Monday, August 4, 2008

Step Zero - Define The Problem

Einstein was once asked if he had an hour to save the world from total destruction, what would he do? His comment was he'd spend 58 minutes defining the problem, and 2 minutes looking for the solution.

On the other side of the fence in a recent interview somebody asked Linus about 'innovation' and he replied
I have never had trouble finding people with crazy ideas. I have trouble finding people who can execute.
All right, now I've got enough quotes to start an argument, what about Rule Number Four?

Guess Linus wins this round. Lets figure out what we need roughly and get on with it.

0 - as close to zero maintenance as possible. I might be on vacation, the hydro might go out for a day, or real life just might be more interesting that day. Has to be 'no worries'

1 - Backup Drop Spot - Computer problems are a lot easier to solve with a working backup :-) And on a home network backups can be a real bitch. Lots of big files, no organization, and the most demanding users you'll ever find anywhere - your significant other and family members who just know that you're the computer geek who's supposed to know how all this stuff works right?

2 - DNS - Because my family aren't into remembering IP numbers

3 - aDSL PPPoE connection maintaining. Because it has to work whenever they want the internet, no muss, no fuss

4 - DHCP - more of the it should just work for friends and family stuff

5 - Central file share - because maintaining multiple copies of all your movies and music is silly, and makes Rule 1 even harder to follow

6 - Firewall

7 - Web filtering. My kids are old enough to try typing things, and young enough not to know why that's a bad idea. And yes, I supervise them, but I don't pretend to believe I'm perfect, and they aren't just a bit sneaky from time to time :-)

8 - Cross platform (see Rule 3)

9 - Central sign on and mobile profiles for the kids - because they don't care which computer they use, and they shouldn't have to really.

10 - Safe remote access to all machines.

11 - Guest wireless and wired access that doesn't give away the keys to kingdom for visitors

12 - Mail server that downloads mail regularly, virus scans it and stores it before the end pcs see it

13 - lots of flexibility to do other stuff I haven't thought of at the moment.

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