Another aphorism of system administration

November 28, 2007

Here is a principle of practical system administration:

Later never comes.

Specifically, don't defer something until 'later', because it's never going to happen. Unless you are exceptionally well disciplined and lucky, either you will have lost track of things by the time you have the free time or you'll discover that any number of other bits now depend on the state of the world as it is, and it is no longer at all simple to change it.

(A surprising amount of practical system administration is about not losing track of things. Unfortunately this is not my strongest suit.)

Comments on this page:

From at 2008-06-17 20:33:10:

This is why ticketing systems exist. Ticketing systems never forget and an "internal" or "systems" queue can provide a list of things you meant to get to 'later' and now suddenly have the time to do

By cks at 2008-07-14 17:43:53:

A ticketing system only solves half of the problem; it doesn't keep other bits of your environment from coming to depend on the things that you want to change or remove.

Written on 28 November 2007.
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Last modified: Wed Nov 28 23:29:37 2007
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