A day in the life of a small school techie

OK, so it actually was several days.  Thursday last week I went to my office to do a little work.  Yes, it is summer break but I usually go to school at least three days a week to see what went wonkers (“wonkers” – a highly technical term to replace the less technical term “weird shit happened”) over night.  I have a blue screen of death.  A brief message tells me something is corrupt.  After a few minutes of Googling on a second computer I find that I can restore the corrupt files through the BIOS.  I restore the corrupt files.  I reboot.  It reboots.  No blue screen of death.  No, wait.  I cannot log in.  “Domain controller not found.”  Golly, gee, shucks or at least words to that effect.  I log in to the local computer account with success.  That works.  I try to join the domain.  All sorts of interesting DNS errors.  I am back to golly, gee, shucks.  Time to go home and have a beer.

I wander in Friday to do some work.  The computer fairies did not fix my computer overnight.  Nuts, lazy little buggers.  I tinker.  I ping.  Everything is pingable.  I am confused.  Of course the browsers are dead but I have internet because I can ping Google.  It is Friday.  I go home.  There is beer.

I come in Monday.  Still no computer fairies.  (I am starting to suspect they do not exist.)  I am going to figure this out.  I discover one of my domain controller servers is off.  Actually unplugged.  What the heck?!  I fire it back up hoping that, for some odd reason (usually having to do with computer fairies), that that was the problem.  Nope, still DNS errors when trying to join the domain.  I have an epiphany.  I call my computer guru.  He comes in.  He is puzzled.  We tinker.  I have not tried a browser in a while.  Chrome comes up telling me it cannot connect to the internet due to either the firewall or antivirus product.  This is a new error.  The firewall is off.  We turned that off first thing.  This computer has run just fine with this AV product for years.  It cannot be the AV.  I uninstall the AV.  I try and join the domain.  The computer joins.  I log into the domain profile.  It works.  My guru and I stare at each other.

So here are the lessons learned.

  1. Computer fixing fairies may not exist.
  2. Never trust the fact something that has worked for years on the computer just fine will not go bonkers. (Evil computer fairies?)
  3. Have a guru. He may not be able to fix it but confusion deserves company.
  4. Always have beer in the fridge.
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