10 ways to keep users from confusing SysAdmins with a normal person
The following was writen by Steve Mitchell
in the newsgroup alt.sysadmin.recovery
- Send/read mail, news, and www pages with telnet. Or, use only
dd with the ethernet device and raw file systems.
- Look at pornographic GIFs with your favorite hex dump utility
instead of a graphics viewer. Comment on how "hot" this particular
pic is. Ask them to close the door when they leave.
- Write out your will. Put it on the server as the motd.
- When booting a user's workstation, shout out all console output
1/2 second before it appears. Do this with your eyes closed and
- Always refer to a server's current uptime instead of the rest of
the office's idea of the time of day. Or, use seconds since
Jan 1, 1970.
- Make a big production out of throwing away all your old manuals.
Tell the users that the manuals have contracted a virus. Wear a
- Walk around the building with a screwdriver in your teeth, pirate
style. Also carry your workstation's mouse with you. Do not allow
users to talk to you unless they hold your mouse over their head
in both hands. Put the other end of the mouse in your ear.
- Shut down your servers from home. Time your arrival at work
so they start taking logins just as you enter the door. Walk
in dressed as Jesus.
- When troubleshooting software, make extensive use of senses such
as smell, touch, and taste. Use condiments.
- After figuring out a user's problem over the phone, keep asking
them pointless questions while quietly fixing it remotely. Then
say "Hmmmm." Ask them to hold the phone up to the monitor so
you can tell the computer something. Announce that it should
act better now.
Last Modified : Dec. 4, 1995
Heather Garvey / email@example.com