This contractor pilot fish is at a client site -- and, as usual, he and his cohorts are dealing with issues that weren't originally contemplated when they were bought in.

"The network was going crazy," fish reports. "This was a big site, with lots of routers and subnets all carefully segregated. Something was hosing this big time, and sniffers told us we were seeing 'contamination' between subnets."

Fish and his team eventually pin down where the contamination is happening. It's in two subnets in adjacent wings of the corporate building: the ones for the legal department and for software development.

So fish and his team decide to walk the floor to see if they can spot anything out of the ordinary.

At first, everything looks normal. But then someone on the team sees an Ethernet cable snaking around a corridor.

The cable is plugged into two network jacks on the wall. And it doesn't belong to fish's group.

"We dug a bit," says fish. "Turns out that Legal was blocked from open Internet access; Development wasn't. Some bright character in Legal figured out if he plugged a cable into a Development jack around the corner, they got out to the Internet without filters.

"I never found out, but I really hope he got fired."

Sharky doesn't want to get you fired, so I'll file off all the identifying marks from your true tale of IT life. Send it to me at You'll get a stylish Shark shirt if I use it. Add your comments below, and read some great old tales in the Sharkives.

Now you can post your own stories of IT ridiculousness at Shark Bait. Join today and vent your IT frustrations to people who've been there, done that.

Copyright © 2010 IDG Communications, Inc.

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