Boned

  • moz 2014-06-05 06:24
    After all, what's the worst John's brand new script could do?
  • WTF 2014-06-05 06:24
    Hard to read, uninteresting, WTF lacking story.

    Unsubscribe.
  • Rnd( 2014-06-05 06:25
    Source for frist not found!
  • psuedonymous 2014-06-05 06:27
    John asked Roman what he had changed. Nothing, he was told

    So, Roman's unchanged copy of the program pulled the config file and data from production (because he never changed to to look locally) and kept naffing up the production process by fighting for the same data?
  • Squiggle 2014-06-05 06:31
    Hello you're through to 3rd line support. How can I help?

    Oh, the critical data import isn't working? Well that is to be expected, because $staffmember is currently on holiday.

    Please check back in a week.

    WONTFIX.
    *click*
  • np 2014-06-05 06:39
    There is less risk in not changing anything.
    Management doesn't know that John's new script won't break things in a catastrophic way.
    Also some shops value a dev's work over IT.

    As long as John handed the ropes over to Roman to maintain for the upcoming weeks/months of trying to figure out why a trivial local change broke production, who cares?
    Roman may give up eventually and John's new script will get promoted. Or Roman decides he doesn't want to change anything and reverts his local changes and stops breaking production.
  • That admin guy 2014-06-05 06:50
    So the policy is to not try and fix something that isn't broken, so why doesn't the story just end with:

    "And they put the old, working, .BAT file back into production and everyone lived happily ever after"
  • Kabi 2014-06-05 06:50
    np:
    Roman may give up eventually and John's new script will get promoted. Or Roman decides he doesn't want to change anything and reverts his local changes and stops breaking production.

    Or Roman remembers that John already has a (possibly) working script, takes that and sells it to management as his brilliant fix...
  • QJo 2014-06-05 07:04
    TRWTF is:

    a) not immediately finding the problem that caused the job to fail.

    b) not immediately rolling back to the pre-Romanised version of the bat file, followed by Roman being required to share his proposed new (broken) version with John, who would then go over it with Roman to work out what it was that went wrong.

    c) allowing Roman to continue with his broken script after the second time it happened.

    After b) has happened, it would then be confirmed that it *was* something that Roman had done that broke it. (Note that it still has not been established that Roman's changes did in fact break it -- it could have been coincidental). It would also be an opportunity to call Roman out on his untruth that he never did nuffink.
  • faoileag 2014-06-05 07:06
    Erm... 44 lines, 831 words and 4848 characters just to say: "In company X management prefers to find the root cause of a problem first, even if that means waiting longer, before applying a fix"?

    And it's not as if that would be a wtf.

    Actually, saying "I don't know what causes the problem, but here is a replacement script that does not exhibit the same problems, so it must be a fix", that's wtf.
  • S 2014-06-05 07:19
    faoileag:
    Actually, saying "I don't know what causes the problem, but here is a replacement script that does not exhibit the same problems, so it must be a fix", that's wtf.


    Well, it certainly can be. But on the other hand, when production is already failing, it's a lot easier to justify that kind of thing... telling the boss "I don't know what caused the bug, but the relevant code no longer exists".
  • Craig 2014-06-05 07:33
    TL;DR - Management being management
  • DaveK 2014-06-05 07:39
    moz:
    After all, what's the worst John's brand new script could do?
    It might replace their forums with Discourse :( :( :(
  • Schol-R-LEA 2014-06-05 07:44
    DaveK:
    moz:
    After all, what's the best John's brand new script could do?
    It might replace their forum-going with intercourse :) :) :)

    FTFY.

    CAPTCHA: ratis - this sort of cheap humor barely ratis as worth the trouble, but I did it anyway.
  • anonymous 2014-06-05 07:53
    WTF:
    Hard to read...

    Agreed!
  • geocities 2014-06-05 07:56
    No picture. I didn't even start reading because there's no picture!
  • cyborg 2014-06-05 08:17
    geocities:
    No picture. I didn't even start reading because there's no picture!


    Given your name I presume it'd have to be a small animated gif of a rotating bone?
  • GWO 2014-06-05 08:22
    TBW, DR.

    / Too Badly Written, Didn't Read
  • Steve The Cynic 2014-06-05 08:28
    QJo:
    It would also be an opportunity to call Roman out on his untruth that he never did nuffink.

    TRWTF is believing any colleague who says he didn't change anything.

    NEVER believe such a statement. For working-relationship purposes, it's usually a bad idea to directly challenge it, but you turn it around. "I didn't change anything." "OK, so what did you do?" This isn't guaranteed to get a useful answer, but starting from "What did you do?" instead of "What did you change?" is possibly more useful. "Show me what you did." might be even better.
  • Smug Unix User 2014-06-05 08:34
    I'm sure a bash script would work much better.
  • Florent 2014-06-05 08:34
    WTF:
    Hard to read, uninteresting, WTF lacking story.

    Unsubscribe.


    After unsubscribing, remember to stop commenting.


    captcha: enim, an enumeration with roman numbers.
  • Ziplodocus 2014-06-05 08:41
    Florent:
    WTF:
    Hard to read, uninteresting, WTF lacking story.

    Unsubscribe.


    After unsubscribing, remember to stop commenting.



    Maybe they're commenting on a replacement version of the production program that creates the article on his own PC
  • tin 2014-06-05 09:28
    cyborg:
    geocities:
    No picture. I didn't even start reading because there's no picture!


    Given your name I presume it'd have to be a small animated gif of a rotating bone?


    And flashing text in a really odd colour over a really bad pixelly background.

    Does anyone else wish Yahoo had kept Geocities around just for laughs?
  • Josh 2014-06-05 09:43
    psuedonymous:
    John asked Roman what he had changed. Nothing, he was told

    So, Roman's unchanged copy of the program pulled the config file and data from production (because he never changed to to look locally) and kept naffing up the production process by fighting for the same data?


    TRWTF is that it was a move and not a copy

    CAPTCHA: distineo. The production file's distineo was Roman's local machine.
  • QJo 2014-06-05 09:52
    Steve The Cynic:
    QJo:
    It would also be an opportunity to call Roman out on his untruth that he never did nuffink.

    TRWTF is believing any colleague who says he didn't change anything.

    NEVER believe such a statement. For working-relationship purposes, it's usually a bad idea to directly challenge it, but you turn it around. "I didn't change anything." "OK, so what did you do?" This isn't guaranteed to get a useful answer, but starting from "What did you do?" instead of "What did you change?" is possibly more useful. "Show me what you did." might be even better.


    "But I didn't do *anything*."

    "What, nothing at all? Absolutely nothing at all?"

    "That's right, I didn't do *anything*!"

    "So remind me again: why do we pay you?"
  • Anonymous Coward 2014-06-05 10:01
    tin:
    cyborg:
    geocities:
    No picture. I didn't even start reading because there's no picture!


    Given your name I presume it'd have to be a small animated gif of a rotating bone?


    And flashing text in a really odd colour over a really bad pixelly background.

    Does anyone else wish Yahoo had kept Geocities around just for laughs?

    Well, they did keep it around for Japan.
    There's also always Neocities.
  • phuzz 2014-06-05 10:20
    Did someone say they wanted Geocites back?
  • Bill 2014-06-05 11:05
    QJo:
    "That's right, I didn't do *anything*!"
    This ranks right up there in the collection of common lies along with LUsers describing their problems to the help desk:

    HD: Do you see any kind of error message?

    LU: Nothing.

    HD: What's on your screen now?

    LU: Nothing.

    HD: Your screen is completely dark?

    LU: Well not exactly.

    HD: What color is it then?

    LU: Mostly gray, except for some funny words at the top.

    HD: I see. And what do those words say?

    LU: (proceeds to relay the error message that didn't exist two seconds before...)
  • Nagesh 2014-06-05 11:44
    I did not get the punchline for this story.
  • Spanner number 3 2014-06-05 11:44
    Obligatary XKCD reference...

    http://www.torwuf.com/xkcd-geocities/
  • Chelloveck 2014-06-05 12:22
    So, BAT file watches a magic directory for a file to appear, then ftps the file to another machine. Developer does something on his dev machine and the production system breaks. SysAdmin writes a replacement BAT file using Powershell. Management decides to keep BAT file in place until the root cause is found.

    Scenario 1: Developer changed the production code or the production config file. Proposed solution: Rewrite the BAT file in Powershell. This *might* work, but will require test time and is likely to introduce new problems. Actual (but not suggested) solution: Revert the changes. Duh.

    Scenario 2: Developer didn't change the production code or the production config file. That means his dev work is somehow preventing the file from being put into the magic directory, or manages to delete the file from the magic directory before the production code processes it. Proposed solution: Rewrite the BAT file in Powershell. This will *not* work, because the BAT file is not the problem. The file still won't be in the magic directory when the new Powershell script runs. Actual (but not suggested) solution: Fix Developer's dev environment so it doesn't touch production.

    So, can anyone come up with *any* scenario here in which rewriting the production code from scratch is actually the right thing to do? 'Cause I sure as heck can't think of any.
  • CigarDoug 2014-06-05 12:30
    This is one of the few stories I have read on the Daily WTF where the villain is not clear after the first couple of paragraphs.

    It is certainly the first one where I STILL don't know who the bad guy is after finishing the article. So, what was the WTF, and was there a solution?
  • Coyne 2014-06-05 12:35
    Looks to me like the well of understanding is bone dry; since it seems very unlikely that Roman will bone up on reality.

    I feel in my bones that this is now a permanently manual process. This tickles my funny bone, since it will be Roman (the cause of the problem) wearing his fingers to the bone.
  • CigarDoug 2014-06-05 12:43
    Coyne:
    Looks to me like the well of understanding is bone dry; since it seems very unlikely that Roman will bone up on reality.

    I feel in my bones that this is now a permanently manual process. This tickles my funny bone, since it will be Roman (the cause of the problem) wearing his fingers to the bone.

    I think your understanding of the story is too marrowly defined.
  • Valhar2000 2014-06-05 12:53
    To be fair, PowerShell is quite a bit more powerful than CMD (even CMD is more powerful than most people realize). You can generally make a shorter and clearer script to do something in PS than you can in a BAT file.

    Given that, it may not be that bad an idea to replace the BAT.
  • Zylon 2014-06-05 12:58
    CigarDoug:
    It is certainly the first one where I STILL don't know who the bad guy is after finishing the article. So, what was the WTF, and was there a solution?

    Turns out the president's daughter was deleting the source files off the server.
  • rekcuf rehtom uoy siht esrever 2014-06-05 12:59
    So the WTF is not using source control to track changes to the batch files?

    Or is the WTF that the story is unreadable?
  • MoarCynical 2014-06-05 13:26
    Steve The Cynic:
    TRWTF is believing any colleague who says [s]he didn't change[/s] anything.

    FTFY :-)
  • chubertdev 2014-06-05 13:26
    Does anyone else feel that this story was accidentally truncated, despite it being ten times as long as it should have been?
  • MoarCynical 2014-06-05 13:27
    MoarCynical:
    Steve The Cynic:
    TRWTF is believing any colleague who says [s]he didn't change[/s] anything.

    FTFY :-)

    Sorry, I forgot strike-through doesn't work here. Maybe it works better on Discourse? :-(
  • haero 2014-06-05 13:29
    tin:
    cyborg:
    geocities:
    No picture. I didn't even start reading because there's no picture!


    Given your name I presume it'd have to be a small animated gif of a rotating bone?


    And flashing text in a really odd colour over a really bad pixelly background.

    Does anyone else wish Yahoo had kept Geocities around just for laughs?

    I thought that's why Yahoo kept themselves around?! LOL
  • faoileag 2014-06-05 13:31
    Spanner number 3:
    http://www.torwuf.com/xkcd-geocities/

    My Eyes! The goggles do nothing!
  • faoileag 2014-06-05 13:35
    MoarCynical:
    Sorry, I forgot strike-through doesn't work here. Maybe it works better on Discourse? :-(

    It does.
  • chubertdev 2014-06-05 13:37
    MoarCynical:
    MoarCynical:
    Steve The Cynic:
    TRWTF is believing any colleague who says he didn't change anything.

    FTFY :-)

    Sorry, I forgot strike-through doesn't work here. Maybe it works better on Discourse? :-(


    FTFY
  • chubertdev 2014-06-05 13:37
    EDIT: double post o_O
  • CEO of IBM 2014-06-05 14:06
    WTF is the need to mention 'all over again' all over again right after saying 'déjà vu'?

    Use our cloud services and Watson to avoid embarrassing mistekes like these. Watson doesn't have much work these days anyway lol.
  • FormalWare 2014-06-05 14:54
    TRWTF is the implication that it is EVER summer in Winnipeg. Winnipeg has 3 seasons: Winter, Mosquito, and Roadwork.
  • Anon 2014-06-05 14:54
    psuedonymous:
    John asked Roman what he had changed. Nothing, he was told

    So, Roman's unchanged copy of the program pulled the config file and data from production (because he never changed to to look locally) and kept naffing up the production process by fighting for the same data?


    That is the way I read it as well.

    So, TRWTF is that Roman's development environment had modify access to critical production files.

    Also that they didn't just disable Roman's copy of the BAT (I'm assuming he had it scheduled) until Roman could grok it enough to fix it.

    It seems that John intentionally encouraged Roman to leave his broken instance running so there would continue to be a production issue to justify John working on a new script.
  • anonymous 2014-06-05 15:06
    MoarCynical:
    MoarCynical:
    Steve The Cynic:
    TRWTF is believing any colleague who says [s]he didn't change[/s] anything.

    FTFY :-)

    Sorry, I forgot strike-through doesn't work here. Maybe it works better on Discourse? if you do it correctly. :-(

    FTFY.
  • deleted 2014-06-05 17:59
    Maybe the president's daughter got boned with a vibrating .bat
  • MoarCynical 2014-06-05 18:04
    chubertdev:
    MoarCynical:
    MoarCynical:
    Steve The Cynic:
    TRWTF is believing any colleague who says he didn't change anything.

    FTFY :-)

    Sorry, I forgot strike-through doesn't work here. Maybe it works better on Discourse? :-(

    FTFY


    anonymous:
    MoarCynical:
    MoarCynical:
    Steve The Cynic:
    TRWTF is believing any colleague who says [s]he didn't change[/s] anything.

    FTFY :-)

    Sorry, I forgot strike-through doesn't work here. Maybe it works better on Discourse? if you do it correctly. :-(

    FTFY.


    Thanks guys! I learned something new, just in time for these forums to become deprecated. ;-)
  • herby 2014-06-05 18:50
    Problems:
    1) Batch files
    2) "Power" shell
    3) C: drives
    4) MS-DOS
    5) Windows.

    Take your pick.
  • Sole Reason for Visiting 2014-06-05 18:52
    Latest clbuttic comment from Attwood, btw (for those who are viscerally averse to Discourse):

    In my experience, the value of dogfooding > value of arbitrary correctness.

    It is also roughly a fit. Now if we were using air traffic control software or 3d modeling software to keep tabs on bugs...

    The phrase "Architecture Astronauts" springs readily to mind here.

    Well, we've had a poor few months of WTFs recently, although that one a couple of days ago was definitely up to scratch.

    In a way, it's reassuring that Alex is encouraging his buddy with the inflated helium balloon head to come up with a new classic every other day ...
  • Norman Diamond 2014-06-05 22:19
    FormalWare:
    TRWTF is the implication that it is EVER summer in Winnipeg. Winnipeg has 3 seasons: Winter, Mosquito, and Under Construction.
    Reconstructed that for you.
  • Rob Nelson 2014-06-05 23:15
    The situation where the rewrite fixes difficencies like looking in magic directories for magic files, rather than recreating old issues in new languages.
  • Shinobu 2014-06-06 02:17
    Badly written, overly wrong, boring, no real point.
  • Abe 2014-06-06 02:51
    Zylon:
    CigarDoug:
    It is certainly the first one where I STILL don't know who the bad guy is after finishing the article. So, what was the WTF, and was there a solution?

    Turns out the president's daughter was deleting the source files off the server.


    And the president's daughter name's McAfee.
  • Martin 2014-06-06 03:30
    Deploying completely new script BEFORE the upcoming long weekend?

    This is The Real Fail!

    Do it, if you want to fix everything on the holiday.
  • Anonymous Observer 2014-06-06 04:35
    "Naturally there were also many lines of business logic embedded in the .BAT "


    Hello? business logic in a batch file?!! How much business logic can you encapsulate in batch commands?

    I don't think ECHO, CHOICE, CD, FOR, and IF EXISTS would let you accomplish much....
  • Matt Westwood 2014-06-06 04:41
    Anonymous Observer:
    "Naturally there were also many lines of business logic embedded in the .BAT "


    Hello? business logic in a batch file?!! How much business logic can you encapsulate in batch commands?

    I don't think ECHO, CHOICE, CD, FOR, and IF EXISTS would let you accomplish much....


    For example, routing decisions based on the filenames reflecting their business content would be "business logic"; ensuring that certain files get routed to particular recipients is "business logic", and so on.
  • fa2k 2014-06-06 07:14
    Maybe you all would like to discuss tomorrow's Error'd here? I wasn't that opposed to the new comment system until I realised I have to make an account to log in. Never gonna do that, sorry. Anyway, my comment...

    Ara beware, next scene LG will break through your door with a fire axe...

    Doesn't really work after all that serious stuff, dammit
  • Valued Service 2014-06-06 10:00
    Not sure what just happened.

    Not sure if author is sure what just happened.
  • Valued Service 2014-06-06 10:51
    Paraphrased for the impatient.

    IT Professional, John, always looks for opportunities to automate tasks that repeat and just consume time. If you can get software to do it right one time, and do it right again and again, it makes less mistakes, works faster, and doesn't need benefits. Some processes, however, were ingrained in the corporate culture, and automated these would tread on "if it ain't broke, don't fix it". Better to leave them alone. Or so he thought.

    Developer Roman didn't have anything better to do, and was working on a replacement solution to migrate files. He brought in John to help him understand the intent of the code in the .BAT files he intended to interact with. The .BAT file in question was moderately complex. The basic functionality was to look in a directory for a specific file, and when the file appeared, send it to a remote destination using PSFTP. Naturally there were also many lines of business logic embedded in the .BAT file along with this simple flow.

    Some morning after, the process failed. A source file the .BAT depended on was missing. Suspecting that Roman had deployed a change to the production environment, John petitioned Roman for any changes. Roman swore that he was only testing a replacement production program on his own PC. Roman questioned the deployment of the dependency, and John double-checked the build for any problems with components. John suspected that Roman's shiny new program was affecting the production environment, but Roman insisted that his application used a config file to determine which folders to watch.

    This stalemate ensued until John suggested a powershell equivalent replace the whole process instead of a program, and Roman agreed... Or so it seemed... One weekend full of problems, and John was ready with his script. Roman insisted on protecting his love-child, and pushed back.

    Circumventing Roman, John petitioned the managers. Misunderstanding the problem, the managers backed Roman, who wanted to keep working out the case of the missing file, given that he offered to watch the situation over the weekend. Somehow manual intervention in a broken program to replace a working process was deemed the safest option. But what does a lowly IT guy know.
  • Tux "Tuxedo" Penguin 2014-06-07 14:11
    Maybe he's understanding is too marrowly defined, but I get the boner every time I read it.
  • Tux "Tuxedo" Penguin 2014-06-07 14:15
    CigarDoug:
    Coyne:
    Looks to me like the well of understanding is bone dry; since it seems very unlikely that Roman will bone up on reality.

    I feel in my bones that this is now a permanently manual process. This tickles my funny bone, since it will be Roman (the cause of the problem) wearing his fingers to the bone.

    I think your understanding of the story is too marrowly defined.

    Maybe he's understanding is too marrowly defined, but I get the boner every time I read it.
  • Tux "Tuxedo" Penguin 2014-06-07 14:18
    herby:
    Problems:
    1) Batch files
    2) "Power" shell
    3) C: drives
    4) MS-DOS
    5) Windows.

    Take your pick.


    6) All of the above.

    Also Roman is quite .bat man to be able to put up with watching if code failed or not.

    Captcha: I need haero such as .BAT man.
  • dude 2014-06-08 07:09
    I'm assuming that it was failing because dev b's testing of his new changes was upsetting production, so until dev b stopped testing it was going to keep failing. At this point he stopped testing the new feature to go look for why testing was upsetting production. The new version by dev a in powershell had the new functionality so that dev b could just stop.

    Neither of them should be let anywhere near a computer.
  • operagost 2014-06-09 10:19
    CEO of IBM:
    WTF is the need to mention 'all over again' all over again right after saying 'déjà vu'?

    It's a Yogi Berra-ism.
  • The Crunger 2014-06-12 00:17
    Anon:

    It seems that John intentionally encouraged Roman to leave his broken instance running so there would continue to be a production issue to justify John working on a new script.


    My take: John's manager was Codethulu, who had set John to replace a crap system, but John hadn't yet realized the new system would just be different crap. It can sometimes take years for people to realize this.

    Another manager took a more sensible tack for an intern, limiting the scope of work to a system that didn't matter much, so the kid could produce some real results and learn. There was no time or reason to advance John's larger mission.

    When John and the intern's goals came into conflict, the managers decided to let the kid continue, because the kid could still learn, and the kid's efforts to keep the system running (even if it shouldn't have made it to production) seemed like a trait worth cultivating.

    The article reminds me a little bit of Ticket 232632
  • The Crunger 2014-06-12 00:29
    anonymous:
    MoarCynical:

    Sorry, I forgot strike-through doesn't work here. Maybe it works better on Discourse? if you do it correctly. :-(

    FTFY.


    So, Discourse actually has a straight-forward way to do strike-through, without having to make BBcode summon elemental text-styles from a parallel dimension.

    All just more proof how Akismet Discourse really sucks.

    FTFM
  • anonymous 2014-06-12 10:34
    The Crunger:
    anonymous:
    MoarCynical:

    Sorry, I forgot strike-through doesn't work here. Maybe it works better on Discourse? if you do it correctly. :-(

    FTFY.


    So, Discourse actually has a straight-forward way to do strike-through, without having to make BBcode summon elemental text-styles from a parallel dimension.

    All just more proof how Akismet Discourse really sucks.

    FTFM

    But it makes for some fun CSS hacks.
  • anonymous 2014-06-12 10:45
    anonymous:
    The Crunger:
    anonymous:
    MoarCynical:

    Sorry, I forgot strike-through doesn't work here. Maybe it works better on Discourse? if you do it correctly. :-(

    FTFY.


    So, Discourse actually has a straight-forward way to do strike-through, without having to make BBcode summon elemental text-styles from a parallel dimension.

    All just more proof how Akismet Discourse really sucks.

    FTFM

    But it makes for some fun CSS hacks.

    This and this are two of my personal favourites. Coincidentally, I also happen to have posted both of them. Not that I'm bragging. Well, maybe a little...