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1. Moving Mountains
Come and sit by the camp fire as I tell the tale of woe.

It all begins with a signed contract to move our primary business application from our server to a SaaS environment. Sounds easy enough, but if it were there would be no tale to tell. One minor recurring issue was that we are on the east coast of the US, and the provider is on the West coast. With 2 months before our planned final migration we set off on the journey to the end of my sanity. It took 2 weeks to set up the first migration meeting. Ok, 6 weeks should be enough….

We had 6 weeks to migrate the data. How much data you might ask? Well, it depends on what you are asking. Being a system administrator and understanding the long battle between hard drive manufacturers and operating systems, I know that 4 trillion bytes is how much data a 4tb hard drive can hold, where the operating system will see it as around 3.6 TB. Good ole powers of 2. Our migration specialist did not understand this and we had to explain it to him.

That was yellow flag #1.

This process of determining the data size and getting the information to the specialist took about 2 weeks.

That was red yellow #2. That should have been a red card and immediate ejection, but of course this isn’t FIFA.

So a 5TB drive was ordered and 10 days later we receive that. Yup. 10 days. It arrived on a Thursday. Ok, we can start the transfer. Or not. The specialist is out of the office, and Friday is a holiday. Since we are dealing with data that must be encrypted in transit, and all we have is a vanilla 5TB USB hard drive, we are stuck until Monday.

4 weeks to go.

Monday we find out that we need to use Truecrypt to create an encrypted container. Truecrypt? Wasn’t that determined to be totally unsafe? Oh well, cross our fingers and home no one intercepts this drive with the knowledge of how to decrypt it. 28 hours to create the encrypted container (4650Gb). Another 65 hours to copy the data from a live system. Friday at 2:59pm it finishes the copy. Yank the drive, Next day Air Early AM Saturday delivery label on the box. Away it goes.

3 weeks to go.

Monday rolls around. Specialist is out of the office once again. No news.

Tuesday comes. We find out that the initial copy will take longer than the specialist estimated. He thought it would take only a day or 2. It took till the weekend. 4 TB of data, 10 million + files. It takes a while.

1 week till final migration.

So, Monday they ship the drive back, Tuesday morning we get the drive. 12pm rolls around and we down the server to attach the drive safely. Hmm. It’s dead. -37493 MB. No encrypted container to update. Fuck!

Meanwhile we had purchased an 8TB hardware key encrypted device. Nice toy ($2000). We had started a restore of our data from Monday to the 8tb device. We were restoring the VHDX that the data lived on. That only takes 12 hours. We were doing that for another reason, but now we had an ace in our hand. Quick text message to my sales rep and 7pm rolls around. Now, I had a large liquid dinner and was much calmer than I had been earlier that day. My phone rings. It is our specialist’s boss. She is at a conference with my sales rep. She gets the SaaS manager, the Virtualization Expert, the migration specialist, the datacenter manager, and anyone else who could make this happen on a conference call.

1 hour later we have a tentative solution. A few emails of confirmation and a few notes of CYA because we were changing procedures and re-writing the rules. But we have a possible solution. Come Friday we shut down the local server and hopefully by Monday we have a hosted server ready and waiting for us with the final data. Only time will tell at this point.

Wednesday I come into work with a big grin and a feeling that I had moved mountains.
[By: gashach / 2014-07-23 ]
Comment on Story [Top]


  • 2 months to transfer 4.65TB of data? WTF?!? -Stryker One
  • is that a good WTF or a bad WTF? -gashach
  • I think you could have done the job faster with avian carrier. -Stryker One
  • No, Carrier Pigeon Internet Protocol might take a while as far as real-time lag, but the amount of data you can transfer is immense. I'm thinking SSIP: Smoke Signal Internet Protocol. -RiffRaff

  • 2. Job Opening in Indianapolis
    Job Description:

    Sn. Security Administrator – Troubleshoots network access problems and implements network security policies and procedures. Ensures network (LAN/WAN, telecommunications, and voice) security access and protects against unauthorized access, modification, or destruction. Familiar with a variety of the field's concepts, practices, and procedures. Performs a variety of tasks.

    They called me but I had to turn it down due my existing employment. If you are interested, e-mail me at riffraff (a) wizardslab dot net and I will forward you the contact info.

    [By: RiffRaff / 2014-07-23 ]
    Comment on Story [Top]


    3. I Know Jack

    Offsite Link

    [By: RiffRaff / 2014-07-23 ]
    Comment on Story [Top]


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