05/26/2006

Garden Season

Category Life in Cape Breton
With the early spring that everyone on the east coast seems to be having, the last few weeks have been spent creating a vegetable garden and landscaping. It seems that everyone that comes by brings a plant or two, and we are rapidly running out of room for growing things (or at least on the acre or two immediately surrounding the house). As for the vegetable garden, I ordered 72 rough sawn juniper boards and built twenty four 8 foot by 4 foot beds. 12 cubic yards of top soil just about filled them all, and we have already managed to plant a third of them. It will take a season or two to get things really in shape, but it's great to have it started. Juniper supposedly has the same rot avoidance properties as preasure treated lumber, and at only 50 cents a board foot significantly less expensive. Time will tell though if their durability is as advertised..

05/13/2006

A better satellite signal

Category Technology
Finally!!! My internet connection has been unstable for several months and despite my complaining nothing that was tried remotely worked. Yesterday, the guy I bought the system from made the 8 hour round-trip drive, and discovered that the dish was out of alignment. When the dish was originally ordered, it was supposed to be approximately 48" in diameter, and when it arrived they sent the 60" dish instead. It would have taken over a month to get it exchanged, so some of the installation hardware was modified to fit. The arrangement has worked pretty well, but the pipe which I had embedded in 6 feet of cement should really have been larger in diameter for the larger dish. At any rate a 6' dish presents a pretty large area to the wind, and over time it appears the dish had turned slightly to the east. After a few adjustments everything seems to be working much better. It's still a satellite connection with all of the inherent problems, but at least it now works as advertised.

05/10/2006

I take back everything I have ever said good about IBM support

Category Customer Service
This is just ridiculous! If you have been following this blog (and you probably haven't ) you will know that I have been trying to get IBM support to solve a problem with WCS and the Managed Client Provisioning Server. In short the installation fails every time and at the same point. I submitted the problem via Email support (which I have mentioned in the Blog previously as being very good and responsive in the past) on February 20th. I spent the first few weeks trying to convince IBM support that I really was having a problem. They clearly wanted and expected the problem to be a user error, so I wasted many hours redoing installations, downloading new copies of the installation files, trying other hardware, and sending screen shots of the various installation choices etc. Finally, when they couldn't find anything wrong with the information I sent them, they insisted that I join a sametime meeting, share the screen, and go through the installation while they watched. When the installation failed, as usual, they decided to turn things over to level 2 support in the middle of March.

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