Going "off on one"

Yesterday, I had to fix a bug in some of my code that was released in a hurry. Why was it released in a hurry? Because my boss had sold some software that didn’t support the device the customer had bought the software for. Clever.

Last week the conversations went something like this:

T (on phone): Hi J1, I’m in Singapore installing TF to transfer media from O to B.
Me: TF doesn’t support O.
T: J2 says it does?
Me: Nope, never has. We’ve had development proposals, but no work orders so it’s never been written.
T: I’ll talk to J2.
(A few seconds later)
J2 (in my office): I thought TF supported O?
Me: Nope, never has.
J2: S says it does?
Me: We’ve had development proposals, but no work orders so it’s never been written.
(J2 phones S on his mobile)
J2: Hi S, T is in Singapore installing TF, but J1 says TF doesn’t support O.
S (on phone): I though it did, pass me to J1.
S (on phone to me): I though TF supported O?
(You can guess the next bit.
Me: Nope, never has. We’ve had development proposals, but no work orders so it’s never been written.
S: Sh*t.
S: How long will it take to do the change, T is only on site for a short while.
Me: About 2 days. But I’ll need A (my line manager) to OK this first.
S: Pass me to J2.
(J2 calls in A, I didn’t hear what was said between S and A, but A asked me to do the fix.

I coded the fix and tested that TF can do O to B, which it did so I released it. Then yesterday we found that TF was also picking up requests when transferring from O to O (different servers, but both O), TO is supposed to do O to O so media wasn’t being moved. Had I had more time to test, and that we did in fact have a QA dept we’d have caught this one, but since I didn’t have time and we don’t have QA, it was missed.

The fix was easy and took 2 hours, we create a new device type OF for media from OF to B, and then TO is happy doing O to O. S on the other hand proceeded to phone C to check I wouldn’t “Go off on one”. Nice to know what your boss truly thinks of you 😦

I’ve only ever “gone off on one” to change code in a large way, which was due to random crashes in three large customer sites that noone could work out how to fix. I worked out it was due to a 3rd party DLL so moved that into a separate process that TO called via DCOM, no more crashing. So my “going off on one” fixed quite a few support issues we had for those 3 sites. Did I get thanks, nope. Bitter, me, nope – I finish here in 4 days!

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