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Remembering Y2K call-outs and the joy of the hourly contractor rate

Anonymous Coward
Anonymous Coward

I was a fulltime, 24x7x365 desktop engineering employee in '99 (basically perpetually on call as one of the two guys who built and maintained our standard workstation images). My youngest had just been born the first week in December, but I returned for New Years' week to join the "all hands on deck" festivities with the rest of our few hundred internal IT staff. Confidence was high because the inside crew had already completed fixing the problems with our contractors' Y2K remediations. The contractors had actually done an amazing job going through reams of mostly COBOL, but the home grown code was a minefield for anyone who hadn't spent 20 years caring for and feeding it like our senior devs. We got through it with only a couple of hiccups: an overseas system that didn't get updated because... reasons, and a desktop app that a certain big hardware maker pushed a last minute (OK, last _hour_) update for that contained a regression. Earned my (modest) bonus that morning for fixing that one with a manual (as in over-the-wire to the hidden system drive shares) rollback to the previous version that went out to thousands of machines.

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