Journal For Week of October 23, 2000

Last Update: October 29, 2000

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Monday October 23, 2000

Woke this morning looking bleary eyed at the alarm clock which was not ringing and wondering what the significance of the time 7:00 a.m. has. My head was nearly back on the pillow when it dawned on me that I should be behind the wheel of my truck, not counting sheep.

So I was a few minutes late for work, then just as I settled in at my desk to check my mail, my PC blue screened. Ended up spending half the morning repairing Windows NT and a few applications that were broken.

Spent the afternoon working on user policies. I am starting to get my mind wrapped around how they should be implemented and hope to have something usable put together by the end of the week.

I seem to have hit upon the right cocktail of cold medicine to knock the stuffing out of the cold that has been keeping me down lately. Managed to get out this evening for a short walk without my causing me any problems.

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Tuesday October 24, 2000

I have stuff to write but am too beat to write. Time for more sleep.

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Wednesday October 25, 2000

Lunch hour post: Is it really Wednesday already? Where did Tuesday go?

First hour of the workday spent putting out fires. This was good in that it forced me to get going and be productive. Otherwise with the fog induced from my cold trying to make a come back, would have had me in a corner somewhere staring blankly into space.

After hitting pay dirt with several good Windows 98 registry hacks to lock down the plant floor PCs, I now am getting to the point where I need to decide how far I want to go. I also need to provide myself and my co-worker with a back door so we can get into things like the control panel if we need to fix things.

I made up some reg files with which I can add or delete the ability to access things in Windows 98 yesterday. I am very tempted to totally lock down things on the Windows side and use very little of the user policies in ZenWorks to control user access. This has the bonus of keeping all users out of things, even those who are not under ZenWorks control, which is most users. This is tough for me as the last few environments I have worked in have had global user policies in effect which limited what users could do to settings on their PC. Now I am in an environment where no policies have been in effect and users are left to their own devices to mess with settings. This opens huge security holes like the one department which copies files off the network to a share on a PC, so they can share the data with another department. What this really means is that everyone now has access to the data. Why they donít call tech support to give those who need read only rights, access to the data on the network Iíll never know. I fixed up one of these instances yesterday, but am sure there are many others hiding in the corners.

Back to my earlier point, that I am finding it hard to decide how far to go with locking down systems. The inner control freak in me wants to make the PCs into a kiosk where the only thing users can do is login and use the apps they need. While another part says this is too much but canít put in words why this is so. Also I am sure at some point someone is going to point out that most PCs are not locked down while these other are. In the long run I hope to have some level of lock down on all PCs.

Well time to go finish testing my registry hacks and see if I can deal with one or two of the other back doors I have left open.

Evening post: I am getting the hang of inputting data into my PDA by using the stylus. Yesterday I wrote the registry hacks I found directly into Pocket Word. This paid off today when I needed to reference back to my notes. I just fired up the Casio, opened my registry hacks document to find the information I needed, which lead me to being able to work out a new registry edit.

Not much chance of catching up on my daily web surfing tonight as most of the web seems to be unreachable.

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Thursday October 26, 2000

Had a sight visit at work by the installers who will be putting in the rack for our new rack mount server. Now that we finally have the specs for power requirements and confirmed where we are placing the rack, we can put the electrician to work.

I sure am getting to see the growing pains that can come with the development and implementation of a new manufacturing control system. One of our Oracle databases got corrupted this morning which puts production control people behind the eight ball once again. Sure makes me glad I only have the servers and network to deal with.

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Friday October 27, 2000

Another work week has ended in a blur of activity. Finished the week off having to practise my Windows NT administration so I could lock all the supervisors out off the time keeping system. I had to lock them out so we could fix a data problem and get next weeks payroll done. You would think asking people to stay off a system would be enough, but alas it is not.

Got my first draft of the system and user policy for the plant floor PCs done today. Lots of screen shots of poledit showing all the selections I made to setup the policies. Added some comments and good basic documentation is done. Next week I'll add some details, double check my work and I'll be done.

Went hunting for garbage I could throw in the trash on the sys and data volumes on the development server at work today as storage space is running a little low.. The sys volume was easy. I found some old Arcserve databases which I could get rid of. The data volume was a little harder but after some digging I found several directories I could get rid of. Some were copies of CDs, others were a mish mash of graphics files and other personal data of people who have not been with the company for some time.

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Saturday October 28, 2000

Ah the weekend! Two whole days without schedules to keep or ringing phones.

My email has not been working properly through Shaw all week. I have not been able to connect to any of Shaws mail servers reliably all week. So I reconfigured my mail to go through @homes external mail server which so far is responding properly.

So much for no ringing phones, but at least today it is friends calling not business stuff. Helped one friend out with some computer stuff and meeting up with another to see some live entertainment tonight.

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Sunday October 29, 2000

Very late start to the due to being out late with friends. Good get together, but the smoke in the pub killed me. My cough has come back and a bit of the sniffles. I never would have thought that smoke would be trigger for the return of cold symptoms, but this seems to have happened to me.

Copyright © 1999, 2000 John Doucette. All Rights Reserved


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