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I particularly like don't be a human keyboard where people may tell you to implement a solution rather than telling you what problem they need solved. When Frank (fictional person) says "install Postgres on that server," he is treating you like a human keyboard. He isn't presenting you with a problem needing solved, he is telling you to implement a chosen solution (that may or may not work). You have a function being called and a result is expected. What result? You don't know the problem and lack context!
You have a few options for avoiding turning yourself into a human keyboard, and solutions will vary by situation and audience. First, you can simply document common questions and answers. Second, you could (assuming skill/time/energy) automate answers that can't easily be documented - like creating a dashboard to answer service health status questions. Third, if you can't automate it, put requests like these through your ticketing system. Fourth, you can try to train the user to answer the question without invoking you.
Last edited by somabc; 16th December 2010 at 12:54 PM.
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