On this date in…

I spent a fair amount of time catching up on email and archiving old emails tonight. I have kept all my email for years, but I only have email going back until 2002. The first two years of email at my current job were lost because they were on a laptop that was stolen in January of 2002. Even system administrators fail to have backups sometimes. It was interesting to go back to 2002, 2003, and 2004 and see what was going on.

Selected items on this date (4/14 – 4/15) in:


  • One of our Alumni had suggested to the Dean of Engineering that we should be putting out a email newsletter like Stanford was doing – and we were asked about what it took technically to do it
  • I found a bug in the emailed notices from our (then) Steltor Calendar Server that had a TZ setting of -23852 – causing really wacky time displays in email clients. ITD knew about and was working to get it fixed
  • There were wrong addresses in the NCSU Leave application (a web-based leave tracking system) – the developers assumed that everyone used first_last@ncsu.edu as an email address which was not true for most of my staff
  • ITD was pursuing a cost-sharing arrangement to license the ‘XV’ application for campus, and I was trying to find out why (it was a lot of money, and there were plenty of alternatives)
  • I sent a note to a departmental system admin that were not (yet) shutting off telnet, but new installs didn’t include it
  • We still had two netware servers and had updated them to eDirectory version 85.20c (Novell’s version numbers still are horrible)
  • A student and faculty member in CALS were trying to get the media for TecPlot and I had contacted a CALS IT staff member to work through them to get it distributed to them


  • We were trying to coordinate a golf outing with NCS and ComTech
  • I reported a problem with Javascript and the new ACS authentication for Leave and other web applications
  • We were reviewing our web services documentation that was in draft form (and later become http://www.eos.ncsu.edu/web/
  • Lin had mostly completed our Eos locker request forms and was getting feedback
  • Billy had replaced our lab image the previous – and we were getting complaints about updating it mid-semester, and had sent the fixes/differences in the changes to me – part of Arena had to be broken in order to allow Solidworks, Autocad, Office, and even the main Arena to work properly, and ArcGIS had to be blocked from distribution to our labs


  • I sent a late night email to Bill and Charles proposing that we offer 1GB of storage and web space to grad students – we still haven’t been able to get to the point we can implement that
  • I had sent out the 2004 rest-of-the-year meeting schedule to engr-sysadm
  • the CERT had released a whole set of Windows Security warnings the day before
  • We had been asked for an account number to get charged for our portion of Red Hat Enterprise Linux
  • I was trying to figure out a #%!@#$&*% problem with Eudora not being able to read text/enriched mail that Mulberry was producing if it didn’t have a newline after the closing tag – in the process finding a bug in the Windows version of Mulberry
  • A CSC-managed computer was hitting our Webservers an awful lot – and I sent a bunch of mail complaining about it. Turns out it was the CSC webserver doing a reverse proxy to republish information that our webservers were publishing
  • The eventual solution to the problem in 2002 with the Newsletter was an outside vendor, our Engineering Foundation folks were having a problem with the software that the outside vendor gave us to help manage the list
  • We apparently lost one of webservers for about 15 minutes – resulting in a lot of Pager notifications