Well, after far more stuggles then I thought there would be, machines are finally coming back. I had planned on experimenting with both KDE and GNOME as my desktop environments, but think I'm going to check out just GNOME first since its smaller and simpler (took hours to compile still, I'm sure KDE is far worse) and if it doesn't quite do what I'm hoping, might check out KDE afterward. With my fallback being good old Fluxbox. Eyecandy is nice but I prefer a system that doesn't slow down when I try to open a menu or something.
fenchurch down 14+12:03 ford down 35+12:23 l0rt up 10:10, 0 users, load 0.00 marvin up 30+01:28, 0 users, load 0.00 trillian up 65+10:45, 1 user, load 0.11 zaphod up 42+20:14, 1 user, load 0.25
Think ford has a power supply issue... got a huge pile of spare parts, just need to find time to figure that crap out... still haven't settled on a name for the new laptop.. but l0rt is working for now! haha
LOL.. so I got to spend a day or so in NYC, and my experience was hellish to say the least.
On the way out there, the flight was delayed. Ok, I can understand delays if there's a mechanical problem or if weather delayed the plane from arriving. But, the plane was sitting right at the gate when I got there. 55 Minutes later after the scheduled departure time, they finally let us get on the plane. The only explanation was "Air Traffic Control Delays" due to windy conditions in New York. Unless they are dramatically slowing down the rate at which plans can land in NYC and they don't want a backlog of planes circling around New York waiting for clearance to land, it just makes no sense at all.
So yeah... we finally get ON the plane, and then we sit at the gate for another 45 minutes before taking off. Ended up getting into New York about 2 hours late, but thankfully didn't mess with my plans TOO much.
My return flight was the next day. 4PM flight, I get to the airport at 2PM and go to checkin. The automated kiosk was very polite in informing me that my flight had been canceled and offered a flight at 6am the next morning. I check the departure screens and just about EVERY flight to chicago is cancelled, but other cities are just fine. Again, they blamed it on wind in NYC! LOL A phone call or two later they put me on a flight that was scheduled to leave at 6pm on another Airline. Delta. Alright, so I wander around the terminal building at LaGuardia and find out that Delta isn't in this terminal. Sweet, so I ask some security guy how to get to the delta terminal. He politely points me out to the street, tells me to wait for the bus and it will take me to the other terminal building where delta flies out of.
Bus shows up... drops me off at the new terminal building. I check in with delta, get a boarding pass and head towards security. The two security guards were too busy telling some story to each other to notice that people wanted to go through security. And of course the guy in front of me had like 1000 questions about he can bring on the plane. Like he's gonna head back home if he brought something they were gonna make him throw out. Ha. Anyway, I finally show my boarding pass, and she tells me in a thick Indian accent that Chicago flights for Delta are out of a seperate terminal building. The Marine Terminal Building. So, it was back out to wait for another bus and FINALLY get to this gimpy little terminal building that's from like 30s. Was kinda interesting being a pilot and seeing that this is where they launched some of the transatlantic flights in the 30s. The Yankee Clipper being among the most famous of the "flying boats".
Finally check in there and of course, the 6PM flight is delayed. We boarded at about 7:30PM, waited on the runway for another hour and half and finally got to chicago around 10:30PM.
All that for a little wind? Sure it was breezy, but it wasn't that bad... I could see if it was like 40MPH gusts...
Halloween comes a few hours early for me.... Scary!
So.. its about 8:30... i'm finishing up some things here at work.. First day back in the office after being out most of last week for training... I happened to notice THIS on our production web server's homepage (and ever page on every site):
This.. for those of you who may not have guessed.. is a BAD thing. Turns out that IIS (Microsoft's webserver) is crashing right when it starts up.. even on a completely plain website. After running down a lot of possible solutions... we have come up with absolutely nothing. Other then a mysterious entry in the system log:
A process serving application pool 'DefaultAppPool' terminated unexpectedly. The process id was '3952'. The process exit code was '0x80'.
So... I isolated out the main website into its own application pool... and it crashes immediately. Ok.. I disable all the webserver extensions.. still crashes. Finally, create a pool for a basic HTML only website.. and it too fails to produce any different results.
Seeing as how a large percentage of our business relies on this actually working, we are faced with a decision... switch to a back up server that can't really handle the load too well, or.. bend over and call Microsoft for a Paid Phone Support Call. After deciding that its critical to get this machine up and running we pull the trigger on the support call.
That was about 10:30PM once we got the call started... Pleasantly surprised to find out that the normal cost of a support call, $245, only applies from 6am - 6pm Pacific time. Since we are unlucky enough to have a problem in off hours... this little beauty is costing us $490 (see MS site).
It's now 11:45 and I've spoken to two people at microsoft to describe the problem just for them to figure out who I should be directed to. The last 45 minutes or so I've been on hold for. Will keep adding to this post to keep my sanity alive while I'm trying to resolve this.
Food... oh, how I love thee...
ha... ok, I know I don't have the best diet in the world... I eat a lot of fast food.. and I probably should have a cholesterol level somewhere in the 400s and weigh like 350 pounds... but, last time i checked, my cholesterol was low and I'm still trying to put on weight... 185 pounds for 6'3" isn't hefty... but anyway.. on to my point...
I've written before about Burger King and their tacos... I probably go to my local BK 4 or 5 times a week. And I order the same thing. Its good. The people there know me. Not sure if that's good or not. But pefection in a fast food burger = a whopper with no pickles or tomato and for the last 6 months or so... every BK meal is accompanied by two of their tacos. Awesome.
Couple that with the fact that the closest BK to home is open until 3am during the week and 24 hours on the weekend... and well... yeah.. its just ideal.
There's actually a second BK that's a little easier to get to from work. I went there today for lunch, well.. at 4:45pm.. i'm not sure if that qualifies as 'lunch'. Mainly because I saw a commercial for a new Italian Chicken Sandwich. Supposed to have chicken with mozzerella and marinara. Mine came plain. And the two tacos were also noticiably missing. AND there was no receipt in the bag. By the time I found the number and called them, it was like an hour later.
At least I get to eat a free lunch there tomorrow.. but wtf?!? I can see some fuckups occaisionally... I've had no mayo instead of no tomato before. That's understandable. And there's no way i got someone else's order.
Oh well.. i guess its just too much to expect a minimum wage person to care about their job to get it right. Just SOOO disappointing. Probably a good sandwich... but unless its stellar tomorrow... this one experience soured it forever... probably will be back to my good old standby #1, king sized with tacos... and at my regular BK....
Tried to get out of the same old rut... but everytime I veer away from the tried and true... it always goes wrong... So.. to everyone that ever made fun of me ALWAYS getting the same thing... THIS is why i don't mess with a good thing. lol
Ok, pointless entry over... mountains of work to do...
Oh the humanity! Not sure what has happened, but my home comps have taken a turn for the worse. Here's a report of the uptime of my machines at home...
fenchurch down 11+13:19 ford down 6+10:47 marvin down 5+22:34 trillian up 36+09:06, 0 users, load 0.00 zaphod up 13+18:38, 2 users, load 0.02
First of all.. bonus points to anyone to knows where the names for my machines came from... and super bonus points if they could explain why each name is appropriate.
Fenchurch is an old dell laptop... been on its last legs for a while... and parts of the keyboard stopped responding a while ago intermittantly.. its been taken apart and put back together and taken apart again and is currently in several pieces strewn about... not a pretty sight, and I'm pretty sure its beyond repair...
Ford is a linux workstation... it refuses to even begin to boot up... no clue what's wrong with it.. haven't been able to mess with it lately.. that happened a week ago... (or 6 days, 10 hours, 47 minutes ago.. to be exact)
Marvin is attached to my TV and used to be my TiVo replacement (MythTV in case anyone cares) but since it doesn't do HD, and my crappy comcast DVR can kinda record stuff... sometimes... its been relegated to being a jukebox that plays music... rarely... can probably scrap that project and repurpose it... nothing wrong with that machine.. the power went out and its on a power strip with a really sensative breaker that needs to be manually reset whenever it loses power. Just haven't bothered to reset it.
Zaphod is a dual processor machine that used to get my mail and ran a lot of web stuff, but that's mostly been moved off to my real server on a real connection... it still does some stuff, but that can probably be moved over to trillian...
Trillian is my 'new' firewall/router... the old trillian was a Pentium-166, circa 1996 or so. The hard drive in it had been going for a while.. and it finally crashed.. hard... so... its now an old Pentium II I had laying around... took a weekend to rebuild that machine... but its much better off... old one had 8MB of memory and 2GB of total hard drive space.. but still managed around 400+ days of uptime... its got a ways to go still.
Speaking of uptime.. zaphod used to get up to about 100 days before randomly locking up due to a poor SMP support on the motherboard and linux pushing it a bit too hard. but now its been dying at about 30 days.
Anyway, the point of this is... I have a lot of work ahead of me to figure out what's going on with this stuff... I think that I'm gonna be putting the remains of fenchurch into a newer laptop that's also having some issues... but that's gonna be a project that might take months to finish.. and quite possible could end up being a big waste of time that results in some burned out laptop hardware.. eh.. will see where it goes.
The life and times of an atypical average guy.
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