Motivation

Throwback Thursday: Motivation – Computerworld

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Pilot fish gets tapped to install a secure version of FTP on an existing FTP server. But figuring out when to do it turns out to be a challenge.

“The FTP server gets a lot more use than anyone realizes, because many of our processes are automated and EDI-related,” says fish. “The new install will require some downtime for a reboot and configuration.”

So fish begins working with the various groups that transfer files using the server, so he can schedule the downtime. Most of the groups give fish a choice of times when they can live without the system.

But one team leader is less flexible — he insists that his applications are using the FTP server all day and all night. He tells fish that the only possible window for the installation is between 1 a.m. and 3:45 a.m.

The leader of another group suggests doing the work on a weekend, and everyone else quickly agrees — except that team leader, who still insists that the graveyard-shift window is the only time the install can be done, regardless of the day of the week.

Fish decides to try another tack. He sends out an email to everyone involved:

If the early morning is our only window, and jobs cannot be paused or held, then we’ll do what we have to do. However, if I install this and set it up during this quiet time, it will have to be tested before the jobs begin again at 3:45 a.m. Someone on your team will have to do that.

To which the troublesome team leader promptly responds: “I have found another FTP quiet period: every Sunday from 8 p.m. to 11:59 p.m. Hope this helps out.”

Help out Sharky by sending me your true tales of IT life at sharky@computerworld.com. You can also subscribe to the Daily Shark Newsletter.

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