* Posts by Hazmoid

134 posts • joined 11 Mar 2014


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I had one recently where the client could not login and got the reasonable "your username or password is incorrect" error. It was'nt until we tried typing the username in that we realised that there was actually a space at the end of the username the user had cut and pasted in.

BOFH: Bullying? Not on my watch! (It's a Rolex)


Walked rather than pushed

In my long and distinguished IT career , I'm happy to say that the only time I was pushed, it came with nearly 8 months of pay, the joys of working for the same company for nearly 15 years ( in Oz, after 10 years continuous service, you get pro rata long service leave up to 3 months after 15 years, and they pushed me out after 14 years.) The rest of the time I have seen a better job and gone for it.

Regarding contract renegotiations, at least in Australia there is the principle of "employee will be better off" whenever contracts are rewritten. More to the point employers cannot change contracts to suit themselves on a whim unless they like paying big fines and penalties.

The only downside to being on a salary is the expectation to put in extra hours outside of core business hours (with no extra compensation) and the clause that always peeved me, "other duties as required" which could mean anything from brewing coffee to sweeping the office.

Don't be a fool, cover your tool: How IBM's mighty XT keyboard was felled by toxic atmosphere of the '80s


Re: The 80s were generally a happy time...

We rented a flat in south Perth that had been lived in by a chain smoker who just closed all the doors and hid in there. Not only did we find that the brown walls were actually white, but that the curtains were actually a cream colour.

Worst part was that because the ceilings were coated in vermiculite, we couldn't wash them :( also the owner refused to replace the carpets so we had them steam cleaned, twice.


Re: Smoking

I can add Helsinki to that list, or at least last time I was through there ( about 10 years ago), and It made me laugh as it was a completely glass room with multiple extractor fans in the roof. I suspect it would be quieter on the runway.

Just when you thought it was safe to enjoy a beer: Beware the downloaded patch applied in haste


not me but one of my co-workers

I worked for a stockbroker years ago when Exchange first came out. Our marketing department were always trying to sell shares to clients, so had their distribution list __clientlist at the top of the GAL. Unfortunately many brokers (particularly the private school boys) were also dirty little perverts and were constantly sending each other filthy emails. One of them received a picture of a naked lady that he thought some of his mates would like and selected them from the GAL when addressing the forward. Those of you who have used exchange know that hitting enter in the GAL will select the email address highlighted and go back to the email.

This guy didn't realise that his highlight had popped back to the top of the list when he hit enter.

First I knew about it was one of the company directors running down the hall yelling "turn off the email server!"

I had to explain to him that unfortunately our email server was so efficient that it had already gone :)

As a client list, this distribution list also included a number of journalists, who quite thoroughly enjoyed writing about the interesting product that we were now selling :)

A grovelling email to clients went out shortly thereafter and the offending party left the office never to return.

Remember that day in 2020 when you were asked to get the business working from home – by tomorrow?


MSP experience

I work for a small MSP in Perth Western Australia. We mainly deal with small offices and panel shops. When WA was locked down, we got panicked calls from lots of our clients as they had no VPNs etc configured. Fortunately most of our clients were running watchguard firewalls and we were able to set them up with SSH vpns quickly and remotely, with some instructions on how to connect and allowed them to VPN to the network then RDP their workstations at the office.

I ended up working through as my boss decided to work from home (has a wife that is very susceptible to any infections going around) and I was the only one in the office. So I mainly never got to experience the joys of trying to work from home until we recently had a second 1 week lockdown, and the boss just told me to stay at home.

3cx pbx meant I could make and receive land line calls on my mobile. With VPN access and remote access to most machines at our clients, I was able to resolve most issues remotely. For those clients using personal machines, I used the Spiceworks remote control to get in and configure VPN and remote access.

Overall this has been a very busy time for us.

No egrets: Ardent twitchers fined for breaking lockdown after bloke spots northern mockingbird in his garden


Re: Is the point of a personal interest that you persue it?

In Australia at the moment, we are just about getting back to normal, with no need to wear masks ( except in Melbourne) and most activities available. Melbourne has just had a 1 week lockdown to stop the spread of an infection from a quarantine hotel, and currently has a number of active cases.

I'm fortunate to live in Western Australia where we currently have 3 active cases and a total of 910 since it started. Of that there are only 9 reported deaths.

We have come around to the point where it is sensible to wear a mask when out and about, and those who scream about it are looked at like they are dog turds to be scraped off a shoe.

However when we went into lockdown, the penalty for breaking lockdown unless urgent was up to $10 000. If you were not an emergency worker or a "required worker" then you were expected to stay home. There have been a few people who have been locked up because they refused to stay self isolated when required to.

Dev creeped out after he fired up Ubuntu VM on Azure, was immediately approached by Canonical sales rep


So to me this sounds like an updated Clippy :)

We'd rather go down in Down Under, says Google: Search biz threatens to quit Australia if forced to pay for news


As an Aussie, I hate this proposed legislation

Given that most of the Murdoch press is hidden behind paywalls, and all I am seeing on Google news is news headlines, I can't see that this should be a thing.

Actually as a newspaper, I would be more worried that we would lose revenue as we would not have Google pushing people to our websites.

Tried explaining this to the wife last night and got told that "Google is making a bucket load of money by showing other people's work". I obviously explained to her that the news press make money by showing ads on their site, which is where most of the headlines point to anyway.

Two clichés, one headline: 'No good deed goes unpunished' and 'It's always DNS'


I had a great boss for 14 years, at a Stockbrokers. He worked on the theory that our job was to fix stuff and his was to run interference with the C suite and other random "users" to the extent that when we had an emergency, the first thing we did was take our phones off the hook so they would not ring. Luckily the IT area was behind a security door and we were the ones that controlled who had access to the area. So random people walking in and bothering us was not an issue.

One day I happened to be nearby when he was chatting to the Chairman and CEO who opined that he never saw us so maybe we weren't necessary. My boss came back with, " we work on the theory that the only time you see us is when there is a problem, therefore not seeing us is a good thing".

Wonderful boss, and I was sad to be stood down when the GFC hit. Unfortunately, when he had an opportunity for us to work together again, it was shafted by a twat who had been a "Projects manager" at the Stockborkers (sic) and shown the door when it was proven that IT could run our own projects without his input. This twat was good friends with a replacement CEO that took over the organisation we were going to work for, and poisoned the well for us :(


Re: Life Lesson

And since you "touched" it last, you are now the "Guru" and will forever be responsible for maintenance and anything going wrong with said system.

Lay down your souls to the gods of rock 'n' roll: Conspiracy theorists' 5G 'vaccine' chip schematic is actually for a guitar pedal


Re: Doh!

Or to coin my own phrase, "debating anti-vaxxers is like mud wresting with a pig, you both end up covered in shit but the pig enjoys it"

'Best tech employer of the year' threatened trainee with £15k penalty fee for quitting to look after his sick mum


BOFH awards

I can see that the BOFH has a hand in these award companies :)

Pure frustration: What happens when someone uses your email address to sign up for PayPal, car hire, doctors, security systems and more


There is a very confused gentleman in the US who is not getting his emails.

I have had my gmail account since gmail was invite only. It is a very short email address (firstinitialsurname(same surname as Tom from Forrest Gump) )

There is a gent in the USA with the same surname but a different first name (although it has the same initial) who is continually using my email address for stuff.

So far I have received Trump emails, congratulations on buying a new truck and the warranty details, new mobile phone orders, offers of work and various other things. Usually if it is a business that I can unsubscribe from, I will. There have been a few times where I have had to track the company down and explain that the email they have used belongs to someone in Western Australia, not the MidWest and most times they are very apologetic because they have other ways of contacting the gent.

Super-antique-fragile-and-it's-XP-alidocious, even though the sight of it is something quite atrocious


Windows XP is still around in many places.

In fact I recently had a job repairing a programmable cutting saw that used XP embedded. Had to upgrade it to the latest SP to get the management software for the saw to load. since it is internal to the network and all traffic to the internet is blocked, it should be ok.

You only live twice: Once to start the installation, and the other time to finish it off


Re: car key or Dutch House Key!

However my Leatherman Squirt s4 was confiscated in Singapore because I had forgotten to put it into my check in luggage :( only had a 3" blade on it

There ain't no problem that can't be solved with the help of American horsepower – even yanking on a coax cable


Re: Closest I've had to that ....

I used to work for a company re-assembling agricultural equipment that had been welded in China, pulled apart and then spray painted and then packed in containers for delivery to Australia.

Our standard saying was, "If it doesn't fit, get a bigger hammer, if it breaks, it needed replacing anyway."

0ops. 1,OOO-plus parking fine refunds ordered after drivers typed 'O' instead of '0'


Re: And this ladies and gentlemen...

Shame that most road signage in Western Australia is designed by people who know where they want to go and how to get there, and therefore never look at the signs for directions :)

Anyone else noticed that the top countries for broadband speeds are well-known tax havens? No? Just us then?


Don't know what you are complaining about

Australia only ranks 62. New Zealand 26.

So stop ya B!tching UK you still do better than us schlubs in the Antipodes with the crappy National Broadband Network foisted on us by your new Marketing manager Tony Abbott.

Engineer admits he wiped 456 Cisco WebEx VMs from AWS after leaving the biz, derailed 16,000 Teams accounts


I have left a number of companies over the years.

Not one of them did I consider going back into their systems and looking to see if they had, in fact, changed or deleted my account. I always kept my personal and work email separate, so that I did not have to worry about getting a copy of my mailbox.

When I was laid off at a Stockbrokers during the GFC, I knew I was on the chopping block even before the HR lady called me into a meeting in the board room. I made sure that anything personal was on my external drive and not on the work computer. I was still good friends with my boss and warned him that the company had not cancelled my home internet service that they were paying for. He was happy to let me hang onto it until I could get it signed over as he was wary that he might need me to help out remotely.

Faxing hell: The cops say they would very much like us to stop calling them all the time


Emergency numbers

In Australia, you dial 000 to get emergency. However to get an international line, you dial 0011 so you can imagine how often people accidentally dial emergency services :)

Mortal wombat: 4 generations of women fight for their lives against murderous marsupial


to be honest, I think this is a beatup

wombats are generally nocturnal and will avoid humans. I suspect the story started small and grew from there as do most tall tales.

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).



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