On this day, ten years ago, I took my brand new car to work for the very first time.  It would get dubbed “The Toaster” by my friends in San Francisco.  I truly loved this underpowered box on wheels and it was fun to drive.


I had a meeting with a very important new client and they were very unhappy because their drive array began to die on my first day of work for the company.  My predecessor had only done the most minimum of upgrades on their hardware. The motherboard and drive array were damaged when the four year old power supply failed.


When I arrived onsite, the owner of the business was irritated and kept mentioning that the corporate Lawyer was out of the office at a client but would be returning soon and they would be discussing their legal strategy.  This is a company that relied on it’s email and they now did not have access to it.  I patiently explained that I was not sure what was wrong but that I would figure it out and offer a solution as soon as I could.  He took a deep breath and walked away still annoyed.


When I figured out the problem and explained it to him, he asked why only the hard drives were replaced and I explained that I wasn’t sure that my recommendation would have been to replace the current hardware with the most energy efficient and reliable hardware possible.  I had to take the server back to the Depot in San Francisco to Marin and a co-worker had to drive both of us and the server back.  The client called and wanted to meet with us on Monday to discuss this.   On Sunday, I went to Santa Clara Honda and this is what I got.


On Monday when the meeting began, the client asked what I would do for their Network.  I explained what I recommended and that was two new servers, a backup device and server software upgrades.  The client eventually agreed to all new workstations and computers as well as Notebooks for the executives.  In total about $150,000 worth of equipment.  He then asked how they could be assured that I would not be like the last five Field Engineers and I explained about buying this car as I dropped the keys on the table and explained the job, their business paid my salary.


NOTE:  This blog was recreated from backup files from a self hosted blog posted the day it happened.