…make me quite detached from reality.

A few friends have noticed that I have been less active in Eve Online, IRC, MSN, Gtalk and not really out and about much either. Ignoring some emails and calls too… It’s all due to work.

Due to some unexpected circumstance. I ended up with the interesting job of having to replace the entire IT Infrastructure for the Art Loss Register and The Equipment Register.

So I find myself with the opportunity to not only rebuild the systems, but have the freedom to redesign them and bring them to the cutting edge, with efficient systems, better continuity, and improved security. This idea grows on me daily. :) They are lucky I am so good.

Note that all of the below, I had to do while maintaining my current duties which already filled up my day…

October 2009

It started towards the end of October 2009. I had started to get news that ridiculous amounts of work would be required. So I started working on plans… Mapping out the existing network, learning system quirks, planning timescales, deployment phases and budgets.

At this point, I am already working 10+ hours a day, and due to not being able to sleep when my mind is active, working for 36 hours without sleep in some cases. At the end of which, I ended up with drafts of our current and planned networks, sixty point migration plan, brief budget and good idea of the improvements I want to include.

November 2009

From the start of November 2009, it got even more complicated. My colleagues vastly underestimate the scale and depth of the work involved. While planning deployment of over a dozen new virtual servers, and teaching myself about all the new systems I also stated work on email migration.

250,000 transferred emails later…

I am pretty happy with the new service. We have cutting edge stuff, with some brilliant security in place. Email’s get scanned by three separate services. Web UI is brilliantly innovative, and the servers are as fast and reliable as possible. Administration is logical and easy, so easy for me to manage too.

Then having spent weeks of hard work to move everyone, users still complain over change…

I actually find that very insulting when people question my judgement without understanding fully what they are questioning. Its deciding on an opinion without doing proper research. Nevermind.

Next Steps

With Phase 1 nearing completion, I have 7 more phases left… Once I return from London, I should have finally freed up a physical server which I can then upgrade and start work on discovering the beautiful world of virtualization. From there, I can finally start work on local domain services and updating all the company databases as much as possible.

I am actually really looking forward to deploying ESXi, and having the chance to investigate security, backup and continuity options for such environments. If I could pick one thing in the last decade that really got me excited, its virtualization becoming commercially available.

The only other thing that comes close really would be Conversation View. As that has just been a god send for me over the past few years.

Moar Security!!1!

If its my responsibility to ensure the security of company data, I am not taking any risks, and I will continue to work towards the highest standards commercially available.

Users are no doubt going to complain when I start bumping up password strengths even more, adding encryption to anything that moves, and start enforcing eve more strict security policy’s. But that’s something that I have to do, even if I will be hated for it.

Meanwhile Out of the Office…

While doing all of this, I already committed to helping a friend work on a website called BLOCK, to help get information out about a TV Series Pilot. God knows when I can fit this in… As I have already agreed to help, and its a interesting project I really want to get it done.

I also have to start thinking about Christmas and sorting gifts for family members. Its good that all the family get together, and I do respect and like everyone in my family, and always make time fix computers, or help with computer problems whenever needed.

That said, Christmas is something I grow to hate. Giving gifts is fun, but when not financially able or lacking the time to think of decent gifts. Instead, the objective will be to get gifts to just ensure my family don’t become angry with me rather than to make them happy… Hardly the intended Christmas spirit or idea of gift giving.

The fact I have to work all the time at the moment, and not really be able to afford to live is a bit of a joke to to be quite honest. I miss having spare time and cashflow. :(