Monday, August 27, 2007

BackupExec Sucks!!!

        I currently have two issues with this POC software.  I will in the very near future (as soon as my two page list of open projects are finished) be looking into a new piece of software.  I currently am unable to have more than two weeks of trouble free operation.  Invariably, one or more of the jobs will stall for no apparent reason.  This leads me to have to delete all of my jobs, recreate them and erase all of my backup-to-disk files.  I've gotten to the point where I'm pretty darn fast at doing this job, but good luck trying to cross-train one of my co-workers to pick up the work when I'm on vacation.
        My other issue is when I want to backup a device in my DMZ.  For obvious reasons I don't make any of my machines a member of my production domain on the corporate LAN.  They are therefore not available using browsing through the master browser.  The only problem is BE selects machines through the F'ing browse list.  I can do some wiz bang workaround based on IP, but I lose a lot of the additional functionality like the Notes database agent.
        I would consider Netbackup as I've heard great things about it's functionality, however I'm a little concerned based on my tech support response from Symantec.  If they treat Netbackup customers the same as BE customers, I don't want anything to do with them.


Thursday, August 23, 2007

Losing the spare tire

        For about 10 years I've struggled with a very large tire around my mid-section.  After reaching the coveted 100 pounds over my ideal weight, I finally sprang into action.  Two weeks ago I started spending my lunch break walking up this treacherous hill (not really all that treacherous, but when you are as out of shape as I am it looks like Mt. Everest).  The trek is 1 mile up this fairly significant grade and then back down for the remainder of 30 minutes.  I can finally complete the walk without horrible pains in my side.
        I also starting cutting back on the amount of food I was eating.  I realize that the types of food I eat are just if not more important as how much I eat, but baby steps are all I was looking for me to complete.  I think I realized I was taking too much food for lunch when I couldn't even zip close the lunch box without squashing my PB&J sandwiches.  
        All that being said, I just got on my weight watchers scale and looked in satisfaction that I've lost 10 pounds (probably all water weight).  Of course I was completely naked and had just exhaled all the air from my lungs, steps right?

Wednesday, August 22, 2007

Active Directory Project update

        We moved over our sales and marketing department and ran into some small snags that became larger snags.  The machines that we are moving over the AD have been abused for a long time.  Our users used to have local administrative rights to their machines and thankfully we are removing those rights as we convert them over to the new domain.  That being said, the machines have suffered from user abuse and made for some ridiculous problems with printers and .  
        I thought I would be cute and introduce OS deployment through multicasting to our department.  Yes, I one knows about Ghost or Acronis in my department.  I took one machine that was a spare in our office with the intent to build an Acronis master image that I would deploy to one of the machines in our sales department.  12 hours after starting the build on the spare dell, I finally finished the master image (it was a busy day).  I deployed it to the target machine in sales around 5pm.  I then promptly rebooted the machine only to find that it wouldn't boot into windows.  Sometime around 7pm, I finally figured out that I had built the master image with a different video card than the target machine.  Not wanting to rebuild the master image, I stuck the spare machine in the sales department and upgrade the video card.  So much for my easy demonstration on OS deployment.
        Also, our VP of Sales/Marketing was due to have her machine upgraded.  The machine she was using was a pain in the rear-end and was truly the bane of the IT department.  I was happy to see it go, so I offered to setup her new laptop for her.  That entailed some new concepts in our company, such as.....offline files, synchronizing and pointing the my documents folder to the home drive on the file server.  I know....big deal right?  I'm still dealing with the laptop and installing stupid user add ons like flash, adobe and the like a week later.
        I hope next week goes better the week prior.  I'm scheduled to move our corporate offices (office of the president, HR) over to the new domain.

Wednesday, August 15, 2007


This doesn't speak well for the Nevada State government's IT team.

Update -- This from blackhat. I say if you aren't encrypting data over public networks you deserve to be hacked.


I've arrived

Not only have I achieved the coveted 10 actual posts in one month on my blog, but I've now just received my first comment posted on my blog. It's SPAM!!!! Woooohoooooo. Some Portuguese blog that sells swag wants me to add him to my blogroll. Fat chance pal. Not until pigs fly and democrats swear on oath that George Bush is the best president we've ever had.

Tuesday, August 14, 2007

It's alive

One of my favorite tech blogs "Life of a Sysadmin" is back up. I was worried the move to another job was going to take too much time to maintain. Lucky for me, I looked at my RSS reader and there were nine posts for one of my favs. This post on VARs hits the nail squarely on the head. One of my last jobs was for a "security" VAR, but in truth they were nothing but a fulfillment house with token engineers. I'm not going to give the name of the company, but their name starts with Star.



Hey....everyone say hello to the Salem-Keizer public school district. They graced our home last week looking at my post on login scripts. I worked for three public school districts in So. Calif and had a blast while I was there. I have to say I'm impressed. You guys have 9 people in your infrastructure team to handle a crap load of schools. If you get a chance, post some of your environment (sensitive data not included).


Monday, August 13, 2007

Google Toolbar

We just added a user, that use to have local administrative rights to his machine, to our corporate domain. When we did this his local admin rights went away and he became a regular user on his box. When this took place, his Google toolbar went away. If I place him back in the administrator's group on the machine the toolbar comes back. Obviously there is some file on his machine that needs write access that I need to set on his machine. I already gave modify rights to the program files\google and program files\mozilla directory but it still is crapping out.

Update -- Here is the link to the discussion with Google.

Friday, August 10, 2007


I would just like to thank LGF for this. You had me at hello..., tear.

Thursday, August 9, 2007

Active Directory Project update

We moved over our Customer Service and IT staff to the new domain last Tuesday. It's been a couple days of clean-up and minor problems. I had wanted to accomplish two secondary tasks with this move.

First - Our password policy is atrocious and it would be embarrassing to even describe it. We will now be forcing all of our users to abide in a new strong password policy that was adopted by the company.

Second - The other task involves workstation administration. When NTFS permissions became common place on workstations several years back, my company decided to start granting "domain users" local administrator rights to clear up problems with programs needed modify rights for certain areas of the HDD. This has lead to pirated software, mis-configured computers and large security holes on our network. Unfortunately, this issue still exists and will not be able to be fixed at the present time. I guess I will add it to the project list

Tuesday, August 7, 2007

Damn....I missed it.

I will be celebrating this next year.

Login Scripts

I was trying to determine how I wanted users to run their login scripts when they are moved over to the 2003 domain. I decided to not use group policy at this point and just utilized the user account properties. My accounts are segregated nicely by OU which makes the advantages of GP closer to nil. I also decided to use WScript instead of the old DOS way of coding login scripts. This website had some great simple coding examples

Friday, August 3, 2007

I want one

OK. This has got to be the coolest thing I've ever seen. I want one for Christmas. Click the picture to go to the Moller International.

Thursday, August 2, 2007

Active Directory Project update

I've decided to move forward with the Active Directory project using 2003. I was going to wait until the file server I was migrating was done, but I'm waiting on others to get me information on certain files and folders and that mini project is dragging. I'm start converting our customer service department over to AD as they make useful lab rats. In all fairness I'll include the IT staff in the process so we can all share the pain.

Wednesday, August 1, 2007


What is with people and not cleaning up their files. We are in the process of migrating our main file server over to a newer box. This old file server has been around since the invention of dirt and never has had a clear organization about it. This has led to files after files that no one has any idea about. I just found HR documents that aren't secured and are wide open for anyone to look at. I also just discovered that I'm being paid $20,000/year less than the rest of my colleagues. Time to upgrade that resume.