paroxysms of anti-joy

I lost an entire day today. The pathology is all very geeky and work-specific, but the effects are simple enough: I want to punch the universe until it stops twitching, and then set it on fire.

Thank you for your attention to this matter. Some parts of my day were lost to iterating over a crappy test suite — a crappy test suite that I wrote back when it was last really critical that this stuff get fixed up and tested, so I can’t really get too indignant about that part — and some parts were lost to some suboptimal logging and power-management infrastructure on the cluster in question. But a lot of it — the bulk, certainly — was lost to the fact that there was a change in the software I work on. Before the change, you could, in this configuration wooble, use pretty much any name you wanted, as long as you used it consistently throughout the aforementioned configuration wooble. After this change, there is only one legal name.

Picking the name incorrectly does not result in an error message at name-selection time. Nor does guessing the wrong name give you a failure to start up. No, a name mismatch just gets you a nice crash after you start to talk to the filesystem — a crash which is a little tricky to diagnose when you have logging and crash-dump tools that are a little less than perfectly useful.

At least nobody will get beaten by that “in the future”:

2 comments to “paroxysms of anti-joy”

  1. dan mosedale
    entered 4 September 2003 @ 2:12 pm

    heh. nice first paragraph. jwz would be proud.

  2. janice
    entered 4 September 2003 @ 3:54 pm

    Hmmm. Perhaps to prove the point, this entry should be dated the 4th?