* Posts by Xalran

112 posts • joined 15 Apr 2020


OVH blames hour-long global outage on human error during 'routine' network reconfiguration


consider this :

pluging two unconfigured switches ( that are interconnected ) to two backbone switches, can bring down the whole backbone for hours, do that on a $TELCO backbone and you basically have no phone until they unplug at least one switch from the backbone.

Yes it occured ( more than once ), no I wasn't involved into it... ( I jumped ship to another branch a few months before it occured... and yes it would make a great Who, Me?... but it's not old enough yet.)

Yes it will occur again.

Facebook rendered spineless by buggy audit code that missed catastrophic network config error


Re: Out of band management?

As I read it, it was an unspecified borked change in their backbone, that led the BGP to withdraw all the routes, which then led the DNS server to go FUBAR.


Re: Out of band management?

In theory, the Out of Band Management Network is build for that specific purpose.

It's supposed to be a fully separate standalone network, that can be reached through other means than the normal operating network.

In security and availability aware companies, it's really physically separate from the normal network ( read : it has it's own network equipment, it's own routing configuration and it's own ( sometime remote ) access that's fully independant of the rest of the network. ( but in many cases, while it's a separate network, it has no remote access for security reasons, you need to be in the datacenter to access it... Security )

Fesse de Bouc apparently is not that kind of company.


Re: Out of band management?

Apparently their OOB manglement relied on the non available DNS.

As well as the offsite access to said OOB manglement.

There's days, I wonder why I love IP addresses when it comes to OOB management ?


Re: Who me?

Well there has to be some delay... the Who, Me? could make people loose their job if they get identified.

I have a few I'll have to send for Who, Me? and On Call ( mainly On Call, I was not directly involved in the best Who, Me? )... one day... probably when they hit the 20 years of age. ( so that most of the people involved would have moved on )

They are so specific and the French Telecom Universe is so small ( It's common to meet former colleagues in the corridors of $TELCO... to the point that nobody is surprised anymore about it [or to meet somebody that worked for $TELCO1 you worked with on a project in the corridors of $TELCO2 a few years later ) that many people that heard about them would be able to identify me and the other people involved despite all the Regomizer effort.

Don't touch that dial – the new guy just closed the application that no one is meant to close


Re: Timely tale in the UK

It depends on the fire supression system, but in some systems the Halon ( it's not halon anymore, but for lack of better term... ) is kept under very high pressure ( 600bars+ ) so when they get triggered, you basically have flying raised floor tiles and well explosive sonic waves. [ note : I only ever saw one datacenter equiped that way, and the security briefing was done that way :

If the Fire Alarm is triggered you have 30 seconds to leave the room, do not pick up anything, do now try anything, run, run, run, run, 30 seconds is barely long enough for you to reach the door from the back of the room before you get plastered between the hanging ceiling and the raised floor, as one will be flying down and the other will be flying up.

( and yes it had rows of those 600+ bars red bottles tucked all around with 20cm+ sized tubes going up ( in the hanging ceiling ) or down ( into the raised floor ). )

The whole point of this kind of system is to kill the ( notional ) fire ASAP, and to hell with eventual collateral damages, those can be dealt with after the event and once the room has been vented.

Though the most common I see uses 200 bar bottles, which gives you a little bit more wiggling room.

( you still do not want to be in a room where the bottles are triggered )

BOFH: You'll find there's a company asset tag right here, underneath the monstrously heavy arcade machine


Re: Sshh!

I got a not similar one, but still somewhat similar...

at a visit of our new office building with a colleague, looking at the datacenter room, and the raised floor being put in place, I look at my colleague, then back at the raised floor, then back at my colleague, and I innocently ask the weight rating of the raised floor. ( because we had a bunch of indecently heavy racks that contained up to 3 SUN V880, and one cabinet that was even more heavier )

He answers me that according to what has been asked it should be 500Kg by square meter except for the area where the heavier cabinet would be... It would be on it's own steel frame separate from the raised floor...

Then it dawned to him that what was being installed would barely be able to cope with 150Kg per square meter. That occured two weeks before we moved in... Strangely the move of all the datacenter content was delayed by 2 months, and some of us had to go from new site to old site and back on a regular basis during that time. We got the 500kg/m² raised floor ( which was barely enough for the V880 stack of 3 as we discovered later when the rack started to movea bit ), but I was already seeing the carnage that would have happenned had we rolled in all our equipments on the initial raised floor.

It's not the only wrong thing seen that day... and actually getting rid of the unnaceptable raised floor was mandatory to fix the other big fail : all the RJ45 in that room had been wired towards the IT room instead of being wired to a patch cabinet in the room. So a second set of cabling & RJ45 plugs had to be laid in the whole room.


Free Coffee & Tea

I work in such a company,

Every floor has it's coffee/tea/chocolate/hot water/variations and blends thereof machine.

Coffee ( or whatever ) is free if you use your own mug/cup, it's also free twice a day if you use a cup from the machine.

We also have a separate hot/cold/temperate/sparkling water dispenser. ( free, even for the sparkling one )

Oh and we have a small washing equipment to wash our mugs/cups once we have finished draining them.

As far as I can tell, there's no shadow boiler in the building... there's lots of other shadow equipment. like say... the SUN flatsreen behind my desk, and most the stuff in the boxes along the wall not far away from my desk... but since it's remotely ( or closely ) work related nobody notice it.

If you're not sold on the benefits of 5G, Ericsson suggests you keep an eye on gaming, home broadband


Re: The Pope is a Catholic

> Wireless, no matter which "G" can only replace broadband if every other street lamp is fibre fed and a 5G or 4G cell.

We will reach that point sooner than you think. That's part of 5G, and that's why there's those factories connected autonomous vehicles tested in factories

In some of the frequencies used the cell size will be very small, and that's the one with the high bandwidth.

5G ( once fullly deployed ) uses several frequency ranges going from the freed analog TV broadcast frequencies ( low bandwidth, but very long range... good for voice calls ), to the microwave oven/radar frequencies ( very high bandwidth, but small range, will require beam forming to optimize the range while keeping the power low enough that it won't fry your brain cells ) and going through the good old 2G/3G/4G frequency ranges ( that stands somewhere in the middle : bandwidth so so and range not that bad )


Re: well, that's wildly unconvincing

Actually it's much much much more cheaper for a $TELCO to put some 5G Antenna on top of a pylon to provide 5G Fixed Wireless, than lay the kilometers of fiber needed to reach your home.

The point is that they only need to lay the fiber to the equipments attached to the pylon and they can serve 5G fixed broadband to 50+ houses... That's one single fiber to lay ( and usually it's already there, it's just an upgrade of the equipment )... instead of 50+ that needs to be put on top of poles or underground.

Now it's clear that if you already have Fiber at hand in your neighbourhood , 5G Fixed Broadband is pointless.

Report details how Airbus pilots saved the day when all three flight computers failed on landing


Re: Automation Issue

It wasn't in Paris, it was in Strasbourg.

And it was more than the plane thinking it was on the ground... the type was brand new, the pilots were fresh out of the type school and forgot to take into account how long it takes for the turbofans to go from idle to full throttle... while being too low...

The last plane that crashed in LBG ( Paris Le Bourget ) is the Soviet Era Concordsky.

The unit of measure for fatbergs is not hippopotami, even if the operator of an Australian sewer says so


Re: Am I the only one

Yeah, but which one ?

A Roman Catholic Pope ? a Greek Orthodox Pope ? Russian Orthodox Pope ? or an Armenian Pope ?

Oh! A surprise tour of the data centre! You shouldn't have. No, you really shouldn't have


Re: Why is everything I type Blurry?

> And our Boss turned to us and just said "Thanks guys, let's get back to the party and never mention this to anyone".

I hope you managed to hang to that particular Boss for a long time, they are of a rare breed.


In my case the call was while I was ( in vacation ) having lunch on the Glacier d'Argentière Moraine...

( they tried to call me before, but since I was obviously somewhere on the glacier I was out of coverage )

I ended up spending an hour troubleshooting X.25 by phone, sitting on a rock, with my icepick, iceshoes not far, and with the harness still on trying to eat a sandwich while the people accompanying me were wondering how long it would take.

Samsung: We will remotely brick smart TVs looted from our warehouse


That makes it a pretty good reason not to buy or loot a Samsung TV...

If you can't use a TV without an internet connection, it's bad product Design... for decades TVs didn't need Internet, so why would it be needed now.


even simpler : don't configure any WIFI.

You need to at least tell the TV which WIFI network to connect to ( and if you're not dumb provide the password needed for that specific network ) before that TV can connect to Internet.

If you don't provide those there's no way it can connect, so there's no way it can be bricked.

Magna Carta mayhem: Protesters lay siege to Edinburgh Castle, citing obscure Latin text that has never applied in Scotland


Re: Holy Progress

I'm French, I always expect the protestors and the police to be battered. Tear gas, pepper spray, molotov cocktails, and Parisian "Pavé" are "de rigueur". ( read : thrown coblestones )


Re: Holy Progress

If I remember correctly my visit there ( it's fuzzy, it was 30ish years ago ) they have a nice collection of two handed swords ( claymores & friends ) in the castle, but maces were not in particular evidence.

I'm sure being hit by the side of a 2m long sword will do the same trick as a mace though.

Come fly with me. But first we need to find a boot device


Disneyland Paris

Well Disneyland Paris was originally called Euro Disney, it changed name a few years after opening.

Microsoft to require proof of vaccination from on-site staff, pushes back full reopening


which is the whole point of getting a vaccine shots and saving your life ( and others along the way ) and not being a retard trying to dodge having vaccine shots ( and eventually Darwinizing yourself out of the gene pool of Homo Sapiens Sapiens )



That should shut you up.



click on UK, wait for the graphs to load to see nice UK relevant curves. Explore the whole site, there's quite a lot of SARS-CoV-2 ressource in it.

I guess John Hopkins University and Medecine qualifies as being in the medical domain...


So far they have only reached H ( no Greek letter for it ) and Lambda ( last Greek letter used )

Source :


When I look at those strain/mutation graphs I think that we will end up having to deal with it the way we deal with the seasonal flu : getting a new shot for the 'Strains combination of the year' every year.

IPv6 still 5–10 years away from mainstream use, but K8s networking and multi-cloud are now real


Private 5G is already here.

That's the big 2021 topic in telecom... Who ( in the realm of telco kit vendors ) will be the first to boast an operational 5G ( preferably SA ) Private Network.

The most difficult part is probably going to get the customer that with the first 5G network to agree to be in the communication.

New mystery AWS product 'Infinidash' goes viral — despite being entirely fictional


Re: Aww yisss

I remember a few job adds in the late 90s & before the Internet Bubble burst where basically you had do have managed to get a PhD at 18, gotten a job straight away in the right domain so that you had the required 10+ years of experience while still being young enough.

America tops ITU's Global Cyber Security Index, UK in tie for second with Saudi Arabia


ITU... as in Internationnal Union of Telecommunications

Basically the Telecom kit vendor and Telecom operator union... so that long ago all the country operators had protocols to talk to each other.

They went for a broader range, but that's still at the heart a standardization body, not an expert group on cybersecurity.

( even if they did branch out in that domain along with a few other )



Tectonically Israel is in Africa... as is a good part of Italy.

Most of Turkey and a good chunk of what is called Middle East is on the Arabian Plate

Tectonic, when you look at boundaries can be a mess of broken chunks of some plate or another that moved away from their main plate ( another example : Corsica and Sardigna are pure European, but they did drift away because of that Italian chunk of Africa. )

Emergency mode? Bah! It takes a Microsoft product to really break a digital sign


Flying Rats

At a guess the streaks are from flying rats ( aka pigeons)...

They are everywhere and just love to defecate in locations where it will be seen by all the bipeds around once dry. ( cue all the streaks on the back of the screens [ and some in front despite the screen orientation... not mentioning all the other areas... ] at the railway/RER/TGV station I have to walk through when I have no choice but go to the office )

Petition instructs Jeff Bezos to buy, eat world's most famous painting


they can be sold

"Unfortunately, artworks owned by French public bodies cannot be sold or given away, as Article 451-5 of the French “Heritage Code” law governing national treasures stipulates: “Collections held in museums that belong to public bodies are considered public property and cannot be otherwise.” "

Just nitpicking, but French public bodies can and will sell items coming from museum collections. That's what Les Domaines are for.

( https://encheres-domaine.gouv.fr/hermes/ go in the luxe category and you'll see a few paintings being auctionned ).

Now there's more chances of survival for a snowball in hell than for The Louvre to send The Mona Lisa to the Domaines for auctionning.

( basically they will be auctionning lots of other paintings before that )

UK gets glowing salute from Bezos-backed General Fusion: Nuclear energy company to build plant in Oxfordshire


Re: Hang on

well Culham hosts the ITER predecessor : the JET.


Re: According to General Fusion, just 1kg of fusion fuel can power 10,000 homes for a year.

As you pointed, Thorium can't be weaponized... that's why it wasn't developed and whey everybody went for PWR/enriched Uranium power plants : to produce the nice Pu and U isotopes that can go boom...

Roger Waters tells Facebook CEO to Zuck off after 'huge' song rights request


You mean he can choose where the money comes from if he wants some pocket money on a given month.

Three million job cuts coming at Indian services giants by next year, says Bank of America


revolving doors.

all the Telecom and IT industry in India is just a game of revolving door....

Every 6 month ( or so... usually when they got the competencies they were seeking ) the employee leave for the company next door ( and a pay raise )

rinse, repeat until they leave the technical domain to go into the managerial one... then they finally try to settle somewhere.

So unless the job cuts happens all at the same time in a coordinated manner, it won't have any impact because the culled ones will find a job next door pretty fast.

'I put the interests of the country first': Colonial Pipeline CEO on why oil biz paid off ransomware crooks


Re: I put the interests of the country first

There's no Shareholders in communism, everything is owned by the state.

Fastly 'fesses up to breaking the internet with an 'an undiscovered software bug' triggered by a customer


Re: Credit where it's due

To answer your question one single word can be used :


now for the details :

It costs less for the numpties to use a 3rd party to host their stuff than buy the metal, own the datacenter and manage the whole shebang. ( especially since the metal will be obsolete in no time and will have to be regularly replaced ).

In the end it all boils down to the opex/capex excel sheet ( where you can have high opex, but capex should be kept as low as possible. )

Thanks, boss. The accidental creation of a lights-out data centre – what a fun surprise


Strange I have almost the same story... a stack of buttons by the door: one open the door, one turns off the lights, one is the Big Red Button, one turns on/off the intrusion alarm, and one is the fire alarm (and the tied inert gas release)

I don't rememberr the exact orderof the stack, I visited the site once during the day and you had to be extra careful pressing the correct button to get out... but my colleague that ended up exiting the datacenter at 4AM, even being extra careful ended up pressing the wrong button. Luckily just The Big Red Button was pressed...The consequences were bad enough.

The only good thing was that datacenter was within walking distance of the office so when the inevitable FUBARED hardware happened we had all the spares needed 10 minutes ( walking ) away.

Wyoming powers ahead with Bill Gates-backed sodium-cooled nuclear generation plant


Re: You know what

Replying on myself...

Apparently the Military are interested in modern nuclear reactors ( in that case a peeble bed one ) :



Tell that to a French... with 70%+ of the electricity production being nuclear.


Re: Using spent fuel... And getting paid to...

Actually if a company get things rolling on the molten salt fast neutron breeder reactor, beside making money from electricity production, the owner could also make money by getting paid by the other nuclear reactor operators to get rid of their wastes.


Re: You know what

The problem is that the small, modular, molten salt, reactors ( especially of the Thorium kind ) don't create the plutonium the military are so avid of.

Why do you think there's only one single type of reactor that has been developped all over the world ?

The 3% U235 ( Water, Helium, whatever else, cooled ) reactor is the best reactor when it comes to creating Pu239.

You can't produce Pu239 with a Thorium reactor... and the U235 produced is contaminated by U233

making it impossible to use in military applications that go boom.


Re: You know what

Well Super Phenix was safe enough, despite all it's problem being basically a full scale prototype of a Sodium Cooled Uranium Fuelled Nuclear Powerplant.

Too bad nobody in the French government at that time had the guts to tell all the ecologists and the nymbys to go fsck off and kept the thing running...


Re: Go for it

actually with some type of Thorium reactor you could 'burn' a lot of those long life, expensive and complex to store wastes generated by all the Classic reactors... creating short lived wastes instead ( thus relatively easier to store )


Re: Go for it

Well it's a Sodium Cooled Molten Salt reactor... There's good chances it's either an Uranium or a Thorium reactor...

Nature is healing: Shhh. It's a lesser spotted Pi Bork nesting behind the bushes at IKEA


Re: Börkäge

but those are also found in other countries... aprés tout c'est pas comme si le Français était pas plein de caractères accentués. On as même le œ dans Cœur, le u tréma existe aussi ( tout comme le e et le i )... j'ai juste pas de mot avec sous la main...

( after all it's not as if French Language didn't have lots of accentuated characters... we even have the œ in the French for Heart, the ü also exists ( as well as the ö and the ï ) I just cand find a word right away with it. )

‘Staggering’ cost of vintage Sun workstations sees OpenSolaris-fork Illumos drop SPARC support


Well I have a working and kitted ( more HDD & RAM than initially ) Ultra45 sitting in another room.

I fire it up from time to time when I need to do some unix related stuff or when I'm in front of the binocular ( which is on the desk that hides the U45 ) trying to identify microminerals ( I then use the U45 to browse mineralogy reference websites )

I also know where to find an Ultra 2 with a bunch of Unipacks and Multipacks. ( but those have been taking dust in a cellar for quite some time )

US declares emergency after ransomware shuts oil pipeline that pumps 100 million gallons a day


Accountants and Financials

Well, since none of them has a Degree/Msc/Phd in computer science or assimilated but all of them except the head of operation are accountants of finance people of some kind, we can only assume that they have never worked on risk assessment and mitigation below manglement level.

No surprise they got hit.

So what if I pay peanuts for my home broadband? I demand you fix it NOW!


This is why my phone line is separate from my Internet access.

That way when my Internet is down the end of the line drone cannot catch me off by telling me it's back up since I'm phoning through it.

And as an added level of naughtyness that way I can create complaint through the website when my phone line is down so that they fix it up.

( oh and as a side note, $TELCO has to fix the phone line ( old PSTN ) within 48 hours or there's penalties involved while $ISP ( which is also $TELCO ) only has to prove it tried to fix the DSL line but couldn't do it in a decent time [ and has left you hanging for weeks without Internet... Usually fixing the PSTN line means that the DSL link gets fixed too... )

What is it with Facebook and screwing democracies? Now calls for Prime Minister Modi to resign censored in India


Re: Delete Facebook

well can't delete... never had a *Fesse de Bouc* account.

On the side note : according to colleagues I met at work this morning things are bleak in our Indian branch/subsidiary and people there are really worried, and what they are worried about are not work conditions. ( we have a work from home order until end of the year [ for the time being ] with the ability to buy [ and being reimbursed by the company ] desks and borrow from the company chairs, screens, keyboards and mouses. )

Greenland's elections just bolstered China's tech world domination plan


All he mines in Greenland so far...

All the mines in Greenland so far... Shipped the ore away without doing anything on it.

Mesters Vig ( Zinc/Lead ) only infrastructure was an airstrip and a place to dock ships.

Ivigtut... well they transferred the ore from the open pit mine to the ships by just rotating the crane.

Even the Gold mine ( I forgot it's name ) sent the ore away for treatment.

And here they want to build a whole treatment and concentration plant, along with supporting plants to produce the acids needed in the treatment/concentration.

No surprise the Inuits don't agree with that.

There's several reasons :

- Inuits are protecive of their environment.

- There's not enough people living there to actually provide workers to the mine ( Greenland whole population : 50000 or so )

they don't want to be invaded by Chinese people that will fill the jobs that can't be filled locally.

- a mine in Greenland means that it can only produce during 4 to 6 months in a year... so the ore concentration has to be very high to make it profitable.

( and yes that geological complex has high percentages of all the cited ores... )

- that geological complex is also one of the oldest one in the world ( between 1Ga and 2.5Ga... there's older not far in Greenland but it's part of the oldest rocks in the planet )

For the area in question more details can be found in this PDF : https://eng.geus.dk/media/13359/go_fs23.pdf

( yes it comes from the Danish Geological Survey... But Greenland is still an autonomous province of Denmark for the time being. )

A floppy filled with software worth thousands of francs: Techie can't take it, customs won't keep it. What to do?


Re: Minitel

It was used for more than that, but yes it was a large part of it.

There's a few important things to know about the minitel.

It was basically a VT100 with a modem that you connected to a phone line.

Then you dialed the (in)famous 3615 ( or other numbers in case of private servers, like the one we used to have at work ) and entered a code. ( there was also 3616 and 3617 services. 3615 were free the other two were pay services and in some cases quite expensive )

It could be CUM, it could be SNCF ( to buy a train ticket ), it could be lots of things... from the weather forecast, to being able to send emails, to checking your bank account, and much more.

Minitel was free for anybody that asked for it as long as they had a phone line, so it was in many houses.

That's one of the reasons why Internet didn't really appear in France before ADSL showed up.



Biting the hand that feeds IT © 1998–2021