Tuesday, June 17, 2014

Robert Bukowski: Keeper of Data & Monitor of Servers

If you're looking for a nice person in IC, you're not going to have a difficult time.  We're here to help the entire campus, and we're as friendly and customer service oriented as possible. Bob is no exception, actually, he excels in being pleasant.  If you're within 30ft of Bob and following him through the same door, it'll most likely be held open for you with a smile.  He's a good guy!

To get to Bob's office, you've got to have some special access. What does that mean?  Bob's important. As a popular culture reference, you might think of Bob as IC's Boris of Goldeneye, except Bob isn't a bad guy, isn't a hacker, isn't invincible (I think), and isn't working for the Russians. Maybe that's just a poor reference in general, but you should get the overall message: Bob is awesome. 

Q:Would you mind telling me a little about yourself?
A: My name is Bob Bukowski, and I'm a network engineer here at Shenandoah University.  I take care of servers and storage. Originally, I'm from Newcastle, PA.  I moved to Manassas, VA in '88, then I lived in Front Royal, and now I live in Stephen City, VA.  I came from the Warren County school system, and I made my way to SU because I got to specialize in servers and storage.

Q:Do you have any hobbies?
A: Taking it easy!

Q: Have a favorite type of music?
A: Classic Rock. Aerosmith, Led Zeppelin

Q: Do you have any nicknames that you are aware of
A: "Buck" It's short for Bukowski.

Q: What is your most memorable experience at SU thus far?
A: The power outages of last summer. They were continuous, I think we had three right in a row. It was memorable because it brought out the fact that we need a generator. We still need a generator...

Q: What does a typical work day look like for you?
A: I show up at 8a, and check through emails. I'll open up VMware to make sure everything is running well. Then, I'm pretty much working through until the end of the day.

Q: What are the primary systems that you deal with on a day-to-day basis?
A: VCenter which manages around 70 virtual servers, and LeftHand San Storage which has around 56 terabytes of high speed storage which is where the majority of SU's data lives.

Q: What would happen if you disappeared for six months without anybody filling your job responsibilities?
A: If nobody took over my job responsibilities, SU would eventually not have server services. If something went down, it might take awhile for it to come back up, and if there was a power outage, it would be a very bad thing.

Q: If you could give end users a quick pro-tip with regards to some of the technology that you support, what would it be?
A: Backup your Data. Backup as often as it would not be very painful to lose the information you want to keep. Basically, you need to think, "How much am I willing to risk." If you're not willing to risk it, backup your data.

If SU's IC department was a time-traveling vessel, you'd find Bob in the engine room covered in techno-oil banging on the Flux Capacitor with a wrench. He maintains and monitors many critical systems that allow you to successfully use technology here at SU!

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