Monthly Archives: September 2006

First Roll Out of Sun Java System Access Manager

As I write this note I have a small, yet serious problem with my Apple PowerBook G4. I have been using this for more than a year now and it has been serving me really well. But of late its keypad has started to behave very strange and very often I end up striking the keys really hard to echo on to the screen. This problem is not permanent though! It requires some really hard work on my part to key in certain characters esp. “u.” So everytime you see a word in this article which has a “u” in it, understand that I managed to put it in using the classic “CTRL + C” & “CTRL + V” method. It is indeed quite annoying to have a problem like this. For those of you who had sent me several E-mails over the last few days and still didn’t hear from me, kindly know that I am finding it slightly difficult to draft a mail to you because of this keypad problem. This morning I went to the Apple Service center in Bangalore, only to find them not working on a Saturday (Foolish me to think that Saturdays are off days only for me). I wouldn’t be able to fix up an appointment with the service center until next Tuesday, for Monday is a National holiday. I sincerly hope I can resolve this issue as early as possible.

I feel very serene today. This is a long weekend and I intend to take some good rest. I have not been keeping up well over the last one week and more importantly I was engaged in an all important assignment: the first roll out of Sun Java System Access Manager in India. I have been preparing for this for a couple of weeks and I am personally satisfied with the job I did last week. At the same time, I must also confess that this wasn’t really the best of training programs that I delivered. During the five days training program, I witnessed a couple of CPUs and monitors “blowing up’ right in front of me. The labs of this course were quite sensitive (in the sense that it worked fine only a specific version of the Solaris 10 Operating system and that we had lot of issues using certain browsers while testing the Policy Agents in the SJS Access Manager) and I found it a little difficult to manage 17 participants who sat through this course. There were moments in this training program, wherein I felt I lost control of the situation and I really hate to find myself in such situations. Nonethless, I managed to convey all that I wanted to convey to a bunch of people who travelled from various parts of this country to participate in this training program. In the next couple of days time, I would analyse the situation and probably find out different methods of improving upon the quality of the delivery. Well, life is all about accepting the mistake and eliminating them. Probably, such lab intensive course should slightly have lesser strength. Now that I have realized the situation I should able to give some valuable inputs to my Management. That would be helpful to decide upon several factors while scheduling the JES training programs. Having said all this, as usual I enjoyed every bit of my time that I spent with this people. What makes me moving is this exposure to various human beings with varying nature. For me, such an exposure is something that I rate much above the exposure to any technology.. It has been a pleasant experience to know several people and learn some good lessons from them and I am certain it shall continue to be so. Everyone would have a few things to share. And probably whatever they share would have great significance in the long run. All that is required an openmindedness to listen keenly to what others have to say.In this context my Master used to say,”Even a dead clock is correct twice a day.” So it was fun to be with another bunch of people, a proof of which you would find below:

I must express my gratitude to Edward and Gary (Sun Education Team, Australia) to provide some timely help in order to ensure that all the lab files for this course were in place and also to Manikandan to have spent some time, very patiently, on the phone throwing some light on various issues that generally pop up when we install policy agents on Web Server.

Last two weeks have been really really tough, esp after having some serious problems with my throat and chest. One of those nights I was finding it difficult t o speak and ended up spending a few minutes gargling some hot water with salt (traditional method of getting over throat problem). Another incident that is worthy of attention is a narrow escape from an accident yesterday morning. I was walking, very peacefully, towards the venue of the training and I was doing so on the footpath (obviously). And suddenly I saw a tempo traveller jumping on to the footpath from the road and the driver losing complete control over the same. I have a gut feeling that the driver dozed off in between. If it was a few meters behind, then I am sure it would have run over me. This prompted me to brood over various mysteries of life for which this is not the best time to discuss.

I don’t seem to have anything more to write for the time being. I look forward to my LVC on ZFS next week. But before that, I need some good rest. So if you have reached this far reading through the entire note, please remember that every “u” you came across in this article was produced as a result of two key strokes and not one.

International Day of Peace

Tomorrow is September 21. The United Nations designates the day as the International Day of Peace. Ten days earlier to this date we observed the fifth anniversary of the tragic 9/11 incident, an incident that certainly left some traces of fear in all of us. The New York tragedy perhaps flagged off a new era in the history of mankind, for over the last four years or so there have been several heart breaking incidents of such nature in different parts of this world, in different forms, executed by different people, taking the lives of innocent human beings like you and me. On several occasions I have pondered over the reasons behind orchestration of such brutal activities. And when I don’t get answers to such questions, what dominates in me is a feeling of helplessness. What could I do, if a couple of planes crash on to a twin tower, bringing down the huge tower in split of a second and killing several people in it? And what I could do if there is a series of bomb blasts in the heart of Financial Capital of India,blowing up a few hundred middle class people eagerly journeying to get back to their home in the evening? Well; watch helplessly all the pictures that are captured by the television crew – risking their life- and then sympathise with the victims, occasionally blaming the culprits with a strong feeling of hatredness. But what’s the point? By doing so, I know very clearly that I don’t contribute to the world peace. But then, what else could I do? Perhaps, look to a higher authority, whose essence is within me, whom we may call as God or by any other name for that matter and then appeal to Him, with folded hands and with a heart full of love and devotion, to bring peace on planet Earth and make it a wonderful home for all of us to evolve spiritually. I believe if such thoughts, which are noble in nature, constantly emanates from mind and are strong enough, then perhaps it could make a huge difference.

United Nations Organization has chosen September the 21st as the Internal Day of Peace. The least we should all do tomorrow is to sit in silence for a few minutes, giving out a strong suggestion that one day, not far from now, peace will prevail on this third planet from Sun.

Italian Grand Prix witnesses a great moment

I got hooked on to the TV this evening to watch the Italian Grand Prix. Micheal Shumacher was second in the pole position. As always, my bet was on him. To my excitement, and to the delight of millions of his fans, he did it one more time , he did it in style. And what he achieved today is an unprecedented ninety Grand Prix titles. He has raised his bar so high that his successor would require to display a special show to reach anywhere near him.

I wasn’t really interested in Motor racing until I came across an article in The Hindu Newspaper written my Nirmal Shekar. And then on, I was educated by a friend of mine on the jargons like pit stop, back markers etc. I have not missed much Grand Prix races after that. And every time I sit to watch a motor race I sit with a surety that the red Ferrari with Schumi in full control of it would hit the chequered flag first. And today at around 7:20 IST Micheal Shumacher sat for a press conference prompting all of his fans to hold their breaths to listen to the much awaited revelations about his future plan. As always, he maintained his calm as he revealed to the world that he wouldn’t race after this season. My friend sitting near me produced a sigh of depression and waved his hand as if he lost something really precious. He then said to me, “Why is he doing that man? He is at the peak of his career.” Well, I do not know. Schumi would know it better. Perhaps he now knows that not a common man could achieve what he achieved in Formula One. Perhaps he doesn’t want to be a spoil sport winning all the races that he participates in and giving no one else a chance to touch the Championship trophy. Or may be he felt that it is not possible to improve upon the perfection that he already achieved in the art of driving. Whatever may be the reason, Formula One fans would find it difficult to accept the reality that when the next season would start, they wouldn’t see the handsome Micheal Schumacher on the track. Thank you Schumi for all the wonderful moments that you gave to all of us out here.

My favourite newspaper in digital format

The following is an extract from my autobiographical account:

Roughly speaking, Sport seems to be a trivial pursuit. But it wouldn’t be fair on my part to say that Sport has given me nothing. It has been the root cause of some of my productive habits like reading newspapers on a regular basis, particularly The Hindu. A sport scriber named R Mohan, who worked with The Hindu was the first one to ignite in me a passion for reading the articles published in that daily. From then on, I began to carefully read through the reports and comments of various journalists working with The Hindu. The role that The Hindu played in helping me improve my reading abilities as well as standard in English has to be underlined.

My favourite newspaper has taken one step forward in providing the news and articles in the form of an E-book. Well, three editions are available at this point of time: Chennai, Hyderabad and Delhi. The Hindu’s digital editions are available for viewing from 6:00 A.M. IST everyday. Access is free for now but users are required to register online.

When will this ever end?

Yet another terrorist act in the state of Maharashtra in India. This time, thirty-one people were killed and over 100 injured in two bomb blasts in Malegaon in Nashik district of Maharashra on Friday. Don’t we all deserve a better situation on earth? What are “they” gaining from blowing up a few innocent human beings like us? Don’t stare at me; I am as clueless as you are. And I know of only one person whom we could all send an appeal to see these activities come to a full stop: and that’s God.
A couple of months back a series of bomb blasts had shocked the people in Mumbai. The impact of that devastating incidents in Mumbai was so huge that I couldn’t sleep the whole night until I completed drafting the following note that I sent to all my acquaintances the next day:

E-mail dated 12/July/2006.

Dear friends,

It is quite hard to greet you all this morning after those terrifying events that took place in different parts of Mumbai last evening. For me, like anyone else away from the city of Mumbai, it was just another story of horror. May be, I only felt a fraction of its intensity; yet it had its impact on me at least to an extent to make my sleep a miserable one. It is difficult then to imagine what the people in Mumbai are going through at this point in time.

I saw my father shell-shocked and speechless while watching those clippings on T.V. I sat beside him viewing those pictures live from various spots in Mumbai, occasionally glancing at my father only to find his face display a mixed feeling of sorrow, helplessness and strangely, but understandably anger. I don’t think he has any friends in Mumbai; not even a person whom he could exchange formal greetings with. Still, the whole story affected him deeply for sure. For me, my father’s reaction was one more evidence of how common we all humans are and how much we all are bounded regardless of all the differences in caste, creed, colour and even the geographical boundaries. Yet there are some people out there who do not realize how valuable a human life is. I wonder what they achieved by mercilessly blowing up a few hundred people, who were on the move with an eagerness to get back to their homes after their days activities. Well, it’s insane even to think that there can be any reason for such a nasty orchestrated operation. It can only be madness at the highest level. Oh God, can any one do such a thing even to his foes? I don’t think so; not certainly anyone with a stable state of mind. Damn those who did this.

By the very courageous nature of the people in Mumbai, it is quite natural to expect that the normalcy would be returned in the city not many days from now. But there are several families whose loss can never be compensated for. What on earth could ever compensate for a human life? I sincerely pray with my folded hands for a better home, devoid of any more of these heart throbbing chapters and would wish all of you to participate in such a prayer, for when we unite in pursuit of a noble cause, our appeal will reach where it has to reach and probably would wipe out evil from the surface of earth, giving us an environment conducive for our evolution.

With prayers,

affectionately yours,

–R Rajesh

Happy Onam

Tomorrow is Onam. Onam, considered to be the most popular festival in Kerala (the southern state of India), is celebrated every year in memory of an Asura King Mahabali, who was pushed down to the core of the earth by ‘little’ Vamana, an avatar of Vishnu. In Hindu religion, they believe in a Trinity, who are in charge of the three main processes of creation, protection and destruction. Brahma, Vishnu and Shiva are the trio, who are entitled to perform the acts of creation, protection and destruction respectively. All other Gods in Hindu religion – thousands of them – are supposed to be either their descendants or an alternate form of one of them. In fact the term ‘GOD’ itself is considered to be an acronym for Generator, Operator and Destructor. Coming back to the story behind the Onam celebrations, Kerala was once ruled by the Asura king Mahabali, under whom the land prospered, much to the envy of Gods. They all wanted to terminate the asura king and for that they seeked the help of Lord Vishnu – one of the Trinity. Lord Vishnu assumed the form of a small brahmin Vamana and went to Mahabali requesting for three footsteps of land. Mahabali, out of his generosity, offered him the same without a second thought. At that point of time, the little Vamana grew physically in such a manner that his two footsteps covered the universe in its entirety. He did not find any more space for his third footstep. Mahabali, with an intention not to break his promise to Vamana, bowed before the brahmin and offered his head as a place for his third footstep. Vamana placed his foot on Mahabali’s head and pushed him down to the core of the earth forever. However, Lord Vishnu was kind enough to grant the asura King, the privilege of visiting his people once in every year. And so he comes to the land of Kerala, every year, on the day of Onam. I’m sure, as always, the people in Kerala would be welcoming Mahabali with the same pomp and show as they have been doing for long long years. I would miss the show being away from home. But that’s okay. Happy Onam!

Another dozen folks join the Sun Java System Identity Manager club

Next time you see anyone of these gentlemen in the following snap, know them to be equipped with one of the Sun’s hottest technology: Sun Java System Identity Manager.

Five days of learning and good fun I had with these guys. Unlike the last batch, where we all the participants were working really hard on the lab sessions because of the very nature of the course (it was IDM 345 last week), we had some lighter sessions this week (IDM 2525). I think the difference was primarily due to the platform on which we installed the Sun Java System Identity Manager product. Last week, the participants had to work on Solaris boxes, which wasn’t really a pleasing experience for them, but this week the training was conducted on a more familiar Windows environment and hence had no major surprises during the five weeks. However, I have emphasized to them the importance of Unix and its flavours in the computing world and I am sure they would – at least one of them – would go back home and install their Intel machine with the best OS on earth. Time is not far when we would see people trying to save their notepad files using the ESC + wq! commands. I was pleased that each of my participant signed up for the SDN so that they could access the Forum on Identity Manager. Well, in case while reading through this note of mine, if my dear readers also feel the urgency to be a part and parcel of the Sun Developer Network, I hereby provide you the link for the same.

SDN Profile Management

Also, in case any of you are interested in Sun Java System Identity Manager related Forum, THIS is the place to go.

Well, I am satisfied with the way things went on all the five days; it went according to my plan and more importantly quite smoothly. And as usual there was this online test for my participants followed by a teach back session. Thank you guys for your co-operation and five valuable days with Sun Education. Good luck for your assignments. Now I am looking forward to have a very peaceful weekend and start fresh this coming week.