What's up with IT, Doc? Rabbit hole reveals cause of outage
Who would willingly chews a 6:00AM Sunday callout?
On-Call As the world gears up for a week that features a celebration of love, The Register brings you another instalment of On-Call, our weekly reader-contributed tale of the thing IT pros hate most – being asked to fix silly problems at loathsome times of day.
This week's love letter to being on-call comes from a reader we'll again Regomize as "Andrew" whose phone rang unreasonably early: 06:00 in the blessed AM – on a Sunday no less.
"A client called in a panic as he had no power to his home office equipment. The switch in the distribution box would not reset, so could I come and see what was causing this issue."
Andrew agreed to come out and have a look.
"Nobody but me is daft enough to go out on call at silly o'clock on a Sunday morning," he admitted.
But go out he did. With his box full of tools that he believes can fix any IT issue.
Andrew started with the most potent diagnostic technique of them all: turning it off and turning it on again.
Doing so a few times showed that the client's fridge was the cause of the outage.
So Andrew tugged and lugged the machine until he could see its power cord … which showed the unmistakable signs of having been nibbled, bitten, chewed, and otherwise damaged by dentition.
- No, you cannot safely run a network operations center from a corridor
- User was told three times 'Do Not Reboot This PC' – then unplugged it anyway
- This can’t be a real bomb threat: You've called a modem, not a phone
- Don't lock the datacenter door, said the boss. The builders need access and what could possibly go wrong?
IT isn't Andrew’s only skill: he also has an electrician's ticket, so he rewired the fridge.
As he did so, he wondered why the severed cord – which carried 240V when whole – was not accompanied by a corpse given the likely conductivity of whatever beast had unleashed its chompers.
Andrew mused about this out loud, within earshot of his client. The client "became pale and looked upset, then quickly called his wife and asked if she had seen their pet rabbit."
She had not.
A swift search of the client's home ensued, thankfully producing a non-tragic ending.
"Said bunny was located in its box, with burnt off whiskers and a sore nose, but otherwise unharmed," Andrew recalled. The loving bond between human and rabbit was unbroken – if singed.
If something furry has chewed your tech, click here to email your tale to On-Call and you might be our pet story in a future edition of this column. ®