A Fat Pipe

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  • georgir 2013-03-28 07:59
    I don't get it. First he used a performance monitor on the live server and verified that the screensaver caused the difference. Then when he had to convince his boss, he instead went for a simulated environment... why?
  • olaf 2013-03-28 07:59
    I never knew pipes was based on OpenGL. Pretty cool I guess!
  • Pero perić 2013-03-28 08:15
    olaf:
    I never knew pipes was based on OpenGL. Pretty cool I guess!

    Because you can't rely on having DirectX support on Windows.
  • Medinoc 2013-04-08 06:42
    TRWTF is that a bleeping screen saver would not run with reduced CPU priority. Especially a multi-thread one.
  • Chris 2013-04-08 06:52
    Yeah, that was something everybody in support back then had figured out pretty quickly, you can't run any of the OpenGL screen savers on a Windows server. Well, you could but it rendered (get it.. HAHA) the machine almost useless.
  • Nintendo 2013-04-08 07:08
    frist to notice the video game references.
  • Tim 2013-04-08 07:16
    Why didn't he ask Luigi for a second opinion?

    Captcha: Causa- Causa Luigi wassa busy else-a-where..
  • Paul T 2013-04-08 07:21
    I don't recall submitting this so I'd like to know which of my former co workers it was who did. You left out the part where we dragged an old 486 out of a closet and installed linux and apache and demonstrated much, much better performance, or the fact that we had an identical dual pentium pro machine for our visual source safe repository and the CTO kept putting the OpenGL screen saver on it as well.

    The company in question was named after an unusually colored fresh water crustacean.
  • faoileag 2013-04-08 07:22
    Can anybody please tell me why you would run a screen saver on a server?? Even the ones sporting MS operating systems usually run in the server room, and the only screen saver you would need is the power button on the monitor attached to it for the occasional maintenance.

    That said, in a company where the CTO does not see a problem with a screensaver running on a webserver (to stress the point again), I would probably update my resume and hit stepstone right after filing the request for a bigger network pipe.

    And I would file that request with a smile, not begrudgingly: the webserver might not need it, but there are so many other things you can do with the extra network bandwidth... like playing quake with another developer from a shop a few hundred miles away ;-)
  • Ash 2013-04-08 07:23
    Would threatening to apply a length of pipe to the head help resolve the issue? Pipes, the cause and solution of so many problems!
  • ¯\(°_o)/¯ I DUNNO LOL 2013-04-08 07:23
    After a few moments, he looked at the log and when the screen saver kicked it, it monopolized the entire processor on their dual CPU box.
    TRWTF is how the screen saver kicked the log. It could have stubbed a toe from that! Maybe he should have used a bucket instead?
  • Paul T 2013-04-08 07:24
    The point was to show that it wasn't the t3 line that was causing the slow down, it was his idiot configuration of the server. We got way better performance out of way less capable hardware just by configuring it better. And by using a 486 running Linux with only a text console, he couldn't fuck it up with fancy screen savers.
  • F 2013-04-08 07:29
    Paul T:
    The point was to show that it wasn't the t3 line that was causing the slow down, it was his idiot configuration of the server. We got way better performance out of way less capable hardware just by configuring it better. And by using a 486 running Linux with only a text console, he couldn't fuck it up with fancy screen savers.


    Come off it. A CTO of that calibre could fuck anything up.
  • Tractor 2013-04-08 07:39
    F:
    Paul T:
    The point was to show that it wasn't the t3 line that was causing the slow down, it was his idiot configuration of the server. We got way better performance out of way less capable hardware just by configuring it better. And by using a 486 running Linux with only a text console, he couldn't fuck it up with fancy screen savers.


    Come off it. A CTO of that calibre could fuck anything up.


    Like with a heavy duty ascii art screensaver.

    while true; do sl; done;
  • Geoff 2013-04-08 07:46
    faoileag:
    Can anybody please tell me why you would run a screen saver on a server??


    Because you have a display attached obviously. It was probably a crt that you did not want to cycle on and off rapidly and also should not display a single image for long periods (though this was never much of an issue with color displays). Even in those days lots of them were energy star and would go to standby after a while; so screen savers sorta made sense; simply blanking was probably the best choice.

    faoileag:
    That said, in a company where the CTO does not see a problem with a screensaver running on a webserver (to stress the point again), I would probably update my resume and hit stepstone right after filing the request for a bigger network pipe.


    Yes you should do that today. I think you are seriously underestimating just how immature much of, though not all of, the industry was when the hardware in question was in wide use. While virtually nobody in an IT specific role today would be that clueless; it was not nearly so uncommon in the mid '90s.

    It was also not uncommon in those days for the web server to be a single machine with no redundancy in tower(not rack) configuration to be sitting on the floor of the telephone DMARC room with its monitor and keyboard precariously set on top of it. There might have been a UPS on the floor next to it if you were lucky and the server would actually be plugged into it if you were very lucky.
  • Pista 2013-04-08 07:50
    I would laugh on this story, but unfortunately Mario is not the only idiot whose sole competence is to configure fancy screensavers. The story recalled me painful memories and now I just cry.

    PS: Even though I'm opposed to the death penalty, I'd send without hesitation all the Marios to the chair.
  • drake 2013-04-08 08:01
    Geoff:
    faoileag:
    Can anybody please tell me why you would run a screen saver on a server??


    Because you have a display attached obviously. It was probably a crt that you did not want to cycle on and off rapidly and also should not display a single image for long periods (though this was never much of an issue with color displays). Even in those days lots of them were energy star and would go to standby after a while; so screen savers sorta made sense; simply blanking was probably the best choice.

    faoileag:
    That said, in a company where the CTO does not see a problem with a screensaver running on a webserver (to stress the point again), I would probably update my resume and hit stepstone right after filing the request for a bigger network pipe.


    Yes you should do that today. I think you are seriously underestimating just how immature much of, though not all of, the industry was when the hardware in question was in wide use. While virtually nobody in an IT specific role today would be that clueless; it was not nearly so uncommon in the mid '90s.

    It was also not uncommon in those days for the web server to be a single machine with no redundancy in tower(not rack) configuration to be sitting on the floor of the telephone DMARC room with its monitor and keyboard precariously set on top of it. There might have been a UPS on the floor next to it if you were lucky and the server would actually be plugged into it if you were very lucky.



    Woah - you actually beleive that it is uncommon today for IT to be that clueless?
  • Doctor_of_Ineptitude 2013-04-08 08:09
    Why is everyone missing the obvious? Mario wanted a fatter internet connection and Paul was becoming a hindrance in his plan by claiming an alternate explanation for slowness.
    That is why Mario is the CTO, not Paul.
  • ubersoldat 2013-04-08 08:10
    I'm not sure which is TRWTF: a (so called) server OS with GUI or the people who evangelist it.
  • ZoomST 2013-04-08 08:13
    To get bigger network pipe, just do:
    1) configure the screensaver to create fatter pipes.
    2) ????
    3) Profit!
  • Geoff 2013-04-08 08:21
    drake:
    Woah - you actually beleive that it is uncommon today for IT to be that clueless?

    Alright, they may be that clueless but they are not ignorant of the forms. They have seen enough tv and movies to know what a data center rack should look like.

    So even if in the strictest cargo cult sense, we have to have a EIA rack with a KVM to make the magic happen, some stuff gets done just a little better as a result.
  • Vilx- 2013-04-08 08:31
    Pipe Recommendations

    As an aid to our customers, the following is a list of pipe recommendations for laying waterlines and other such uses around the drill site. Naturally, each drill site requirement or customer preference will cause variations. The following list is only offered as a general guide for pipe selection.

    1. All pipe is to be made of a long hole, surrounded by metal or plastic, centered around the hole.

    2. All pipe is to be holed throughout the entire length. Do not use holes of different length than the pipe.

    3. The ID (Inside Diameter) of all pipe must not exceed the OD (Outside Diameter). Othervise the hole will be on the outside.

    4. All pipe is to be supplied with nothing in the hole, so that water, steam or other stuff can be put inside at a later date.

    5. All pipe should be supplied without rust. This can be more readily applied at the job site. (Note! Some vendors are now able to supply pre-rusted pipe. If available in your area, this new product is recommended as it will save a great deal of time at the job site)

    6. A long pipe over 500ft (153m) in length should have the words LONG PIPE clearly painted on each end, so the drill crew will know it is a long pipe.

    7. Pipe over two miles (3,2 km) in length must also have the words LONG PIPE painted in the middle, so the crew will not have to walk the entire length of the pipe to determine whether it is a long pipe or short pipe.

    8. All pipe over 6in (152mm) in diameter must have the words LARGE PIPE painted on it, so the drill crew will not mistake it for a small pipe.

    9. Flanges should be used on all pipe. Flanges must have holes for bolts quite separate from the big hole in the middle.

    10. When ordering 90 deg, 45 deg or 30 deg elbows, be sure to specify right-hand or left-hand. Othervise you will end up going in the wrong direction.

    11. Be sure to specify to your vendor whether you want level, up-hill or down-hill pipe. If you use down-hill pipe for going up-hill, the water will flow the wrong way.

    12. All couplings should have either right-hand or left-hand threads. Do not mix the threads. Othervise, as the coupling is being screwed on the pipe, it is unscrewing from the other.
  • faoileag 2013-04-08 08:39
    Geoff:
    faoileag:
    Can anybody please tell me why you would run a screen saver on a server??

    Because you have a display attached obviously. It was probably a crt that you did not want to cycle on and off rapidly

    crt... I think I remember those... big square box that gets slimmer towards the rear, amirite? But seriously: yes, you need a monitor attached to a server. But you wouldn't powercycle it rapidly - you would switch it on, do your stuff, switch it off again and then it would sit there powerless for days or maybe even weeks. Even in the nineties, server administration was not something you would do several times a day.

    Geoff:
    faoileag:
    That said, in a company where the CTO does not see a problem with a screensaver running on a webserver (to stress the point again), I would probably update my resume and hit stepstone right after filing the request for a bigger network pipe.

    Yes you should do that today.

    No need to do that at my current company, thank goodness for that :-)

    But although one single incident in the past has never been enough, on one or two occasions the powers in charge and their idea about running a shop did indeed have influence on my decision to search for employment elsewhere.
  • Martin 2013-04-08 09:02
    People complaining of slow website? In 1990?

    Please!
  • Ironside 2013-04-08 09:04
    Can anybody please tell me why you would run a screen saver on a server??


    To save the screen
  • faoileag 2013-04-08 09:15
    Martin:
    People complaining of slow website? In 1990? Please!

    In that day and age, "slow" was a different kind of slow than the one in common use today.

    I remember an email from 1996, when somebody was asking me if I could split my webpage (40k) into several pages, because "anything over 20k takes ages to load from my college access, if it finishes at all".

    Or some personal experience from 1995: with a 1200/1200 modem, a small (80k) gif took nearly an hour to load :-)

    But tell that to the kids today, and they won't believe you! ;-)
  • magnus 2013-04-08 09:16
    Because you had monitors attached. This was before the age of Remote Control of Windows and other servers.

    Novell Netware featured the best ever server screen saver.

    It was made up of one or more snakes running around the screen like in the good old computer game.

    Each snake would have a different color. The length and speed of the snake would indicate the load of the given CPU.

    Being 80x25 text mode it was also a quite efficient and "nice" running process...

    Magnus
  • NotAPussyLikePaul 2013-04-08 09:18
    Paul is a WTF too. Just tell the guy he is wrong and never ever would I have done a request for a bigger "network pipe".
  • Magnus 2013-04-08 09:19
    faoileag:
    Can anybody please tell me why you would run a screen saver on a server?? Even the ones sporting MS operating systems usually run in the server room, and the only screen saver you would need is the power button on the monitor attached to it for the occasional maintenance.


    Because you had monitors attached. This was before the age of Remote Control of Windows and other servers.

    You would og to the server room, put on your white lab coat - or a down jacket - and sit right there in the room working.


    Novell Netware featured the best ever server screen saver.

    It was made up of one or more snakes running around the screen like in the good old computer game.

    Each snake would have a different color. The length and speed of the snake would indicate the load of the given CPU.

    Perfect way to show the server load, no need to log on to the console to check.

    Being 80x25 text mode it was also a quite efficient and "nice" running process...

    Magnus
  • Lorne Kates 2013-04-08 09:35
    Take a video of the screensaver running.

    Disable the screen saver.

    Write a custom script to play the video (looped) after so many minutes of inactivity (and stop the video when the keyboard/mouse moves).

    Make sure the video is in a nice format, and the video player is hobbled to only use a fraction of the CPU the screen saver would. Hopefully playing a video is less expensive than constantly rendering the pipes.
  • faoileag 2013-04-08 09:35
    Magnus:
    faoileag:
    Can anybody please tell me why you would run a screen saver on a server?? Even the ones sporting MS operating systems usually run in the server room, and the only screen saver you would need is the power button on the monitor attached to it for the occasional maintenance.

    Because you had monitors attached.

    I see. You need a screensaver when there is more than one monitor attached ;-)

    SCNR
  • Lorne Kates 2013-04-08 09:36
    OR if you want to get real fancy:

    Set up a second computer with the pipes screen saver.

    Hack a KVM so act like a screen saver-- IE, when there's no input from A for a certain amount of time, switch to B. As soon as there's any activity on A, switch back to it. Ignore all input from B.

    Disable the screen saved on A.
  • jello 2013-04-08 09:43
    If you run an OS that an idiot can configure, an idiot will configure it.
  • David 2013-04-08 09:56
    Windows NT, he argued, was so easy to use that any idiot could set it up.

    ... and many do. What Paul apparently did not realize is that the idiot part was a requirement at that company.

    Vilx-:
    Pipe Recommendations

    As an aid to our customers, the following is a list of pipe recommendations for laying waterlines and other such uses around the drill site. Naturally, each drill site requirement or customer preference will cause variations. The following list is only offered as a general guide for pipe selection.

    <...>

    3. The ID (Inside Diameter) of all pipe must not exceed the OD (Outside Diameter). Othervise the hole will be on the outside.

    <...>

    6. A long pipe over 500ft (153m) in length should have the words LONG PIPE clearly painted on each end, so the drill crew will know it is a long pipe.

    7. Pipe over two miles (3,2 km) in length must also have the words LONG PIPE painted in the middle, so the crew will not have to walk the entire length of the pipe to determine whether it is a long pipe or short pipe.

    <...>


    Broken English and snark aside, this reads scarily similar to some of the more WTF bureaucraticese guidelines I have received.
  • VAXcat 2013-04-08 09:58
    The screensaver wouldn't have been an issue if Windows (any version) did a halfway decent job of task scheduling, memory allocation and sharing. Of course, if Windows did that, the practice of dedicating one machine to one task wouldn't have caught on. Then, we wouldn't have de-evolved into the current sorry state, where VMware is the defacto operating system, and the basic scheduleable task of work for each job is...an entire copy of Windows and one application...
  • MB 2013-04-08 10:03
    Obviously the real solution at that time would be to install a 3d accelarator in the server!
  • operagost 2013-04-08 10:03
    ubersoldat:
    I'm not sure which is TRWTF: a (so called) server OS with GUI or the people who evangelist it.

    I'm not sure which is TRWTF: an OS zealot who thinks every server task is a nail, or the horrible grammar of his smug posts.
  • Yoshi 2013-04-08 10:06
    Anybody else read Mario's dialogue in Charles Martinet's voice?

    Also, TRWTF is running an OpenGL program on a server
  • operagost 2013-04-08 10:09
    faoileag:
    Martin:
    People complaining of slow website? In 1990? Please!

    In that day and age, "slow" was a different kind of slow than the one in common use today.

    I remember an email from 1996, when somebody was asking me if I could split my webpage (40k) into several pages, because "anything over 20k takes ages to load from my college access, if it finishes at all".

    Or some personal experience from 1995: with a 1200/1200 modem, a small (80k) gif took nearly an hour to load :-)

    But tell that to the kids today, and they won't believe you! ;-)

    This 40 year old kid thinks you must have had a really noisy phone line, because that should have taken less than 12 minutes.
  • operagost 2013-04-08 10:11
    VAXcat:
    The screensaver wouldn't have been an issue if Windows (any version) did a halfway decent job of task scheduling, memory allocation and sharing.

    Because there totally haven't been any improvements in that regard since 1996. *sigh*
  • faoileag 2013-04-08 10:20
    operagost:
    faoileag:

    Or some personal experience from 1995: with a 1200/1200 modem, a small (80k) gif took nearly an hour to load :-)

    But tell that to the kids today, and they won't believe you! ;-)

    This 40 year old kid thinks you must have had a really noisy phone line, because that should have taken less than 12 minutes.

    Either that or the service provider didn't let me have the full bandwidth the modem was capable of. Given the state of the line from the ground up to my bedsit, probably a combination of both :-)
  • RichP 2013-04-08 10:24
    Geoff:


    It was also not uncommon in those days for the web server to be a single machine with no redundancy in tower(not rack) configuration to be sitting on the floor of the telephone DMARC room with its monitor and keyboard precariously set on top of it. There might have been a UPS on the floor next to it if you were lucky and the server would actually be plugged into it if you were very lucky.


    You forgot the $4.99 power strip (with brightly glowing power swtich!) plugged into the UPS so that the web server, the monitor, the KVM, the firewall, the DNS server the, router, the file server, the modem bank and the email server can all plug into the UPS.

    Then CTO asks "why does the UPS have such poor runtime? it's a big expensive UPS, it should run longer than 5 minutes" (um, yea, if you load it to 95% of its capacity, never change the batteries, have extended outages 3 times per summer, and keep the ambient temp in the "server room" at 88F...).

    (side note: we had an email server with redundant power supplies... that used a single power cord. Also had a webserver with real dual supplies (each with its own cord) which inevitably ended up plugged into the same power strip.

  • Andrew 2013-04-08 10:25
    NotAPussyLikePaul:
    Paul is a WTF too. Just tell the guy he is wrong and never ever would I have done a request for a bigger "network pipe".


    Yeah, Paul screwed up at least 3 times here:

    1) His only explanation to his boss was "It was something really simple", instead of actually explaining the problem the first time.
    2) "Proving" the source of the issue to his boss via a simulated environment rather than just showing him the test logs he already had (as was mentioned).
    3) Giving up completely in the end.
  • PG4 2013-04-08 10:25
    Wow. Had something like this happen at our shop back in the 90s also. Slightly different. The machine in question was SUN server running Ingres and also serving files over NFS. It supported an app on less than 10 disk-less SUN clients.

    The architect of the application thought the SUN/Ingres combination just couldn't be beat. So the application that was running just fine on a VAX Cluster had to be re-written. After a few years and dropped support for a bunch of other packages used to glue everything together, the application was re-written again and put back on the VAX/Alpha Cluster.

    The architect was PITA to work with, and only one sysadmin, Todd that was the source many other WTFs, agreed to be part of the project.

    Todd kept complaining about the users calling him with performance issues, and when he would go look at the SUN server he could never find any problem. Around the same time, the users said everything got better, never mind.

    One of the other sysadmins figured it out one day. He happened to walk by the SUN server and see what was on the screen. Todd was real lazy, he never logged off of the console as root, and after some time, Xswarm would fire up as screen saver.

    One WTF is graphics heads on DB servers.
  • Pero perić 2013-04-08 10:25
    Thank you again Olaf for another day of spoiled surprise.
  • Steve 2013-04-08 11:04
    HA!

    Had something similar happen back in '96 while working for a large cell phone provider who eventually started selling iphones and became really big. We were contracted to deploy Win95 and NT 4.0 file/print servers. In that case the CTO had decided we buy these high end DEC Alpha servers. I seem to remember those things being $75k each.

    It wasn't the CTO that put the 3D pipes on, it was actually the server admin who thought it was cool how fast it ran. That is until users complained about speed accessing their files. A day or two of this, and I stuck my nose in there and identified the CPU issue with the screen saver.

    That solved the performance problem. There was a bigger problem though. We'd bought 4 servers, had deployed only one of them with the other 3 being slated for different sites. But because the hardware kept failing, to keep the one deployed server running we had to scavenge pieces from the other 3. DEC was slow at delivering replacement parts. I think after the CPU failed for the 2nd or 3rd time finally someone convinced the CTO that being a DEC only shop wasn't such a great idea, and they brought in Compaq servers.
  • Coyne 2013-04-08 11:04
    Just being devil's advocate here, as I'm sure it is all quite reasonable. So let's take a peek inside the manager's brain:

    1) Even though the server is in a closet, from time to time visiting dignitaries will be shown around in there.

    2) There must be something impressive for the dignitaries to see. Servers that just sit there are not impressive.

    3) What could possibly be more impressive than an OpenGL Pipes screen saver, drawing big pipes? They prove we are open and impressive. They also show we have big pipes!

    4) But of course the big pipes must be drawn as fast as possible, because otherwise they're not impressive.

    5) Everyone knows that screen savers do not use CPU. I use one on my desktop and my programs are still running happily away when I switch off the screen saver.

    6) Big pipes are impressive: Both on the screen and to the web. We definitely want everyone to know we have big pipes!

    7) Everyone knows if the web is slow, it's because the pipes are too small. We need a bigger pipe!

    8) I am the boss. I am in charge. Therefore, I'm smarter than the peon who says the web is slow because of the screen saver. I know we need a bigger pipe!

    9) This is a great company! I know this is true because we have big pipes!
  • Rysto 2013-04-08 11:26
    > Windows NT, he argued, was so easy to use that any idiot could set it up. This made
    > Mario the prime candidate to configure their behemoth of a web server

    Nice.
  • OS Agnocist 2013-04-08 11:33
    What you have there is a Chief TOOL Officer. One who has drunk so fully (and repeatedly) of the MS Kool-Aid that they believe any BS that is sent out on the monthly newsletter about how great microsoft is. In some cases the right answer is MS, in others it's *nix, in others it's Apple.
  • Unknown Dan 2013-04-08 11:33
    I too had to disable the pipes screensaver on our NT server. Couldn't figure out why sometimes I could access VSS and other times I couldn't.
    <Great story icon>
  • Dan 2013-04-08 11:36
    I encountered the same problem (circa 1999) - I think it was the 3D flying text rather than pipes, and we didn't have the idiot CTO to insist on keeping the screensaver. It took me a few days to figure it out, since the server always worked fine and had no load when you were looking at it.
  • JiP 2013-04-08 11:39
    My mom once had not so much as a screen saver, but a wallpaper installed.
    She complained about her PC being slow.

    I checked the background picture, it was a 350k jpeg.
    Turns out, when used, in memory, it took up 16M, which was half her RAM back then. Changed wallpaper back to 'none' and the PC again was behaving as well as could be expected from any machine with those specs at the time.

    Just a tad different memory effect than tiling a 3k pattern bmp as a wallpaper...
  • Wayne West 2013-04-08 12:07
    This actually happened to us, though not on a web server. I was doing database and server admin work for a police department back in the 90's, and around 4:15pm this one precinct would call up saying their server was down. We'd remote in and it seemed fine. Then 10-15 minutes later it would die. Turns out the precinct admin set the server's screen saver to Pipes because it was pretty, the server was in the admin's office.

    We then issued a memo that all server screen savers would be the login screen saver and deleted all of the 3D ones.

    Definitely one of the best jobs that I've had. We had secretaries using magnets to hold boot floppies to their copy stands, we had people disconnecting coax cables from the T adapter, all sorts of fun! We actually ran Office over the network because we didn't have enough hard disk space for both Windows and Office.
  • JJ 2013-04-08 12:26
    Martin:
    People complaining of slow website? In 1990?

    Please!

    Please learn the difference between "1990" and "the 1990's."
  • herby 2013-04-08 12:33
    Then there is the case of "optimizing".
    A company wanted to "optimize" their operating system (this was, thankfully, before Microsoft), so they did an analysis of their tasks on the operating system. They figured out that a certain loop ran quite a bit, so a big meeting was called and they looked at the instructions that this often used loop was executing, and optimized these instructions in the CPUs microcode. Then then started their operating system, and again looked for places to optimize. Again this same loop was using a big percentage of the operating system time, and they needed to optimize again. This loop proceeded for quite some time until someone noticed that this optimization was taking place in the idle loop.
    Yup, they optimized the idle loop.
  • Bill Coleman 2013-04-08 12:46
    A REAL CTO would ask Paul what he did to fix it, and accept his explanation after seeing proof.

    A REAL CTO wouldn't worry about which screen saver to run on a server that no one sees.

    Makes me wonder how this idiot got to be CTO in the first place.
  • Peteris 2013-04-08 12:50
    As far as I recall, the dual 200mhz pentium server mentioned in the OP would not be capable of playing a full-screen resolution video in any way whatsoever.

    What 'nice format'? At that year, commercially produced DVDs was the bleeding edge format, and you couldn't produce mpeg video files without specialized, expensive software. And that wasn't available on the torrent sites that didn't exist back then.
  • chubertdev 2013-04-08 13:01
    Lorne Kates:
    Take a video of the screensaver running.

    Disable the screen saver.

    Write a custom script to play the video (looped) after so many minutes of inactivity (and stop the video when the keyboard/mouse moves).

    Make sure the video is in a nice format, and the video player is hobbled to only use a fraction of the CPU the screen saver would. Hopefully playing a video is less expensive than constantly rendering the pipes.


    "We've implemented a static pipe-rendering policy to ensure the optimization and the fat-ness of our pipes."
  • webhamster 2013-04-08 13:02
    Geoff:

    It was also not uncommon in those days for the web server to be a single machine with no redundancy in tower(not rack) configuration to be sitting on the floor of the telephone DMARC room with its monitor and keyboard precariously set on top of it. There might have been a UPS on the floor next to it if you were lucky and the server would actually be plugged into it if you were very lucky.


    I believe we may have worked together at some point...but you forgot to mention the primary AND secondary DNS being on the same server too.
  • John 2013-04-08 13:15
    Priceless!!!

    Vilx-:
    Pipe Recommendations

    As an aid to our customers, the following is a list of pipe recommendations for laying waterlines and other such uses around the drill site. Naturally, each drill site requirement or customer preference will cause variations. The following list is only offered as a general guide for pipe selection.

    1. All pipe is to be made of a long hole, surrounded by metal or plastic, centered around the hole.

    2. All pipe is to be holed throughout the entire length. Do not use holes of different length than the pipe.

    3. The ID (Inside Diameter) of all pipe must not exceed the OD (Outside Diameter). Othervise the hole will be on the outside.

    4. All pipe is to be supplied with nothing in the hole, so that water, steam or other stuff can be put inside at a later date.

    5. All pipe should be supplied without rust. This can be more readily applied at the job site. (Note! Some vendors are now able to supply pre-rusted pipe. If available in your area, this new product is recommended as it will save a great deal of time at the job site)

    6. A long pipe over 500ft (153m) in length should have the words LONG PIPE clearly painted on each end, so the drill crew will know it is a long pipe.

    7. Pipe over two miles (3,2 km) in length must also have the words LONG PIPE painted in the middle, so the crew will not have to walk the entire length of the pipe to determine whether it is a long pipe or short pipe.

    8. All pipe over 6in (152mm) in diameter must have the words LARGE PIPE painted on it, so the drill crew will not mistake it for a small pipe.

    9. Flanges should be used on all pipe. Flanges must have holes for bolts quite separate from the big hole in the middle.

    10. When ordering 90 deg, 45 deg or 30 deg elbows, be sure to specify right-hand or left-hand. Othervise you will end up going in the wrong direction.

    11. Be sure to specify to your vendor whether you want level, up-hill or down-hill pipe. If you use down-hill pipe for going up-hill, the water will flow the wrong way.

    12. All couplings should have either right-hand or left-hand threads. Do not mix the threads. Othervise, as the coupling is being screwed on the pipe, it is unscrewing from the other.
  • snoofle 2013-04-08 13:18
    webhamster:
    Geoff:

    It was also not uncommon in those days for the web server to be a single machine with no redundancy in tower(not rack) configuration to be sitting on the floor of the telephone DMARC room with its monitor and keyboard precariously set on top of it. There might have been a UPS on the floor next to it if you were lucky and the server would actually be plugged into it if you were very lucky.


    I believe we may have worked together at some point...but you forgot to mention the primary AND secondary DNS being on the same server too.
    But...but... it takes less resources to run it that way!
  • Magnus 2013-04-08 13:30
    faoileag:
    Magnus:
    faoileag:
    Can anybody please tell me why you would run a screen saver on a server?? Even the ones sporting MS operating systems usually run in the server room, and the only screen saver you would need is the power button on the monitor attached to it for the occasional maintenance.

    Because you had monitors attached.

    I see. You need a screensaver when there is more than one monitor attached ;-)

    SCNR


    Because pressing a key (or touching a mouse, if you had one attached) would be quicker.

    Additionally, with screensavers that give interesting info (like then one Novell Netware sported) keeping the monitor on is a good thing.

    Magnus
  • HowItWorks 2013-04-08 13:34
    Coyne:
    Just being devil's advocate here, as I'm sure it is all quite reasonable. So let's take a peek inside the manager's brain:
    ...
    5) Everyone knows that screen savers do not use CPU. I use one on my desktop and my programs are still running happily away when I switch off the screen saver.
    ...
    I recall seeing an article around 2000, plus or minus 2 or 3 years, that a study found the top user of CPU by software category ($drumroll) Screensavers.

    iirc, that was PCs in business and home use. Not sure if that included PC's used as servers.
  • justme 2013-04-08 15:22
    webhamster:
    Geoff:

    It was also not uncommon in those days for the web server to be a single machine with no redundancy in tower(not rack) configuration to be sitting on the floor of the telephone DMARC room with its monitor and keyboard precariously set on top of it. There might have been a UPS on the floor next to it if you were lucky and the server would actually be plugged into it if you were very lucky.


    I believe we may have worked together at some point...but you forgot to mention the primary AND secondary DNS being on the same server too.

    You also forgot to mention the time when the secretary who substituted as network admin at the remote site just happened to mention that she couldn't figure out where that blasted beeping was coming from
  • Jazz 2013-04-08 15:29
    Coyne:
    So let's take a peek inside the manager's brain:

    8) I am the boss. I am in charge. Therefore, I'm smarter than the peon


    Aaaaand there it is. We found the root cause of the performance issues!
  • jay 2013-04-08 15:58
    faoileag:
    I remember an email from 1996, when somebody was asking me if I could split my webpage (40k) into several pages, because "anything over 20k takes ages to load from my college access, if it finishes at all".

    Or some personal experience from 1995: with a 1200/1200 modem, a small (80k) gif took nearly an hour to load :-)

    But tell that to the kids today, and they won't believe you! ;-)


    You had 1200 baud modems? Wow! When I started in this business, we had 330 baud modems and ASR 33 teletypes. I remember when we got the 1200 baud modems -- and the DecWriters that could actually print at that blazing speed.

    I recall when I first starting using the Internet, I guess in the 1990s sometime, I was browsing around what was out there and found AT&T's web site. Their home page had a GIF that filled the screen -- maybe 640x480 or 800x600 back then. Over our dial-up connection it took several minutes to load. Okay, pretty picture. So I clicked a button to take me to the next screen. Another full-screen image that took several minutes to load.

    After 3 or 4 screens it occurred to me that I had re-learned a valuable lesson: An application that seems way cool on my computer may not work so well for others. In this case, I'm sure that when they viewed the web site at their offices over a high speed local network, or from a site with T1 lines, those pictures popped right up and the sight seemed really cool. But for the majority of users, who in those days would be running 14.4k or less over dialup lines, it was almost unusable.
  • jay 2013-04-08 16:05
    ¯\(°_o)/¯ I DUNNO LOL:
    After a few moments, he looked at the log and when the screen saver kicked it, it monopolized the entire processor on their dual CPU box.
    TRWTF is how the screen saver kicked the log. It could have stubbed a toe from that! Maybe he should have used a bucket instead?


    He should run the overflow from the pipes into the bit bucket.
  • mizchief 2013-04-08 17:51
    Well duh, you can run a website with out generating the tubes!
  • da Doctah 2013-04-08 17:52
    Vilx-:
    Pipe Recommendations

    As an aid to our customers, the following is a list of pipe recommendations for laying waterlines and other such uses around the drill site. Naturally, each drill site requirement or customer preference will cause variations. The following list is only offered as a general guide for pipe selection.

    1. All pipe is to be made of a long hole, surrounded by metal or plastic, centered around the hole.

    2. All pipe is to be holed throughout the entire length. Do not use holes of different length than the pipe.

    3. The ID (Inside Diameter) of all pipe must not exceed the OD (Outside Diameter). Othervise the hole will be on the outside.

    4. All pipe is to be supplied with nothing in the hole, so that water, steam or other stuff can be put inside at a later date.

    5. All pipe should be supplied without rust. This can be more readily applied at the job site. (Note! Some vendors are now able to supply pre-rusted pipe. If available in your area, this new product is recommended as it will save a great deal of time at the job site)

    6. A long pipe over 500ft (153m) in length should have the words LONG PIPE clearly painted on each end, so the drill crew will know it is a long pipe.

    7. Pipe over two miles (3,2 km) in length must also have the words LONG PIPE painted in the middle, so the crew will not have to walk the entire length of the pipe to determine whether it is a long pipe or short pipe.

    8. All pipe over 6in (152mm) in diameter must have the words LARGE PIPE painted on it, so the drill crew will not mistake it for a small pipe.

    9. Flanges should be used on all pipe. Flanges must have holes for bolts quite separate from the big hole in the middle.

    10. When ordering 90 deg, 45 deg or 30 deg elbows, be sure to specify right-hand or left-hand. Othervise you will end up going in the wrong direction.

    11. Be sure to specify to your vendor whether you want level, up-hill or down-hill pipe. If you use down-hill pipe for going up-hill, the water will flow the wrong way.

    12. All couplings should have either right-hand or left-hand threads. Do not mix the threads. Othervise, as the coupling is being screwed on the pipe, it is unscrewing from the other.


    There needs to be something in there about teakettles at random points of flexion.
  • Shinobu 2013-04-08 18:34
    I've read a story very similar to this before (although possibly with 3D Flowerbox). I thought rehashes were supposed to be called ‘Classic WTF: Title’?
  • Paul T 2013-04-08 18:47
    Andrew:
    NotAPussyLikePaul:
    Paul is a WTF too. Just tell the guy he is wrong and never ever would I have done a request for a bigger "network pipe".


    Yeah, Paul screwed up at least 3 times here:

    1) His only explanation to his boss was "It was something really simple", instead of actually explaining the problem the first time.
    2) "Proving" the source of the issue to his boss via a simulated environment rather than just showing him the test logs he already had (as was mentioned).
    3) Giving up completely in the end.


    You screwed up at least 3 times here:
    1) You assume that the obfuscated version posted here is exactly how it happened.
    2) You assume I didn't demonstrate to the CTO how much slower it was when the screen saver kicked in. I literally had a download going on the fancy server with a speed meter, and showed him "slow, wiggle the mouse, fast". Didn't help.
    3) You think once an idiot CTO makes up his mind about something that any force in the world other than a CEO will change it.
  • Paul T 2013-04-08 18:48
    Bill Coleman:

    Makes me wonder how this idiot got to be CTO in the first place.


    Friend of the founder, of course.
  • notchulance 2013-04-08 18:51
    Man.. back in the Day..! Hosting your own!
  • robbak 2013-04-08 19:00
    Vilx-:
    Pipe Recommendations

    As an aid to our customers, the following is a list of pipe recommendations for laying waterlines and other such uses around the drill site. Naturally, each drill site requirement or customer preference will cause variations. The following list is only offered as a general guide for pipe selection.

    ...

    12. All couplings should have either right-hand or left-hand threads. Do not mix the threads. Othervise, as the coupling is being screwed on the pipe, it is unscrewing from the other.


    This one's the kicker. Anyone who puts a smidgen of thought into it will know that using a coupler that 'mixes the threads' is the way to avoid this 'problem'.
  • Romojo 2013-04-08 19:36
    Would have been cheaper to turn off the screensaver on the Server, buy a small machine to do nothing but run the screensaver and (maybe) switch around the monitors so the CTO/CIO didn't know.

    I worked with a guy once who said that their company had a special machine just for the auditors. When they came in to check, that was where they looked. Everything was perfect. Of course that wasn't the live machine, but details, details...
  • Bill C. 2013-04-08 20:08
    robbak:
    Vilx-:
    Pipe Recommendations

    As an aid to our customers, the following is a list of pipe recommendations for laying waterlines and other such uses around the drill site. Naturally, each drill site requirement or customer preference will cause variations. The following list is only offered as a general guide for pipe selection.

    ...

    12. All couplings should have either right-hand or left-hand threads. Do not mix the threads. Othervise, as the coupling is being screwed on the pipe, it is unscrewing from the other.
    This one's the kicker. Anyone who puts a smidgen of thought into it will know that using a coupler that 'mixes the threads' is the way to avoid this 'problem'.
    That's it! That's it! Where were you when the Chief Executive needed you? Your advice would have avoided all that unscrewing trouble after laying pipe at the drill site.
  • bgodot 2013-04-08 20:34
    Paul T:
    The company in question was named after an unusually colored fresh water crustacean.


    Blue Oyster Cult?
  • Simon 2013-04-08 21:11
    Coyne:
    So let's take a peek inside the manager's brain:


    Through the left ear, or the right?
  • Len 2013-04-08 21:47
    "The 1990s, a simpler time, when ... the most amusing thing a computer could do was render 3D pipes, or flying toasters"

    Surely you're joking. The 90s was a golden age of video games, producing genre-defining classics. Wing Commander, Dune 2, Doom, to name a few.

    Did I miss something here? Was that meant to be a joke?
  • Murk 2013-04-08 22:07
    Peteris:
    As far as I recall, the dual 200mhz pentium server mentioned in the OP would not be capable of playing a full-screen resolution video in any way whatsoever.

    What 'nice format'? At that year, commercially produced DVDs was the bleeding edge format, and you couldn't produce mpeg video files without specialized, expensive software. And that wasn't available on the torrent sites that didn't exist back then.


    mIRC and BBS's were your friends back then young padawan.
  • Murk 2013-04-08 22:08
    Len:
    "The 1990s, a simpler time, when ... the most amusing thing a computer could do was render 3D pipes, or flying toasters"

    Surely you're joking. The 90s was a golden age of video games, producing genre-defining classics. Wing Commander, Dune 2, Doom, to name a few.

    Did I miss something here? Was that meant to be a joke?



    Sir, I salute you 1000 times for your dune 2 reference, I just got a tear in my eye. Best. RTS. EVAR... (Next to C&C: Red Alert that is)
  • Josh 2013-04-08 22:35
    Paul T:
    The company in question was named after an unusually colored fresh water crustacean.


    Zoidberg Inc?
  • Cheong 2013-04-08 23:38
    Medinoc:
    TRWTF is that a bleeping screen saver would not run with reduced CPU priority. Especially a multi-thread one.

    Just want to remind you that we didn't have multithreading at that time. The closest thing we have is named fiber and is very difficult to write and manage.

    Btw, since this is a dual-CPU machine, and I don't think the screensaver is written to consume multiple CPU, why on earth does it supposed to affect web server performance that way? At most it should have affected half of the requests only.
  • Dave 2013-04-09 00:35
    Geoff:
    Yes you should do that today. I think you are seriously underestimating just how immature much of, though not all of, the industry was when the hardware in question was in wide use. While virtually nobody in an IT specific role today would be that clueless; it was not nearly so uncommon in the mid '90s.

    It was also not uncommon in those days for the web server to be a single machine with no redundancy in tower(not rack) configuration to be sitting on the floor of the telephone DMARC room with its monitor and keyboard precariously set on top of it. There might have been a UPS on the floor next to it if you were lucky and the server would actually be plugged into it if you were very lucky.


    Actually it was in pizza-box configuration (Sparc 1+). It ran for years without a UPS, until we finally had a power cut and found out on trying to restart it that at some point in the past it had lost its superblock.
  • Steve The Cynic 2013-04-09 06:20
    Cheong:
    Just want to remind you that we didn't have multithreading at that time. The closest thing we have is named fiber and is very difficult to write and manage.

    I'm not in the mood to be polite here, so I'll just speak my mind without the usual censors. What you said here is bollocks (translation: utter bullshit).

    Windows NT 3.1 had threads FFS. ALL(*) 32- or 64-bit versions of Windows support threads, right from the very beginning, in 1993. You know, twenty years ago. OpenGL wasn't introduced in Windows NT until 3.51, so there was multithreading available for the programmers of the screensavers.

    (*) The bogus Win32S API add-on for Windows (not-NT) 3.1x did not support threads, but that was (a) bogus and (b) not a 32- or 64-bit version of Windows.
  • Ol' Bob 2013-04-09 07:21
    Um...just a guess here...he got to be CTO because his brother-in-law was the President and his father-in-law was the CEO..?
  • Ol' Bob 2013-04-09 07:33
    faoileag:
    But tell that to the kids today, and they won't believe you! ;-)

    Right! We used to get up at 10:30 at night, half an hour before we went to bed, eat a lump of cold poison for breakfast, work 27 hours a day down in server room, PAY the CTO for permission to come to work, and when we got home our mum and dad would kill us all and dance on our graves singing "Hallelujah"!

    Pass me a glass of that wine, Obediah...
  • pscs 2013-04-09 08:54
    Len:
    The 90s was a golden age of video games, producing genre-defining classics. Wing Commander


    Oh, wow. Wing Commander - almost forgotten about that. That's the game that I imported a SoundBlaster all the way from the US (to the UK) for (you couldn't buy decent sound cards in the UK at the time).

    I'm fairly sure I've still got a copy somewhere - but bet it won't run on a Windows 7 PC... (and I'd have to find a 5.25" drive somewhere)

    They should relaunch it - it'd run easily on a mobile phone/tablet nowadays.
  • RichP 2013-04-09 10:17
    Ol' Bob:
    Um...just a guess here...he got to be CTO because his brother-in-law was the President and his father-in-law was the CEO..?

    That's part of it, plus his daughter was sick.
  • Mason Wheeler 2013-04-09 12:34
    pscs:
    Len:
    The 90s was a golden age of video games, producing genre-defining classics. Wing Commander


    Oh, wow. Wing Commander - almost forgotten about that. That's the game that I imported a SoundBlaster all the way from the US (to the UK) for (you couldn't buy decent sound cards in the UK at the time).

    I'm fairly sure I've still got a copy somewhere - but bet it won't run on a Windows 7 PC...

    It probably would under DOSBox.
  • chubertdev 2013-04-09 12:59
    Murk:
    Sir, I salute you 1000 times for your dune 2 reference, I just got a tear in my eye. Best. RTS. EVAR... (Next to C&C: Red Alert that is)


    Red Alert 2, I assume you mean. Frank Klepacki has GREAT music to work to.
  • PeterL 2013-04-09 15:54
    I worked in a company where this sort of thing was done. But it wasn't pipes, it was something called Night Bird.
  • TheCPUWizard 2013-04-09 17:49
    You had 1200 baud modems? Wow! When I started in this business, we had 330 baud modems and ASR 33 teletypes. I remember when we got the 1200 baud modems -- and the DecWriters that could actually print at that blazing speed.


    If you are going to quote hisory...get it right. ASR-33's used 110 baud modems (10cps, but 11 bits per char), then came 300 baud modems (30 cps, now and forever 10 bits per character). Extra bonus point for what 134.5 baud was used for, and why!

    FWIW: I still own (And occasionally turn on) a 1968 DEC PDP-8/e along with 3 ASR/33 and a few DecWriters (LA120's). PArtialy for the "good old days" feeling, partially to heat the basement, and dry out all the dampness...
  • Silverhill 2013-04-09 20:04
    Vilx-:
    Pipe Recommendations

    As an aid to our customers, the following is a list of pipe recommendations for laying waterlines and other such uses around the drill site. Naturally, each drill site requirement or customer preference will cause variations. The following list is only offered as a general guide for pipe selection.

    1. All pipe is to be made of a long hole, surrounded by metal or plastic, centered around the hole.

    2. All pipe is to be holed throughout the entire length. Do not use holes of length different from that of the pipe.

    3. The ID (Inside Diameter) of all pipe must not exceed the OD (Outside Diameter). Otherwise the hole will be on the outside.

    4. All pipe is to be supplied with nothing in the hole, so that water, steam, or other stuff can be put inside at a later date.

    5. All pipe should be supplied without rust. This can be more readily applied at the job site. (Note! Some vendors are now able to supply pre-rusted pipe. If available in your area, this new product is recommended as it will save a great deal of time at the job site)

    6. A pipe over 500 ft (153 m) in length should have the words LONG PIPE clearly painted on each end, so the drill crew will know it is a long pipe.

    7. Pipe over two miles (3.2 km) in length must also have the words LONG PIPE painted in the middle, so the crew will not have to walk the entire length of the pipe to determine whether it is a long pipe or short pipe.

    8. All pipe over 60 inches (1.52 m) in diameter must have the words LARGE PIPE painted on it, so the drill crew will not mistake it for small pipe.

    9. Flanges should be used on all pipe. Flanges must have holes for bolts quite separate from the big hole in the middle.

    10. When ordering 90°, 45°, or 30° elbows, be sure to specify right-hand or left-hand. Otherwise you will end up going in the wrong direction.

    11. Be sure to specify to your vendor whether you want level, up-hill or down-hill pipe. If you use down-hill pipe for going up-hill, the water will flow the wrong way.

    12. All couplings should have either right-hand or left-hand threads. Do not mix the threads. Otherwise, as the coupling is being screwed on the pipe, it is unscrewing from the other.
    A few additions I've seen:

    13. All pipes shorter than 1/8" (3 mm) are very uneconomical to use, requiring many joints. They are generally known as washers.

    14. Joints in pipes for piping water must be watertight. Those in pipes for compressed air, however, need only be airtight.

    15. Lengths of pipes may be welded or soldered together. This method is not recommended for concrete or earthenware pipes.

    16. Other commodities are often confused with pipes. These include: conduit, tube, tunnel, and drain. Use only genuine pipes.

    17. Scottish Regiments in the Army use Army pipes in unusual ways. These are not approved of in engineering circles.
  • Bill C. 2013-04-09 21:46
    TheCPUWizard:
    Extra bonus point for what 134.5 baud was used for, and why!
    2741's, but I never thought of wondering why. Would it be because the mechanical speed of rotating the typeball and splatting the paper pretty closely matched the CPS of that data stream? Let's see, 1.5 stop bits, so 9.5 bits per character, so 14 CPS, yeah I bet that's it.

    TheCPUWizard:
    FWIW: I still own (And occasionally turn on) a 1968 DEC PDP-8/e along with 3 ASR/33 and a few DecWriters (LA120's). PArtialy for the "good old days" feeling, partially to heat the basement, and dry out all the dampness...
    Hey, don't forget us software types.
    #define LITTLEENDIAN TRUE
    #define BIGENDIAN FALSE
    #define MIDDLEENDIAN FILENOTFOUND // DEC
  • Mike 2013-04-09 22:23
    The solution is simple. Dual-VGA switch, second PC running only pipes screen saver.
  • Mike 2013-04-09 22:28
    pscs:
    Len:
    The 90s was a golden age of video games, producing genre-defining classics. Wing Commander


    Oh, wow. Wing Commander - almost forgotten about that. That's the game that I imported a SoundBlaster all the way from the US (to the UK) for (you couldn't buy decent sound cards in the UK at the time).

    I'm fairly sure I've still got a copy somewhere - but bet it won't run on a Windows 7 PC... (and I'd have to find a 5.25" drive somewhere)

    They should relaunch it - it'd run easily on a mobile phone/tablet nowadays.


    It would run easily on a phone? Interesting for a game that wouldn't even run on a damn PC half the time!
  • F***-it Fred 2013-04-10 06:46
    RichP:
    (side note: we had an email server with redundant power supplies... that used a single power cord. Also had a webserver with real dual supplies (each with its own cord) which inevitably ended up plugged into the same power strip.

    That's not completely silly: it means you can move the server without switching it off, by moving one of the plugs to an extension cord running to the new location.

    Captcha: secundum - don't forget to plug the secund, um, power supply back in when you're, um, done moving the server.
  • the beholder 2013-04-10 09:14
    pscs:
    Len:
    The 90s was a golden age of video games, producing genre-defining classics. Wing Commander


    Oh, wow. Wing Commander - almost forgotten about that. That's the game that I imported a SoundBlaster all the way from the US (to the UK) for (you couldn't buy decent sound cards in the UK at the time).

    I'm fairly sure I've still got a copy somewhere - but bet it won't run on a Windows 7 PC... (and I'd have to find a 5.25" drive somewhere)

    They should relaunch it - it'd run easily on a mobile phone/tablet nowadays.
    http://www.gog.com/gamecard/wing_commander_1_2
    For 6 dollars you can have it running on any Windows from XP and up, or OSX.
    They do not port games for mobiles and tablets, tho.

    Incidentally, my captcha is something that also regards sound cards. I just don't remember what Gravis was back then.
  • DW 2013-04-10 19:32
    I remember that issue well, we had a long running engineering simulation which used to take a 30 minutes to run so we had a dedicated workstation in the corner and pipes kept getting turned on because everyone always wanted to play "spot the teapot" - every now and then instead of a normal junction it would display a teapot.
  • AC 2013-04-10 20:10
    The only thing worse that the 3D savers for a server in the BSOD screensaver. Surest way to get the server power cycled.


  • Neil 2013-04-11 11:03
    TRWTF is not using system policy to enforce the screen saver.

    Lorne Kates:
    OR if you want to get real fancy:

    Set up a second computer with the pipes screen saver.

    Hack a KVM so act like a screen saver-- IE, when there's no input from A for a certain amount of time, switch to B. As soon as there's any activity on A, switch back to it. Ignore all input from B.

    Disable the screen saved on A.
    Or just install a remote control app to control the server from the second computer.
  • mikedjames 2013-04-12 06:36
    I seem to remember in the days of prehistory, that a US warship had Windows NT 3.51 ? installed on some engine management computer because it was the last Windows certifiable as secure.

    Somebody enabled OpenGL pipes or flying stuff screen saver and the warship was disabled, as the screensaver took over from the engine management going on in the background ...
  • My Name 2013-04-15 08:20
    1200 bits per second provides approximately 120 bytes per second of useful throughput.

    80,000 bytes / 120 bytes per second = 667 seconds

    667 seconds / 60 seconds per minute = 11 minutes.

    That's without compression.
  • Remy Monsen 2013-04-17 07:29
    Wow... I can really relate to this story.

    I was visiting a shop many years ago, and the guy at the cash register was complaining that the register (which was a standard desktop computer) always took so much time (more than a minute) before the attached money drawer would open. They've had technicians looking at it multiple times, and each time it would work for about an hour after the technician left.

    I was allowed to have a look at the server (Also a Windows NT box like in this story) (I didn't know the guy at the counter, but I was in the company of someone who did, which is why I was allowed access), and guess what I found running on the screen..... Yep, beautiful colored pipes all over it, happily keeping the CPU from idling. A minor screen saver configuration later (changing it to "Blank"), and the cash drawer delay was a thing of the past....