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Win2K Does It Again

October 2, 2000 9:33 PM UTC
The BellSouth backbone collapsed and an entire university network was laid to waste. How was this possible?

The local news broke with the story. The Chancellor of the Bayou Country university was on camera, all apologetic for what had happened. A major portion of the Bell South backbone had gone down and an entire university network had been laid to waste. How was this possible? Why with the wonderful Windows 2000 of course. That and a modicum of very savvy MCP 'network administrators' who had planned this little surprise all by themselves with no help from their parents or guardians.

In an area of the planet where the title 'Network Administrator' carries the same weight as 'Secretary of the Chamber of Commerce' but does not necessarily or ostensibly imply any concomitant modicum of gray matter, a major decision had been made to upgrade a mighty network to Bill's Bugs & Bloat Emporium - and permeate the poor backbone all the way to the routers and the DNS servers themselves with that sorry product.

This is a lovely network. And it has always worked, so one should not complain. It contains old VMS boxes and MVS mainframes and has programs running that when last updated were done so with punch cards. It has 240 baud modems and reel to reel tape transfers to deal with. It is a real Good Ol' Boy network - and it worked. Like a charm. Until Bill got his foot in the door and told his Pied Piper marching crew how they could make it better.

The result was at once swift and unequivocal. Attempting to provide a stream link to Saturday's football game, the entire area was wiped out as if through an invasion from outer space. One by one the major servers got overloaded and gave up. The worst of it was that this portion of the Bell South backbone actually services a number of other areas as well - and they all suffered too. Three days later the situation is still total chaos. The university registrar's office is still not online - student records, including those for financial aid, have vanished - the destruction is all but complete.

Chalk up another victory for Win2K. And another victory for sound experienced thinking and MCP network administrators. And if this event doesn't win Bill a new award, then people are just biased against the poor guy. And if the gifted 'network administrators' don't squeeze new pay rises and promotions out of this, but somehow in the confusion get the sack instead, then there is, as we all have suspected, no justice left in the world.

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