Data Centers

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How to win friends and influence people, eventually

After a bit too much New Year's Eve celebrating, these execs decide to send the data center team home and do the year-end close themselves. What could go wrong with that?

Throwback Thursday: Hey mister, got the time?

This law-enforcement agency stores its mainframe data with time stamps on every record, which can be important for court cases. But what time zone are they actually in?


Who says lowly IT techs don't get any power?

Pilot fish is sent to a location in a faraway land to do some routine data center maintenance, and everything is fine -- until it's time to upgrade this power supply.

Wayback Wednesday: Undependence Day

At 12:30 a.m. on the Fourth of July, sysadm gets a page from an outsourcer: A remote job can't connect to the server. But what could be going wrong on a holiday?

Wait, how can you be unclear on the concept of HEAT?

This company's newly installed WAN network equipment has a big problem: It's overheating in a big way. But the reason turns out to be not such a big mystery after all.

Throwback Thursday: Well, no, not exactly

Pilot fish is setting up a new router to let a branch office connect to HQ's VoIP. The final step: Have a user at the other end restart the remote router. Easy, right?

Throwback Thursday: It seemed like the thing to do at the time

On-call database admin is sound asleep when his beeper goes off at 1 a.m. But it's not an alert from monitoring software or the trouble center. Whose number is it anyway?

And how did you spend YOUR holiday weekend?

This 30-employee office is about to move to a new location, but the manager from HQ says he's prepared everything for the move. What's left for this networking guy to do?

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What is network virtualization? Pioneer Martin Casado explains

Network virtualization pioneer Martin Casado explains the concept behind network virtualization, how the technology works and why it was created.

Throwback Thursday: Well, that explains it

There's a major system outage at this company, and it needs to be escalated at once to Support Team A. But there's just one problem...and another, and another, and...

But it's just a planet!

Flashback a decade or so to the days when this IT shop is setting some standards for how it will name new servers -- and what could be safer than names from astronomy?

At least they didn't just unplug it to plug in the vacuum

It's the late 1960s, and refrigerator-size minicomputers are arriving at university computing centers. But the way-cheaper-than-mainframe machines do have a few issues.

Throwback Thursday: And they do this every month?

It's time to service this server room's air conditioning, and the AC vendor has sent a new team this month. So why does this pilot fish hear them screaming for help?

Whaddya mean, 'Isn't it backed up?'

It's the 1970s, and this student's grade depends on 5,000 mainframe punch cards in a tray, and the hands of the operator who will run the program. What could go wrong?

Throwback Thursday: Let us out of here!

Pilot fish gets an invite to fly to the corporate main office and meet the new CIO, as well as see the fancy new server lab -- but the tour doesn't go quite as planned.

Still a few bugs in this computing architecture

University is building its first computing center, but there's no good spot on campus. Obvious solution: Put it underground -- which comes with a less obvious problem.

Some things are better left unexplained

Large organization has a server-based application that sometimes just stops -- and soon it's happening on a daily basis. But the vendor says nobody else has the problem.

Sometimes it just takes the right question

This company has its systems set up so that any power outage will trigger an email that's sent to the support team. So why isn't one server reporting its outages?

Headless, redefined

Flashback to the 1980s, when CRT monitors are very big, and pricey enough to keep using even when they break -- which is a problem when a new hardware tech is hired.

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Tech Talk: The coding benefits of serverless computing

The panel talks about serverless systems, which spin up a snippet of code that runs on demand to perform a business operation. It's a step toward a more developer-friendly approach to code development.

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