Mario Villalobos

I Didn't Want a Drink Today

Today was much better than yesterday, and that’s because I came out of hiding and made myself available to be seen by people. For the past three days, I’ve been locked inside my office trying to figure the issues we’ve been having with our network. All I did was stress myself out trying to figure out a problem that might be beyond the scope of my expertise. Today I accepted that. Today I allowed everyone who saw me to ridicule me, and I laughed along because I needed to. If I can’t make light of this situation, then I don’t deserve to be there. If the last tech guy can’t figure this out, then it’s okay that I can’t, either. That’s kind of horrible, but there’s truth there.

For some reason, and I’m not really going to go into much detail here, one of our servers โ€” a very old server that the last tech guy wanted to decommission but couldn’t because of some DNS issues โ€” worked as a DNS server. That means if I change the DNS server from any computer on our network to route traffic from this old DNS server, then that computer could get internet. I found this out yesterday, and today I changed some settings for a few of the more important people at school so they could have internet to do their jobs. That bought me some time.

I simply chipped away at the problem today. I took it slow. I read a lot. I performed a lot of tests. I tried to troubleshoot all the errors these tests gave me. It seems like I was fighting for hours just to move forward an inch. I’m understanding how everything was built and how everything works together, and it seems like the solution is just around the corner but I can’t see it. Nothing makes sense. Why these two servers are down makes no sense to me. They can see each other, they still replicate to each other, but they can’t talk to each other. If they can’t talk to each other, then no one else can talk to them, and we need them to so they could reach the internet. It’s strange.

Tomorrow I’m going to try a few more things and see if I shake anything loose. I called the company that set these servers up a few years ago, but I just got a voicemail. I left a message, but no one got back to me. I’m going to try a different number tomorrow and see if I can’t get somebody up here to figure this out. I’m thinking of working through the weekend to see if I can’t figure this out on my own. I’m confident I can, but I also don’t want to screw this up anymore than I already have. I’m taking it slow now. Doing more research, doing more tests, evaluating if what I’m looking at even needs to be done, and then carefully implementing the changes and observing how they work. If nothing happened, then I just reverted it back. Otherwise, I left it alone and hoped for the best.

Tomorrow is Friday. I thought today was Friday. I feel bad that this happened and that this disrupted everyone’s game plan for the week. I’d admit, I wanted to get this working today so I can be seen as the hero, but hell, I must’ve done something to cause this mess in the first place. What that was I don’t know. Been racking my brain all week. But hey, at least I didn’t feel like getting a drink today or stress eating. That’s progress.