Some of the neat things that I’ve run into at work recently:
- A pristine, unopened copy of Caldera’s OpenLinux Lite. I wonder if it’s worth anything.
- PrimeOS version 19.2.3. Never heard of it? Neither have I. The fact that it’s on a pair of 8″ floppies might have something to do with that, of course.
- A box full of 8″ floppies. Shocking enough, but I also found an 8″-floppy drive; it’s the size of a small suitcase, and I think it’s made out of depleted uranium.
- A 300-baud “Acoustic Coupler”, designed to snugly fit sixties-era bakelite phones for optimum whistle-screech transmission, or something. It does come in a very elegant wood-grain finish, though.
- A Kaypro 1.
- A 50-ft flat cable that has an RJ-45 jack at one end and an RJ-11 jack at the other. No indication of what it might have plugged into, if anything ever.
- A Microsoft Cobol reference manual.
Some not-so-neat things I ran into at work recently:
- The Sasser worm. MSBlast Redux, basically. Wheee.
Once upon a time, in dark ages past, I worked at a place that had the only sane network setup I have ever seen – a nested-star topology with Linux boxes at the center and Windows boxes at the peripheries. The Linux boxes, older x86 machines centrally administered with some clever application of rsync whose details I was not privy to, firewalled the Windows machines both ways so that even if somebody clicked on a malicious e-mail inside the gates, brought in their infected laptop, or somebody was outside knocking on some forbidden port trying to get in, the blast radius of a problem was always limited to a handful of machines. I’m told they even did some clever traffic analysis if need be, reporting back to base if there was somebody knocking persistently on doors they shouldn’t have been. Swoon.
That’s not what we have where I work. Here, we rely on a combination of DeepFreeze and shoe leather, which has proven (again) to be a complete fucking disaster. You’d think that MSBlast would have taught somebody something, but I guess not. Right now the way it works is this: if we’re fucked anywhere, we’re fucked everywhere.
Dear Microsoft – I understand that there are some really, really smart people working for you. If you could figure out who they are, round them up and fire everyone else, I’d really appreciate it. Thanks.
Dear Person Who Wrote Sasser – If I ever meet you, I’m going to punch you until you stop moving, and then I’m going to write down what I did so that I don’t overlook anything when I do it again.