Thomas (boggyb) wrote,

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Down the rabbit hole...

Our build system was having a bit of a funny time today. Jobs were starting and stopping of their own accord and failing for no end of reasons. Including, and I jest not, a "Mimsy" error. I ended up having to fall back on some very old tools of mine...

> look
You are in the lab router.
Exits: many.

> go to build-machine
Your way is blocked by a confused nano-hamster, holding a lost packet.

I blame that evil firewall.

> ping nano-hamster
You PING the nano-hamster! It leaps in the air, dropping its packet on the floor. Upon landing it realises that it no longer has any data to deliver and scurries away.
Items: dropped packet.

> take packet
The packet makes a strange snick-snick noise as you collect it.

That's weird.

> go to build-machine
You are in the TCP/IP stack of the build machine.

> look
The stack is full of industrious nano-hamsters ferrying packets of data around. The activity, while high, is normal for a release cycle. A curious burbling sound from one of the ports is audible above the pitter-patter of microscopic nano-hamster feet.

> examine burbling port
The port is guarded by a frumious gate-warden, who is only admitting select nano-hamsters. The nano-hamsters that emerge from the port seem to be in a hurry and look rather singed.

Curioser and curioser. Whatever's up with the server has to be behind that port.

> go to burbling port
Your way is blocked by a frumious gate-warden.

> show authentication
The gate-warden refuses your authentication. If anything, it's even more frumious. Shunning it would be a good idea right now.

> sudo show authentication
With a speed that would put a drill seargant to shame, the gate-warden leaps to attention and jumps to the side.

Now to head onwards before it realises.

> sudo go to burbling port
The gate-warden throws a precision military salute. You nod in reply as you enter the port.

As you step through the port all trace of it vanishes behind you. You are now in a maze of twisty tulgey woods, all alike. The burbling is louder, but you cannot locate it. In front of you is a Tumtum tree.

> go to Tumtum tree.
You are now standing next to the Tumtum tree.

> rest
After a few moments, you spot a pair of small flames, whiffling through the tulgey wood. The burbling is much louder.

> examine packet
The packet is still making a curious snick-snack noise.
The flames have disappeared. The burbling is extremely loud, as if it was right behind you.

Will not turn around will not turn around will not turn around...

You slowly turn around.
Behind you is a Jabberwock, a beast with eyes of flame, jaws that bite, and claws that catch!


Wait, did that packet go snick-snack? It can't be...

> use packet
You quickly rewrite the IP addresses on the packet and fling it at the Jabberwock. With a snicker-snack, the Vorpal packet passes through and through the Jabberwock.

It burbles an inarticulate sentence of corrupt data before segfaulting and evaporating.

The tulgey wood slowly fades away as the kernel deallocates the process, to reveal a standard packet buffer guarded by a somewhat confused gate-warden. The gate-warden has the look of someone who's just realised he's been had...

Whoops. It must have seen through the sudo. Best not to hang around

> take packet
You pick the slightly battered Vorpal packet up. The packet makes a strange snick-snick noise as you collect it.
The gate-warden bellows a frumious roar as it spots you.

> ^D ^D

Well, at least that's sorted. I'd better save a copy of that packet, just in case...

Happy Rabbit Hole Day '11!
Tags: down the rabbit hole

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