Archive for 2005

The $tate Fair

So I broke down and wagered Connor’s college fund against the NC State Fair yesterday. Mostly just to see his face when he rode the flying Bumble Bee’s and kiddie swings. And I committed a serious sin that almost ruined it for Amy – I did not remember to bring a camera. But seriously – I got away lucky and only spent about $60 in just under four hours! Let’s recap:

Parking – $5
Admission (2 adults) – $12
2 corn dogs – 1 hotdog – 2 drinks – $12
Fried Dough w/ strawberries – $8
20 ride tickets – $15
Cotton Candy and Candy Apples – $7

Total financial impact for 4 hours of traffic, heartburn, crowds and 2 rides = $59. But Connor loved the rides and Cotton Candy so I officially declare it justified.

It’s easy to see that the amount of time that can be spent at the State Fair is directly proportional to the depth of one’s wallet. $59 could have almost gotten us into Busch Gardens because Connor’s admission is free!

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One busy year.

I just realized this blog turned one today. I was cruzin’ through it to recap some of the events that took place because this eventually turned out to be one of the best years ever (despite a rough start and Dubya being re-elected):

This is a whole lot considering just two years ago Amy and I were living in an apartment on a college campus and I was playing the drums in a steadily performing band until 3am several nights a week. Now if we don’t get to bed by 11 the whole next day is shot to hell.

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Back On-line

This morning I got my cable modem back on-line. Obviously the DynDNS update completed successfully or you wouldn’t be visiting. Wednesday DirecTV will be out to hook up a new dish and the last of the utilities will be transferred.

We are living out of boxes for now. Moving is just plain painful. But my new office is a huge 16’x18′. It’s the biggest room in the house, Connor’s new playroom being second at 16 feet square. The boys get the big playrooms. Mom gets the downstairs. I made her kitchen look like a Starbucks so she should be in heaven.

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Site Down

This blog’s going down this afternoon and may not be back up until Wednesday or Thursday of next week when Time Warner gets my cable service moved to our new house.

This will be the only set back I’ve experienced in hosting my own site.

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Look who’s two!

imageOn Friday the deed was done, or at least transferred. Amy and I now own 1404 Raybon Drive in Wendell, NC. but we didn’t get to spend much time out there this weekend because our little man Connor turned two the very next day! And his party was better than any I ever had when growing up. All his little friends were there – Andrew, Maeve, Charlie, Megan, Skylar, Hannah, Jacob and plenty of adults. All of the food was eaten – every last thing.

imageConnor was wiped out by this afternoon. He had his party on Saturday and explored his new backyard all morning on Sunday. And now comes the fun part. As soon as he gets up from his nap we’re heading to Home Depot for paint and about four million other things. Tomorrow I’ll spend the whole day painting and then I’ll be off to buy a new refrigerator and microwave to install over the stove.

By Friday we have to be moved out of the house in Raleigh. Buying new furniture will have to wait until next weekend. Today it dawned on me that this is the first time I have taken off work in over four years that hasn’t been medically related.


It’s closing day.

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It’s closing day.

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It’s closing day.

By noon today we will have a new home.


Calling VanDyke CRT from a Microsoft DTS

CRTOne of the things I have always disliked about administering Windows servers and workstations is their inherent inability to act as a basic terminal. You’ve got to use terminal emulation software to login to NFS based firmware and appliances. Recently this became a huge issue when we were required to delete the contents of a volume on a NetApp SAN at Dillon Supply. Here was the scenario:

We have a volume vol0/dscsql2db on a NetApp FAS270 filer. Every night all of the NetApp “snapshots” on this volume need to be deleted. The snap delete command native to the snapdrive service on Windows 2003 servers cannot perform the force deletion of an entire volume. The snap delete command in the OS of the filer can delete the entire contents of a volume regardless of a snapshots state or condition. More specifically, one of the snapshots we wanted to delete is mounted as a read/writable volume on a server (busy, LUNs). Therefore the arguments available in the snap delete command on the filer are required.

So we needed a way to log on directly to the NetApp filer from within a Microsoft SQL DTS (Data Transformation Service) and execute the snap delete command to remove the entire contents of the volume. Basically, I needed to run a Vbscript as a job executed by a DTS against the Netapp filer. That’s where VanDyke CRT came in. I could have used custom expect scripts and spent a long time figuring out how to get them to run through Telnet. Instead we set up a default Telnet session for the CRT application to use when called by the parent DTS (by IP Address) then it automatically executes the following login script:

#$language = “VBScript”
#$interface = “1.0”

Sub main

‘ turn on synchronous mode so we don’t miss any data
crt.Screen.Synchronous = True

‘ Wait for a string that looks like “login: ” or “Login: ”
crt.Screen.WaitForString “ogin: ”

‘ Send your username followed by a carriage return
crt.Screen.Send “root” & vbCr

‘ Wait for a tring that looks like “password: ” or “Password: ”
crt.Screen.WaitForString “assword:”

‘ Send your password followed by a carriage return
crt.Screen.Send “ya, you wish” & vbCr

crt.Screen.WaitForString “etapp1”

‘ ++++ Begin Production commands to delete snapshots

crt.Screen.Send “snap delete -a -f -q dscsql2db” & vbCr

crt.Screen.WaitForString “etapp1”

crt.Screen.Send “snap delete -a -f -q dscsql2logs” & vbCr

‘ ++++ End Production commands to delete snapshots

‘ turn off synchronous mode to restore normal input processing

crt.Screen.Synchronous = False

‘ This will wait 30 seconds
crt.Sleep 30000
‘ dismiss the app

End Sub

Notice the crt.whatever.wait and .send vb scripting objects. It’s these objects included in CRT that made this all possible. Once the script command executes to delete the contents of the volume on the NetApp filer, it closes CRT and our SQL DTS can proceed with creating a new snapshot of our production database volume, mounting this snapshot to a remote server where it is then attached to MS SQL as one of the last steps. Bang! The refreshed reporting server is on-line.

None of this would have been possible without our $35 copy of CRT.


David Joyner??? – Work Under Way To Promote Toll Roads Statewide

WRAL.com – News – Work Under Way To Promote Toll Roads Statewide

This article says “To help sell the idea, the state has hired public relations veteran David Joyner to lead the North Carolina Turnpike Authority.”

Is this the same David Joyner who leased my old band our rehearsal room off capital Blvd. I certainly hope not. That would be quite strange because he owns a downtown real estate company. Not a public relations company. Just read about one of his properties: Fox Ridge.

It must be someone different. Gotta be. I might email WRAL to find out.

UPDATE: It’s not the same Joyner (thank God). This David Joyner is the founder of State Capital Strategies in Raleigh.

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