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Thread: Tech support stories

  1. #11
    Maximum Bitrate tom2112's Avatar
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    Also from the 5.25" days: a programmer friend of mine call me, laughing his butt off. He tells me he was on the phone with some chuckle-head who was having trouble installing their software. It was a package with 5 diskettes. The had four of the five jammed into the drive, but couldn't get the fifth one in!
    So far:
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  2. #12
    MySQL Error MatrixPC's Avatar
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    $hit that sound VERY familiar.
    Sometime I have to help the fu<king DBA to do the job. No I am only a programmer.
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  3. #13
    Variable Bitrate DaveB's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by RPI Geek
    Not really a tech support one, but it kinda fits.

    I'm doing some work with my uncle right now for a large-ish company. They wanted to be able to put together a few Access reports based on their SQL server. The database is one that logs security issues like logon failures, special privileges, etc. I had a hint of the problem that was to come, but didn't fully realize the scale until later.

    To make the problem even bigger, I figured I'd add some nice functionality to the reports to pretty them up and make the customer real happy. I added a few fields for them to search by, put a small dump of their event log on my personal machine, and ran some tests on a small scale.

    It ran great on my environment, but once I got it over there, things started timing out all over the place. Great, something more to debug.

    It turns out that they log every single event that happens on their network, and it goes back for a whole year. Every time someone miffs their password, every time an account is changed, they write it to this database. To give an example, one of the quries I ran returned 4800 pages (about 8 entries per page) of logon failures.

    And they won't hear changing their policies... I still need to figure this one out.

    RPI Geek,

    Access is a single threaded database engine and not very robust. Wheras, with SQL server, you can return a million or more rows of data in under a minute if the database is properly tuned with the right indices and on relatively decent hardware. If you put your queries into SQL Sever stored procedures it may help with the performance even further.

    Your problem is definately solveable and not all that complicated. Have you made any progress on it?
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  4. #14
    Variable Bitrate DaveB's Avatar
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    Back in the early 80's, when we still used card readers for the mainframe computers, I was talking with one of the IBM FE's. He told me they had a card punch machine at another company and the circuit boards kept blowing out. He said they were having a devil of time determining the cause. Until he was there one day and this big, fat, woman comes walking over to the card punch. Her legs were so thick her nylons rubbed as she walked. She sits down at the card punch and unleashes a massive static shock on the machine and toasts the board right then and there! LOL!

    The fix? She was no longer allowed to wear nylons!!!!
    8" Lilli TS
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  5. #15
    Variable Bitrate DaveB's Avatar
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    When I first started in I.T. in 1980 I received a call from some woman who wanted her FOCUS turned on. I thought to myself, "What the hell? How can I turn on her focus? Its got to be a knob somewhere on her monitor." I told her I could not help her.

    Later, I learned that FOCUS was the name of a software application she wanted me to start. The joke was on me!
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  6. #16
    Constant Bitrate RPI Geek's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DaveB
    RPI Geek,

    Access is a single threaded database engine and not very robust. Wheras, with SQL server, you can return a million or more rows of data in under a minute if the database is properly tuned with the right indices and on relatively decent hardware. If you put your queries into SQL Sever stored procedures it may help with the performance even further.

    Your problem is definately solveable and not all that complicated. Have you made any progress on it?
    Databases are a little out of my field at the moment, so I need to read up on them before I ever start administering them.

    Nonetheless, I learned a few things that should really help me. It turns out that the first generation of my report queried every single field in the database

    I fixed that. Also, the database itself isn't indexed!!! I'm going to ask their guy to go do that on a few key fields, like timestamp. (I hear it's a very simple process).

    Lastly, the computer they stuck me with is a POS. PIII 600MHz 128MB RAM and WinXP. It's not like I really need a lot of horsepower to work with, but some of the queries from my 1st gen reports have returned with "out of memory" errors...

    I'm not done with this beast yet but I'll let you know next week after they index the database.... I just thought it was funny that they wanted to log every little event that happened. I think they're generating on the order of 2 gigs of logs per day.
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  7. #17
    Raw Wave wizardPC's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DaveB
    Back in the early 80's, when we still used card readers for the mainframe computers, I was talking with one of the IBM FE's. He told me they had a card punch machine at another company and the circuit boards kept blowing out. He said they were having a devil of time determining the cause. Until he was there one day and this big, fat, woman comes walking over to the card punch. Her legs were so thick her nylons rubbed as she walked. She sits down at the card punch and unleashes a massive static shock on the machine and toasts the board right then and there! LOL!

    The fix? She was no longer allowed to wear nylons!!!!
    I dunno if that's an IBM urban legend, but I've heard that story before from another guy who heard it from an IBM FE.
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  8. #18
    Variable Bitrate nkotch's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by tom2112
    Back in the "good old days" of 5.25" floppy disks, I told a customer to send me a copy of a disk that was giving them problems. A few days later, I got a double-sided photo copy of the disk in the mail!

    HAHAHAHAHHA.......now that was pretty funny....
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  9. #19
    The Lavender Tie Just
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    Quote Originally Posted by tom2112
    Another time, in the same hospital, I get a call from a doctor's office that their PC doesn't work. (I love that - no other info, it just doesn't work!)

    Anyway, I go up to the office and check it out, and the doctor had all this stuff plugged into a surge protector: PC, monitor, speakers, printer, AND THE SURGE PROTECTOR! Yes, it was plugged into itself - not the wall. And this guy is a DOCTOR!
    I hope he's not a surgical doctor....


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