Systems Administrators: the Unsung Heroes

Sysadmin Day

Systems administrators get one day of recognition a year for all the hard work they do for their organization. They ensure our network and systems are secure and working so employees are able to get their own work done. Sysadmins are the unsung heroes upon whom we can always rely when something goes wrong in the workplace, and they’re always there to save the day. Sysadmins, we appreciate you!

We wanted to know what life is like as a systems administrator, so we had a fun Q&A session to show our appreciation:

What is the most rewarding part of being a sysadmin?

Michael G: Being the "hero" that fixes all the problems for everyone.

Chris M: You never experience the same thing day in day out. There are always new challenges each day.

Brian S: Having a crew of reliable people in the department ready for catastrophe.

Matthias S: To see that everything´s working and all these little blinking LEDs on different servers.

How has your work changed in the last year as a sysadmin?

Peter A: I now have an app that lets me see inside my refrigerator…

Chris M: It is always changing. Projects come and go. There is always something new to implement or something that needs to revisited.

John D: Upgrades and automation have been handy.

Sarah M: Well... Windows 10.

What would you do if you had more time in your day?

Michael S: Fish.

David H: I would spend it with my family.

Gavin R: Play more golf!!

Brad B: If I had more time in the day, I’d head to the beach...or Disney...or the's a toss-up.

Have any funny IT stories or IT requests to tell?

Shawn L: I sat next to an elderly man one day and when he was told to "put his mouse on the screen," he did!

Michael R: A user went to buy a new mouse because it wouldn't move on the screen. I asked what was on the screen. She said it was just black. The computer wasn't even on.(You can’t make this stuff up.)

Damien C: “What's a browser?”

Sarah M: Years ago, when I first started working in IT, I got a call from a user about a printer that was making a terrible noise and not pulling any paper. When I got there and tried to print, the machine made an awful noise, and the user said it had been doing that a few days, but the need to print hadn't been urgent before then. (Sounds familiar, right?) I dug around in the printer and found the culprit: a peanut M&M. The printer resumed and the horrible noise was gone. I turned to the user and held up the M&M, to which the user said: "Oh! I remember dropping that," then took it from my hand and ate it.

What are some things you like to geek out on?

Cindy K: Brand new equipment or tools that we get to try or that we are planning to implement so that we understand the ins and outs and how it will work on our network. It is still just plain old fun to get something new to try (kind of like getting a new toy when I was a kid).

Michael G: Sci-fi novels, video games

Brian F: Star Wars

Shawn L: FAST hardware!

DC or Marvel?

John J: DC

Shawn C: Marvel

Jonathan H: I can't pick! Clark Kent and Bruce Wayne were my favorites as a child. As I got older Peter Parker and Logan (Wolverine) were my favorites.

Bradley B: Marvel. Wait, DC!. Agh, it’s too hard to decide.

We had so much fun reading all of these responses and getting to know some awesome sysadmins. This SysAdminDay, show your sysadmins some appreciation by taking them out to lunch, buying them a drink, or even stopping by to say hello.

Although we couldn’t survey everyone, we’d still like to hear from other sysadmins! Answer one (or more) of the questions above by posting a comment below or tweeting us @Quest!