John Croson's Blog Home: 09/01/2010 - 10/01/2010

Wednesday, September 08, 2010

Subsystem for Unix-based Applications and Windows Batch scripts

The current logo of Microsoft Windows, the com...Image via WikipediaSome time ago, I installed the SUA package with the thought I might use it for scripting and other tasks that I find easier to accomplish using GNU-like tools rather than Windows.

Recently I needed to run a batch script that programatically checks for the evidence of some data files and injects them into MS Sql via DTS. This script worked fine on another server for years with a few tweaks now and then, and suddenly during my tests on this machine, it was failing.

What I found was that my script was using the Windows FIND command, which is also installed by SUA. When I used FIND in my script, it was using the SUA flavor, and not the Windows version.

I checked my PATH environment and saw that SUA's path was listed first, then %SystemRoot%, and %SystemRoot%\System32 where Windows FIND is installed. If I were a betting man, I'd have to say that since the SUA tools are listed before Windows, they get processed first. I've not tested this, but really didn't feel the need to since calling the application absolutely in the script (%WINDIR%\System32\Find.exe) solves my problem.

Hope this helps you!

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Tuesday, September 07, 2010

Milwaukee PC Non-Customer Service

Last week Friday, a tape got stuck in our Dell PowerVault 132T Library. Luckily, I was able to remove the tape and resume order to our backups...or so I thought.

After checking in Saturday it was clear that we were going to be without backups, something that makes my skin crawl.IMG_3082Image by artescienza via Flickr

So promptly after our return to work after a nice long Labor Day weekend, I rushed out and to purchase an external drive to backup data to.

My choice for such emergency trips is usually Milwaukee PC, since they are likely to have what I need in a pinch even if it is a few more dollars.

IomegaImage via WikipediaThey indicated there indeed was a 2tb drive in stock, so I bought an enclosure and we headed over to the display case to retrieve the drive. Unfortunately the drive was no where to be found...bummer. A 1tb drive was likely not going to be quite large enough, but it was going to have to do. I started planning what data to trim from the backups to make room, then suddenly saw the Radio Shack sign on my right...what the heck, I'll check and see if they have what I need.

Sure enough, they had a Iomega 1.5tb in an enclosure. Just big enough for a full backup of all our stuff. Sold! Now to head back to Milwaukee PC to return the smaller drive.

Only 15 minutes had passed and this was the response I got from the clerk even after I expressed my surprise and dismay; "Sorry sir, but your purchase will be subject to a 15% restock fee.", and "That's our policy..."

Unbelievable. In today's climate you'd think the loss of my business and everyone else I tell this story to is worth more than $24.

Never will I shop Milwaukee PC again, and I will dissuade my customers, family and friends from making the same mistake I did.

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