* Posts by Hazmoid

112 posts • joined 11 Mar 2014


Great success! Finance app was able to inform user that their action was unsuccessful


Re: What's Success?

Having tried to do the same ( close a bank account, or talk to someone at the bank in general) I agree with the premise of CYA. If you can record discussions when you do get to a real person, do so ( make sure you let them know that you are recording) . More to the point, make a note of date, time, person and department you are talking to, so that when they haven't done what they said they will do and you call back to complain, you can quote this information back to them. Also quickly note what you have discussed, and confirm what actions both parties are going to take.

Mortgage departments are notorious for saying, "I'm sorry but there is no record in our system of that discussion having taken place". We make a point of recording everything, especially since the "failed" call or internet connection is a real possibility now.

You E-diot! Formula E driver booted off Audi team after getting video game ace to take his place in online race


When nobody gets the joke

So it would have been been better if he announced at the start of the race, " I can't be bothered today so I got a mate to drive for me. "

The Rise of The (Coffee) Machines: I need assistance. I think I'm running Windows. Send help



I highly approve of all the Hitchhikers and Doctor Who references.

Russia admits, yup, the Americans are right: One of our rocket's tanks just disintegrated in Earth's orbit


Re: Elon Musk isn't helping, is he

Bonus points for HHGTTG reference :)

Square peg of modem won't fit into round hole of PC? I saw to it, bloke tells horrified mate


Re: DIMM Slots

If it doesn't fit, get a bigger hammer

Sometimes one can go a little too far in search of isolation


Makes a change from the cockroach stuffed Xbox

'Non-commercial use only'? Oopsie. You can't get much more commercial than a huge digital billboard over Piccadilly


Teamviewer was great when I was managing IT on Ocean going tugs moving up and down the Western Australian coast. We only ever used the remote assistance module when building the machines for the vessels, and used the licensed version on the 2 technicians machines. That way we could talk to them to get their TV id and password ( and in fact we set the pw when installing the client) and could get in to see what they had mucked up.

Totally enjoy using Connectwise now, however I regularly use the free Spiceworks Zoho install if all I need to do is view the remote machine enough to download the connectwise client :).

Beware the Friday afternoon 'Could you just..?' from the muppet who wants to come between you and your beer


payment methods

when i was working for a Stockbrokers, the occasional bottle of good single malt scotch or carton of beer made itself my way for fixing personal computers. However the one that really made my day was one broker who handed me a one hundred trillion dollar note from Zimbabwe. Given that it was probably worth 25 cents US, I still have it up and show it to visitors to my desk.

BOFH: When was the last time someone said these exact words to you: You are the sunshine of my life?


irony of ironies

Came here for the comments and was not disappointed. Bonus was ElReg asking me to turn off my ad blocker so they could scrape my responses to their ads.

When I used to work for a Stockbroker (national so IT was reasonably large) and we were constantly getting bombarded with "Survey" requests. Really they were lead hunting missions for various vendors. Funniest response I saw was my boss responding to a survey from "Hell-stra" telling them that the reason he went elsewhere was because they effectively shutdown for 2 months at Christmas time, usually when we were in the middle of firing up new offices for the start of the year.

Our standard response to phone surveys was "Our company policy is not to respond to surveys" to which they would still try to claim that it was not a survey.

The Foot of Cupid emits final burst of flatulence in honour of fallen Python Terry Jones


RIP Terry

Just wanted to add my commiserations.

As I've said to my kids, in my day, we listened to Monty Python on cassette tapes and bloody well enjoyed it! Tell the kids of today that and they won't believe you!

Ave Biggus Dickus!

The Register disappears up its own fundament with a Y2K prank to make a BOFH's grinchy heart swell with pride


The original PHB

I must admit that I had my own BOFH who stepped up to become the PHB and took me along for the ride.

Many of the IT Directors have come from a background of BOFHdom so it is important to take that into account before shooting them down.

BOFH: 'Twas the night before Christmas, and the ransomware struck


Re: Merry Happies, Everyone

At least where I am the temperature isn't expected to exceed 35 celsius.

My eldest was working until quite late trying to recover a server that, to quote him,"This server is more important to the client than Jesus is to the Pope". His job was to replace the server motherboard and get it to the stage where the remote support could login through the ilo and rebuild the server from bare metal. However as he was about to leave the data centre, the storage array for that server crashed as well :( Quick call to the support contractors that deal with that and he was on his way :)

I'm still not that Gary, says US email mixup bloke who hasn't even seen Dartford Crossing


I totally sympathise

having one of the 6 letter prefix gmail accounts, I totally sympathise with Gary. I've had many emails regarding all sorts of things for multiple people with the same inital and surname. I usually just reply and say that I am not the person they are trying to contact as I live in Perth Western Australia and have never been to the USA. I then assign it to my junk mail folder, never to be seen again.

Now it's Terrance Dicks' turn to regenerate: Golden-age Doctor Who mainstay dies aged 84


Re: RIP Terrance Dicks

Growing up in rural Australia, we got 2 TV stations, both of which shutdown at midnight. The ABC showed Dr Who after The Goodies and then had an hour of news. So obviously we watched Dr Who, but I did read all the novelisations I could find and many of those were by Terrance Dicks. I must say that the stories in the novels relied on imagination to set the mood and create the characters that we as Whovians love.

Neuroscientist used brainhack. It's super effective! Oh, and disturbingly easy


Re: Yep: Think Otherland instead of Ringworld

The other thing was that when it was legalized, it reduced the drug problem to very low, as this was a pay up front and then you are independent of your dealer. i.e. the money was in the implant, and not a continuing revenue stream because it just used electricity to power the droud. Hell with today's battery tech you could walk around getting the pleasure centre tickled whilst hooked up to your external power pack.

However, if the experience is more of a VR type experience, then there will be scope for all sorts of kinky stuff (let's face it, technology is driven by porn) and bootleg experiences, which will be gladly supplied by your local dealer.

Storied veteran Spitfire slapped with chrome paint job takes off on round-the-world jaunt


Bugger, not coming to the southern Hemisphere at all :(

I've been to the Air museum at Darwin https://www.darwinaviationmuseum.com.au/ and the one in Perth (Bullcreek) https://www.raafawa.org.au/museum/ and they both have mockups of the Spit, but it would be lovely to see one in the flesh as it were.

Rise of the Machines hair-raiser: The day IBM's Dot Matrix turned


In western Australia, pretty much the only people who wear ties are the sales people and the bankers. Everyone else has bowed to the inevitable ( and the heat) and gone for polo shirts.

Apollo at 50? How about 40 years since Skylab smacked into Australia


Proud West Australian here

Having been to Esperance (with my newly minted wife 25+ years ago) and wandered through the museum, I must admit that they did a good job of making the best of a bit of illegal dumping. Makes a change from the local bogans dumping their used mattress and broken washing machine out on some bush track.

Must be a quiet news week as there have been a few reports about it. Apparently people are still finding bits of it.

BOFH: On a sunny day like this one, the concrete dries so much more quickly


"Middle of a Rainforest in Brazil" where it was probably being used to prop up the desk of the local Warlord.

BOFH: What's Near Field Implementation? Oh, you'll see. Turn left here


Re: Coloured pencil department

Also known as the Apple Fanbois, as they always insist they need the latest Apple desktop and screen ($1000 for a monitor stand, Cheap at twice the price)

Bloody vultures! Cheeky Spanish paraglider firm pinched El Reg's mascot


Think you are hard done by

For the ultimate in rip-offs, visit Bali. For any company that has made it big in Australia, there will be a cafe or company in Bali that uses their logo and branding.

For example my wife just got back and took a photo of a nightclub that offers Bunnings sausage sizzles, along with the Bunnings green and red logo.

Greatest threat facing IT? Not the latest tech giant cockwomblery – it's just tired engineers


Try support they said

As a support bod, I have done the occasional overnighter to get things fixed, so much so that at one stage I had a sleeping bag under the desk so I could catch some zzzs in the board room whilst waiting for things to happen. However the only time I worked long hours was when I was in a bush fire gang helping combat bushfires in SW Australia during summer. The overtime and standby were awesome but the social life sucked.

Oblivious 'influencers' work on 3.6-roentgen tans in Chernobyl after realising TV show based on real nuclear TITSUP


Re: "hysterical shit about Prince Harry "dressing as a Nazi","

Having seen the story about the B-17 a few times, from memory the only reason the Luftwaffe pilot didn't shoot them down was because he was out of ammo.

However a very good friend of ours had a photo of a german soldier in their house, and when I asked about it, was told that it was her father who served in the Wehmacht and now lived in Australia. Yes there were many nasty "Nazis" but the majority of soldiers were either conscripts or not willing to sell their souls for the Fatherland.

Town admits 'a poor decision was made' after baseball field set on fire to 'dry' it more quickly


Seems that councils don't have a lock on stupid moments

reminds me of the time the local ranger decided the easy way to get rid of dead whale carcass was to blow it up :)

All good, leave it with you...? Chap is roped into tech support role for clueless customer


Re: "This will only take a second..."

Scotch was a good transfer of monetary value, only problem is that as I've got older I've stopped drinking. (I can't handle the hangovers now, they seem to last 3 days)


Re: Went for a coffee - stayed two weeks

I remember that term from Novell Netware when I was administering that network.

Reliable system was so reliable, no one noticed its licence had expired... until it was too late


Re: Soon never seems soon enough

This sounds very similar to the recent issue with a Cybercurrency archive where the only person with the passcode for the external wallet (Containing $millions ) died, taking the password with him to the grave. I suspect management is currently trying to contact him via medium :)

You can blame laziness as much as greed for Apple's New Year shock


Hmm, I will admit that I have been anti Apple for many years, since I had to support a number of stuck up graphic designers who insisted they needed Macs, even when we showed them a Windows machine that did the same work for half the price. I will admit that the Apple gear was nice from the point of view of the software and hardware working together nicely. However I have a friend who is an Apple Fanboi, and is happy to have the latest versions of their hardware. Even he feels that the new hardware is out of the range of most people and because Apple insist that their RRP is the only price for which their hardware can be sold, they are rarely if ever discounted. This means that the whole point of "It just works" is lost on those that could most benefit from this, i.e. everyone's technophobic uncle or Grandma Mae.

I personally have an Android phone and avoid even the Applefied version of that OS (I will not buy Oppo phones for that reason).

College PRIMOS prankster wreaks havoc with sysadmin manuals


I remember the school of Chemistry at UWA always stunk of Hydrogen sulfide (rotten egg gas) because of students mucking around.

Sacked NCC Group grad trainee emailed 300 coworkers about Kali Linux VM 'playing up'


Re: It's not really about the laptop.

Thank you for recognising the problems to be had by people on the spectrum. My son is a great example of an ASD person who is very good at the technical stuff but can lose it at the smallest irritation. Many managers have so many calls on their time that using kid gloves to handle one special person can be overwhelming, even if they do have some training. There are many undiagnosed ASD people out there, who are usually written off as unusual or quirky, but usually they fit right in with all us other misfits in the IT department.

Microsoft sysadmin hired for fake NetWare skills keeps job despite twitchy trigger finger


cisco experience

Got an interview with a Nonprofit that I had used previously for my autistic son, and went and had a very pleasant interview in the garden with the IT manager. Turns out my Cisco experience (I have configured phones on a VOIP system and set up Cisco switches and routers in a training environment) was vastly overstated, so after the IT manager gave me the details of what they wanted, I had to turn to him and apologise for wasting his time as I didn't think I would be able to fulfill the role.

When I got on the phone to the recruiter afterwards, I did mention that my skill set was a few steps down from what they actually wanted.

My hoard of obsolete hardware might be useful… one day


My storage cupboard of tech

Many 5 1/4 inch floppies, 3.5" floppies, numerous IDE and Sata HDD , a number of cordless keyboards and mice, complete with usb/ps2 connected wireless dongles, various telephone cables and rj11 adapters,

Laptops and ones that are spare parts only.

My wife keeps asking me to sort through it but I am loathe to throw anything out, having experienced the "have you got?" question, days after the council rubbish truck has been.

Techie was bigged up by boss… only to cause mass Microsoft Exchange outage


early morning shenanigans

One of the joys of working for a Stockbroker in Perth Western Australia (The Australian stockmarket works on Eastern states time so is normally 2 hours ahead of local time) is that daylight savings in the Eastern states(ES) means that you have to start 3 hours earlier than normal. So for me that meant I had to find some way to get to work by 5 in the morning. (to ensure support for the early birds in the ES.) My solution was to ride a bike the 12 km into work, shower, change and have breakfast at my desk) . This worked well for a number of years (so well that I wore out 3 bikes in the years I was commuting).

One morning whilst coming up the shuttle lift to the office from the basement, the lift jammed. No matter what I did I could not get it to move. So I let security know through the intercom, and decided to lie down in the lift and get some sleep, because they told me that the lift service company would not be there until 8. Great idea except that every 20 minutes they would page me "to see if I was OK" :( so I could have got 3 hours of sound sleep but instead got about 10 minutes at a time. When I got out of the lift I went to security and said thanks, but you could have let me sleep :)

Haunted disk-drive? This story will give you the chills...


Re: Similar scenario with a line printer

We had a similar problem with a copier that was located in a "lifestyle" office (located in a seaside town famous for wineries and surf, a couple of hours drive from head office. This allowed the directors the ability to have a long weekend at their beach "shack" and still do some work. Obviously this was in the days before ubiquitous mobile phones, wireless data services and remote access)

The copier was set up by the local copier company originally ("local" being a 30 minute highway drive away) and we had not been on site to inspect. It constantly jammed and it was almost every second day that the support company had to visit ( and would change an hour travel time each time).

When we did come in for other work ( rewiring the data switch ) we could tell what the problem was instantly. The printer was located directly below the outlet of a cassette air conditioner, and was constantly being blasted with cool damp air. This resulted in the paper (stored in a cupboard next to the printer) absorbing moisture and curling when exposed to the heated interior of the printer.

We moved the printer and paper to the other side of the room and it fixed the issue.

Mind you it paid for us to have a nice weekend in Busselton :)

Oh Smeg! Hacked white goods maker resurfaces after system shutdown



I think "Smeg" as a swear word has reached the penetration of "F*ck" but without the sexual connotations. I always assumed smeg was an alias for "Sh!t" as it seemed to have the same usage.

Sysadmin shut down server, it went ‘Clunk!’ but the app kept running


Speaking of Financial institutions

Many years ago we were running a very small options desk and running off a single server. When the time came to upgrade, we had to do it overnight, and by 4.30 am (after starting at 6am the previous day) I was more than a little groggy and decided that it was time to call it a night ( and crashed out on one of the couches in the board room). Next day with all the stress, I forgot to copy the historical data across to the new server. A few days later, one of the other admins asked if they could re-use the server and without thinking I said yes. About a day later I was asked where all the historical data was :(

Unfortunately they needed it for a court case and the only backups were done on DAT tapes using a reader in the old server. So after a Stat Dec saying that the data had been irretrievably lost (We spent ~$5k on a data recovery service but were unable to recover the data) I learnt a couple of things.

1. document the upgrade process and test run it before proceeding.

2. make sure you have a checklist for data checking and completion.

3. have a roll back position (much easier with VMware)

4. retain the old server for at least a month after the process.

5. never do a job like this when sleep deprived

BOFH: Their bright orange plumage warns other species, 'Back off! I'm dangerous!'


Re: One evening about ten year ago...

I'm surprised the cop didn't use the police car to proceed depositing his truck in the ditch


Re: One evening about ten year ago...

I had to chuckle the other day, talking with our HSE manager and he was telling me about the first job he attended as an ambulance officer. A group of teenagers had taken a car on a high speed chase, missed a corner and half of them had exited the car because they were not wearing seatbelts. Apparently when the fire brigade turned up to extract the ones still in the car, they ran over one of the deceased bodies on the road. Their comment was, "You should have marked it with cones" to which the HSE manager replied," I'm an ambo, we don't have cones"

America's forgotten space station and a mission tinged with urine, we salute you


Re: Lots to see here

I was in school when Skylab crashed in Western Australia, and was ready to go searching in Esperance for bits of it. To a kid in Western Australia this was excitement with a capital E.

Yes, people see straight through male displays of bling (they're only after a fling)


Re: Gender bias...

My wife's bag is nicknamed "The Leather Brick" because getting hit by it would be like getting hit by a brick. She also complains of neck pain because of the weight of it.

‘I broke The Pentagon’s secure messaging system – and won an award for it!’


Re: Chairman of the Bored

I had a previous manager who thoroughly enjoyed taking the piss out of anyone in senior management. At a sexual harassment seminar run by HR, when asked if there were any comments he piped up and said, " I have a complaint" to which the HR manager got all excited and suggested that they meet later. He carried on and said,"I'm not getting any :( " to a huge laugh from all in the room.

B-Ark passengers to control most IT spend from 2019 onwards


Re: Very mixed feelings

I now state that company policy is not to answer surveys as we would spend all our time on the phone answering surveys. Most people understand and are quite happy to let me go. As you say, the word gets around and the call volume drops off.

My PC makes ‘negative energy waves’, said user, then demanded fix


Re: A solution

Anything that takes the piss out of these people that need their mental faculties re-aligning with a Cattle Prod (ala BOFH) is welcome in my book..


Microsoft Office 365 and Azure Active Directory go TITSUP*


Happened Friday afternoon for us

I started getting reports of problems Friday around 3.30 PM (GMT+8) and spoke to our MSP. At this point they reported that a couple of their clients were seeing the same problem. Shortly thereafter confirmed it was a Microsoft issue.

We run Office 365 including Sharepoint online extensively as a way of minimising required infrastructure in house ( I am the first in house IT person they have had) and the likelihood of an in house exchange server is minimal. The main reason is that they have staff on site at Minesites who may have access to Internet but anything that requires heavy traffic is going to be a big no-no. Even running Citrix desktop sessions is too difficult for some of the site guys so they run a localised version of O365.

By 7pm the issue had been resolved, so well done to the technicians who managed to repair the backend that caused the problem.

My PC is broken, said user typing in white on a white background


Hacking tractors is becoming a thing.

Apparently there is a problem with all those computers in that only approved repairers can service these tractors due to the code in the computers being used. Apparently it is locked down so that farmers cannot do their own servicing and there is a move for the code to be changed to allow this to be done. In the meantime, there have been "Jailbroken" versions of the software shared out, along with the applicable lawsuits against the jail breakers.


MY GOD, IT'S FULL OF CARS: SpaceX parks a Tesla in orbit (just don't mention the barge)


Speeding fine has been levied

Our WA Police Facebook team are on point, already sent the camera fine for breaking the speed limit.

Kudos to Elon and his team for making use of the most satirical of Scifi humour books in DNA HHGTTG.

'The Queen' is showing Geneva how to be polite on public transport


Maybe they should try the Singaporean MRT

Having been there, the trains pull up in exactly the same spot each time, so that they have markings on the platform to keep the exits clear. As a tourist I accidentally stood in the middle of one and was politely reminded that I should keep to one side to allow the alighting passengers a way to clear the entrance. Some of the stations have a barrier with automatic doors that only open when the train arrives and the train door and barrier door align.


Re: 09.30

Not only that but with their painful joints and swollen ankles they can be a positive menace. They've got to the age where they put up with no-one's crap and would happily pin your foot to the ground with their zimmer frame if it meant they could get the cheap meals.

What’s the real point of being a dev? It's saving management from themselves


Re: Devs getting listened to?

Whilst ensuring that all requests are in writing for the CYA aspect ;)



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