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Remember the song “Daydream” by the Lovin’ Spoonful? Well, I guess you may have to be a little old to do so.

Anyway, it starts out…

  • What a day for a daydream
  • What a day for a daydreamin’ boy
  • And I’m lost in a daydream
  • Dreamin’ ’bout my bundle of joy

Well, until recently I could have said that I have plenty of time to be that boy, but not this week, nor in the coming weeks. Things have picked up and with the holidays coming around I only have a few days left in which to get everything done.

What’s happening is that several of our larger clients, who have numerous MFD’s, are starting to change over the systems to Windows 7 and to Office 2010. That’s all well and good but our MFD’s, as they stand, are not yet capable of handling the new change overs. In order for them to be fine in a Win7 network they must have their firmware upgraded, much like any operating system has software upgrades. Except now it seems to be happening all at once.

So, I’ve been researching the updates, what needs done and at what level the MFD’s should be taken and seeing how they work, and that’s been just the start. Next week – a 2 day work week – I’ll be starting with the updates, and it looks like from then up until the Christmas break that’s pretty much what I’ll be doing.

Don’t forget, here at my work place, we are upgrading our network and exchange server and that needs to be put in place. Then we will need to take care of any bugs that might show up and to make sure the email is getting through, not to mention the new setup for remote work places.

I’m a one man shop and it looks like I’m going to go out in a blaze of something; not sure, yet, what kind of a blaze though.

Sheeesh, I’m supposed to be winding down towards retirement, not revving up the brain waves with all new technology. It will be interesting to see how the story ends… 🙂

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Last week was a downer of a post. I was out of sorts and I apologize for that. I’ll try not to be so negative from now on.

And the reason that I love weeks like this is because I was busy. Had three MFD installs for a large mining corporation and I got to drive for an hour and a half just to get to them. The people there are quite nice and they always make me feel welcome when ever I have to go there. That, in itself, makes the trip worth while. When the client likes you and are glad you are there makes the job that much easier. I love the trust they put into me and my work.

In addition, we’ve been working on the network server/exchange server change over and I’m sort of excited about some of the new stuff I’m going to have to learn; even if I have only a few months left until retirement. Yeah, I know, I’m crazy for doing so, but I told myself that I would be a productive employee up until I leave. I want to go out on a good note and not leave any doubts about what I know and what I can do. No one will be able to say I became a slacker at the end.

One more day to go, as I write this (which is Thursday) and tomorrow looks quite promising as the week ends. More server change over work and settings and, hopefully, some photo ops. I let you know tomorrow when I finish this…

OK, it’s Friday. Been a great week and finishing up in a great way.

Did some checking on yesterdays installs and discovered that one thing that was done, was not done the way the customer had expected. So I contacted them and made the change over the phone.

They were quite glad that I had done so, as they had not as of yet discovered the needed change. I walked them through the minor change over the phone, which created a big difference in how they did the scan to file feature and were thankful, and surprised, that I had discovered it myself, before their own I.T. people did, and had taken it upon myself to call and make the change myself.

That plays big dividends down the road.

So now, all is well. The day is almost over and our outside I.T. consultant will be in around 5:00PM to get started on the final migration push on our network server change over, and by Monday morning we will be back up with a faster and more secure Local Area Network.

Yeah, I have to keep things on a more positive note, and I will do my best not to have anymore downer posts or negative comments as we travel together on my journey in my Countdown To Retirement… 🙂

 

Weeks like this makes me wonder if I’m going to be happy in retirement, not having a job.

Why? Well, it’s been a slow week. I had one call on Monday and that’s it. The rest of the week I spent here in the office. While that doesn’t sound bad, and it really isn’t, it’s just that even here in the office things have been slow. That’s what I’m talking about.

I’ve had to look around for stuff to do. One of the things that did help was preparing for a network server upgrade/changeover that will get started this afternoon. However, I’m not the chief I.T. person in charge of that, and for good reason. While I know my job, as far as networking MFD’s and managing network scans and printing, taking care of network servers are low on my list of expertise. I know enough to keep things going but as for doing a major change over like this – no way.

The person that is doing the job for us is a good friend of mine and he is quite intelligent when it comes to the network, especially network servers. He has his own business and part of that is running hosting servers for other companies, and he is our outside consultant whenever we have problems that I can’t handle. He’s the man for the job and I’m glad for it.

Well, now it’s 8:OO PM. I’m home and my friend was still at my work place when I left. We had set up the new router, had to do that first before doing the server migration, and when I left today he was just getting ready to do that. Hopefully, when I come in on Monday all well be changed over, the servers will be up and running OK and there won’t be any problems.

This was the only good thing about this week. Otherwise… I hate weeks like this… 🙂

I’m Tired…

As I write this it is almost 3:00PM on a Friday afternoon, and I’m tired. I have 2 hours of overtime so I will be leaving in just 20 minutes for the rest of the day.

I gained the two hours of overtime from working through lunch on two days this week, and the reason for that is because of the 8 MFD installs I took part in over a two-day period in 5 different towns. The good part was that I only had to make sure that the machines were up on the network and that the “scan to email” was working.

It’s just that at my age, even though I feel that I can do it, I’m just not cut out for this type of activity over a period of several days. Setting up machines in one area is one thing, but to be doing so in 5 different towns is what gets me down; the driving, the stopping and starting, getting the info at each site, the conversations, demonstrations and integrations into their network is the culprit. At one time I could handle this with no problem. Now, I’m finding that I can’t.

I won’t miss this when I retire…

This week is ending with the beginning of possibly the biggest in-house project in which I have been involved.

We are migrating from a 2003 Small Business Server / Exchange Server to a 2011 Small Business Server / Exchange Server. The pre-reading for this was a manual that is 131 pages long. Not to mention that on each page there are links to other documents that need to be checked out as well.

The one bright spot is that a very good I.T. Consultant, and good friend, is doing most of the setup and configuration work. If it were not for him I am definitely sure that the new network server would not get set up in the 21 days that is allowed for the setup to be completed. It sure is nice having someone like this in your circle of friends.

The problem is that I really do not want to start learning something new, especially with something as involved as this. I only have three months left and by the time we get this installed, setup and configured I will have to start learning a great deal about the operation and upkeep of the server until, if and when, they hire someone to take my place; which they have not done as of today. Prospects do not look good for the near future as well.

I would normally look forward to the challenge and the learning process. It is the one thing that keeps me active and my brain functioning, at least in a semi-sane manor that is…

It is just that I do not want to have to learn something new of which I will play no big part in its handling. It is some what of a conundrum.

So, what to do? 

I will leave you with this of which you may ponder, if you so desire… J

What Lies Ahead

I had used this photo on my photoblog over at Riff’s Photography Journal, but I thought it would also work with this weeks theme of “Possibilities”. Sure hope you agree… 🙂

 

Yeah, it was one of those weeks. All because of one call. This is the stuff that drives me crazy.

Went to install a new MFD at a new clients office and it went from bad to worse from the start. Everything was supposed to have been in place and they knew all that they wanted to do; or so I was told.

First, there was no data port available in which to connect the MFD to their network. They were all in use. So, from that time until we got authorization for the office to purchase a new network switch, to have someone go out and get it and return and for me to install it took about 40 minutes or so; give or take.

Getting it up on the network was the easiest part. The clients in this office was not sure on how they wanted to use the print aspect or the scan capabilities. So I had to give them the low down on the various ways these could be done and that took some time. Then I went through in installing the print and scan setup as we agreed they would need.

In the meantime, there were questions… can we do this, do we have to do that, what about this, how do we do that? Sometimes the same questions from different people as I went around doing the install. You see, basically this all should be done before hand by the sales department, so that when I go in we already know what they want and need and I can then set it up to meet their expectations and then have the time to do any troubleshooting that might arise along the way.

It was just that I could not concentrate on just one thing at a time, and over the next couple of hours that I was there I developed one heck of a stress headache. The only good thing about all of this was that the people in the office were all really nice ladies who were quite patient as well. Tell the truth, that did make a stressful situation a lot easier, and I won’t mind going back there again, if needed.

It’s just that it’s not supposed to go down that way, and most installs don’t.

To add to the stressful situation, I got a call from a salesperson who had just delivered another MFD in a different town, about 45 minutes away and wanted to know if I could go over there and install that machine for them. It seemed that the client was expecting everything to be done right away, even though they were told before hand that the install would occur on another day. Well, they forgot about that bit of information.

No, I could not get there the same day. In fact, I wasn’t sure if I could get there the next day or the first of next week. I had already scheduled other activities that could not be set aside so easily or be changed and that I would have to look into the one request that the new client – in the other town – had, to see if that would be possible to do. Found out later on that they would not be able to do this one specific activity with the way they wanted it setup. I found that out the next day while researching their request.

Yes, it could be done, but the MFD would have to be installed differently and different configurations needed to be done, but it would work and take care of that one particular need they had. However, they were not satisfied with that answer and was just a “little” upset that it could not be done in the manner they had expected.

You know how it goes. You are used to doing something one way and don’t want to change from that because it would require a new learning situation, and some people just do not like to do that. Evidently this was one of those times.

So, when I finally finished in the office where I was at, answered all their questions and made sure they were happy with the install I left. The first thing that I did was to take two Excedrine Migraine pills and stop at a convenience store to get a cup of coffee and a donut. That combination always gives me the required fix for a stressful situation. As usual, it worked.

If it hadn’t, the way I was feeling could have been the very incentive, the straw that broke the camel’s back (so to speak), to have quit right at that very moment and just take retirement a little early. However, I’m glad the “fix” worked.

After all, I only have three more months to go before the “official” retirement… 🙂