[rescue] Vendor software support [was Re: RPi vs SS20 benchmarks (interesting)]

Lionel Peterson lionel4287 at gmail.com
Sat Jan 2 07:33:07 CST 2016

Having spent some time working in technical support for major software
companies I too have a story or two...

One story involved a major customer of ours that used our mainframe
programming package to run their municipal Housing Authority. Despite clear
large text, single sentence page warnings in the program documentation this
gov't agency used our "development-use only" indexed database in production
because it was so simple to use. Our warning clearly said to not use the DB in
production because it can become corrupted and once corrupted it was
impossible to correct.

So when their production database went down they called for support. After
acknowledging what the manual clearly said, they asked us if it could be
recovered. We said no, they had to roll back to their last update they told us
they stopped backing up their database daily because, and I quote, it was
taking too long... They had to manually restore their database by going to a
previous weekend backup and then reposting their previous four days of updates

(To explain the logic of including a simple dev only database, it allowed
programmers to quickly develop and test their applications without having to
configure a DB2 or IMS database until their coding was completed, and cutting
over to a full production DB like DB2 or IMS was a trivial matter code-wise,
just change the file handles at the beginning of the code and go...)


> On Jan 2, 2016, at 3:09 AM, Mike Meredith <very at zonky.org> wrote:
> The best story I have in relation to vendor support was way back in the
> 1990s when I was a clueless newbie.

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