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Essential System Administration, 3rd Edition by Æleen Frisch

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Administrative Virtues

I’ll close this brief consideration of the profession and professionalism with the full list of administrative virtues. This time, we’ll take a somewhat more humorous tack than we have previously:

Flexibility

Being able to wriggle out of tight spots and escape when irate users seem to have you cornered.

Ingenuity

Realizing that you can use syslog to send messages to your friend on another system.

Patience

Remaining capable of waiting until the final sendmail configuration bug is fixed.

Persistence

The compulsion to try just-one-more-thing to fix a problem before going home.

Adherence to Routine

Insisting on real cream and sugar-in-the-raw in your coffee (which is Kona or nothing).

Attention to Detail

Noticing that the clock on one of your systems is using Aleutian time, and changing all the others to match.

Laziness

Writing a 250-line Perl script to avoid typing 15 characters.

What these alternative definitions are designed to highlight is the fact that system administration is not only challenging and sometimes frustrating, but can also be fun. In fact, this is my last piece of advice for you:

Note

Don’t forget to have fun. Life is too short.

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