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Search - "checked exception"
Worst thing you've seen another dev do? Long one, but has a happy ending.
Classic 'Dev deploys to production at 5:00PM on a Friday, and goes home.' story.
The web department was managed under the the Marketing department, so they were not required to adhere to any type of coding standards and for months we fought with them on logging. Pre-Splunk, we rolled our own logging/alerting solution and they hated being the #1 reason for phone calls/texts/emails every night.
Wanting to "get it done", 'Tony' decided to bypass the default logging and send himself an email if an exception occurred in his code.
At 5:00PM on a Friday, deploys, goes home.
Around 11:00AM on Sunday (a lot folks are still in church at this time), the VP of IS gets a call from the CEO (who does not go to church) about unable to log into his email. VP has to leave church..drive home and find out he cannot remote access the exchange server. He starts making other phone calls..forcing the entire networking department to drive in and get email back up (you can imagine not a group of happy people)
After some network-admin voodoo, by 12:00, they discover/fix the issue (know it was Tony's email that was the problem)
We find out Monday that not only did Tony deploy at 5:00 on a Friday, the deployment wasn't approved, had features no one asked for, wasn't checked into version control, and the exception during checkout cost the company over $50,000 in lost sales.
Was Tony fired? Noooo. The web is our cash cow and Tony was considered a top web developer (and he knew that), Tony decided to blame logging. While in the discovery meeting, Tony told the bosses that it wasn't his fault logging was so buggy and caused so many phone calls/texts/emails every night, if he had been trained properly, this problem could have been avoided.
Well, since I was responsible for logging, I was next in the hot seat.
For almost 30 minutes I listened to every terrible thing I had done to Tony ever since he started. I was a terrible mentor, I was mean, I was degrading, etc..etc.
Me: "Where is this coming from? I barely know Tony. We're not even in the same building. I met him once when he started, maybe saw him a couple of times in meetings."
Andrew: "Aren't you responsible for this logging fiasco?"
Me: "Good Lord no, why am I here?"
Andrew: "I'll rephrase so you'll understand, aren't you are responsible for the proper training of how developers log errors in their code? This disaster is clearly a consequence of your failure. What do you have to say for yourself?"
Me: "Nothing. Developers are responsible for their own choices. Tony made the choice to bypass our logging and send errors to himself, causing Exchange to lockup and losing sales."
Andrew: "A choice he made because he was not properly informed of the consequences? Again, that is a failure in the proper use of logging, and why you are here."
Me: "I'm done with this. Does John know I'm in here? How about you get John and you talk to him like that."
'John' was the department head at the time.
Andrew:"John, have you spoken to Tony?"
John: "Yes, and I'm very sorry and very disappointed. This won't happen again."
John: "You know what. Did you even fucking talk to Tony? You just sit in your ivory tower and think your actions don't matter?"
Me: "Whoa!! What are you talking about!? My responsibility for logging stops with the work instructions. After that if Tony decides to do something else, that is on him."
John: "That is not how Tony tells it. He said he's been struggling with your logging system everyday since he's started and you've done nothing to help. This behavior ends today. We're a fucking team. Get off your damn high horse and help the little guy every once in a while."
Me: "I don't know what Tony has been telling you, but I barely know the guy. If he has been having trouble with the one line of code to log, this is the first I've heard of it."
John: "Like I said, this ends today. You are going to come up with a proper training class and learn to get out and talk to other people."
Over the next couple of weeks I become a powerpoint wizard and 'train' anyone/everyone on the proper use of logging. The one line of code to log. One line of code.
A friend 'Scott' sits close to Tony (I mean I do get out and know people) told me that Tony poured out the crocodile tears. Like cried and cried, apologizing, calling me everything but a kitchen sink,...etc. It was so bad, his manager 'Sally' was crying, her boss 'Andrew', was red in the face, when 'John' heard 'Sally' was crying, you can imagine the high levels of alpha-male 'gotta look like I'm protecting the females' hormones flowing.
Took almost another year, Tony released a change on a Friday, went home, web site crashed (losses were in the thousands of $ per minute this time), and Tony was not let back into the building on Monday (one of the best days of my life).10
Dev checked in code (I suspect purposely not inviting me on the code review invite) saying he "fixed" the authentication bug in the web service.
Um no, like I told you last week, the authentication error is because the load balancer wasn't passing the user's authentication to IIS.
If I didn't overhear him telling a user "Still getting the error? I don't know, we might have to re-write that service", he might have gotten away with it.
Me: "Wait, that doesn't sound right. If I hit the server directly, authentication works. Its an issue with the load balancer, not the service"
Dev: "Admin said the load balancer is fine and it has to be the service."
Me: "I don't buy it. IIS is returning the authentication error, not the service."
Dev: "I added exception handling and nothing is being logged. Must be something in the service configuration."
Me: "No, IIS performs the authentication, not the service. I explained that last week, remember?"
Dev: "Oh yea. What changes do we need to make to the service?"
<my blood pressure starts to spike>
Me: "None. Give me a sec.."
<we have other apps on the same server farm that work just fine, so I re-configure the service pool settings to match theirs>
Me: "See, now going through the load balancer, the service works fine. For some reason, the admin had our service set up differently."
Dev: "OK, I'll let the users know the service is fixed."
Me: "Service was never broke and I'm not leaving it in its current state. In the morning I'll talk to the admin and see what he can do to fix."6
My dad has an acquaintance - let's call him Tom. Tom is an gynecologist, one of the best in Poznań, where I live. He's a great guy but absolutely can not into tech of any kind besides his iPhone and basic PC usage. For about a year now I've been doing small jobs for him - build a new PC for his office, fix printer, fix wifi, etc. He has made a big mistake few years ago by trusting a guy, let's call him Shitface, with crating him software for work. It's supposed to be pretty simple piece of code in which you can create and modify patient file, create prescription from drugs database and such things. This program is probably one of the worst pierces of code I've ever seen and Shitface should burn for that. Worse, this guy is pretentious asshole lacking even basic IT knowledge. His code is garbage and it's taking him few months to make small changes like text wrapping. But wait, there's more. Everything is hardcoded so every PC using this software must have installed user controls for which he doesn't have license and static IP address on network card.
Tom asked me to build him a new PC that will be acting like a server for Shitface's program. He needs it in Kalisz (around 150 km from my place). I Agred (pun intended) and after Tom brought me his old computer I've bought parts and built a new one. I have also copied everything of value and everything took me around three hours.
Everything was ready but Shitface's program. I didn't know much about it's configuration so when I've noticed that it's not working even on the old PC I got a bit worried. Nevertheless I started breaking everything I know about it and after next three hours I've got it somewhat working. Seeing that there's still some problems with database connection (from Windows' Event Viewer) I wrote quick SMS to Shitface asking what can be wrong. He replied that he won't be able to help me any way until Monday (day after deadline). I got pissed and very courteously asked him for source code because some of libraries used in this project has license that requires either purchase of commercial license or making code open source. He replied within few minutes that he'll be able to connect remotely within next 10 minutes. He was trying to make it work for the next hour but he succeeded. It was night before deadline so I wrapped everything up and went to bed thinking that it won't take me more than an hour to get this new PC up and running in the office. Boy was I wrong.
Also, curious about his code, I've checked source and he is using beautiful ponglish (mixed Polish and English) with mistakes he couldn't even bother to fix. For people from Poland, here's an example:
So I drove to Kalisz and started working on making everything work. Almost everything was ready so after half an hour I was done. But I wanted to check twice if it's all good because driving so far second time would be a pain. So I started up Shitface's program, logged in, tried to open ANYTHING and... KABUM. UNHANDLED EXCEPTION. WTF. I checked trace and for fuck sake something was missing. Keep in mind that then I didn't know he's using some third party control for Windows Forms that needs to be installed on client PC. After next fifteen minutes of googling I've found a solution. I just had to install this third party software and everything will work. But... It had to be exactly this version and it was old. Very old. So old that producent already removed all traces of its existence from their web page and I couldn't find it anywhere. I tried installing never version and copying files from old PC but it didn't work. After few hours of searching for a solution I called Mr Shitface asking him for this control installation file. He told me that he has it but will be able to send it my way in the evening. Resigned I asked for this new PC to be left turned on and drove home. When he sent me necessary files I remotely installed them and everything started working correctly.
So, to sum it up. Searching for parts and building new PC, installing OS and all necessary software, updating everything and configuring it for Tom taste took me around what, 1/3 of time I spent on installing Mr Shitface's stupid program which Tom is not even happy with. Gotta say it was one of worst experiences I had in recent months. Hope I won't have to see this shit again.
Fortunately everything seems to work correctly. Tom hasn't called me yet with any problems. Mission accomplished. I wanna kill very specific someone. With. A. Spoon.1
Unaware that this had been occurring for while, DBA manager walks into our cube area:
DBAMgr-Scott: "DBA-Kelly told me you still having problems connecting to the new staging servers?"
Dev-Carl: "Yea, still getting access denied. Same problem we've been having for a couple of weeks"
DBAMgr-Scott: "Damn it, I hate you. I got to have Kelly working with data warehouse project. I guess I've got to start working on fixing this problem."
Dev-Carl: "Ha ha..sorry. I've checked everything. Its definitely something on the sql server side."
DBAMgr-Scott: "I guess my day is shot. I've got to talk to the network admin, when I get back, lets put our heads together and figure this out."
Me: "A permissions issue on staging? All my stuff is working fine and been working fine for a long while."
Dev-Carl: "Yea, there is nothing different about any of the other environments."
Me: "That doesn't sound right. What's the error?"
Me: "No, the actual exception, never mind, I'll look it up in Splunk."
<in about 30 seconds, I find the actual exception, Win32Exception: Access is denied in OpenSqlFileStream, a little google-fu and .. >
Me: "Is the service using Windows authentication or SQL authentication?"
Dev-Carl: "SQL authentication."
Me: "Switch it to windows authentication"
<Dev-Carl changes authentication...service works like a charm>
Dev-Carl: "OMG, it worked! We've been working on this problem for almost two weeks and it only took you 30 seconds."
Me: "Now that it works, and the service had been working, what changed?"
Dev-Carl: "Oh..look at that, Dev-Jake changed the connection string two weeks ago. Weird. Thanks for your help."
<My brain is screaming "YOU NEVER THOUGHT TO LOOK FOR WHAT CHANGED!!!"
Me: "I'm happy I could help."4
Did a bunch more cowboy coding today as I call it (coding in vi on production). Gather 'round kiddies, uncle Logan's got a story fer ya…
First things first, disclaimer: I'm no sysadmin. I respect sysadmins and the work they do, but I'm the first to admit my strengths definitely lie more in writing programs rather than running servers.
I could rant for days about the various problems this codebase has, but today I have a very specific story to tell. A story about errors and logs.
And it all started when I noticed the disk space on our server was gradually decreasing.
So today I logged onto our API server (Ubuntu running Apache/PHP) and did a df -h to check the disk space, and was surprised to see that it had noticeably decreased since the last time I'd checked when everything was running smoothly. But seeing as this server does not store any persistent customer data (we have a separate db server) and purely hosts the stateless API, it should NOT be consuming disk space over time at all.
The only thing I could think of was the logs, but the logs were very quiet, just the odd benign message that was fully expected. Just to be sure I did an ls -Sh to check the size of the logs, and while some of them were a little big, nothing over a few megs. Nothing to account for gigabytes of disk space gradually disappearing.
What could it be? I wondered.
du . | sort --sort=numeric
What's this? 2671132 K in some log folder buried in the api source code? I cd into it and it turns out there are separate PHP log files in there, split up by customer, so that each customer of ours (we have 120) has their own respective error log! (Why??)
Armed with this newfound piece of (still rather unbelievable) evidence I perform a mad scramble to search the codebase for where this extra logging is happening and sure enough I find a custom PHP error handler that is capturing (most) errors and redirecting them to these individualized log files.
Conveniently enough, not ALL errors were being absorbed though, so I still knew the main error_log was working (and any time I explicitly error_logged it would go there, so I was none the wiser that this other error-catching was even happening).
Needless to say I removed the code as quickly as I found it, tail -f'd the error_log and to my dismay it was being absolutely flooded with syntax errors, runtime PHP exceptions, warnings galore, and all sorts of other things.
My jaw almost hit the floor. I've been with this company for 6 months and had no idea these errors were even happening!
The sad thing was how easy to fix all the errors ended up being. Most of them were "undefined index" errors that could have been completely avoided with a simple isset() check, but instead ended up throwing an exception, nullifying any code that came after it.
Anyway kids, the moral of the story is don't split up your log files. It makes absolutely no sense and can end up obscuring easily fixable bugs for half a year or more!
So I wanted to update my visual studio. Turns out I cant because WPF (Apparently the Installers uses it) has a problem with broken fonts.
Okay. No problem I thought. I uninstalled all 720 fonts and re-registered them, filtering out the 3 broken ones. Checked the time-stamp as suggested. Everything fine. Had to reboot. (Of curse.)
Rechecked the fonts, reports as okay. Tried to start the installer BUT THIS FUCKING PIECE OF SHIT SOFTWARE CRASHES ON ME AGAIN WITH THE SAME FOCKING ERROR. IT DOESN'T EVENT WANT TO FUCKING TELL ME WHICH FUCKING FONT IS THE PROBLEM. I CHECKED EVERYYYY SINGLE FUCKING FONT. NOT THAT THERE IS NO FUCKING WAY TO FUCKING CATCH A FUCKING FUCKER EXCEPTION IN THIS FUCKING WORLD. I mean seriously. Why would you crash on a font THAT YOU DON'T EVEN USE IN YOUR FUCKING FUCK PROGRAMM TO INSTALL YOUR FUCKING PICE OF SHIT SOFTWARE.
But, IT GETS WORSE. TURNS OUT MICKY FUCKING SOFT KNOWS ABOUT THIS FUCKING BUG SINCE TWO-FUCKING-THOUSAND-FOURTEEN.
And they didn't fixed it. Nooooooooo. THEY FUCKING WROTE A FUCKING WORKAROUND THAT DOES NOT FUCKING WORKKKKKK AND KEEP PUTTING THIS FUCKING BUG IN EVERY FUCKING INSTALLER SINCE THEN.
Can you tell I'm pissed? YES? GOOOOOOD. BECAUSE I FUCKING AM.
MICKYSOFT CAN GO AND SUCK A FUCKING APPROPRIATE THING TO SUCK IN THIS FUCKING SITUATION.
THE BEST? THEY EVEN FUCKING DARE TO ASK ABOUT MY FUCKING FEEDBACK. YOU KNOW WHAT? YOU GET MY FUCKING FEEDBACK. TOGETHER WITH A FUCKING BAG FULL OF FUCKING SHIT TO YOUR FUCKING HQ
CAN I HAVE A FUCKING STRESSBALL NOW
Me and a co-worker were investigating a nasty ,apparently ninja, bug. After a long time we came across a string holding a bunch of IDs separated by commas, which always had a 0 at the end.
Checked on who and why he/she wrote it..
we: "Why did you add the 0 at the end of the string?"
author: "Well, it was throwing an exception when I was calling String.Split(), it was because of the comma at the end, so I added a 0 to the string."
If you know String.Split() how can you not think of String.Join()? Most of all, how can you come up with such a way 'fixing' it?!
Bonus: the string was built inside a foreach with '+=' ...4
can we all take a moment to appreciate the developers of flutter. they're smart, and they took the time to make flutter the *right* way.
they used an easy to learn language that's ideal for mobile development, which means hot reload/restart is possible (because dart supports aot and jit compilation)
the way it's designed is beautiful. everything is a widget, and it's easy to customize them via named parameters.
the community is great. it's not large, but it's supportive, with two active subreddits. yesterday i asked a question on r/flutterdev, and a member of the flutter team at google answered the question with a comprehensive answer.
flutter is very consistent across platforms. if it works on android or ios, you can bet it'll work on the other just as well, with the exception of platform-specific code.
it is VERY performant. unless you write a major bottleneck, 60fps is easy to achieve.
animations are EASY. define a tween and animation controller and then write a callback function. not to mention it's straightforward, and complex/combined animations are easy, too.
you can get almost direct access to the canvas, should you need it, with custompainter.
oh my god, this is revolutionary in the programming world. development is quicker than it is with native android alone, and for people who have no access to a mac, like me, i can develop for ios and compile via code magic. if you haven't checked it out and you develop for mobile, check it out.
oh yeah, did i mention it's not just mobile. hummingbird - flutter compiled to web - is already in experimental public betas, and will likely be released by the end of the year. there's also experimental desktop support, which is amazing, and much better than electron. not to mention flutter is the future, as it will be the primary way to make apps on fuchsia os.13
Who the hell designed the fucking Java exception system? The fucking checked/unchecked exceptions is a big piece of crap.
Makes everything more complicatedly unnecessarily3
A friend frequently asks me for help with Java homework.
Today we spent half an hour figuring out how to use some ass-backwards linked list implementation his lecturer provided.
The list itself acted like an iterator, keeping track of a 'current' element that had to be reset to the list's head manually every time you want to iterate over the list. There were insert and append methods that call each other for no good reason and most methods would throw the same generic checked exception.
Also they're told to use BlueJ which has the ugliest debugging tools i've ever seen.3
Got a call about production was going to fail. They thought it's the application server.
I'm the end it was bogus file mods which were scrambled by the backup tool.
Why we didn't find out earlier? Because the java application was coded like this:
File bla = new File
content = ... Read operation
} catch (IoException | SecurityEx | RuntimeEx ex)
// nothing we can do here
Why the fuck do we have code reviews? Why not just log or throw a Runtime Exception? Argh... I thought it would be better in enterprise applications. Perhaps I should tell them to not just use pmd, also spotbugs and sonarqube. But the department for the build tools does not have enough employees. Dang.
Anyway. Earned some money for that.
Now it's 2018 and I still get money for the same kind of bugs as 2008.3
Urgh... No exceptions in Rust annoys me. Now you only have the choice between "this didn't work please handle this error, thank you ^-^" and "you fool, prepare for annihilation". So basically if anything remotely serious happens your programs dead and there's nothing you can do about it. I don't get why people have this hate for exceptions. Everytime a new language gets made it's always either "ew it has exceptions" or "it's so nice it doesn't even have exceptions". NOOO! They can deal with serious situations in the best possible way and they can be statically checked (so no "but they're so complex and unpredicable" stuff please). If you can expect an exception they shouldn't be used in the first place (eventhough they are absolutely no less good than Option returntypes or whatever, just different) but in cases when it's impossible to predict an error they really shine. And not having them makes your language worse. If a device driver accesses illegal memory it should throw an exception, so instead of the computer shitting the bed, first the offending function has a chance to resolve the problem at it's root, then a few functions up the call stack, the general control functions of the device drivers can handle it and restart the operation if applicable, and even if the driver fails to handle it, the OS can jump in and restart the driver, log an error and do whatever. It's absolutely beautiful: This hierarchical ramp from near the accident site to more high level operations code ensures the error can be caught at the right level of abstraction without introduction a lot of boilerplate. If everything fails and nobody can handle it *then* the program or kernel or whatever can panic.4
So my boss asked me to create an integration with a governamental program. This integration consisted in a text file being sent in a monthly basis.
Months later, he asked a coworker to automate the process, since the appointed user was finding the work too..."tedious",and asked me to check on the former regularly.
Thing is, everytime I checked, I saw a change being done in the core of the business layer, and I intervened, saying that those changes were either unnecessary or wrong altogether.
After three of these interventions, said coworker asked my boss to "ask" me to stop, and let him do his work. The boss concedes.
At the end of the week, my boss asked me to review the final product, and assert whether it conformed to our patterns.
After said review, he asks me why I've denied the work, to which I answer "a) the rules were changed by (the coworker), and are no longer correct, b) the the automator still requires a user intervention, and c) it threw an exception in the first time I (and I guess we) tested".
The job was placed in my time line the following day.
Just wanted to do some scripted image resizing for school in school because the teacher asked me to help her with that.
So I thought: Let's just write a tiny script. Written the script in almost no time (just iterates over all jpg's and resizes them)
Now I tried to run it. Didn't have my laptop so I had to somehow run it on their windows PCs. At least it's windows 10, unlike other schools that still run XP and stuff so I thought it might be doable. Well guess what, nope it wasn't.
First tried to install imagemagick, that didn't work as only teacher accounts have admin and the teacher was already pretty scarred once he saw me doing stuff in powershell so I thought I'd better not ask to do this via a teacher account and mess with stuff as admin.
Next method: Installing msys2. That worked at least (after taking forever to install and having to mess with the av software to get it to run).
And there comes the next problem: pacman doesn't connect via the proxy so I can't download any packages. There is free wifi but only for teachers, and students aren't going to get access until the school finally has a faster connection because they'd (understandably) cause this connection to be constantly overloaded. I just happen to have access to this wifi network, too, because at least the guys from the IT dept know how bad using proxies under linux is. So I connect via wifi and it works. At least I thought: After running the script it yields weird errors about unsupported arguments even though the command is exactly the same I have been using for years (already checked typos twice)
Then got the idea of simply installing imagemagick on termux on android and transferring the files onto my phone.
Too bad we aren't allowed to attach our own USBs to the pcs. Luckily I got a rooted phone so I simply activate adb over network and connect to it.
After downloading the platform-tools I can't run them because of AV software. Luckily there is an option to add an exception per executable so I do that. After doing that it works.... nope it doesn't. The wifi only allows 443/tcp and 80/tcp, even for internal network devices.
So that's it. I'm simply going to upload that stuff to my nextcloud and convert it at home.
Windows, I hate you!!!2
I really cannot see why there still isn't an API in Java where I can get an hashing algorithm without having to catch a checked exception.
Granted, Bouncy castle is a top library. But of you just have a small application with a single method wanting to hash a few values... It's so nuts and unnecessary.
So what do you do in the catch block? Either throw a checked exception (because without that hash your app won't work), or calculate a replacement. But if it were that easy, I wouldn't have needed a hash on the first place.
I really wonder what the java developers had in mind.
Same with IO exception. I'm beginning to like python more and more.
And, of course, kotlin.5