Involves a cluster of Vaxen nicknamed Bilbo, Frodo, Merry and Sam. Dates back to the 1980s or earlier. Thanks to Sarah Hartwell Jshartwell@aol.com for this one.
Twas a glorious dawn on the Monday morn And the sun was shining bright, But a groan of doom from the computer room Said something was not right, >From the door we could see the floor Was spread six inches deep Where consoles spewed their printouts, chewed, While the Ops staff got their sleep. For all weekend they went round the bend, And chewed their ribbons through; In disbelief (that turned to grief) We knew not what to do. With faces sour we cut the power And began to phone around, "We need you here," but the engineer Was nowhere to be found. The disk was clogged with unprinted logs Of ten thousand blocks or more, We hit 'reboot' and saw paper shoot Six feet across the floor. The printers moaned, overburdened groaned And ground to a noisy halt, And we took one look at the gobbledegook And we too paused for thought. Mid-morning neared, we had barely cleared The paper jammed in tight Between the lid and thre printing head And we thought the time was ripe To try again (no doubt in vain) To get that cluster running, So we turned the key and machinery Began its gentle humming. Surprise, surprise, before our eyes Into life leapt SAM, Then FRODO too, and before we knew, Node BILBO also ran. Then MERRY hell the net befell Down came that cluster, crashing, As all around, the nodes went down And left the printers thrashing. "Let's try this way" the boss did say "And now we'll have some fun" The disk drives whirred and the first node stirred As they booted one by one. A seven-eight-five sprang into life Two others followed shortly So far so good, they did as they should And nothing acted naughty. The printer thumped its way through dumps The network rose victorious Then things slowed down, to a halt they ground And silence reigned inglorious. Then too late we saw disk eight, The system disk, was ailing, Before our eyes we watched it die, The 'Ready' light was failing. "Leave this to me!" and gallantly An operator tried, At his own risk to save that disk Before the network died. In stark fury he hit those keys, Deleting by the score, And at our urging started purging Logs and dumps and more. At first we sniggered, then lights flickered And with our fingers crossed, We saw the drive return to life - The network wasn't lost! We turned the switch and without a hitch, The final node responded, Its console clattered as DECnet chattered And lights flashed off and on. Twas a glorious dawn on the Monday morn And the sun was shining bright, And a gentle vroom from the computer room Said things were now alright. The cluster hummed, the disk drives thrummed And printers stacked hardcopy In tidy piles, so with pleased smiles We crept away for coffee.