Bureaucracy. It’s one of the longer 4-letter words.

Two examples of this, from today and last week:

“What is the purpose of this new terminal server?” It’s a replacement for a non-compliant W2k8 32-bit server, using like-for-like hardware loaded with W2k12 64-bit server and the same current software loadout.

“What’s the primary use?” Right now, as we have no field activity in our Region, it’s primarily used as a compatibility tool. We have mandatory OCFO financial spreadsheets which have embedded macros, and the current approved user system image has 64-bit Office, which won’t run the 32-bit macros in these old but required spreadsheets.

“WHAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAT?!?! OMBWTFBBQ! MACROS ARE OF DE DEBBIL HIMSELF! MACROS ARE NOT ALLOWED ANYWHERE! AUTHORIZATION DENIED! UNAUTHORIZED PURPOSE!” These spreadsheets and the macros therein are /required/ as /mandatory/ by $agency OCFO. These are not optional in any way. There is no workaround for these spreadsheets. Without these spreadsheets, we cannot complete the required Quarterly Spend Plan for the new fiscal year. We also cannot spend money against any Field Operations that may arise.

“DO NOT CARE! UNAUTHORIZED PURPOSE! AUTHORIZATION DENIED!” Okay, I’ll have my Admin Services Branch CHief get the contact information for the OCFO personnel in charge of this aspect, so you can get on the same page with them. FYI, they are using these same spreadsheets /RIGHT NOW/, the only reason you haven’t heard about any problems is that they haven’t transitioned to the 64-bit image yet.

“DO NOT CARE! WILL NOT CHANGE MIND! DENIED! DENIED! DENIED!” Roger that, I will inform OCFO that OCSO states all financial operations using macro-embedded spreadsheets must cease immediately, and attach your name personally as author of the order.

“I WILL TALK TO THEM ABOUT THIS. AUTHORIZATION DENIED BUT ON HOLD. DO NOT PROCEED FURTHER WITHOUT AUTHORIZATION.” Okay, but make it quick…there are Congressionally-mandated reports, using these spreadsheets on a mandatory basis, that are due by the end of next week.



Received e-mail from On High: “You have a mandatory EOL Software Report, due COB Thursday. Use $tool (only approved data source) for data acquisition.” Roger that, I’m on it.

*login* *click click click* “Invalid Policy” *click click click* “Invalid Policy” *logout*

Lync with Security Ops tech: Hey, $tool keeps giving me “Invalid Policy” when I try to set up a scan. “Really? Lemme delete and repost that policy to your profile. *delay* Okay, give it a try.”

*login* *click click click* “Invalid Policy” *click click click* “Invalid Policy” *logout*

Nope, same thing. “Okay, lemme delete your profile and recreate it in $tool.” Cool, I’ll go to lunch. “Okay, lemme know when you’re back.”


*login* *click click click* “Invalid Policy” *click click click* “Invalid Policy” *logout*

On Lync again: Same thing, dude. “Yeah, after I deleted your profile and rebuilt it, I found out from $boss that it’s a known bug in $tool and we’re waiting for a patch from $creator.”

Okay, but I’ve got this mandatory report due day after tomorrow – here’s a copy of the message *forwards e-mail* “Sorry, here’s all I’ve got for workarounds”

*two hours of back & forth trying to get the required data and failing*

“Sorry, we’ll keep working on it. Send the requestor a message citing that we can’t make $tool give you the data, and we have to run $tool for you and send you the reports. That’s gonna be tomorrow at the earliest due to tonight’s maintenance window. Sorry!” Roger that, I’m the speed bump and you’re the bus.

*sends e-mail to On High*

On High reply: “I’ll make sure to get you the raw data tomorrow.”



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