We have an IC department (they dropped the T)



  • This is great, in february I started my new job at a new university as a research technician / lab manager. And although at previous universities I always had "trouble" with the ICT departments (not having admin rights being always the first one).
    This ICT department is, well special. They dropped the T of technology.
    So now I want to get a laboratory network with a few simple requests:

    1. No internet access, but access to the intranet (for the matlab licence servers)
    2. A file storage system, so that anybody (students and staff) can store research results (now mostly dropbox is used for that)
    3. A version control system to store program code in. A web front-end like github or bitbucket would be nice.
    4. A booking system for apparatus

    Their answer after no less than three meetings:

    1. We cannot do that because all our systems are directly coupled to the internet.
    2. If you do not want to use dropbox we can recommend the following: "Google Drive or MS OneDrive
    3. Well this one was in more stages:
      a. what is a version control system (after I explained that)
      b. can't you just use zipfiles in Dropbox (after I explained that I would lose stuff like knowing who changed the code)
      c. We could create a network drive (aha you can do that) and then you could see who changed the file by looking at the previous versions of that file (are they really now proposing to use shadow copy as a VCS?, after explaining that and pointing again to github)
      d. We are not a company delivering cloud solutions.

    So now I will not only be a research technician / lab manager but also an ICT specialist here.
    Okay then I would like to have a few patch-port to patch-port patches (e.g. direct links between ports with no switch in between) to setup my own network and servers inside that.
    They did not know how to do that and had to place me in contact with the company they always use for those kind of complex infrastructural things.

    So now after this last meeting I'm going to cry in the corner.



  • @Dlareg said:

    So now I will not only be a research technician / lab manager but also an ICT specialist here.

    Sounds fun!

    Keep us updated.... :laughing:



  • VCS are overrated. Just look at how few people manage to even use the versioning capabilities of Dropbox. And then you want something more complex? People are just going to be confused with the extra options. Will you think of the students.

    On the bright side, they won't take your admin rights on the boxes you installed.



  • @gleemonk said:

    On the bright side, they won't take your admin rights on the boxes you installed.

    Actually they have that covered. When you buy a pc for the wired network. The dedicated supplier will install an image where no one has admin rights. If you want admin rights they install an other image and everybody is an admin.

    Oh and if you want a laptop you just get a stock HP laptop and have install everything yourself.

    I forgot about the reservation system. They want you to use the booking system for rooms which is part of IBM notes.



  • @Dlareg said:

    everybody is an admin.

    :fireworks:

    @Dlareg said:

    install everything yourself.

    progress?

    @Dlareg said:

    the booking system for rooms which is part of IBM notes.

    I've heard things about Notes.



  • @gleemonk said:

    I've heard things about Notes.

    Where did we place that boxing glove guy again?



  • @swayde said:

    Where did we place that boxing glove guy again?

    Here? Pic:



  • @Dlareg said:

    The dedicated supplier will install an image where no one has admin rights. If you want admin rights they install an other image and everybody is an admin.

    :wtf:

    @Dlareg said:

    Oh and if you want a laptop you just get a stock HP laptop and have install everything yourself.

    :wtf:

    @Dlareg said:

    IBM notes.

    Run. Run away now.



  • @gleemonk said:

    progress?

    Even installing IBM Notes... That includes getting a so called .id file from the IC guys Before installing the software.

    @gleemonk said:

    I've heard things about Notes.

    I have experienced things with Notes.....



  • @Dlareg said:

    That includes getting a so called .id file from the IC guys

    There is a voice in my head asking what that is. All the other voices are screaming that I don't want to know.



  • I see that picture in my head every time I open Notes.



  • @Dlareg said:

    They want you to use the booking system for rooms which is part of IBM notes.

    You need to find another place to work, pronto.



  • Points 2 and 3: "OK, so can I get a corporate account for Dropbox and one for Github?"


  • Discourse touched me in a no-no place

    @loopback0 said:

    Run. Run away now.

    Nonsense--I bet we can get boxing glove guy back here to help @Dlareg out. Then @boomzilla can give him the One of Us badge.


  • area_deu

    For glorious Forumpointzzzzzz
    (INB4 someone asks for a jeffing)



  • @gleemonk said:

    There is a voice in my head asking what that is. All the other voices are screaming that I don't want to know.

    The most positive way I could explain it is that it is some sort of 2-factor auth.
    First you need to know the server name for your mailbox (that is not a generic address but one of the 130-ish mail servers). then you need to know your login name, then you need to know your passport. And you have to show your .id file. This file has to be stored in a specific folder for it all to work. I have never looked at its contents but I know it doesn't contain login name, password and server. Because you have to do those by hand.

    @anonymous234 said:

    ints 2 and 3: "OK, so can I get a corporate account for Dropbox and one for Github?"

    Ofcourse not. They want to have controll over the infrastructure. (And I want to have control over where my data is stored)


  • Discourse touched me in a no-no place

    @Dlareg said:

    Ofcourse not. They want to have controll over the infrastructure. (And I want to have control over where my data is stored)

    For serious, there's something you can do about that. These guys are an effective way to get security in use on platforms like Dropbox while maintaining proper corporate control, such as being able to specify complex access control rules and track what accesses were really performed, and they work by keeping everything encrypted with high-grade security so that it being physically in some other country is no big deal, as the encryption keys aren't there (and encrypted data by itself is useless). They're the platform that we're very likely to choose for our stuff (since we've no hope of actually preventing people from using Dropbox) and I think we've been liaising with them to get the feature set up to what we need.



  • Another route is what I ended up doing. I installed a copy of Windows Server 2008 inside a hyper-v VM running on a networked Windows 8 Professional PC that I hate because of Windows 8.

    I then have admin rights on that and for historical reasons, I installed a Subversion server (one of the Collabnet installations) and a MediaWiki Wiki.

    I could have installed a Linux VM.

    So what you end up doing is create a virtual PC network inside a PC which meets your requirements, then get everybody to use that for revision control.

    Forget the Cloud. Clouds rain on you and dump your data in Puddles.



  • Actually, just use the position as a springboard to find a better job.


  • Discourse touched me in a no-no place

    @mike_james said:

    Forget the Cloud.

    You do that if you want, but for us, we can't. Cost effectiveness is always an issue, and if the network goes down, we're stuffed anyway; a vast amount of our main-line business requires access to the internet.



  • I decided to try and look it up, because I got curious. One of the hits that looked promising was [url=http://www-01.ibm.com/support/docview.wss?uid=swg21224443]this IBM support page[/url]. Not really relevant to what the .id file is, but I noticed this sentence:

    Delete the current Person Document in the Address Book for the user using the Delete key on the keyboard, not the Delete User option in the Administrator client.
    So … there’s no way to delete this “Person Document” except by pressing what’s essentially a semi-random key that may or may not have a function in this particular context? And there’s another option that you can discover but which is likely to cause a lot more grief later on? I bet nobody ever took the wrong one …

    Not that my search helped much, since all links Google gives me to pages that might explain appear to either time out or say the server can’t be found. It seems you can look inside the file using Notes itself, though.



  • @Gurth said:

    server can’t be found

    Somebody used the wrong delete key 😉


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