General discussion

Locked

just another day

By bloomed ·
Tags: Off Topic
blog root

This conversation is currently closed to new comments.

11 total posts (Page 1 of 2)   01 | 02   Next
| Thread display: Collapse - | Expand +

All Comments

Collapse -

the background

by bloomed In reply to just another day

<p><strong><em>Mine -</em></strong> </p>
<p>11 years working my way up through a small development/hosting firm in metro Milwaukee.  Effective customer service skills, light programming skills, excellent with project management/definition, generally good "jack of all trades".  I've got a descent eye for graphic design and over a dozen years of troubleshooting and finding "out of the box" solutions to client problems.  I've been the sales consultant, server admin, client relationship manager and development director. </p>
<p>When my company sold my division I wasn't retained by the new owner who wanted their own people in management positions.  My entire background is in corporate.  The current economic environment meant that without a degree (no matter my experience) I was unable to find a position in my field.  I was unemployed for 1 year, moved back to my rural southern roots, and took a position as a secretary at a small university (eating is something I prefer to do).  1 year later I've been hired as the webmaster for the same university.</p>
<p><strong>The Position -</strong></p>
<p>The person previously in this position left 8 months before I was brought in.  They were without a webmaster for that time.  She was in charge of not only the website, but also the web based class management system.  Her priority and background was never really the website, which she inherited simply by default because she'd helped work on it originally (they decided over the summer that the university needed a website and it needed to be done in a month ).</p>
<p>During the vacant 8 months the position was moved from Technology to Marketing.  There are (of course) political issues existing between these depts.</p>
<p><strong>The Work -</strong></p>
<p>I mentioned before that the site was initially built in a month-ish.  This was approximately 5 years ago and it's basically been organic since then, meaning left to it's own devices.  The departments are responsible for their own content but some nebulous "they" has dictated a template to be used.  Today, every department pastes their content into a static html template and saves it as a new filename.  Navigation is broken throughout, images are deleted without removing the reference in pages, pages are built without linking from other parts of the site, and a 70gb monstrosity looms before me.</p>
<p><strong>The Blog -</strong></p>
<p>I'm going to attempt to regularly document the political, technical, and administrative encounters that make up such a situation.</p>

Collapse -

the background

by denise.vrantsidis In reply to the background

<p>Hi, just a suggestion: have your manager authorize permission for you to have full administrative rights over your computer.  You will then be responsible for ensuring that patches and spyware are up to date, but if you can get the local administrative password, you can log in as the local admin and install what you need when you need it.   </p>
<p>Denise Vrantsidis, Systems Administration/Analyst</p>

Collapse -

Week 1

by bloomed In reply to just another day

<p>It's the last day of my first week.  So far I've submitted a rough outline of a strategic plan.  My boss loved it, but now we have to do the upper administration shuffle as we show various directors and vice presidents.  I've submitted invoices to purchase several software applications for everything from finding broken links to resizing images on the fly to reporting content changes and user statistics.  There's nothing in place today.  Nothing.</p>
<p>I downloaded a trial version of the statistics package I've chosen and installed it so I can begin accumulating statistics that I've already had requests for.  It's missing some key features but I think it'll hold them over until I have the real deal.</p>
<p>ITS has been a joy to deal with.  I've been disallowed from IIS access because they've decided that it's a security risk (it'd need to be remote from outside their building) and they have to get permission from higher up.  This means that I am unable to make basic changes and progress.  I do have access to \inetpub so I can make content changes.  This is great but doesn't help me that much since I'm not changing content yet.</p>
<p>For instance, I can't get a single directory on the website pointed to in IIS correctly because it takes 5-48 hours for ITS to respond to my requests, and generally the action they take is wrong.  Also, the website was initially built such that each individual department directory is a unique website in IIS, which means the NTFS directories aren't "nested", they're all on the same level, under \inetpub, and I am going to have to use IIS to setup custom 404 errors for each of over 150 directories rather than 1 time for the whole site...and I have to do it via ITS since I can't have access.  It could take a year to get that done.  Also, the directories do NOT by default have ASP active, and the only default page specified is default.htm.  These are my challenges.</p>

Collapse -

Week 1

by juha.volotinen In reply to Week 1

<p>I wouldn't try to fix this rather I would just replace it as the required functionality is part of off the shelf products these days. Bit more work initially but lot less trouble in the long run and I guess ROI of less than a year.</p>

Collapse -

Week 1

by Chaz Chance# In reply to Week 1

<p>I would ask ITS for a desk and computer with IIS in their building to use until they can get the permission for you have access from your own desk.</p>
<p>Rather than individually submitting your requests to ITS, make a complete list of what you need from them and submit it as one request.  A bit of clever phrasing will tie it all together, like "<em>I require the <thing> to be set up as preparation for modifying the website, and to achieve this the following tasks need to be done by ITS: task 1) enable ASP of the following directories[...]</em> <em>task 1024)...</em>"</p>
<p>Good luck.  </p>

Collapse -

Week 1

by bloomed In reply to Week 1

Actually I am going to do a ground up rebuild (assuming I can get upper administration behind me).  I've tried the "all in one" approach to requesting xyz from ITS...I get maybe 2 things on the list and they call it done.  It's like dealing with support from ****, they only read the first and last lines of an email.

Collapse -

monday monday

by bloomed In reply to just another day

Still no response to the minor request I sent to ITS on Wednesday.  I'm going to send a friendly refresher request to see if anything happens.  I'm trying to keep a sense of humor, hopefully I don't turn into a giggling freak in footy pajamas.

Collapse -

bang head here

by bloomed In reply to just another day

Sent an email to ITS yesterday asking if I could get a timeframe on
those changes (the ones that got done WRONG on Thursday) and the
component installs (submitted last Tuesday).  Response I got back:
<br />
<br />
"Your work orders are still on my list and I will let you know as soon as they are completed."<br />
<br />
Ok, so I ask if I can at least get a confirmation that .NET is
absolutely going to be installed before I order applications...I can
just see me ordering it and ITS saying they've decided it's a security
risk.  Mind you I have a meeting TODAY with the VP to go over all
of this and finalize my purchase orders (yes I told ITS this).<br />
<br />
Response: "I?ll let you know as soon as that has been determined."<br />
<br />
X ----- Bang Head Here<br />

Collapse -

frelling miracles

by bloomed In reply to just another day

Apparently goodish things do come to those who wait.  I still
don't have remote server access, but I got an email that ITS has
installed all of the components and .NET.  I haven't figured out
yet if they did anything wrong.<br />
<br />
I met with the VP over my dept today for the first time.  The
reaction to my development plan was very positive.  We'll see how
that pans out in the future.<br />
<br />
I also got all but 1 of my purchase orders out of here today.  I
thought they'd been done last week but I discovered they were still
sitting on my supervisors desk.  They were put together and walked
over to the VP's office.  I'm hoping to get the other one no later
than tomorrow.  It's the really important one for most of the
software I'm planning to use to construct the website.<br />
<br />
I also got the books I ordered, then I turned around and ordered more
books on .NET.  Looks like it's a study weekend for me. 
Anyone have any reading recommendations to help me out?<br />

Collapse -

access and installs and progress oh my!

by bloomed In reply to just another day

<p>I took a sick day yesterday; woke up at 3am with a screaming headache and a fever...and couldn't go back to sleep.  We're on our last 4 day work week of the summer before going back to the standard grind, so it's a really long weekend for me.</p>
<p>Today isn't a work day, but I got an email from ITS (I think they're doing an Exchange Server upgrade today) telling me I get my access and they'll come install the remote client on Monday.  I'm overjoyed.  Now I can get somewhere.</p>
<p>I do have concerns though. The pre-existing political situation between ITS and my dept worries me.  I fear it could seriously undermine my attempt to simply do my job, not to mention any relationship building on my own behalf with ITS staff.  I'm not concerned so much about the ability of the two departments to resolve their differences and make nice, but I do want ME to be able to have a reasonable relationship with ITS.  Is distancing myself from my department in the eyes of ITS the way to achieve this goal?  I'm not sure, politics isn't my bag.  </p>
<p>I think I'll try the direct approach and just have an open conversation about it with the one ITS person I have had reasonable communication with.  Maybe he'll have some insights, or at least let something slip that will help me understand if any issues exist and how I can correct them before anything escalates.</p>
<p>The rest of the weekend is going to be spent in research.  I'm digging up statistical information on the website to help make my point about using the site as part of a unified marketing strategy, and to clearly explain some of the issues that made the VP cringe a bit.  Cross your fingers for me.</p>

Back to After Hours Forum
11 total posts (Page 1 of 2)   01 | 02   Next

Related Discussions

Related Forums