Thursday, 16 March 2017

10:00 – When I took Colin out around 0745 it was 14.1F (-10C) with a light breeze. I think our forecast multi-day blizzard is over now. We ended up with about 1/4″ (~ 6mm) accumulation. We depend on Ray’s Weather for our forecasts. He’s based in Boone, an hour or so down the road, and he gets it right more often than anyone. He missed it this time, but it’s notoriously difficult to forecast weather, particularly for folks like us who sit on top of a mountain range.

I increased our science kit prices across the board yesterday. Our last price increase was in the summer of 2014, and all of our costs have been increasing since then. Until now, we’ve just been eating the difference, but things were getting out of hand. We try to keep our prices as low as possible to make these kits affordable for homeschool families, but it was starting to get ridiculous.

For example, in 2014 it cost an average of $11.08 to ship a kit. For 2017 to date, our average has been $13.19 in postage per kit, an increase of about 19%. A couple bucks more per kit may not sound like much, but all of our other costs have shown similar increases. Chemicals in particular have skyrocketed, but everything from bottles to labware has also increased significantly. Overall, from summer 2014 until now our costs, excluding labor, have increased about 21% while our prices have remained the same. All of the labor is done by Barbara and me, so we’re not actually out-of-pocket on it.

So I increased kit prices yesterday by about 10% across the board. Our standard Biology kit, for example, went from $199 to $219. I hate to do that, because I know that many homeschool families are on very tight budgets, but we really needed to do something to bring our revenues more in line with costs.

More work on science kit stuff today.

* * * * *

79 thoughts on “Thursday, 16 March 2017”

  1. 19 here and looks like steadily increasing temps through Sunday and Monday, into the high 30s. With intermittent snow showers.

    I’m just puttering around here today and generally taking it easy, after two days of snow removal and I got some other stuff done inside the house. I sleep like the dead and my carcass seems a little tired and wrung out.

    Meanwhile I get obit news from down in MA of guys younger than me and wonder why I’m still here.

  2. Hitting the 90’s in Vegas in the afternoon.

    I was looking up friends on linkedin, etc a while back. A good friend in my hometown, my age, died suddenly last year. Wow. We hadn’t kept in contact, but he was in shape and athletic all the time I knew him. The obit only said he died suddenly.

  3. I see obits for some of the greats in my second career- live entertainment.

    Guy named Benny, guy called Space.

    I’m starting to lose guys I worked with, who aren’t too much older than me.

    Rock and roll is a tough lifestyle, it takes it’s toll.

    n

  4. “Rock and roll is a tough lifestyle, it takes it’s toll.”
    And then there’s Keith Richards, still here.

  5. And Grace Slick.

    Ya gotta like a girl with the balls to face down sheriff’s deputies while holding a pump-action shotgun.

    I don’t admire her politics, but I do admire her personally. She’s intellectually honest, which is exceedingly rare for a prog. I remember an interview back when her daughter was 14 or so, right after Barbara and I got married. The interviewer asked her what she’d say to China if she found out China had been using drugs. Slick responded, “Well, what could I say?” Indeed. There’s nothing of the hypocrite about Grace.

  6. I’ve also admired both Grace and Keef for their lack of any hypocrisy and willingness to talk straight up about anything. They’re both tough old birds.

    Keef is also somewhat of a right-winger and a military history nut with a huge library.

    What’s kinda funny for me is that one of the sheriffs’ deputies arriving at Grace’s house that night was one of my fellow USAF Security Police while I was stationed in Marin County years before that. I used to have a big color pic of him and me and another guy, also a friend for a long time, marching in the Mill Valley Little League Parade as their color guard, with white gloves and friggin’ chrome helmets.

  7. Slick is also reputed to have said something along the lines of “The only thing worse than being picky-neat is spending half an hour looking for something you misplaced.” My kind of woman! 🙂

  8. 79 F (26 C) here in the Land of Sugar. We’ve got all of the air conditioners spinning.

  9. I was looking up friends on linkedin, etc a while back. A good friend in my hometown, my age, died suddenly last year. Wow. We hadn’t kept in contact, but he was in shape and athletic all the time I knew him. The obit only said he died suddenly.

    Probably heart attack or suicide. There was an obit for a 37 year old guy in yesterday’s paper and the family asked for contributions to the National Suicide Hotline.

    Sounds like I am not the only person reading the obits nowadays to see if I am in them. Cue “The Sixth Sense” movie that I watched again the other day, even knowing the ending. Fine piece of work.
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Sixth_Sense

  10. McCain has always been a stinking prog.

    Every time I see McCain’s face, I’m reminded of the freeze frame shot of the horse in “Animal House”, right before the animal drops dead of a heart attack (?) in Dean Wormer’s office.

    79 F (26 C) here in the Land of Sugar. We’ve got all of the air conditioners spinning.

    We are in Orlando for the week. The highs have been in the 60s for the last three days.

    The main attractions were moving pretty slowly out at Gatorland this afternoon.

  11. Snowfall updates today report that Burlap got 31 inches and we tied with Jay Peak with 35 inches. Bolton Valley, about 40 miles to our southeast got 58 inches, almost five feet.

    Went to our little post office around the corner and saw a sign in the window saying they’ll be closed from 5PM to 9AM until further notice. (they’ve been leaving the outer lobby unlocked so peeps can get their mail at off-hours.) Asked WTF and she told me someone broke the locking folding gate last night and broke in. Someone will be out to fix it sometime, but we wondered what sort of low-life cocksuckers would do that; afterward I thought of the local yoots who were pounding on our doors late at night last summer and breaking into our cars and cracking windshields. I suggested security webcams but doubt the P.O. will spring for them. We’ll see.

    Forgot to ask if they took anything and she didn’t mention anything.

    Main drag also down to bare pavement now, thanks mostly to the partial sun we got today.

    Back to puttering…low key, low impact, low possibility of failure….

  12. laying in bed eating painkillers

    tweaked something in my back

    pain is making me nauseous

    fuck me, I got a bunch of stuff to do too

    n

  13. The obit only said he died suddenly.

    Shot in the head by his girlfriend’s father. Very sudden.

  14. “making me nauseous”

    Reminds me of a woman I used to know, who suffered frequent stomach upsets. She’d announce, “I feel nauseous,” to which I’d reply, “You certainly are.” One day she finally asked why I always said that. I explained that what she meant was that she felt nauseated and that nauseous meant “causing nausea”.

  15. tweaked something in my back

    I know that feeling. That’s why I started HIT with mobility, stretching and spine exercises. Spine and joints are good (I’ll be 62 in June). Now to get off the extra pounds. Like Mr. OFD, my hero.

  16. I think nick meant to say he hurt his back twerking. Which was a poor judgment call. No one wants to see you shake that thang, nick.

  17. “23 Percent of Public Schoolchildren Live in Immigrant Households”
    http://www.lifezette.com/polizette/23-percent-of-public-schoolchildren-live-in-immigrant-households/

    “Almost a quarter of the nation’s public school students live in immigrant households, raising questions about America’s long-term ability to continue its tradition of assimilation, according to a study released Thursday.”

    “The report, published by the Washington-based Center for Immigration Studies, indicates that 23 percent of public school students live in a household with at least one immigrant parent. That is more than double the percentage in 1990 and up from 7 percent in 1980.”

    Oh my, this is disturbing. And I am not doubting their numbers.

  18. President tRump has Libturdians, SJW/Progs and the usual fukstiks up in arms with his budget proposal. lol! Climate Change: “We aren’t wasting your money on that anymore.” Planned Parenthood chopped, Corp. for Public Broadcasting gone, NEA gone, NEH gone. I can hear the libturd brains popping in Hollyweird. The RINOs won’t back it though, a bunch of pussies. 2018 is gonna be interesting.

  19. Yes, next year will be extremely interesting.

    Pain that causes nausea is really bad pain; I’ve felt it. I hope you get better fast, Mr. nick; pain really wears us down on several levels.

  20. Their immigrant numbers are low. WAY low.

    At least by TX standards.

    No one will acknowledge that the plunge in district test scores started with the increase in illegal households either.

    6 of 7 kinder classes ESL of some form at one school. 83% turnover in 2 years at another (that draws primarily from cheap apartments). 80-93% hispanic enrollment district wide. Which would be fine if that matched our overall demographics but it doesn’t. We’re about 40% hispanic overall.

    ” and because children from native households are more likely to attend private school” due to the illegal non-english speakers destroying the chance of a decent education in the public schools.

    “”As a consequence, what you get is both an increase in enrollment without a corresponding increase in the tax base,” he said.” — which is one of my biggest problems with it. the apartments don’t pay NEARLY the same property tax as an equivalent number of homes would, and the apartments have far more school age kids than the equivalent number of single family homes would.

    End the free ride.

    nick

  21. WRT back pain, I take drugs daily for chronic lower back pain, but this is something different. I felt it mis-align this am and didn’t get to the chiropractor until noon. By then, I was grimacing, holding my hands and arms tight to my body, and only comfortable looking down and right. The adjustment helped a bit, but not enough. Due to my normal dosing, I can’t add anti-inflammatory drugs, but I need to break the cycle of the misalignment causing pain, which pulls on muscles, to increase and perpetuate the misalignment. So time for lying in bed with a rolled up towel placed strategically and enough pain meds to get drifty….

    n

    Huh, I was never taught the difference between nauseous and nauseated. Now I know.

    ADDED- although the usage has evolved and become accepted

    “nau·seous
    ˈnôSHəs,ˈnôzēəs/
    adjective
    adjective: nauseous

    1.
    affected with nausea; inclined to vomit.”

  22. “No one will acknowledge that the plunge in district test scores started with the increase in illegal households either.”

    10-4, same thing here in SoCal! WRT assimilation: in two score years we will have to be assimilating with the crimmigrants and their offspring.

  23. Next subject: The stupidest ahole of the last two scores of years, McCain.

    Of course because the North Vietnamese tortured him, he would be totally against torture. OTOH, when did the NV Sovieturds sign the Geneva convention? Oh surprise, what would one have expected of them when they didn’t?

    OK, and then he was against waterboarding the 9/11 terrorists in Guantanamo. Of course, which of the sovereign Al Qaeda nations went to Geneva?

    How can someone be that stupid?

  24. This is from the interactive map of immigrant students living in poverty-

    http://cis.org/Map-Students-Immigrant-Households

    The census chunk where my kids school is:

    Texas
    Houston City (West)–East of TX-6 & West of Beltway TX-8

    Studentsa from Immigrant households: 48%
    Total number of students: 21,316
    Poverty rate students in immigrant households: 42%
    Poverty rate students in native households: 4%
    Poverty rate all students: 22%
    Share of all students in poverty from immigrant householdsb: 91%
    Number 1 sending country: Mexico, 28%c
    Number 2 sending country: Africa, ns/nec, 24%c
    Students who speak foreign language at home: 55%d
    Number 1 foreign language spoken: Spanish, 50%d
    Number 2 foreign language spoken: Bantu (many subheads), 14%d
    Number of foreign languages spoken: 14d

    a All figures are for students in public school schools, private schools are not included.
    b Percentage of all students in poverty who are from immigrant households.
    c Percentage of students in immigrant households living in a household headed by an immigrant from this country.
    d Figures are for students in both immigrant and native households.

    And this is the chunk where our house is:

    Texas
    Houston (West) & Spring Valley Village Cities–Between Loop I-610 & Beltway TX-8

    Studentsa from Immigrant households: 58%
    Total number of students: 16,733
    Poverty rate students in immigrant households: 37%
    Poverty rate students in native households: 27%
    Poverty rate all students: 33%
    Share of all students in poverty from immigrant householdsb: 66%
    Number 1 sending country: Mexico, 65%c
    Number 2 sending country: Honduras, 14%c
    Students who speak foreign language at home: 74%d
    Number 1 foreign language spoken: Spanish, 97%d
    Number 2 foreign language spoken: Chinese, 2%d
    Number of foreign languages spoken: 3d

    TL:DR

    Most of the kids are from immigrant households, they are overwhelmingly poor, speak spanish, and are from Mexico.

    n

  25. “No one wants to see you shake that thang, nick.”

    NO ONE! NOPE, NO ONE!

    n

  26. With or without four or eight years of tRump, FUSA will become a balkanized Second World country at best in the next thirty years, with some regions resembling Mad Max Congos and Syrias. Probably no states will secede officially, but the whole mess of empire will gradually just fall apart. The Reds will have themselves a sort of Pyhrric victory, over Clinton Archipelago rubble.

    I don’t see any way to avoid a major financial collapse, which will, of course, have global consequences.

  27. On a completely different subject,

    the antenna search online tool has been improved.

    http://www.antennasearch.com/sitestart.asp?sourcepagename=&getpagename=hopgsitemain&cmdrequest=getpage

    Shows EVERY registered antenna now including every single traffic cam reporter, and every energy company SCADA reporter…. a huge number of antennas. Clicking on the icons on the map gets details and an overhead pic (at least for my area) with everything including owner and freq.

    Really cool.

    nick

  28. Thanks for that antenna search link, Mr. nick; we’ve got two towers up on the ridge between the interstate and here and overlooking the AO, plus 44 antennas registered around the city and town, mostly government and utilities. Downloaded both reports accordingly.

  29. I keep a running inventory of “post apoc” shopping centers for various things…

    Buildings with solar panels, radios and antennas, generators, battery cabinets, fuel tanks…..

    n

    Very conveniently, every school zone here has flashing led lights, with a WiFi link, solar panel, charger, and batteries. Most have at least 2, one for each direction of travel.

    Our local high school has a parking lot with free-standing led lot lights. Each pole has a panel, leds, and a battery with charger.

    Our cable provider has gennies and ups’s with batteries scattered throughout the neighborhoods.

    Those cell towers all have BIG gennies, and accessible 120v outlets, if you don’t mind jumping a fence…

    The creek monitors have level sensors (radar), solar panels, chargers and batteries, and a VHF radio and antenna…

    Nothing I’d mess with short of the collapse, but lots of tech laying about….

  30. Indeed. And a very good idea to include this intel in a growing intel folder, electronic and hard-copy. Plus one of the guides to roadside tech and infrastructure.

    On a related note, looks like our one remaining Radio Shack is going belly-up; they missed the last elimination round. So now no local Radio Shack or Staples or J.C. Penney.

  31. Bob, I’ve admired the work you are doing to help homeschoolers with the kits. It’s surprising how few of your generally conservative readers seem to think nothing of sending their children to state sponsored day care which is what our US educational system has become.

    I’m past child fathering/rearing age now (I think) but if I had children I’d NEVER allow them in the US public school system. Did that twice in the past … big lack mark against me in my personal evaluation of my performance as a parent.

    Do not hesitate to raise prices to cover expenses, many a good cause has gone broke trying to make things affordable to all and ceased to exist, you must make enough profit to stay viable and keep providing the service, if you don’t, then who will.

    Press on and be of good cheer.

  32. ok, before I eat some pain meds and head to bed,

    WRT cable modems.

    New comcast modem and service should be providing up to 120Mbps down and 5-8Mbps up. Was not. Resets and tech support later….

    Finally getting those speeds when connected directly to their modem, according to speedtest.net. NOT sure I trust speedtest and would appreciate any recommendations. I’ve always used the Cnet cable modem speed test, but it’s long in the tooth and says I’m getting 5 and 5. That’s a big difference.

    One thing that was never a problem until I got the crazy fast is my VPN/firewall/router. It was a decent, even good unit new, but turns out its thru put on LAN>WAN tops out around 5 or 6 Mbps typically.

    So off to the web to find a router with a crap ton of throughput. Enter the Ubiquiti EdgeMax. Only $50, has a couple of ports and some other features I won’t use, but mainly 880Mbps LAN > WAN throughput. That should be enough for a while.

    So on top of everything else, I’ve got network hardware to replace (router, access point) cable drops to pull, cams to install, and a server to build.

    REALLY can’t afford this lying around on my back.

    n

    (and still haven’t recovered the Buffalo Terrastation RAID that failed.)

  33. Try Speedof.me instead of speedtest. ” SpeedOf.Me is an HTML5 Internet speed test. No Flash or Java needed! It is the smartest and most accurate online bandwidth test. It works well on iPhone, iPad, Android, Windows and other mobile devices, as well as desktop computers. ”
    http://speedof.me/

  34. Yeah, Trump has been a huge disapointment to me. He’s done a few okay things, like making small cuts in the bureaucracy, but he needs to reduce involvement in NATO, Europe, Japan, Korea and Oz. Cut down or get rid of Obolacare, the Department of Education, etc.

    McCain? I used to think he was okay, sort of. Not any more.

  35. And once again Mr. Miles-Teg has stumbled into the true state of things here with this administration. Hats off!

    And I seem to remember some pain in the ass guy here from Vermont predicting that once tRump and his pals all got down to Mordor and inhaled the toxic vapors emanating from that fever swamp, their stated objectives would fade away. Just like all those Tea Party cretins that everybody was so excited about back in the day.

    Could be worse, though; we could be on the brink of nukular war again with Russia. With our 2A rights utterly destroyed. Which would have been the case with Field Marshal Rodham.

  36. Could be worse, though; we could be on the brink of nukular war again with Russia.

    Could be worse, though; we could be on the brink of nukular war again with the norks.

    Fixed that for ya.

    Which would have been the case with Field Marshal Rodham.

    “shudder”

  37. Yeah, the Norks seem to want it. Ideally a cadre of dissident generals will take out the Pillsbury Dough Maniac, maybe with some help from our Delta and Seal and drone components. Now that’s some “regime change” we could get behind, and the Chicoms might make some hostile noises but otherwise consider it a major headache gone.

    Meanwhile various doomsayers are listing dates this year for SHTF. Hope not.

    Pax vobiscum, fratres and Happy Saint Patrick’s Day! (I am 1/4 Irish and wifey is 100%)

  38. I think enough of the Russian nukes would probably work to make war with them worth avoiding. The Norks? Their conventional artillery aimed at Seoul (where a niece and her family live) would probably work, and cause havoc. Not sure if their missiles *and* nukes will work.

    Yeah, I’m 1/4 Irish too. But I’m not an idolator.

  39. I dislike RAIDs. Except the one that lets you snatch a disk out and replace it with another disk for an automatic rebuild.

    About a month ago, our CS department Gluster server RAID experienced a catastrophic fail of all four physical drives simultaneously. The admins are still picking up all of the pieces, and about half of our servers are still offline.

    Let that be a lesson to you young’n’s — diversify your hardware and vendors. If I had to guesss, given the bureaucratic environment, all four drives were purchased from the same vendor on the same PO.

    I have a single RAID 1 as an experiment at home, hosting my personal Subversion repository. I do regular backups of the repository if I am active in those projects so the RAID is more about reliable sharing between Fedora partitions as I gradually install a new release on the server.

  40. @Dave Starr

    Thanks for the kind words. We’re not planning to go out of business any time soon.

  41. In my case the box holding the RAID died. AFAIK the drives are still fine.

    I can’t get a straight answer to the question “Can I just drop the drives into a new (old) Buffalo Terrastation the correct size and recover? Or does the box store something important?” There was a bare box on ebay for ~$150.

    The other choice seems to be mount the drives in a pc and run a particular piece of software, but that could result in thousands of sequentially named files and NOT my file structure. That would be almost as bad as losing everything.

    n

  42. Hmmm. That site says there’s one tower and five antennas within four miles of our house. Of course, it somehow missed the Verizon cell tower that’s maybe one click NE of our house.

  43. .Could be worse, though; we could be on the brink of nukular war again with Russia.

    Could be worse — we could be looking at Merrick Garland sitting in Scalia’s chair on the Supreme Court with Ginsberg announcing her immediate retirement on Inauguration Day.

    I have no doubt the Republicans would have rushed Garland through confirmation in the lame duck session after the election. That was probably Obama’s intent with the nomination, but Cankles didn’t hold up her end of the deal.

    As for Ginsberg, anyone who doubts her nomination was Clinton payback to Perot needs to go back and review their history books. Ginsberg’s ideology isn’t nearly as pure as what Cankles would have nominated to replace her.

  44. Yeah, the Norks seem to want it.

    Is it possible the NORKs are looking for a “The Mouse that Roared” scenario. It is pretty bleak in NK. The Chicomms are also less than happy with Tubby the Tuba.

    We almost had a rice war during one of my tours in SK.

  45. Say it again. Belt, suspenders, another belt, two more pair of suspenders.
    With the price of drives so low I really don’t know why anyone gets caught with their pants down. Top that off with some cloud storage.
    I use all. Single drive, RAID drive and cloud.

    As to all drives failing at once I’d look to the raid controller first. Glitch that may take out all four drives at once would probably be the boards. Try replacing boards on the drives with matching units.
    As to RAID I only trust mirror of two drives. You can then read the data off just one if only one goes bad. Two separate raid units, maybe a network attached.

  46. (and still haven’t recovered the Buffalo Terrastation RAID that failed.)

    My Drobo lets you pull a dead disk on the fly and it will rebuild itself. They have an option for two dead disks in a 5-disk array.

    If the unit dies, my reading of Drobo manuals and forums pretty much says you are dead. If you put the same disks in a new (same) unit, the disks will be formatted.

    YMMV.

  47. If the unit dies, my reading of Drobo manuals and forums pretty much says you are dead

    Single point of failure, how quaint. Had some Compaq servers, as redundant as you could get, raid, power supplies, network, except motherboard. Guess what failed in all three servers over a period of a couple of years. None of the redundant components ever failed.

  48. Yeah, it’s like the fuses that never blow but the power regulator chips shoot fire across the board.

    I ignored the problem for just a bit too long, and now I’m screwed. There were signs of problems for a long time before the final failure. I was sure I was fine though, ‘cuz the drives are fine. Not so much.

    I’d even bought a USB drive to backup the NAS, but couldn’t get the automated tool to work, and never copied it manually.

    n

  49. I use a combo of SpaceMonkey, Dropbox, Evernote, Apple Script homebrew B/U to external SSD, and Drobo’s for my digital life. If I lost everything, the only problem would be the PITA to get back to business. My Macs are all Time Machine’d and would be up the same day if I had a Mac failure. At almost 62, I don’t really give a shit if I lost all my digital stuff.

  50. I used to run RAID on my systems, but I no longer bother. I back up my data frequently (at least once or twice an hour on a heads-down day) to two USB thumb drives and two USB external hard drives.

  51. in the ongoing saga of comcast–

    freaking thing reboots all the time and wants to go thru the “activation” screens, then reboots again. Takes about 5 minutes every time too.

    WRT speed, since they “prove” their speed with speedtest.net, I’m stuck with that. I really liked the speedof.me link, which consistently shows 20-30Mbps vs speedtest’s 120.

    Both tools, in fact every tool, shows the uploads around 5-6Mbps.

    Funny that. Uploads don’t matter which service you use, NO PLAYING GAMES with uploads….

    Comcast’s custom version of speedtest, well, lots of games you can play with speeds when you specify one hop local paths, have locally cached data, etc.

    HMMM, do I trust comcast’s customized tool? Or some third party that has no skin in the game? I’ll take third party please Alex.

    If I’m actually getting 20-30 Mbps down, that’s a big improvement and I’ll live with it.

    If I really have to put up with my freaking ROUTER rebooting every day and having to “sign up” and activate my account every day, NO, HELL NO.

    n

  52. I just ran speedofme, speedtest, and bandwidth place on my connection, and all gave very similar results for upload and download speeds. The one difference was in ping time, which two reported at about 30 or 40 ms, while speedtest reported 3 ms. That was because it was using a server from my ISP, which server is located about 30 miles from here. My guess is that speedtest uses the closest server it can possibly find, and of course that means using a server provided by the same company who provides the internet connection. In other words, they skew their results to favor the internet provider.

  53. Ours is nominally 20/2 mbps. We normally get 16 to 18 down and 3 to 4 up.

  54. speedofme

    100.31 down (132.54 max)
    11.55 up (14.11 max)
    23ms ping

    Server in Los Angeles

  55. Now I’m envious. Well, not really. We had the option of 100 or 1,000 mbps down with correspondingly fast up, but 20/2 was fast enough and much cheaper.

  56. Nice numbers MrA. Very impressive.
    Who is the provider and the price. Mine’s actually Earthlink through Spectrum at $48 per month.

    Years ago when our cable Time Warner merged with AOL they where required to add outside ISPs to the mix. I had had Earthlink for years and was able to move it from dial-up to cable. TWC later spun off Brighthouse which continued to use much of TWC’s infrastructure. A few months ago Charter bought TWC/Brighthouse and have renamed it all Spectrum. I have no idea what the future holds for the Earthlink offering. At least my speed is good if not better. Only probs occur when too much streaming is going on.

  57. Cox Cable: $79/mo. They have a higher tier plus biz ‘net. I deduct it as a biz expense per CPA.

  58. I’d like to chop the “full” TV package, but the fems might knife me whilst I sleep.

  59. dkreck wrote:

    “With the price of drives so low I really don’t know why anyone gets caught with their pants down”

    Because it takes forever to backup a large drive. I wish there was a way of mirroring data from a RAID-1 to an external drive automatically. There probably is, but I no longer keep up with that stuff.

  60. About a month ago, our CS department Gluster server RAID experienced a catastrophic fail of all four physical drives simultaneously. The admins are still picking up all of the pieces, and about half of our servers are still offline.

    Let that be a lesson to you young’n’s — diversify your hardware and vendors. If I had to guesss, given the bureaucratic environment, all four drives were purchased from the same vendor on the same PO.

    No backup ?

  61. Miles, of course there is. Look at a eSATA/USB3 box or a network attached box but if nothing else just start it at night and go to bed. The clouds are the slowest of course unless you can get really fast internet.

  62. I’d like to chop the “full” TV package, but the fems might knife me whilst I sleep.

    The fems have volunteered to drop the old DVR as our DirecTV bill has crept up to $152/month. Two DVRs and one Genie mini. Might drop our bill by $15/month. AT&T has really increased the rates since they bought DirecTV.

  63. I back up my data frequently (at least once or twice an hour on a heads-down day) to two USB thumb drives and two USB external hard drives.

    We still only perform office LAN backups once per day, each night. Three internal backup drives are used each day. Our incremental backup take two hours to perform. A full backup requires two days and about 3.3 TB of disk space.

    And the weekly offsite LAN backup is a fail today. I forgot to bring in the fricking USB external drive out of the seven drive rotation in the office storage. Sigh.

  64. Internal drives are the fastest which is why I put extras into the box. Copy live data to internal extra then copy that out to other. BTW server to server FTP is much faster than copy paste over the network. I have a 6GB copy of the main data files at work. FTP to a WIN 2008 box over network. About 2:30 mins

  65. No backup ?

    Sure, but the entire department infrastructure is based on NFS mounted Gluster volumes, and rebuilding the configurations correctly takes time.

    Currently, the problem is above my pay grade. I have undergraduates to guide through the last month of Compilers when I get back from Spring Break.

    The fems have volunteered to drop the old DVR as our DirecTV bill has crept up to $152/month. Two DVRs and one Genie mini. Might drop our bill by $15/month. AT&T has really increased the rates since they bought DirecTV.

    Next year is an AT&T strike prep year. I wonder what the DirecTV people will do when they’re told to report to “Poles and Holes” training after the interns in Dallas work out the scab schedule this Summer.

  66. Backups – disk to disk via a dedicated backup server.
    Incremental every 20 minutes.
    We keep hours for days
    Days for weeks
    Weeks for months
    Months for years.
    And the whole frickin’ thing replicates to another server down the street.
    Replication store has 20 TB allocated, but only about 9 TB used. I have excess space, and I’m not sorry for it. Backups of SQL server and Exchange server get the same treatment.
    And every month, an external USB HDD gets a copy of an image from the end of the prior month.

    I’ve been asked for files I don’t have, but not often. Usual is to make them wait 24 hours so they have incentive not to delete the file in the first place.

  67. “Usual is to make them wait 24 hours so they have incentive not to delete the file in the first place.”

    Bloody well right; serves the bastards right. You old softy. Make ’em wait 48 hours.

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