Tag Archives: IT

The things people leave behind

I’m on the way back to Melbourne now from my trip to Sydney.

Waiting at the Qantas Club waiting for my flight, I’m using a public computer to logon and check my email. (Laptop battery flat because I surrendered my power pack to a staff member who forgot theirs)

it’s interesting (but not surprising) to see the documents people have downloaded onto this public terminal but not deleted.
I did go looking for them but merely stumbled upon them when saving a temp document (nothing sensitive) myself.

Dividend reports, names and addresses, they’re all there.

Would you really want to trust a public terminal with private and confidential information?

This is also possibly a bad reflection on Qantas. They should have a more stringent cleanout policy in place to reset a system after use.

My advise:
-where possible, don’t use a public terminal
-never log into sensitive sites such as financial sites
-if you must, it must be secure, not clear text.
-where possible, use a web based service to access files. Citrix if your company offers it, that way no data leaves the corporate network.
-if you have to download files to the public machine, know where you save them and delete them. Directly opening a file from a browser will open the file from a temporary location you may not be able to find or delete. (Although it should get cleaned out)
-Always restart the computer when you are finished.
Many cleanout routines only take effect on a reboot and not a logoff.


For the past two days I’ve been working in Sydney.

I shipped the old HP R3000xr UPS from Melbourne and bought 30 new batteries to suit. After reassembling the battery packs and making a quick hack saw assisted modification to some rack rails, it was mounted and running.
(Tip of the day, buy the $30 hack saw, not the $19 hack saw. Grr.)

I now have a fantastic 2 hours of runtime for the lone server, network switch, telephones and alarm system.
A little bit overkill, but good considering there may be bigger plans for Sydney in the future.

Whilst in Sydney I managed to squeeze in two other meetings.
Meeting one was with the Sydney Opera House (SOH).
They have three locations for there IT infrastructure, one of them being the same building we’re in. All linked by fibre and 802.11g (pringles can accross Circular Quay).

We plan to bridge our networks to provide permanent network access for the 7 week periods we call the SOH home twice a year. Benifits will include a faster reliable connection to the office, no ongoing costs and possibly less setup time.

My second meeting was with Chris from Dell.
I’m in the process of deciding on prefered vendor and models of my laptop fleet (about 50 units).
As Dell is based in Sydney, Chris kindly offered to show me around their offices. It was a very worthwhile and interesting tour. They have a staff of about 450 over two floors, all setup in cubicle arrangements (ala Dilbert style). Even the managers I was introduced to were part of the same cubicles.
The most important part of the tour was the ProSupport area. Dell is one of the few global IT companys to have a local support precence in Australia. Their level 1 standard support is still based offshore, but they offer ProSupport which is 2 level direct support which is exactly what I’m after.

Good to see real people in Australia with real experience (min 5 years) all cross trained.

As I said, worthwhile visit.

Now to make a decision of what to buy..