (Default)
Yeh...thats what I'd forgotten about flying down in the Alaskan Panhandle, the bonejarring landings. I was on AS64 from Juneau to Petersburg to Wrangell to Ketchikan today, and damn.

We were over an hour late leaving Juneau because the plane didn't land coming in from Anch till shortly after we were slated to be taking off(medical emergency leaving Anch) and then they had some cargo juggling to do. I was rather amused to watch them shuffling the cargo modules in and out(it was the 737-400 Combi plane) and while rolling one off the trailer onto the scissor-hoist manage to nearly drop it because the trailer was too far away. We get into Petersburg and have to sit there waiting awhile to see how the runway in Wrangell was looking(marginal...very marginal). We eventually did make it off the ground, and getting into Wrangell was an odd one(especially since it was an 11 minute flight). I don't think I've ever seen a plane with 120% flaps before, and then doing a 90 degree turn and being RIGHT over the runway at about 50 feet and landing a couple seconds later followed immediately by some of the hardest braking I've seen an aircraft do. The take off was similar but straight, and Ketchikan was another hard landing with lots of braking.

I did make it, but I'm leary about making it to Craig tomorrow...and the weather for fri/sat looks even worse. We shall see what the morning brings.


Jan. 22nd, 2008 07:15 pm
crisavec: (Default)
I went to check in at the Best Western in Juneau, and discovered that I'd been upgraded to Grandma's Featherbed. Its a B&B style place 2 blocks down the road that is owned/run by the same company, and for whatever reason I was upgraded.

The room is nice...a tad on the smallside, but with a big jacuzzi tub and a really comfy bed. Also has a hot breakfast in the morning, not just a continental breakfast like most places. I could get used to this ;-)


Jan. 22nd, 2008 10:24 am
crisavec: (Default)
I really dislike people going though my bag, especialy when they don't know what they're doing.

Like today for instance, when TSA decided they needed to chemswab by camera bag(this happens about 1 time in 3 these days). This time was alittle different, because instead of the usual swab around the edges and inside a few of the pockets and maybe the camera, she proceeded to remove EVERY item that wasn't a cable of some sort and swab it. And she wasn't careful about it either, it took her three tries to put the camera back in its compartment correctly and she scattered stuff everywhere and then just crammed it back in place. She also jammed something into the pocket USB hard drive case and then forced the zipper closed and nearly cracked the case. As she was doing this she continuously told me not to touch the bag even while I was standing well away and trying to put my boots back on and get my jacket and coat and keep people from grabbing my laptop by accident.

Finally she appeared to be done and was trying to cram everything back in place and I asked if I was allowed to touch the bag...when she said I was, I told her to leave it be and I'd fix it.

At the way things are going, pretty soon I'm going to need special anti-TSA insurance just to cover the damage they do. *grumbles*
crisavec: (Default)
Nothing says "We're glad you're back in the office" like..."We need you to goto Juneau and then Craig next week".

On the amusing coincidences front, I'm staging to Craig out of Ketchikan, so I can bug [ profile] northrngirl while she's there for work too. :-)


Nov. 19th, 2007 11:44 pm
crisavec: (Default)
I bought my new laptop April 19th, and I just did the first upgrade to it. I think that may be a record for any system, 7 months from purchase/build to upgrade. In fairness I only replaced the 100GB drive with a 200GB drive, and 7 months ago you couldn't get 2.6" 7200 RPM drives in anything bigger than 100GB.

I spent the weekend installing applications and updates and you name it to get the laptop ready for use on Monday...there is a downside to using your own hardware rather than company issued. I also built a VM for corp use...that will run Outlook and the couple Corp apps I need and then everything else I'll do my my laptop directly. guess it was a good thing I maxed out everything when I bought the laptop...because it handles it all nicely.
crisavec: (Default)
I was reading this article(linked off slashdot) and spotted a gem from a user in it.

And our favorite, from an outraged Applied Materials user's actual e-mail:

"Were you aware that at my current salary of roughly $90/hour, the requirement to log in/unlock my laptop computer more than five to eight times a day, including mistyping, takes up to 20 minutes per day, 2.9 hours per week (I work 7 days a week), 145 hours per year (I take 2 weeks off for vacation).

"So, in effect, the security requirements for my laptop are costing the company more than $13,000 per year. When you multiply this for even 2,000 laptop users, your 'need for protection' is costing the company more than $26,000,000 a year. Can't we just turn it off and save the company money?"

Kind of gives new meaning to the phrase, "You do the math," doesn't it?

The first response that came to my mind, to demonstrate WHY there is 'need for protection' would have been to walk to the exec's computer, sit down, and send an email to his boss announcing his immediate resignation.
crisavec: (Default)
I got a call from the Office manager of my part time job today. She was depositing my last paycheck....

End of an Era there...I've worked for that company for 7 and a half years in various capacities.


Oct. 18th, 2007 05:20 am
crisavec: (Default)
Gotta love those 8 to 5(am) work days...


crisavec: (Default)

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