Thursday, 25 February 2010

Take backups before it's too late

I had one of those dreams last night. At the time it appeared too realistic for my own liking. OK, forget the fact that I was riding a bicycle through the streets AND buildings of a city I've never been in, with two of my school mates (Keith Towell who I haven't seen since the mid 70's and Andy Starkey who I last emailed on his 50th birthday two years ago).

The important part of the dream was that I had lost my hard disk drive... and it contained all the work I'd done recently. The fact that I'd used Mercurial for version control wasn't much help; it had been a long time since I'd cloned the repositories to another drive.

So this morning I decided to create another full image copy onto my Seagate external drive.
It's 3 hours into the process. So I'm using another machine to get up to date with my blogging.

So, what's this got to do with my time at IBM.

Back in the early 90's a colleague of mine who shall be nameless, approached me late one evening and asked if I knew of any hard disk unerase program suitable for OS/2. I related my previous experience with hdunerase (a Norton program for DOS 2.1) while we searched for a new program. The program we found was called Phoenix.
He also told me why he needed it.

Apparently he'd just finished a project and was shipping the code to the customer.
It was his only copy, and guess what he's done?

del *.*


  1. Could be worse... an Eire telecomms chap once did rm .* (not an urban myth, I remember reading his own blog about it)

  2. My experience is that the higher your level of authority to do something, the more dangerous you become. I suggest that machines get fitted with dual controls - like cars - which must be used by anyone intending to su - root.
    And when was the last time you responded 'Y' to 'Are you sure?' when you didn't even know what the command was?