back to article Summer breeze makes IT fine, blowing through sysadmins in my mind

Summer is here and IT bods can rejoice because if users aren’t already on their annual two-week holiday then those remaining – the ones with kids – will be soon once schools break up in mid July. It’s the time of year when the heavy lifting side (physical or virtual) of infrastructure upgrades can be done without pesky users …

  1. chivo243 Silver badge

    Love IT

    Love the Seals and Crofts reference. And I am living this article now... Upgrades, updates, and next to no users to howl. It's Thursday and only one helpdesk ticket from a mobile user!

    Can't wait to start my holiday!

  2. Yugguy


    While we might be a certain percentage down on internal users there's just as many people taking out mortgages and using online banking services so while the roads might be quieter, work isn't really.

  3. David Nash Silver badge


    for the headline

  4. L2Bis55

    Is the guy in the photo sat outside the Hipster Academy?

    If so, that laptop is lacking the fruity logo.

  5. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Outsourcing question

    I'm making the assumption that you're writing from the university sector. In which case do you know what is happening at LSE?

    About three years ago they moved a large chunk of their server estate (mostly hosting VMware) to Google for a pittance. The contract must be either up or close to renewal, and being nosey I was wondering if you knew what kind of deal Google were offering this time round?

    I remember that Google offered 20GB mail quotas for all the roughly 12k students and staff. It all looked very tempting but I did wonder what would happen when the contract ended. Would Google stay reasonable and if they didn't how easily could it be ported to MS or similar, was moving back in-house even possible etc.

    1. Alan Brown Silver badge

      Re: Outsourcing question

      Google was offering "free", as was Microsoft.

      To my knowledge, no university which took up the "free offers" (Google or MS) went in with any exit strategy, nor do they have one now.

  6. disgruntled yank

    Hey, it's rough

    'The number of times that management have come to me and said: “Here is two hundred grand. It needs to be spent and invoiced before 1 April," are too numerous to count.'

    That, I believe, is what they call a first-world problem. I'd settle for "on the fingers of two hands".

  7. GX5000

    I guess I'm the only one that likes to keep busy....?

    Winter, X-mas and Family.

    That's when and why I take off, summer is to get things done.

    Implementations and testing, server racks et all, get 2 it !


  8. Alan Brown Silver badge

    Quiet at unis?

    Summer is upon us. Some of the staff are taking breaks. Most are not.

    In the meantime, we will be running summer courses for a bunch of 5th/6th formers (loads of setup work) and all the PhDs think that now is a really good time to start running critical number crunching/big data proceses, so bringing too much down isn't appreciated.

    I do wish someone would come to me with a wish to spend 200 grand.

    95% of projects start out "I want to do this, how much will it cost?", followed some months later by "I managed to sell the project to funders, here's N" (being 50-80% of what I'd costed, in one case 30%) and "You must make it work or it will reflect badly on the university." - the implication being that the blame will be lumped with us - and when we've raised objections the people concerned have gone straight to the top to gripe about us being obstructive.

    These are the same people who believe that several hundred TB of publically accessible data can be fed via USB hard drives or that backups are best done by getting students to burn BluRays (At current fees, students have far better things to do, like study and get out asap).

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