Pilot fish will get a panicked cellphone name from the central management supervisor at a busy worldwide airport. The VT420 dumb terminals are double-displaying each character typed, in order that “exit,” for instance, is being displayed as “eexxiitt.” In fact, when customers hit Enter after typing “exit,” they get an error message relating to the unknown command “eexxiitt.”

The terminals are used to enter instructions to do issues comparable to beginning up and shutting down the central management software program — thus the panic.

Fish takes a glance and sees that there’s a setup menu that allows you to management the habits of the terminal. One of many menu choices — about three ranges deep — is “Activate Native Echo.” The only function of Native Echo is to repeat every character typed on the keyboard.

One orderly shutdown and software program patch later, the issue is solved.

And some days later, the “how” is defined in an e mail fish receives from the central management supervisor. Appears among the operators grew bored watching the totally automated system do its factor, so that they began hacking across the dumb terminal and unintentionally turned on the Native Echo function. Oh, effectively, this stuff occur, proper?

Not if fish’s supervisor will help it. He offers fish the duty of documenting each terminal setting with their appropriate values, to ship to the supervisor.

“That,” laments fish, “took about three hours of my time. No good deed goes unpunished, eh?”

Sseenndd yyoouurr ttrruuee ttaalle — oh, sorry! Sharky needs your true story of IT life. Ship it to me at sharky@computerworld.com. You too can subscribe to the Day by day Shark Publication and skim some nice previous tales within the Sharkives.

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