Documentation and Logs, technicians and documenting.

I have to admit I have not always documented server configurations. Most of the time when I omit a log entry it's because I feel it's a no brainer and the IT administrator should know what I did without having me to log an event log.

But sometimes we need to log an event or log a repair. It's important and one thing I really enjoy seeing is a complete administrators log.

The old "It's my job security" works for those that seem to fight to keep customers or their job. If you have ever worked on one of my systems that I setup or administrated you'll find a XCTech folder with all the modifications and configuration notes. What you won't find is a "Step by Step" guide on how I made the configuration and modification. Now that's called "Job Security".

Knowing something and not sharing it with competitors is one thing but not logging you did something is another.

This all came up last night again when I was getting setup to change out a fan in one of the servers. The fan was manufactured in 1999 and the server was put into place 2001. But it was failing and caused this site to drop a few times this week.

The document folder is attached to the inside of the case cover. It lists everything that had been changed or added. Let's see, hard drives are the only thing I see. It's 100% correct, this system is a server but was used as a workstation for years and the only repairs were hardware. (hard drives)

Now I have more repairs to add to the list, this time I documented and photographic the hardware fix. Measured voltages, cleaned contacts, stress tested the unit and put it back into service.

The important message is to document your fixes and test after you repair the system. It's not enough to just do the repair, we need to document the repair. (Not your process just the repair. If you lose the job let the next person study on their own time like you had to do. Unless you were paid to study.)

I'll be sharing a few of my typical service logs in this section. I read a few years ago about a small group attempting to standardize log reporting by repair techs and administrators. I'll link to their notes as I publish a few of my own.

 

Documenting in todays IT world is not an option and you might want to stop thinking its your job security. When you document every facet of your securing your future. Not always but in most cases.