Monthly Archives: May 2008

Funny thing

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I was watching the original 1971 version of The Andromeda Strain, and watching the scene where they are getting ready to put a sample of Andromeda in an electron microscope and it triggered a memory.

I remember my junior year in college and getting to use a scanning electron microscope for the first time. There is nothing like learning how to use a microtome correctly by learning the correct sheen when you separate a sample of the correct thinness off into the water.

You never forget the look of the sheen you get when you use a diamond blade to slice a 60 to 100 nanometer thick sample of a material embedded in a hardened epoxy resin matrix.

Of course, I have been reading about the advances that they have made in the last few years to make a working laser microtome,which uses a near infrared 1 terawatt femtosecond pulse laser to slice a 10 to 100 ┬Ám thickness sample of a material without having any thermal damage or contaimination.

Cool!

Apropos of Nothing . . .

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But have I ever mentioned how much I love songs like Mandelbrot Set?

I haz a stopwatch!

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First of all. neither of these are completely worksafe. If you think that someone might be offended, please to not be clicking on the hyperlinksys on teh Interwebz.

That having been said. I find the first one very amusing, and the second amusing but in a very, very, very wrong way.

Here are the NSFW warnings – Implied homosexual sweaty snugglebunnies, Not so implied heterosexual sweaty snugglebunnies, and implication that Owen is a major perv.

So . . . ladies and gentlemen – I give you two things that made me laugh really hard in – The Torchwood Macro community.

SmarmySmirkingIanto is smarmy!

Wow

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After a month plus of hard, hard work.

I have every currently broken thing working.

No alerts are firing for my customer, all systems are working as they are supposed to work.

Thankfully.

(I’m almost afraid to breathe as it might cause something to fire.)

*shimmers into existance*

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There are times I feel like the EMH on Voyager.

I may start prefacing any and all consults with: “Please state the nature of the technical emergency.”

Now all I need is a recovered Borg sidekick “Seven of Nine” of my very own.

I’m not really bitching here – I’m just injecting humor into the fact that when I am at work, I become something of a living, interactive database and ‘Expert System‘ for my co-workers. And that I have been told that they don’t like it when I take time off and am not around to dispense wisdom and information.

It is the little things like that which make it all worthwhile.

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Julie – one of our Account Managers in London emailed me this morning asking if she could call me and get my perspective on a problem that had been dropped in her lap.

To make a long story short, one of her customers in Tel Aviv had some site config issues that was preventing our standard monitors from functioning properly, and for over a week, our monitoring group had been telling her “No, we can’t do this – it will not work.” So she wanted to know if I could spare her five minutes to take a look at the problem and see if I could see a resolution.

The root issue was that when the customer set up five different websites, they decided to bind all of them to only one of the five IP addresses on the server, and differentiate them with host headers. What I ended up doing was adding an extra host header to the primary site on the server and not specify a URL for the site, that way when the monitor referenced the base IP as opposed to a URL, the base site would display instead of giving an “Invalid Hostname” error.

From first having the problem brought to my attention to resolution, perhaps 10 minutes.

Julie immediately called Scott – my direct boss, and told him how glad she was to have me around. Scott put her on speaker so I could hear her feedback.

“You know, I have been trying to make progress on this problem for the better part of a week, and all that monitoring would tell me is ‘No, this can’t be done.’. In five minutes, David listened to my problem, and then presto, he had the root issue sorted! I am so glad we have him.”

You know, that just made my entire week worth it.

*snerk*

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Driving into work on Northwest Highway and I just heard the traffic reporter describe today as a “Heavy Flow Day”

Oy

I hope he didn’t mean that the way it sounded.

For the record . . .

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I did *not* like the way that they wrapped up the Gormogon storyline.

Yeah, I know the season had been cut short by the writer’s strike and they needed to “wrap things up” but . . . well, I just don’t like it.

By The Way . . .

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After watching Iron Man, I have to point this out.

After watching Robert Downey Jr. playing Tony Stark, I am convinced of one thing.

marinebear is a dead ringer for him.

So Jess, why didn’t you tell me about your secret identity?

*is vaguely annoyed*

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Why is it that I have straight friends who have better ‘dars than I do?

Best Email Gotcha Title Yet

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Tricksy Hobbitses Unleash The Hurt

The Creators of Star Wars Battlefront prepare to wage war Middle-Earth Style.

Now that is how to make sure that I actually stop and read the new content advertisement instead of just deleting it.

Oh, and Still Not King.

Mmmmmm

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Lunch was For The Win.

I think I will have a home-made peanut butter cookie for dessert.

Thank you gramalkin

Lunchtime!

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Tomato Wrap with Pastrami, Spinach, Shitake, and Smoked Gouda.

Pretzels.

Milk

Oh, and last night’s episode of Bones. (I’m going to watch last night’s episode of House while writing out some SOPs later – I watched this week’s Doctor Who while finishing the logon script last night).

*glee*

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Oh this is so evil on so many levels!

I love it!

Spam Your Enemies! – The Fun Way

Now I just need someone to make me mad enough to use this for good (for certain values of good at least)

The New Network Model

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The New Network Model
Originally uploaded by David Harwell

A little piece of network humor from one of our internal network engineers.

Well, in case anyone is interested

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(And thanks to winbear for catching my stupidity)

Here is the completed login script – and what it does.

First, it determines the hostname of the device the person is logging into. Once it has done that – it makes a series of comparisons to see if the device that the person has logged into is a remote server or not. If they are not logging into a remote server, then it checks for the existence of a file, and if the file exists, then it exits gracefully. Finally, if the user is not on a remote server, and if the file does not exist, then it deploys the requested payload from a central server location. So I guess, in some ways this login script is somewhat viral. *laughs*

option explicit
dim wshNetwork
dim WshSysEnv
dim objFSO
dim oShell
dim WshShell
dim filesys
dim hostfive, strUserProfile, wshHostname

wscript.sleep (30000)

set wshNetwork = WScript.CreateObject(“WScript.Network”)
wshHostname = wshNetwork.ComputerName
set objFSO = CreateObject(“Scripting.FileSystemObject”)
set oShell = CreateObject(“Wscript.Shell”)
strUserProfile = oShell.ExpandEnvironmentStrings(“%USERPROFILE%”)
set filesys = CreateObject(“Scripting.FileSystemObject”)
hostfive = left(wshHostname, 5)

‘ compare too see if we are in the Dallas DC first
if strcomp(hostfive, “DAA30”) = 0 then
WScript.quit

‘ now compare to see if we are in the Miami DR DC
elseif strcomp(hostfive, “MIA30”) = 0 then
WScript.quit

‘ now test to see if we are in the $customer servers
elseif strcomp(hostfive, “dfstx”) = 0 then
WScript.quit
end if

‘ now test to see if the file in question exists
If filesys.FileExists(strUserProfile & “\Start Menu\Programs\Startup\buyer.activity.url”) Then
WScript.quit

else

‘ OK – it does not exist and we are not going to mess up a server, copy it.
objFSO.CopyFile “\\$customerdomaincontroller\SYSVOL\dfs.com\scripts\buyer.activity.url”, strUserProfile & “\Start Menu\Programs\Startup\”

end if

Yay!

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gramalkin made his grandmoter’s cookie recipies!

And he brought me some!

Nom, nom, nom, nom.

Well, brute force may serve me better

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Since Excel is being a hateful, heartless bitch.

I am making the Windows FileSystemObject my new love.

option explicit
dim wshNetwork
dim WshSysEnv
dim objFSO
dim oShell
dim hostfive, dalsvr, miasvr, drvsvr, logicaltest, strUserProfile, wshHostname

set WshNetwork = WScript.CreateObject(“WScript.Network”)
set wshHostname = WshNetwork.ComputerName
set objFSO = CreateObject(“Scripting.FileSystemObject”)
set oShell = CreateObject(“Wscript.Shell”)
set strUserProfile = oShell.ExpandEnvironmentStrings(“%USERPROFILE%”)
set WshSysEnv = WshShell.Environment(“Process”)
set hostfive = left(hostname, 5)

‘ compare too see if we are in the Dallas DC first
if strcomp(hostfive, “daa30”) = 0 then
WScript.quit

‘ now compare to see if we are in the Miami DR DC
elseif strcomp(hostfive, “mia30”) = 0 then
WScript.quit

‘ now test to see if we are in the $CUSTOMER servers
elseif strcomp(hostfive, “dfstx”) = 0 then
WScript.quit
end if

‘ now test to see if the file in question exists
If filesys.FileExists(strUserProfile & “\Start Menu\Programs\Startup\buyer.activity.url”) Then
WScript.quit

else

‘ OK – it does not exist and we are not going to mess up a server, copy it.
objFSO.CopyFile “\\$customerserver\SYSVOL\dfs.com\scripts\buyer.activity.url”, strUserProfile & “\Start Menu\Programs\Startup\”

end if


*sigh*

still with the errors, but I have thrown this together in the last 45 minutes.

I’m going to drive home and see if I get inspired.

And in case you are morbidly curious, this is what I am trying to do.

determine hostname
if hostname == daa*, then exit
if hostname == mia*, then exit
if hostname == dfstx*, then exit
check for existence of %profile%\Start Menu\Programs\Startup\buyer.activity.url – if exists, then exit.
copy buyer.activity.url to %profile%\Start Menu\Programs\Startup

And this is the nonlove I get back.

D:\>\\$customerserver\SYSVOL\dfs.com\scripts\credit.check.vbs
Microsoft (R) Windows Script Host Version 5.6
Copyright (C) Microsoft Corporation 1996-2001. All rights reserved.

\\$customerserver\SYSVOL\dfs.com\scripts\credit.check.vbs (9, 1) Microsoft VBScript runtime error: Object required: ‘[string: “DAA30144CTX027″]’
64144ccf1df”,type=”win32-policy”


Yes, it is a logon script, and no – I don’t really have any other option for distributing it to a small group of about 30 users.

The good news is . . .

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My co-workers get very amused when I am trying to solve problem via code.

Especially when I am trying to instantiate an instance of Excel.

And even though I am setting the .visible property to TRUE, the damn thing won’t appear on the desktop.

And I don’t know if the problem is my code, or Citrix.

And the code is so simple too:

Option Explicit
DIM objXL, objWb
DIM file
file = “*path to specific XL Pivot Table and Spreadsheet in customer’s network*”
Set objXL = WScript.CreateObject (“Excel.Application”)
objXL.Visible = TRUE
Set objWb = objXl.WorkBooks.Open(file)
objWb.Activate

Oh Excel!!! Why don’t you love me anymore?

*runs off crying*

This is so very, very wrong.

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So be sure to blame Curtis for this.

(No, not blackpage, but ckline)

Because, you know:

It’s All Because . . .

Pretty worksafe – a few adult concepts but nothing naughty.