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Busman's Holiday

Not much of a weekend in terms of "not doing IT stuff for two days"...

I started yesterday with a trip into Hartford. In response to Thursday's outage I moved our secondary DNS server onto a different subnet -- one which passes through a different router to get to the rest of the network. I was wondering how well a Windows 2000 domain controller / DNS server would take being re-IP'd, but it took the change without even asking for a reboot. MS has come a long way in this respect. I did an ipconfig /registerdns to force it to update its own records in the DNS, and then verified that the change had propagated through all the DNS servers. The last thing was to change the DNS server information in our DHCP server's config; now when clients request an IP address they'll get the updated secondary DNS server address. All in all, a pretty painless changeover.

As I was driving back, Neo called me. The Library network is still emitting my most favored kind of trouble -- the intermittent kind. Every couple of hours network traffic in the building would seemingly stop, both for the IP phones and the PCs. Of course, I couldn't find anything wrong when I looked at it. So, I essentially told Neo to sit tight, I'll reset your building ATM switch overnight. Not that I'm sure this will fix anything, but it is the one common element, and Neo was on the verge of panic so I had to have somthing to offer.

...Not that I remembered to do the reset overnight. I realized at 8:30 this morning that I had forgotten to bounce their switch. So, they took 82 seconds of down-time at about 8:40. Hopefully they weren't open.

Much of the rest of the weekend has been taken up helping The Misses zorch and rebuilt an elderly NT workstation that she dragged home from her department at UConn. Sixty four megs of RAM is awfully tiny even with NT 4, so I went rummaging through my box of DIMMs to find something. Alas Dell's penchant for using oddball memory types struck again. This Optiplex GXpro 200 didn't like anything I had on hand. Who uses 4x72 DIMMs? Apparently only Dell. So, the Sex and Violence Lab gets a 64 MB box. A Sex and Violence Lab? You just gotta love Anthropologists.

The time that didn't go into geriatric care went into getting a laptop ready for my niece. She's a sophomore in college, and her PC went legs up several weeks back. Her step-dad looked at it deemed that it had to go back to the manufacturer to be fixed. This left her with no PC and no ETA for getting it back. I was on the verge of shipping her the laptop on Wednesday when it started throwing disk errors (grrrr). I picked up a replacement drive yesterday ... the new drive is a Toshiba, and it's almost silent. It's also a 5400 RPM drive, vs. the old 4200 RPM dive. The net result is a faster, quieter laptop. I'll get it packed up today and hopefully shipped tomorrow.

Is it just me, or do PCs hit the stage of being too old to use more quickly now than they did five or ten years ago? I spotted something at Dirt Cheap Drives last week: a four-hundred Gigabyte hard drive. For $480.00. Sheeze. Makes the couple four-giggers I have kicking around look downright puny. Back in the dim mists I once worked on a PC with a 5 meg drive. Of course it promptly died the moment I laid hands on it.

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