S1E10: "(F|H)ired!"

Comments 0

Previous EpisodeNext Episode
Recorded (UTC) Aired (UTC) Editor
2016-06-23 04:23:49 2016-07-04 07:23:56 brent s.
Format SHA256 GPG Audio File
MP3 242c5008df55ac9f307850e90e4024cf14486cffae81fc98cde94f39374aceb4 click click
OGG abc556f7902c9b335e7a291c7e6462cecb9521ca84114e54cee75fe1b1fbfb59 click click

We discuss employment interviews, X2Go, and SOPs (Standard Operating Procedures) for onboarding/offboarding employees.


Starts at 10m22s.

  • (actually at 3m04s) Jthan told Apple no, because this is in their NDA (Non-Disclosure Agreement) (verbatim; some emphasis added):

You agree that during your employment by Apple, you will not plan or engage in any other employment, occupations, consulting, or other business or personal activities or commitments competitive with or directly related to Apple’s business or products, or to its actual or demonstrably anticipated research or development, nor will you engage in any other activities that conflict with any other employment obligations to Apple. ‘’‘Any attempt to denounce Apple or its products can be considered as a conflict of interest, including’‘’ but not limited to sharing information related to Apple products or ‘’‘their defects in a public forum. Public forums include’‘’ radio, internet radio, Podcast™, television, or public speaking engagements. Activities and commitments as used herein do not include passive investments in stocks or financial instruments.


Starts at 24m12s.

I was drinking the same rum. Jthan was drinking a Princess Yum Yum Kolsch again. Paden was drinking a PBR, of all things.

  • Interview stories and tips!
    • “Don’t put something on your resume/CV if you can’t talk about it.”
    • Find what motivates the potential employee/interviewee and what their values are, NOT what you like about the company or what the surrounding culture values.
    • Don’t ask what their favourite superhero is unless you’re interviewing for a position at a comic book. In other words, ask questions directly relevant to the position.
      • Yes, this means no more “Where do you see yourself in five years?” and “What do you consider your worst trait/biggest shortcoming/biggest flaw?” Those questions are meaningless.
    • If you’re looking for a specific and unambiguous answer, you should ask a specific and unambiguous question. If it’s an open-ended question, expect an open-ended (or multiple/many) answers (or further clarifying questions from the interviewee). Good talent asks a lot of questions.
    • A better question that should be asked that almost no interviewer asks is “What doubts/concerns do you have about this position/company?”
    • Jthan references a segment we did earlier, I think in S1E1. That may not be correct, but we do mention in an earlier episode that a surly sysadmin tends to be a good sysadmin- don’t be too concerned with trying to force them to socialize.
  • X2Go (45m39s)
    • A great alternative to VNC!
    • (And NoMachine and the now-defunct FreeNX, and SSH X-forwarding, and remove X sessions, and…)
  • SOP (Standard Operationg Procedure) for onboarding/offboarding employees (53m55s)
    • Both are immensely easier with scripts or config change management (e.g. Ansible)
    • If an employee is fired/terminated (and not on their 2 weeks/voluntarily leaving), they should be escorted to their desk for belongings collection and outside the building immediately after.
    • Let the forensics experts handle the forensics if you suspect foul play! Don’t even touch the computer, don’t even turn it off.
    • Have a clear checklist for all steps needing to be done for onboarding/offboarding.

Sysbadministration Award

In this segment, we highlight system administration mistakes. Think of them as the IT equivalent of the Darwin Awards. (1h03m49s)

The US Air Force had some big data corruption issues, and got some data back.

This would all have been not even newsworthy if they had proper backup and redundancy. Good job, sysadmin!


  • I can’t seem to be able to find more information on WHEN the Microsoft assimilation of LinkedIn goes through.
  • I mention i failed the Google interview because I botched “sticky bits and GUIDs”. I mean sticky bits and SGIDs. :)
  • I wasn’t paying attention to what Jthan was saying and thought the netmask he mentioned ( was an IP address. Which is not Internet-routable as it’s within the “reserved for future use” range (as I thought). The netmask is between a /29 and a /30. (CIDR is discussed in RFC1518, RFC1519, and RFC4632. And of course referenced in the omnipresent RFC1918.)
  • I kind of spaced out and asked what encryption X2Go uses, not realizing Jthan says it uses SSH. You should definitely be locking down your SSH to use stronger encryption.


Music Credits
Track Title Artist Link Copyright/License
Intro Your Love Lyvo click CC-BY 3.0
Outro Hi, Be Mine Muciojad click CC-BY 3.0
(All music is royalty-free, properly licensed for use, used under fair use, or public domain.)



There are currently no comments on this article.


Enter your comment below. Fields marked * are required. You must preview your comment before submitting it.