Take a SysAdmin to Lunch on the 29th

Yes, it is time for the twelfth annual SysAdminDay coming up in two weeks. I must have missed the first eleven of them somehow, but I plan on celebrating in style this time around.

Stay tuned for the contest details at the end of this post.

Yes, those underappreciated folks that build your servers, debug your SQL code to keep it from getting injected, reroute your network cables, balance your loads, and all the other tasks to keep your applications infrastructure humming along. I was never a sysadmin, although I did do my fair share of tech support back in the days of DOS. We had our share of people who didn’t turn computers on (or even plug them in), users formatting their drives to see what happens, and people sending us photocopies of their floppies when we asked them to see what was wrong with the disks.

I just love the SysAdmin Day website above, it is a great time waster. There you can find gift suggestions to give your favorite SysAdmin (ThinkGeek is all over this sort of thing, rightly so, down to their LED Blade Runner-style umbrellas), humor, video clips. You can spend your time checking out their rogue’s gallery of bad cabling installations and cartoons, along with clips from previous year’s celebrations. Missing is my favorite TV show, “The IT Crowd” that ran on BBC awhile back. (Season 2 is the best.)

But lately, things are not so much fun and games anymore. The Internet is a dark place, where evil lurks on every router junction and underneath each seemingly harmless Acrobat file. You can get infected from just visiting a Web site, let alone downloading anything from it. You can’t be running an old browser version, because there are people Out There who will take advantage of your ancient software and send you nice little exploits that will live on your hard drive and make your life miserable. You can’t be too careful, which is why it is time to appreciate your favorite SysAdmin in a couple of weeks.

So here’s my deal. Those of you who live within a few hundred miles of the St. Louis area and would like to qualify for a free lunch, I am serious, send me a note and tell me your most outrageous end user support story, suitable for framing and posting around the Interwebs. The funniest one wins lunch. If you don’t live nearby, you can still enter the contest and I will take you out to lunch when I am next in your city, or when our Foursquare check-ins next intersect in meatspace. Decision of the judges is final, and not valid in Alaska. Post your comments right here.

5 thoughts on “Take a SysAdmin to Lunch on the 29th

  1. Hi David – first and foremost, the gentleman above, Ted Kekatos, gets much (if not all) of the credit for SysAdmin Day. He’s been working tirelessly for years to get SysAdmin the cred they deserve. So huge props to Ted.

    Second, we here at OpenDNS are all about SysAdmins and passionate about the fact that they deserve recognition. So we declare July SysAdmin Appreciation month.🙂 As part of the celebration we’re doing a variety of things:

    – SysAdmin Appreciation Party: It’s going to be epic. We encourage SysAdmins to have a few beers on us and pat themselves on the back at the Old Mint in San Francisco July 28. Expect things like Tron and Hackers projected on walls.
    http://opendns-sysadminappreciation2011.eventbrite.com/

    – Boss Reminder Service: SysAdmin Appreciation Day is July 28. We encourage them to let us remind their boss and hint that gifts containing caffeine are a good idea.
    http://www.opendns.com/feedback/boss_reminder/

    – 2011 OpenDNS SysAdmin Awards: Deadline for entry was yesterday but we’ll be announcing winners shortly.

    Happy SysAdmin Month and Day to SysAdmins everywhere!

  2. My favorite one occurred during a service call to Microsoft. I was having problems with a new server running Windows Server 2008. After giving the technician both the hardware and software specifications, she asked, “Is it on a network?”

  3. We like your idea of recognizing System Administrators (unheralded IT heroes!) and hope that sysadmins everywhere get a nifty new gadget, a free lunch, or at least a pat on the back this Friday.

    We here at QuorumLabs are all about making system administrators’ lives at work easier and more pleasant. We are joining the celebration by offering sysadmins a free, pocket toolset that’s sure to come in handy.
    http://www.quorumlabs.com/sysadminday2011

    Happy SysAdmin Day!

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