Tales from the Machine Room

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Dude, where is my server?

Looong time ago, basically yesterday, there were those things called "datacenters", where you could place your own servers on a wide and comfy shelf, with many other servers, and all of them were nicely cared by, protected and fed with lot of electricity and network packets, so you could concentrate on running the software.

Then... somebody decide to start "selling" parts of servers and "voila", the idea of "cloud" was born.

That isn't much of a difference, if your server is a real thing in a datacenter and you can go visit it in its golden cage, or it is a fictional piece of software in cyberspace, is still a "server" and you still need to maintain it. But of course, when the various managers talks about "going to the cloud", in their mind they think they can kick out of the fucking building all those fucking nerds that spend their time fucking around on the internet without ever producing anything useful, like a nice powerpoint presentation and then burn all those annoying servers and then claim all the money "saved" as bonuses.

The major problem, imho of course, is that this story of the "cloud", you cannot point to a machine and people loses the connection with reality (if they had such connection before I mean).

What is the cloud? It's a metaphisical place where things both exists and do not at the same time and, crucially, they can go from existing to not existing all of a sudden and without any clear reason, like a random UL pressing the wrong button.

And after this introduction, we go back to talk about $mathusalem, of which I talked about here.

After the facts I've talked before, they had started a long, slow process of reassessing things, process that was aimed at understanding what the fuck were they using, why and how.

And obviously they started asking US about. And we, obviously, looked at them and asked "you ask to US?". Yeah, 'cause the best way to know something that has been in YOUR environment for years is to ask somebody that has never seen it before, right?

Anyhow, after a number of meetings, we managed to send them a list of the servers and the various ports that were opened in the firewall and then it's their turn to figure out what to do with it.

Everything is quiet until, one nice and cold January morning, a mail falls into may mailbox.

From: UL@mathusalem
Subject: Login problem on our server.

Last X December we had a problem on our french server that caused delays and refused logins in the system, did you received any alerts or error? If so, why weren't we informed about? The next day the server was rebooted causing more problems. 
We want immediately a list of the services that are actively monitored on our French server and all the peoples that are notified in case of a problem.

I read the mail several time, I even tried Captain Crunch Decoding Ring on it, but it still didn't made any sense.

After a bit I put together the following answer:

Dear UL,
We have no information about a server belonging to you and hosted in France, we have no login information for such thing. Can you provide more details like the hostname, ip address and which services are they supposed to be?

After an half a day I get the following answer:

The server is mailserver.shittinghostingprovider.nl the IP address is 194.151.x.y, there are different services.

I run a whois, even if I already know the answer, that is OUR mailserver, that is used for... many things, and $mathusalem also has a mail account on it.

After thinking a bit if I maybe missed the memo that the server was now belonging to them and maybe even migrated to France, I go to check the pictures taken a month before and no, here it is, in its rack, with its label "Lossesatgames".

At this point the next mail is sent out:

To: UL@mathusalem

I think there is a bit of misunderstanding, the server you reported is OUT mail server on which you have a mailbox, is not in France and obviously we never had a problem in connecting.
Monitored services, services and alert e-mails are reserved information and as such cannot be shared.

Of course it didn't ended there, before the end of the day the next e-mail arrived:

From: UL@mathusalem
To: (very long list with all the bosses, underbosses, vice-bosses and meta-bosses)

That server is used to manage orders from various processes on which you login to deliver them, if there is a problem is imperative that we get informed because it could mean that the order cannot be processed.

I spent some time stearing my coffee and thinking about and then reached 3 possible conclusions:

1. UL has no fucking clue about how their own system works and is structured, that is very possible since they had no idea about it last time.
2. UL is talking with the wrong company (see above)
3. UL is a psycihopath.

Now, my money are on a mix between 1 and 2, but as long as he doesn't know where I live and what my face is like, even 3 is ok.

08/04/2021 12:19

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Comments are added when and more important if I have the time to review them and after removing Spam, Crap, Phishing and the like. So don't hold your breath. And if your comment doesn't appear, is probably becuase it wasn't worth it.

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Messer Franz

By Messer Franz posted 03/05/2021 08:15

> e' proprio li' nelle foto, bello bello nel rack R2, con la sua etichetta "perditealgioco".

aaahhh....il tocco magico del BigD Shakespeare...

In secondo luogo, io devo fare i miei complimenti a chi ha inventato il termine "cloud". Come idea di marketing è stata meravigliosa, i manager (nonostante la loro grande preparazione in tutti i settori) adesso credono che il cloud sia una specie di paradiso con gli angioletti che suonano le arpe ai tuoi database per non farli corrompere...

In terzo luogo, quando qualcuno mi chiede un opinione sul cloud gli dico che sta risparmiando perchè ha rinunciato completamente al controllo sui suoi dati. Dalla reazione capisco se vuole un opinione, vuole solo sentirsi dire che ha ragione (MOLTO più probabile), o vuole solo fare due chiacchiere su checacchioè 'sta cosa che ne sente tanto parlare...e se non è un MIO superiore, no problem...

-- Messer Franz


By Arlan posted 03/05/2021 09:30

Mix di 1, 2 e 3, ovviamente: se no che UL sarebbe?

-- Arlan


By Gabriel posted 03/05/2021 09:36

Ehi, ma non è che te zitto zitto te ne sei tornato in brancodipaguri?

questa storia è veramente assurda, ma i manager delle aziende i soldi pensano che nascono sulle piante e li possono spendere in tante puttanate Che però per loro sembrano figate, senza poi sapere  manco a cosa servono e cosa ci devono fare e come?

guarda, io ci scommetto le palle che quella casella di posta sul vostro server era non usata e anzi manco si ricordavano di averla.



-- Gabriel

Massimo M.

By Massimo M. posted 03/05/2021 10:52

Si, e' giustissimo buttare fuori questi inutili "amministratori di sistema" che non servono a niente.

Certo poi spesso i fan del "cloud" dimenticano, che "essere in cloud", per un'azienda, vuol dire comunque avere comunque dei pc, delle stampanti, degli switch, dei cavi, dei router, e via dicendo, cioe' tutta roba "concreta", che va comunque manutenuta anche se i tuoi server sono sul cloud e quindi "immateriali", ma i client rimarranno ancora per un bel pezzo composti da molecole vere, quindi qualcuno che si gestisca tutto l'ambaradan ci vuole comunque ma cosa volete che sia per un managger moderno...

-- Massimo M.

Anonymous coward

By Anonymous coward posted 03/05/2021 13:34

Immagino che ci saranno le puntate 2,3,4... di questa storia

-- Anonymous coward


By KidPix posted 03/05/2021 13:54

Vignetta xkcd obbligatoria > https://xkcd.com/908/

TITLE ="There's planned downtime every night when we turn on the Roomba and it runs over the cord."

Randall é geniale.

Devo dire che confrontare le traduzioni é quasi meglio che leggere una storia in una lingua sola!

- Ciccio == Dude

- Captain Crunch == Capitan Pisquan

Applausi !

Io propenderei per la 2 con un pó 1.

La 3 é solo propedeutica alle altre.

Mi capitano spesso cose simili, solo perché una mail che "sembra" la mail di qualche dottore/politico della mia regione tipo Dr.[cognome diffuso]@gmail.com.

Mi é arrivato di tutto, da lettere firmate di richieste cambio sede ASL, robe politiche, conferme ordini di mobili, di tutto.

Ma nessumo mai che pensa di controllare a chi caxxo stai mandando una mail importante?

In genere chiarisco l'equivoco, anche se le prime volte ho risposto molto vago per vedere dove andava a parare.

Bye dalla Fresca Teutonia.

-- -- At first, I saw mountains as mountains and rivers as rivers. Then, I saw mountains were not mountains and rivers were not rivers. Finally, I see mountains again as mountains, and rivers again as rivers. Zen saying

Messer Franz

By Messer Franz posted 11/05/2021 14:57

mi è venuta in mente solo ora, rileggendo la storia...

> perche' il miglior modo per sapere cosa sta funzionando sul TUO ambiente e' domandarlo a qualcuno che quell'ambiente non lo ha mai visto e non ci lavora nemmeno sopra no?

...beh, in pratica non c'era differenza tra chiederlo a voi e chiederlo al loro management, quindi, visto che voi eravate esterni e gli esterni secondo le mode d'oggi sono SEMPRE meglio degli interni....

-- Messer Franz

Anonymous coward

By Anonymous coward posted 24/05/2021 18:38

mi pare ovvio che "Quel server e' usato per la gestione di ordini " significa che dalla casella mail passano gli ordini che ricevono :\)

-- Anonymous coward

8 messages this document does not accept new posts

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