Last Mile: This Old Data Center Disaster

Chuckle at the Top 11 Reasons you don't want Bob Vila working in your IT Department, the "Do-it-Yourself" Hacker, and making your own Last Mile Item

May 20, 2005

6 Min Read
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11) Always puts 19-inch server racks into solid oak cabinets

10) Uses a real drill to drill down into network problems

9) Keeps installing toilets in server rooms and wiring closets

8) Uses a pressure washer to clean the shared drive

7) Insists on double-hung Windows (as if Windows didn't already hang enough)6) Extends a RAID set to include a storage compartment with a matching wine rack

5) Stores 4.5-inch circular saw blades in his DVD drive

4) Wants to install a central vacuum for emptying bit buckets

3) Recommends using Apple IIe machines to give infrastructure "that rustic touch"

2) Tests firewalls with a blowtorch1) Resets helpdesk number to ring through to SearsSpecial thanks to JoAnne Brawn, Ron Bunal, Vince Callaghan, Steve Harvey, Gary Hoke, Joe Jackson, Joe LaGreek, Gregory Mamayek, Steven Matheson, Wayne Rorex and Charles Westerfield for their do-it-yourself suggestions.

To see the list of readers' unpainted, unvarnished entries, see

There's something satisfying about seeing a bad guy get his just deserts. That's why we howled last month when a 26-year-old German hacker was duped into deleting his own hard drive. Seems the guy was angry after he thought he'd been thrown off a chat channel (www., and he demanded the moderator's IP address.

The moderator sent back a string of numbers-- there was a brief wait as the hacker wreaked his wrath on the address.

"I can see your E: drive disappearing!" he gloated. "D: is down 45 percent!" This was the hacker's last message, as his computer bit the proverbial dust.Think you're funnier than we are? So do we.
Fill in the blanks of our "Fun Libs" --without reading the story (remember how "Mad Libs" worked?). Then send the finished product to us. We'll run the best PG-rated entries on our Web site.

Joe Jackson
• Double Hung Windows. As if Windows didn't already hang often enough.

Steve Harvey
1. His idea of "Patch Management" involves wallboard compound and a putty knife.

2. To drill down through a network problem, he uses a real drill.
3. Keeps wanting to install Holland Pavers on the server room floor.
4. Says installing software on a PC not any different than installing an
ice maker in a refrigerator.
5. His anti-virus protection includes a pesticide.

Marilyn Taylor
• You can't glue CD's together to hold more data. FUNNY!Dave Smith
• Wants to test the firewall with a blowtorch.

Gary Hoke
• His idea of cleaning off the shared drive includes a pressure washer.

Charles Westerfield
• The helpdesk phone number now rings through to Home Depot.

JoAnne Brawn
• Always trying to make us use Apple IIe's, saying it will give us that "rustic feel".

Ed Palmateer
• Bob's most recent tech certification was on maintaining Sears Craftsman Heavy-Duty server (that is still only running 16-router bit apps).Vince Callaghan
• The only source for Hardware will be Sears.

Kevin DiLoreto
• The networks don't think that "This Old Computer" show will fly.

Gordyan Knott
1. Will fix MS/Windows with MS/Sledgehammer
2. Will annoy the experts the same as he does on TV.
3. Will explain that too much Java on the job makes you search for your own IP Address

Bill Bray
• Constantly mistakes User Attitude Adjustment Wiring Modifications as another opportunity to show you how to correctly -- and safely -- rewire a faulty wall socket.

Joe Jackson
• Patch Management with spackle? Better get out those drywall-tape backups!Ira Wilkerson
• Actually, Bob dont do Windows

Wayne Rorex
• He stores his 4 1/2" saw blades in the DVD drive.

April L.
• Company website always under construction.

Ken Graham
• Bob can be dyslexic at times, but we did get the 5 cats out of the wall safely.

Andrew Lerner
• He keeps trying to install Crown Molding around the Catalyst 6500s in your datacenter.Mark Jass
• Norm isn't already on staff.

Steve Szabo
• Always going to Sears to look for the latest equipment.

Kevin Bradley
• The only tool I've ever actually seen him use is a sledge hammer.

Charles Ashbacher
• His BuildXXX() methods are too heavily overloaded.

Gary Hoke
• His idea of a firewall consists of 5/8" drywall with a special fireproof coating.Joe LaGreek
• Wants to convert all the Windows to triple pane

•Does not understand the difference between grid computing and grid ceilings
•Wants to install a whole house/datacenter central vacuum to empty the bit buckets
•Wants Norm to build some custom server racks out of wood.

Gary Hoke
• Hold music on the telephone system will be replaced with the audio from his TV show.

Bob Kokinda
• Air nail guns aren't component friendly....

Gary Hoke
• Rebuilding a database will take on a whole new meaning.Gary Hoke
• Adding skylights to the server room would expose employees to unusual amounts of daylight!

Gary Hoke
• All full-time employees will be fired and replaced by contractors.

Lisa Bachman
• You were hoping for an environment other than warehouse chic.
• Every move you make is is recorded and broadcast in 7 languages to 23 different countries so the TV audience can play along at home.
• Chris Vila is in charge of operations within the week.
• If you can actually get him back home again, please lock the door.

Scott Winberg
• You will do all the work and then Bob will step in add the final piece and take all the glory.

wayne maurer
• - Laser guided miter saws cause power outages.
• - Constantly trying to refinish the server cases.
• - Mahogany server rack doors look really nice - but don't conduct heat
very well.• - Keeps trying to hold the servers in place with wood clamps.gregory mamayek
• ~ Toilet added to server room; gives new meaning to flush the system; doubles as fire prevention system.

• Not compatible with Home ImprovementTim the Toolman software.
• Rebuilds server rack out of teak.
• Reboots the server with steel toe boots.
• Commences drilling more holes in drywall since server room feels hotter than it should be.
• Tracks mud into server room from last job.

Henry Rohlfs
• Has anyone ever heard of Sears Craftsman brand networking equipment?

Steven A. Matheson
• The company dress code does not include plaid.
• Sears does not sell 10Gb/s interface upgrades.
• Fequently awards maintenance contracts to carpenters from New England.
• Called Mr. Rooter to fix the network uplink pipe.
• Sumbitted a budget request to have all the network tools upgraded to "laser guided".
• Thought that 24x7 support was some sort of large piece of lumber.
• Used pressure clamps and carpentry glue to defragment a hard drive.
• Extended a RAID set to include a storage compartment with a matching wine rack.
• Installed a new server only after refinishing it to match the architectural look of the neighboring historical servers.

Ron Bunal
• Using Robogrip pliers to install memory SIMMs may void the warranty.
• Tries to run mission critical applications on old, outdated servers, and calls it "This Old Hardware".
• Confuses Windows 2003 with the latest triple-pane models from Andersen Windows.
• No matter how carefully you install it, 14/3 Romex cable just won't support gigabit ethernet.
• Solid oak cabinets are nice, but a 19 inch steel rack is really all you need to house your IDS.
• Leaves cinder blocks and mortar mix in the data center every time he installs a new firewall.0

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