Ecclesiastes 1:9

as I said to a co-worker, applies.

The problem?

We were running out of network drive space.  The network drive, where our 2000 customers store their roaming profiles, had 80MB left.  Roaming profiles, very simply put, are copies of your “My Documents” and “Desktop”, which “roam” to every computer you logon to.  To do this, they need to be stored on the network.

Co-worker: “I think we have a lot of unused user accounts taking up space”
Me: ‘Wouldn’t think so.  More like porn and music files.”

Some time later, “There was one guy with 7GB of movies on his desktop.”

There is nothing new under the sun.

Back in the 1990’s a particular Power & Water company would run out of home drive space.

The workers knew they were doing the wrong thing.  So did their management.  Management were afraid of the workers going out on strike so they wouldn’t take action.

The IT Admins took the easy way out to solve the problem, just delete the porn!

It’s not as if the workers would actually complain.

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It could only happen in?

Ron Goodin Power Station Imagine this.

You are a power generating company (PGC).

You have a virus outbreak on your network.

It infects your SCADA PCs.


SCADA.  Supervisory Control And Data Acquisition.  In other words, the PCs which monitor and control your power generating turbines.  Sure, you have staff who monitor these turbines as well, in-between downloading Ralph screensavers.

So it was a major WHOOPS.

The back-story was this:

  • PGC had a network of un-patched, out of scope (ie. not managed by us), machines without anti-virus software, running one of their regional power stations, in (a town of 25,000+ people).
  • The network was meant to be separate from the rest of the general computer network.
  • A hardware-base firewall WAS purchased to isolate the power station SCADA machines.
  • But the person driving the project left and the firewall was not implemented.

Not that PGC should have felt so bad.  In the same virus outbreak, a whole town lost their traffic lights.  A month before, they had switched from using a MicroVax controlling the traffic lights, to a Windows PC.

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Me?, I just want a “Susie” poster

One thing I have noticed is that the shelf-life of a Ralph modem seems rather limited.
So, for your consideration, this is a screenshot from an “inappropriate software report”.

Now, in the interests of research folks, I’ve googled those names, and I’ve come up with Zilch.  Nada.  Nothing.


Conclusion: being a Ralph model leads to a short shelf life as a model.

“Why is the Ralph screensaver” on an ‘inappropriate software’ report?”, you might ask.

Well some organisations take a dim view of photos of scantily clad men/women in the workplace, and therefore ask for software asset reports.

Behaviour that is unwelcome and offensive and that makes the person feel distressed, humiliated, or persecuted.  Includes, public displays of pornography, bullying, derogatory jokes or comments

So they ban inappropriate software & images.

And subject their staff to disciplinary proceedings.

Proofing that people don’t learn, almost five years later, the Ralph screensaver still shows up in reports.

Me?  I just wish I had a copy of the Australian Motorcycle News “Susie”* motorcycle poster.
That was sure one fine ZXR750R race bike.

* Sue Ellen Underwood, former Penthouse Pet.  The poster was widely known as the “Susie” poster.

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