Public vs Bank holidays

Good friday being a bank holiday was being discussed today in the office. Mostly you think that bank holidays are days off? Well no, not quite. Actual days that we’d close our doors are know as “public holidays” not actual bank holidays.

On Oasis it clearly states that Good friday is not a public holiday, and as such is a normal working day for the private sector.

There are nine (9) public holidays in Ireland each year. Good Friday is not a public holiday. The list of public holidays in Ireland each year is as follows:

* New Year’s Day (1 January)
* St. Patrick’s Day (17 March)
* Easter Monday
* First Monday in May, June, August
* Last Monday in October
* Christmas Day (25 December)
* St. Stephen’s Day (26 December)

So we’re gona be working on friday.

Dell PowerEdge problem

I upgraded a box from CentOS 4.2 to 4.3 this evening. You might think “no problem there” – rebooted it and it didn’t come up.

The following error was on the terminal after the reboot

“LOADING PBR FOR DESCRIPTOR 1. DONE

BAD PBR SIGNATURE.”

Basically this means the mbr is shagged on your disk.

A quick boot off of a centOS cd “linux rescue”, mount you system and chroot into it.

Type:

$ grub
$ grub> root (hd0,0)
$ grub> setup (hd0)
$ grub> exit

That is it, grub will have re-installed itself and the machine will boot. The server in particular was a brand new, Dell Poweredge SC1425, 2 x 3.2Ghz Xeon processors etc.

We live and learn.

syslog-ng

I found syslog-ng last week. I’ve since rolled it out on the new network. The core routers and distrution routers log to this now. It’s pretty handy and makes searching for oddities or problems much easier.

You can search per IP, per service or have it exclude certain txt terms. I’ve found it extremely flexible so far. The beauty of it is I can also have the boxes log to disk elsewhere aswell.

RIPE

We’ve finally organised ourselves and joined RIPE as an LIR. Over the coming few weeks/month or so we will be organising our new AS and IPv4 allocation. We’ve decided on our upstream carriers and look forward to the new year 🙂

work

Work has been good. Its been getting better and better since we moved into the new offices. There are a few odds and ends to tie up there which were/are annoying. The bin people forgot to send us our bins for the first 6 weeks … rather annoying/smelly. We had arranged with a guy to come and build shelves who has ret to come and make them.

I’ve got some new toys in the office and in our .NL facility to play with recently. Various bits n bobs like cisco switchs, apc masterswitchs etc. Most if not all can be controlled by the new noc management software we started using the in the past few months. The last build of it has been fairly useable and as such I have started to add all the servers from dublin/ams into it. A daunting task it is because there are close to 600 IP’s to manually assign to customers/servers.

We’ve been working on the whole vps product aswell, I will hopefully be able to write something that will compare Xen vs UML in the coming weeks in terms of stability, scalability, ease of management etc

clustering ..

I’ve been working on a new project in work to increase the overall efficiency of one of the services we provide. Typically its always a single stand alone server and then you just add more stand alone servers etc. It works well, but makes management and billing very difficult.

Last week I rolled out a new cluster of servers to manage the task of a single server. This isn’t a huge undertaking right now, but has the potential to have 10+ servers all for one particular product offering. Depending on the need. We’ll put to market with this in a few weeks, once we’re sure its all going to work and scale as we move forward.

office moves

hmmm not sure I’d like to ever have to do the following again in a hurry:

a) prepare an emtpy office for use by an entire company. This entails a lot of things, small things like kettles, coffee makers etc to big things like furniture, comms equipment the physical network, phone system etc. I basically just spent the last 6-7 working days preparing our new office space.

b) moving everything from one office to the other.

We moved everything on wednesday of this week to the new office including the bodies, Niall and Michele etc. 🙂 It went nice and smooth, no snags really. Oh well one snag, someone emailed every supplier/customer etc our new phone/fax number but mixed them up. Not a happy place for a while. No matter its all up and running nicely and we are beginning to settle in.