There is no drug or single event in the world that can make a computer person focus more clearly than when a server crashes. The mere act of a crashing hard drive, database or server component can temporarily raise one’s IQ as much as 50 points. You suddenly become more aware of the universe around you and less aware of trivial aspects in life, such as reality TV, what type of car you should drive and if wearing socks with sandals is cool. You can for a brief moment see dimly into the immediate future as your pleasure centers temporarily shutdown and you put your resume on standby for a mass mailing campaign. You move much quicker as time seems to slow down, you can calculate rational and irrational numbers using math that hasn’t been invented yet and you become a little more spiritual–no, a lot more spiritual. A crashed server sometimes brings a network administrator closer to God, his or her fellow workers and the unemployment line. And in a single point of light (pixilated light) when you discover that your backups haven’t run for over two months, a cold perspiration blankets your feverous body while your knees weaken and the contents of your stomach climb to the top of your reflux valve. This is it; your mission critical server crashed and you don’t have a backup. So what do you do?
You do what every network administrator does when this happens; you calmly walk into your office, throw up in your trashcan and slowly begin gathering up your personal items while waiting for someone from Human Resources to bring you a box. And as you sit at your desk trying to figure out how you’re going to get 2 gigs of MP3s to your home computer it hits you like a brick, you read this book and configured a redundant backup to another server on another hard drive. Suddenly the feeling in your hands and feet return and you go back to the server room and restore the data.
By Douglas Chick
(From my English course)