Thursday, 5 April 2007

What a week!

The problem with going on holiday is that you have to sort out a lot of work stuff before you go and then come back to a mountain of email, voice messages and work that no one else has picked up. My wife has a theory that you shouldn't take holidays of less than three weeks as someone absolutely has to cover your work if you're out for that long - but then she works in the public sector. Enough said.

So, it's off to the in laws for Easter and then a week of Ikea, John Lewis... and the hell of flat pack furniture.

But back to work, for a minute. It has been decided, by God knows who, that the data on our laptops needs protecting. To achieve this we're using some hideous beast called Data Armour. It took about 10+ goes at installing it before I even got to step 1 because apparently my disk was too fragmented and the Microsoft XP defragger wasn't up to the job of defragging it. Ten goes with it did the trick (and I'm not exagerating). Once the software had installed the fun really began. It rebooted the laptop and then brought up the Data Armour login prompt. I typed in the password which it refused to accept - again and again and again... Apparently you have to wait for an unspecified period of time before it lets you log in, though this wasn't mentioned in the documentation that we were sent by the desktop build deprtment. A cup of coffee later and I was able to log in... to the message that there were corrupt files in my Program Files directory. Data Armour hadn't even started it's encryption at this point which was not a good sign. I tried to fire up Outlook to find that wasn't working and was corrupted.

I could go on but it's Thursday evening and I'm now on holiday, so I won't. But it's at times like this that I understand why corporate IT has such a poor reputation within businesses. How could the manager in charge of rolling this out not take into account the cost of half a day of my working time to get a lousy piece of software working that provides me, personally, with no benefit? I appreciate that there is a benefit to the company but this gets nullified or worse if significant productivity is lost in implementing it. Still, I got off fairly lightly. One of my co-workers lost his entire drive, had to have the laptop rebuilt and all his data restored which only took a day or so. God help us when this gets rolled out to the staff at large. I'll definitely be taking that as holiday!

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