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StepBack

@verizon.net

How to get my supervision to back off

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So our previous train wreck of a IT Director retired about 7 months ago and our old network admin interviewed then got the job, I was sys admin 2 years with 8yrs previous outside exp. then took the network admin spot. To be honest he left behind a complete mess! I truly believe that he was so focused on trying to be Director he neglected his responsibilities as network admin I posted pics of some of the crap I need to address.

I could keep going with other things that are wrong (Not patching security vulnerabilities, personnel issues, AD permission issues, core infrastructure plugged into power strips and so on) but I rather focus on trying to gather some advice on how to get him to step out of the day to day IT so I can fix EVERYTHING that he did wrong because he wanted to get things working or wanted to make people happy, just didn't plan properly and finally just didn't know what he was doing


Harddrive
Proud American and Infidel since 1968.
Premium
join:2000-09-20
DFW
kudos:2

2 recommendations

I worked at a place like this once. Shit strung everywhere for the data network. My VOIP phone stuff was nice and neat (never needed to be touched after the vendor put it in). I got another job and left the place on a Friday. The VP of IS was fired the following Monday. The Admin was fired 6 months later. My former employer brought in a contractor to do everything in the data network/database side of the house. After 18 months, the VP still hasn't found a job. The admin hasn't found a job after a year. 2 weeks after I quit, they hired the VOIP guy I picked for them from all the applicants. He's still there to this day.
--
"The level of sacrifice that you give is beyond my comprehension. If the rest of us in the Country showed the level sacrifice that you do on a daily basis, we wouldn't have any of the problems we have." – Comedian Lewis Black speaking to the US troops.



DC DSL
There's a reason I'm Command.
Premium
join:2000-07-30
Washington, DC
kudos:2

1 recommendation

reply to StepBack

You could take the initiative to document "opportunities for improvement" to bring the shop in line with "current best practices." Cast no aspersions or judgments as to how things got the way they are...just "we could probably reduce costs if..." justifications.
--
"Dance like the photo isn't being tagged; love like you've never been unfriended; and tweet like nobody is following."



WireHead
I drive to fast
Premium
join:2001-05-09
Muncie, IN
reply to StepBack

Depends on how good a relationship you have with his boss. With such a crappy horizontal, I myself would not hesitate to bring this to their or the boards attention personally. I don't understand why they would hire him for their technical director he's obviously not qualified. They must not know WTF is going on. You could alternatively remind him that this is not his job anymore. YMMV but I'm neither soft spoken or capable of holding my opinion, I distribute responsibility and accountability very well also. I am however grateful at being good enough to pretty much write my own check. I accept no defect. If it's not right then do it again until it is.
--
Retired BBR Team Starfire Team Q III Host
Live by chance. Love by choice. Kill by profession.



StepBack

@..nehome-server.info
reply to DC DSL

said by DC DSL:

You could take the initiative to document "opportunities for improvement" to bring the shop in line with "current best practices." Cast no aspersions or judgments as to how things got the way they are...just "we could probably reduce costs if..." justifications.

That was the first thing i did when i got hired and i'm still working through that list i compiled. That pic with the wire spaghetti bowl lol.....it had 8 10/100 switches up under it man. I purchased 4 48 port switches and bundles cables so i can color code all the different area's in that building, it took me 8 days to undo all the mess and do properly.


StepBack

@..nehome-server.info
reply to WireHead

said by WireHead:

Depends on how good a relationship you have with his boss. With such a crappy horizontal, I myself would not hesitate to bring this to their or the boards attention personally. I don't understand why they would hire him for their technical director he's obviously not qualified. They must not know WTF is going on. You could alternatively remind him that this is not his job anymore. YMMV but I'm neither soft spoken or capable of holding my opinion, I distribute responsibility and accountability very well also. I am however grateful at being good enough to pretty much write my own check. I accept no defect. If it's not right then do it again until it is.

I ran out of storage so I purchased a new SAN with some new servers to run the vsphere 5.1 so that required a new rack due to lack of space in all the other ones. I decided to do a TOR design in this one since it hasn't been done here before, it took me about a week to get it all done but I’m proud it (if anyone wants to see pics I will post them)
You're right they don't know WTF is going on and I don’t believe they care because things are working. I feel that I'm going to have a talk with him along with the other 2 guys about things going forward. But here’s a question for you, can these sorts of bad habits be corrected? The guys that are here have been following in his footsteps sort of.
This is the kind of place where you could get away doing the minimal until you retire but I don't fit that mold.


Wily_One
Premium
join:2002-11-24
San Jose, CA
Reviews:
·AT&T U-Verse

said by StepBack :

I decided to do a TOR design in this one since it hasn't been done here before, it took me about a week to get it all done but I’m proud it (if anyone wants to see pics I will post them)

Sure, let's see it.


StepBack

@verizon.net

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said by Wily_One:

said by StepBack :

I decided to do a TOR design in this one since it hasn't been done here before, it took me about a week to get it all done but I’m proud it (if anyone wants to see pics I will post them)

Sure, let's see it.

Here you go i used Velcro to bundle up all the cables (i hate tie raps) named all my switch ports to match my nic's in the vmware world and labeled all the power cords. In my rack the equipment can breath unlike in the other racks, i took one of the other guys in to see it after it was setup and he said "wow that's a nice rack for sure. Anything we've done looks like crap" at that moment i felt odd or out of place.

Fixing all the physical things wrong is easy but the hard part is trying to fix all mental things that are wrong here.


Wily_One
Premium
join:2002-11-24
San Jose, CA

Looks nice and neat but, um, next time open the cage door when you're taking pictures...


tomdlgns
Premium
join:2003-03-21
Chicago, IL
kudos:1
reply to StepBack

i thought i was the only one who labeled ports on a switch (kidding), but i dont see it done enough and i think it is a must.

not only is it good for troubleshooting/identifying wires, but it can be very helpful when you are not on site and need to see what is connected to the port.



Paulg
Displaced Yooper
Premium
join:2004-03-15
Neenah, WI
kudos:1

1 recommendation

Every switch port that is anything other than a client access port should have a description.



Nightfall
My Goal Is To Deny Yours
Premium,MVM
join:2001-08-03
Grand Rapids, MI
Reviews:
·ooma
·Comcast
·Callcentric
·Site5.com
reply to StepBack

This sounds like a great step up for you. I agree that you should take the initiate to document these vulnerabilities and problems. Prioritize them on the document because maybe your new IT Director will have some input on them as well. Hopefully, he will have the budget and experience to prioritize the issues and fix them. Probably, the way it looks will take a backseat to the patching, AD permissions, and infrastructure issues.

As the new network admin, just showing that these are the vulnerabilities is just half the battle. A good network admin should know the network inside out and backwards. From the switches and servers all the way to the OS of the servers and security. Then you have Visio diagrams for the network, and documentation on everything from how groups of users are setup to disaster recovery.

Either way, there is a lot of work that needs to be done. Taking some initiative is key here, but run everything by the IT Manager. It will show you are engaged.
--
My domain - Nightfall.net



StepBack

@opera-mini.net

said by Nightfall:

This sounds like a great step up for you. I agree that you should take the initiate to document these vulnerabilities and problems. Prioritize them on the document because maybe your new IT Director will have some input on them as well. Hopefully, he will have the budget and experience to prioritize the issues and fix them. Probably, the way it looks will take a backseat to the patching, AD permissions, and infrastructure issues.

As the new network admin, just showing that these are the vulnerabilities is just half the battle. A good network admin should know the network inside out and backwards. From the switches and servers all the way to the OS of the servers and security. Then you have Visio diagrams for the network, and documentation on everything from how groups of users are setup to disaster recovery.

Either way, there is a lot of work that needs to be done. Taking some initiative is key here, but run everything by the IT Manager. It will show you are engaged.

The only person above me is the IT Director who was the previous network admin, I could never leave project prioritization to him because nothing would get completed. Any tips on how to get him step out of the day to day trenches? Or how to educate him & the rest of the guys on the team?

The more time spent thinking about this weekend it seems like a daunting task to correct all the metal flaws here...


Nightfall
My Goal Is To Deny Yours
Premium,MVM
join:2001-08-03
Grand Rapids, MI
Reviews:
·ooma
·Comcast
·Callcentric
·Site5.com

said by StepBack :

said by Nightfall:

This sounds like a great step up for you. I agree that you should take the initiate to document these vulnerabilities and problems. Prioritize them on the document because maybe your new IT Director will have some input on them as well. Hopefully, he will have the budget and experience to prioritize the issues and fix them. Probably, the way it looks will take a backseat to the patching, AD permissions, and infrastructure issues.

As the new network admin, just showing that these are the vulnerabilities is just half the battle. A good network admin should know the network inside out and backwards. From the switches and servers all the way to the OS of the servers and security. Then you have Visio diagrams for the network, and documentation on everything from how groups of users are setup to disaster recovery.

Either way, there is a lot of work that needs to be done. Taking some initiative is key here, but run everything by the IT Manager. It will show you are engaged.

The only person above me is the IT Director who was the previous network admin, I could never leave project prioritization to him because nothing would get completed. Any tips on how to get him step out of the day to day trenches? Or how to educate him & the rest of the guys on the team?

The more time spent thinking about this weekend it seems like a daunting task to correct all the metal flaws here...

Keep in mind that he is not doing the project, you are. He would just prioritize them. I regularly speak to the people underneath me and they bring me a list of things that need to be completed in their areas. I sit with them and prioritize those things with them based on their impact to the business.

The only way you are going to get him to step out of the day to day trenches is to make him feel like you have things covered. Do you know what the high impact issues or projects are in the network admin area? Do you have sufficient documentation? Do you have everything handled in terms of day to day operations? If you don't then he will probably see that as an issue, which is why it is important for you to show you are ready by looking at your area overall and making some recommendations on what you should be concentrating on.

These are tasks that will take months if not years to accomplish. If you look at this as an elephant, don't try to eat the whole elephant at once. You eat it a bite at a time.

When I took this job, I was involved in the day to day operations of the network for the first year after I got in here. The network admin and I worked through all the issues and now, I don't even touch the network much anymore. The key here is that he made an action plan with high priority projects, we prioritized them, and then I let him work through them.

You may not get him out of the network side entirely in less than a year, but its your job to come to him with a plan that will get him out of the network side and more into the management side.
--
My domain - Nightfall.net


StepBack

@..nehome-server.info

said by Nightfall:

said by StepBack :

said by Nightfall:

This sounds like a great step up for you. I agree that you should take the initiate to document these vulnerabilities and problems. Prioritize them on the document because maybe your new IT Director will have some input on them as well. Hopefully, he will have the budget and experience to prioritize the issues and fix them. Probably, the way it looks will take a backseat to the patching, AD permissions, and infrastructure issues.

As the new network admin, just showing that these are the vulnerabilities is just half the battle. A good network admin should know the network inside out and backwards. From the switches and servers all the way to the OS of the servers and security. Then you have Visio diagrams for the network, and documentation on everything from how groups of users are setup to disaster recovery.

Either way, there is a lot of work that needs to be done. Taking some initiative is key here, but run everything by the IT Manager. It will show you are engaged.

The only person above me is the IT Director who was the previous network admin, I could never leave project prioritization to him because nothing would get completed. Any tips on how to get him step out of the day to day trenches? Or how to educate him & the rest of the guys on the team?

The more time spent thinking about this weekend it seems like a daunting task to correct all the metal flaws here...

Keep in mind that he is not doing the project, you are. He would just prioritize them. I regularly speak to the people underneath me and they bring me a list of things that need to be completed in their areas. I sit with them and prioritize those things with them based on their impact to the business.

The only way you are going to get him to step out of the day to day trenches is to make him feel like you have things covered. Do you know what the high impact issues or projects are in the network admin area? Do you have sufficient documentation? Do you have everything handled in terms of day to day operations? If you don't then he will probably see that as an issue, which is why it is important for you to show you are ready by looking at your area overall and making some recommendations on what you should be concentrating on.

These are tasks that will take months if not years to accomplish. If you look at this as an elephant, don't try to eat the whole elephant at once. You eat it a bite at a time.

When I took this job, I was involved in the day to day operations of the network for the first year after I got in here. The network admin and I worked through all the issues and now, I don't even touch the network much anymore. The key here is that he made an action plan with high priority projects, we prioritized them, and then I let him work through them.

You may not get him out of the network side entirely in less than a year, but its your job to come to him with a plan that will get him out of the network side and more into the management side.

Ok well put hopefully it all works out. Here’s a question for you, can these sorts of bad habits be corrected? The guys that are here have been following in his footsteps sort of.


Nightfall
My Goal Is To Deny Yours
Premium,MVM
join:2001-08-03
Grand Rapids, MI
Reviews:
·ooma
·Comcast
·Callcentric
·Site5.com

said by StepBack :

Ok well put hopefully it all works out. Here’s a question for you, can these sorts of bad habits be corrected? The guys that are here have been following in his footsteps sort of.

All bad habits can be corrected but it takes the following things.

1. A plan of attack. If you see an opportunity for improvement or a bad habit that you would like to see corrected, then make a plan to correct it.

2. Leadership that is behind your plan. Make sure that you communicate with your IT Manager and get buy in from him first. As you work with him on these things, his confidence in you will grow and you will be able to do these things more routinely.

If a user decides to keep up with their bad habits, then the manager will be behind you when it comes to correcting that behavior and getting them back on track.
--
My domain - Nightfall.net


exocet_cm
Free at last, free at last
Premium
join:2003-03-23
New Orleans, LA
kudos:3

1 edit
reply to StepBack

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This is our forensic storage array (and gateway). I just moved a lot of the equipment around one week ago and need to get some new pictures in.

Wish I had some cable trays to come out of the roof. Oh well, best I could do with the money we had.

Just took a contract job with the City to start redoing their datacenter (a ton of work). Your original pictures look like our current datacenter which I have just begun redoing. I can't stand lazy IT admins/contractors. It pisses me off to no end.

Edit: Where are your cable management arm support trays that plug into the rear of the rails?
--
"I have measured out my life with coffee spoons..." - T.S Eliot
"I have often regretted my speech, never my silence." - Publilius Syrus
Ma blog: »www.johndball.com


StepBack

@204.45.134.x

said by exocet_cm See Profile
Edit: Where are your cable management arm support trays that plug into the rear of the rails?
[/BQUOTE :

They are in the trash where they belong. I measured everything so i knew exactly how long my cables needed to be and used Velcro to rap up the cables. I hate cable management arms because they just get in the way of everything.



Modus
I hate smartassery on forums
Premium
join:2005-05-02
us
reply to exocet_cm

Whoa a is that a HotBrick???? I haven't seen one of those in years, they aren't still around are they?
--
Think Ahead. Learn More. Solve Now!



exocet_cm
Free at last, free at last
Premium
join:2003-03-23
New Orleans, LA
kudos:3

said by Modus:

Whoa a is that a HotBrick???? I haven't seen one of those in years, they aren't still around are they?

Yeah, it was a temp setup until I could get Untangle on one of the spare PowerEdge boxes.

@StepBack, maybe you weren't using them correctly?
--
"I have measured out my life with coffee spoons..." - T.S Eliot
"I have often regretted my speech, never my silence." - Publilius Syrus
Ma blog: »www.johndball.com

JoelC707
Premium
join:2002-07-09
Lanett, AL
kudos:5
reply to Modus

said by Modus:

Whoa a is that a HotBrick???? I haven't seen one of those in years, they aren't still around are they?

LOL I had the same response when I saw that pic in his thread when he built that storage array. Unfortunately they are still around and I don't think they have really updated anything in the last several years.

JoelC707
Premium
join:2002-07-09
Lanett, AL
kudos:5
reply to StepBack

said by StepBack :

said by exocet_cm:

Edit: Where are your cable management arm support trays that plug into the rear of the rails?

They are in the trash where they belong. I measured everything so i knew exactly how long my cables needed to be and used Velcro to rap up the cables. I hate cable management arms because they just get in the way of everything.

You know, I had the same thought. My cable management arms on my 2950's stick out past the back of my rack forcing me to leave off the rear door (not really an issue but still, it'd be nice to have the option). I have thought about measuring and bundling with velcro to secure off the slack needed to pull the server out.

In my case though, I only have rails for two of the servers, the third was a recent ebay purchase and we have not gotten rails for it yet. For securing the non-rail server, I've found that a bent T bracket similar to this one works wonders to hold up the back of the server.

Oedipus

join:2005-05-09
kudos:1
reply to StepBack

The Dell cable management arms can be a pain (especially if the servers are right on top of each other) but the end result looks really sharp except in the case of the OP. They do require some time to implement neatly.



Mellow
Premium
join:2001-11-16
Salisbury, MD
reply to StepBack

Anyone that has delt with a Hot Brick in the past has that same response "are they still around". I personally haven't seen one in the wild for about 4 years.