Work Journal For Week of January 10, 2000

Last Update: Sunday, January 16, 2000 01:40 PM

 

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Shawn Wallbridge pointed me towards Onvia.com who have a good selection of software and hardware. Pricing on some, but not all products is very good. Onvia.com has Canadian and U.S. outlets.

The price I found for a Netgear 10/100 8 port hub and Netgear 10/100 NIC were such that I ordered a hub and 4 NICs from Onvia. Hopefully now I will have enough networking gear to keep things going for a while.

My test computer running WinNT will not talk to DHCP on my Novell server and get an IP address. I have gone through the settings on the PC and the server too many times, and for the life of me can't find what is wrong. I am sure when I do figure it out I will kick myself for not seeing the obvious.

I still haven't see Toy Story 2 so that's where I am off to now. Enough computers, laundry etc. for one day. Time for some simple entertainment.

 


 

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I now have Novell 5 acting as a DHCP sever and my test PC is leasing an IP address properly. The problem was that the DHCP service was not starting. I also added the command "load dhcpsrvr" to the autoexec.ncf file so that the DHCP service will be started if the server ever has to be rebooted.

If telecommuting is going to continue to grow, how are these home PCs to be maintained. I think that telecommuting could produce the required demand to make the thin client, Internet appliance type of device more popular. Imagine turning on your internet appliance, making a VPN connection to your employers server and starting a session of SAP to check reports and make sure that purchasing levels are correct. SAP is a good example as I have done side by side comparisons of SAP running on an office PC verses a laptop running a GUI locally sending and receiving data across a 28.8 modem connection. The modem connection performs nearly as well as the office PC as only a small stream of data has to go across the phone line. 

 

I have worked for several companies which provide PCs for employees to use at home for business use. The problem is maintaining these PCs. Users hate to have to haul them into the office for IT to fix them, and IT does not want to be sending techs to peoples homes. In my experience the biggest problem is people using the business PC for games etc..

 

Now an Internet appliance in theory would do one thing only and do it well, run browser software, email software and connect to the Internet. These appliances would be relatively inexpensive and bullet proof. Now if your employer has setup enterprise computing to take advantage of Internet technology, the majority of work could be done with little more that a browser and an Internet connection. A Java plug-in would provide an interface within the browser and only data would have to pass between the business and the employees home. This is not all that far fetched as SAP is currently moving towards a browser based interface and I am sure other ERP developers are doing the same. With this type of business model, a business would only need warehousing space etc., and a small office to house their servers, required onsite IT staff and those people who's position does not equate well to telecommuting. 

 

I am going to be a test subject at work to test the Windows 2000 install that Microsoft and Telus have put together. Tonight night all the people in my department are going to have their PCs upgraded. Then we get to see what doesn't work and if we can break anything. Maybe we should have a pool to see who can break something first, and who can find a show stopper.

 

 

 


 

Monday / Tuesday / Wednesday / Thursday / Friday / Saturday / Sunday

 

I have this blank spot on the screen where an entry for Wednesday is suppose to go, but my mind is as blank as the screen.

Ah, here is something that is minimally note worthy. I received an email from Onvia.com that my order has been processed, there are no back orders and everything has been shipped. Each item has been broken out into it's own entry and its status clearly stated. Even the items of which I ordered more than one, are each listed individually. 

At the Microsoft Windows 2000 launch on February 17, Arthur Tymos, VP and CIO, will represent TELUS ( my employer ) in San Francisco. A testimonial to the Microsoft 2000 products will be given at this event giving TELUS some international exposure. In addition a video testimonial is also under development with Microsoft Canada that prominently features TELUS as a customer.

Tomorrow I may have something on the Windows 2000 rollout at work. It has just started, and with 8000+ PCs in Alberta alone to upgrade, it should be interesting. BC has I believe at least 5000 company PCs to upgrade. Though the challenge in BC is greater as some of the business units there are still running DOS. Also I think there is some distrust of management still by the BC employees with the merger still in everyone's memory.


 

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Well the initial start of the Windows 2000 rollout at work to about two dozen PCs went well but they did not upgrade mine. Seems that my PC will be retired and the new PC will get Windows 2000, only I question when this will happen. Not likely anytime soon I am willing to bet. This means I am expected to support an operating system that I am not using. I don't think this is going to work out very well, but then this is the way many companies treat contractors.

Mark Joseph Edwards' book Internet Security with Windows NT has been posted to the web so anyone can access it for free. I thought that the idea of publishing was to share knowledge, but to also make money. Windows NT Magazine is the force behind this so maybe they paid the author for the right to post his book on the web.

 


 

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As Tom Syroid would say, I've had Bad Attitude Syndrome (BAS) a lot lately. I've been struggling to get any studying done, not enjoying my job, trying to second guess some of the decisions I have made ( yes hind site is always 20/20, and the human brain seems to be designed so that we never forget bad life altering decisions ) and on and on and on. Then there was yesterday, which was the best day I have had at work ( the only good day this job has provided ) in a long time. The day certainly did not start off well. I awoke as surly as I was when I went to sleep. If I had not gotten up for my morning walk I doubt I would have got up to go to work, and my walk didn't make me feel any better. I had to go to another office for work which I think was the key to things turning around to end up being a good day. I had a change of pace to from my regular office, then I was occupied all day with little jobs, and the people I got to work with were all very nice. 

Now if I can just get through one more work day this week without an attack of BAS, hopefully then I can have a good weekend, which hopefully will include some studying.

 


 

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Well I made it through the end of the week without another attack of BAS ( Bad Attitude Syndrome ). 

Two of the reps from the agency that got me my current contract are taking me to lunch on Monday. I have to decide whether to paint a rosy picture of my job or to say it as it is. I am at the point where I have decided to see the contract to the end, if for no other reason than it is half over, and I can pad my resume with this job. Also I would rather be working and job hunting that out of work and job hunting. There is also the fact that I don't want to burn any bridges, the agency did get me the job, and they have been the only agency that has tried to work with me, and Telus is a big company, which is likely to get bigger and I may want to return someday in another capacity.

At first I thought it was just a case of technology finding it's part in the modern crank phone call. Call display has been around for a few years now and the juveniles placing phone calls know to do them from a phone which has been configured to not display a source phone number. Then they have gotten auto dialers which dial up random phone numbers, when some one picks up at the other end a pre recorded message is played. This is how many of the phone canvassing companies operate except when a phone connection is made, an operator comes on line instead of a recorded message. What I thought at first was a crank call I believe is break and enter thieves canvassing a neighborhood for homes to burgle. I believe this is the case cause this would be too much work and effort to make a crank call. But for thieves this could be the start of casing a neighborhood for a night of booty hunting.

 


 

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I received an email in HTML format, but for what ever reason Oulook would not display it properly. The raw HTML was not easy for me to read and I wanted to read the message. So I created a new page in FrontPage, put the page in HTML mode and pasted the mail message into the new page. Then I put the page in preview mode and was able to read the message and have the links on the page made active.

 

 


Copyright 1999, 2000 John Doucette. All Rights Reserved

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