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This was my first freelancer project. Just dropped out of school, i think i was 17. No money, no proper hardware, i had a very old laptop & stolen wifi from our neighbor. I lived in a very small room at my mom’s flat, she wanted me out as soon as i turn 18. At the time my plan was to work on freelancer stuff and make my own games. “It will be fine, fuck school, who needs school? 😂“ I haven’t really finished anything back then, so i only had a few wip hobby projects to show ppl as my references. I saw a freelancer job posting. The task was to make a simple quiz game for mobile, it paid 350$. Back then that was a lot of money for me so i took it. I met the client, he said “2-3 week tops, i send you everything, you do the code” Cool. I finally had a “job”😃. The 2-3 weeks turned into a 8 month blur of all-nighting and just implement one more thing and its finished. I did not really have any experience on how to deal with clients and i really needed this project to finally have something on my porfolio. I motivated myself with “if i can finish this i can finish anything”. I think the story of my most definitive all-nighting was 3 months into the development. I finally got everything from the client so it was like just put it together and its done. The client wanted 300 levels, beeing a noob i was i started making all the 300 unity scenes by hand, aligning the pictures, the ui, testing each level, making adjustments to the code, etc.. after a really long night and a fuckton of caffeine i was done. I sent it to the client at around 9 am and gone to sleep. When i woke up i checked my emails to saw this: Cool! But can we do hints? (wich needed a fuckton of rework of my code) I think i had my first mental breakdown while working on the project. After that he wanted more modifications and because i made every level by hand i had to remake all of them like 10 times 😂
But in the end it turned out positive, he really helped me to start my carrier, we became sord of friends and the project gave me a lot of confidence and experience on how to deal with stuff when shit goes wrong because everything that can go wrong in a project gone wrong. It was the most valuable developer lesson. Plus it sounds so cool to say “i was born in development hell, b*tch!”🕶
I attached a pic of the laptop i worked on 😂
Thanks for reading 😃33
On Monday the boss says this needs to be done by Wednesday.
I get it done and mid Wednesday I tell my teammates, it's done, and I've done my 40 hours this week. See you next week. Bye!1
On an afternoon the day before delivery, we discovered a crashing bug. At around 2 AM, we had found the cause and fixed it. A short sleep at home, then back to office at 8 AM because the delivery was 200 devices containing that software, and they had to be updated manually because production had put in the old image.
We seized all available computers, even those from marketing who were... surprised. Half-way in the update, we calculated that we wouldn't have enough time until the freight service would show up.
So we asked the secretary that she should be a bit flirty to the parcel guy, invite him to a coffee and chat around to buy us more time. We closed the last parcel just when he figured that he had to continue with his tour.6
So this happened to me occasionally so I hope none of you cringe:
I was writing some new stacks for a new Cloud IDE that went Open Source (give them a try, they're Coder.com), and because working closely and not releasing till I please majority of people who will use it is my paradigm, I spent reasonable time to fix it. Finally everything is sunshi-
"Wait... It's already 3 in the morning? WHAT THE FUCK"
Yep I started around 21:30, finished around 03:30.
I need an alarm clock5
I like coding at night, nobody bothers you... Anyway, I'll never forget when I had to write a Huffman compressor(and decompressor) in C for a school project. It was New Year's Eve of 2016, as fireworks were blowing outside the window of my room, I was fixing bugs. Then, around 4am, I fixed all the bugs. I felt exhilarated as I started compressing and decompressing random images on the internet, comparing hashes.
One of the best New Year's Eve ever... Don't look at me like that... I like being weird.3
Few times per month. Its just crazy but you plug the earphones in. Some good music and write and think.
Oh fuck its 6am. Have to go to school4
I think the coolest all-nighter I can remember is when me and one of my best friends were still in school. We were up all night figuring out what to make. At the time we played a little browser click game, so we came up with the idea of creating a bot for it.
We're both PHP developers, but we figured that wouldn't be an appropriate language to write a bot in. So we went for C#. Both of us never worked with it.
At the end of the night we built a fully functioning bot, that could continue playing the game when we were at school. It could do all our manual tasks and could even decode Captchas with the Google OCR package.
That night was productive.
About 3 years ago, my girlfriend had this laptop that she got from her University. She had to give the laptop back to get reset, but didn't want to lose all of her data on it, and a backup would be around 750GB.
So I suggested that I would backup the laptop (was thinking to just dd an image and go from there). So I plugged in my mobile USB and external hard drive, and started the imaging process. Given the amount of data and setup, the process should have taken about 5hours. So we left it there for 5h.
Please be mindful that at this stage in my life I knew very little about boot processes, oses, and hardware.
5h after. The laptop screen is black and it ain't responsive. Not sure what happened, the dd process was completed, but the laptop refused to boot into windows. Tried a number of boot tools, and spent a crazy night hacking at the machine. But the university had some of sort of fail safe to not allow anyone to boot into windows if someone opened bios without entering a password. Whatever this was, I spent over 12h trying to either open mount the windows partition with a Ubuntu usb or mount the corrupt dd image on my laptop.
Long story short, after throwing at it a number of fixes. I was able to mount the image, copy out all of her personal data, and reinstall a new version of Windows on her laptop. The university didnt understand why the laptop was already reset. She still mentions this to me anytime I want to take a "custom approach" to software lol3
Not sure if this technically counts as all nighter, but when Udacity released their basics Android nanodegree they had a contest where the first 100 worldwide to finish got a scholarship for the advanced Android nanodegree. I followed the uberman sleepy schedule, 20 min nap every 4 hours, around the clock for 6 days. Finished #17. They didn't even have the videos or lessons for the last 3 sections, just a description and a project for each, so they set up a slack channel to let us talk with staff and collaborate with others trying to get it done.
Multiple all-nighters (all day every day):
1) Working, studying and developing an Android game as pet project. Last few weeks before release (yup, I've set a deadline for a pet project) my day consisted of uni, work, more work and 4-5h sleep.
2) Having worked on my thesis (Development of a CPU/SoC + Firmware + Linux kernel) and actual paid work. In parallel. Because, you know, I need to eat and pay rent and shit while I'm writing the thesis. And debts at that moment were not an option (still made some). All-day all-night all-week. After submitting the thesis I went to the doc and enjoyed 2 weeks of doing nothing.
3) Sometimes on my main open-source project after regular work hours. If I have the motivation and ideas that I want to check out or prove it gets late/early too fast.
Was on a trip, a holiday of sorts but there was a conference. Turns out alcohol and no sleep turns me into not only a master of code but negotiations as well. Woke up to find all of my work (that I had been procrastinating for about a week) was all done, my contract was extended and I got accept for a higher hourly rate.
ps: I had to redo most of it. Drunk me is not someone you wanna pair program with.
Finalising my Master's thesis just before the deadline was an all nighter in which I coded a lot.
Back then it was all Matlab!
The only time i pulled an all nighter was during the global game jam. You have to make a game in 48 hours and there were some nice to haves that I had to implement.
In 48 hours I slept only 5 hours. The rest of the time I was mostly programming.
I used to be a sysadmin, which meant I was in charge of quarterly server patching. My team managed about 2500 servers, running various flavors of linux and legacy unix. The vast majority(95% or more) ran Linux(SLES). Our maintenance window was always in the overnight-- 10pm to 6am --so the stroke of 10pm would be a massive cascade of patching commands sent to hundreds of servers.
Before I was brought into the process, it made use of the automation product we were tasked by mgmt to use: Bigfix. It's a real piece of shit. Though we had 2500 or so servers, this environment was dominated by windows. All our vcenter servers ran it, and more importantly, our bigfix nodes were all windows machines. That meant that while we're trying to patch, the bigfix servers would get patched by the windows team. This would cause lots of failed and timed out patching, because the windows admins never quite understood that taking down the automation infrastructure would cause problems.
As such, I got tired of depending on a bunch of button-pushing checkbox-clickers who didn't know shit about shit, so I started writing an ssh-wrapped patching system. By the time I left for my current job, patching had been reduced to a single command to initiate each group's patching and reboots, and an easy check to see when servers come back up. So usually, the way it worked out was that I would send patching orders to 750 machines or so, and within about 5 minutes, they would all be done patching, and within another 20 minutes all the ones that required rebooting but about 5 would be done rebooting.
The "all-nighter" which happened every time was waiting for oracle servers to run timed fscks against a dozen or so large filesystems per server, because they were all on ext3/4, which eats complete shit. Then, several hours later, as they finished, I would have to call the DBAs to tell them to validate their shitty servers.3
I have a strict rule about putting my computer away by 7pm.
I've found that if I get started on something, no matter how stupid it is, I will stay up all night working on something. If I try to quit, I go to bed and can't sleep because I'm still thinking about it.
Setting a time gives my brain time to let go before it's time to go to bed.2
Completely fucked up replication of MySQL servers.
Remote: 2 different database Servers
--> made sense.
Except the misconfiguration. Or better: No configuration at all.
So how to solve the massiv delays and make everything even more crazy?
2 remote servers - 2 readonly slaves for reading data remote (master - slave)
2 local (internal) servers.
Remote - Local Master Master.
Unfucking this cluster fuck was a real nightmare.
It had to be done at night, cause everything needed to be ripped apart.
And the servers were the backend of a warehouse with supply chain and multiple selling channels (Amazon, eBay etcetera).
So. It had to run the next day at 05.00 clock so the incoming orders could be packaged / prepared for shipping.
That was fun. Not.
And the clusterfuck died spectaculously on my first work day - the old DBA was gone (fired....)
Pulled an all nighter for a project, the next thing i know i am demonstrating my code with the error message i forgot to change which was houston we got a problem, i felt so weird and i was laughing very hard after the project presentation
cvs checkout coding-all-nighter
Playing PacMan and Mario
Aaaand it’s morning.3
Yesterday we released this huge refactoring/rewrite I did alone so it was my task to release and fix any upcoming problems. Not that I would have died to refactor a huge part of the codebase but technical debt was waiting to kill us on upcoming features.
Deployment is done by ssh'ing into prod and pulling from git. I'm happy I could convince them to track a dedicated release branch... Why would we want to build anything? What is automation?
Debian 8 with MySQL 5 community edition... Throws some internal error on my use of JSON functions. Thankfully I was allowed to switch prod to MariaDB but updating packages caused segfaults with the PHP MySQL connector. This is why you need NixOS!
Prod is a 4 core 4 GB VM that would take forever to run migrations. Also no disk space. Had to copy the whole db to staging (which is much more powerful and on Debian 9? diverging environments in the same data center...), migrate there and and pipe back mysqldump directly into ssh while in my neck I feel another client's project that I have about half a week left to finish.
It's Monday night. Customer has a full office of over 50 users at 8 AM.
Almost fell asleep in the car the next day, and I think I have RSI in my enter finger now.
I helped release an app to the App Store on a Tuesday night. We now historically refer to it as The Twednesday.
well, there was this time I was facing a bug in production, http requests kept receiving partial data randomly (so downloaded files were always incomplete), but it was working well on other platforms, turned out after 9 hours of research, that I forgot to disable caching
I was working on my personal all-in-one solution to capturing and brute forcing wifi handshakes, and I started around 10 am. I told my parents it's important so they didn't bother me. Next thing I know I look at the time it's 5 am next day
Was working on a game with some friends a while ago and had a HDD fail before I could back it up and lost 48 hours of progress so spent all night hammering it back to how it was before the data loss...
Never stressed so much in my life tbh7
It was for a school project, I was in the bad books of the teachers and some seriously horrible shit was going on with me, so the teacher set up a special 24-hr deadline only for me, rest other students were given a 30 days deadline. The assignment was a java front end paired with a mysql backend application for keeping a record of a students details like name, phone, roll no, and some other details manageable and changeable through the java frontend only. I was seriously panicked and worked the whole night with my friend.4
Never did it in my 3 years of coding. Worth noting, its hard to find clients in the middle east who would pay enough money for me to think they deserve an all nighter. They all think websites cost $200 to $500. Thank you wordpress for that :p9
Both team members quit on a hackathon 2 days before the deadline. I was more curious whether I can do it than desperate, but I spent those 2 days coding. Didn't succeed though.
The night before I had an oral exam about history of Communication Studies at university, I was too excited about learning PHP (ikr, that was 5 years ago). I mailed the professor an apology and stated the real reason I would skip this exam. When I still showed up at 9 in the morning without having slept, he told me "that's the most honest mail I've ever had" and gave me a 2/20 for showing up. (At the third exam period I studied it properly and got an 18/20)
Done it once or twice when finishing up a feature for a presentation/delivery the next day.
I'm leaning on the side of Not Worth It because I'd rather not be sleep deprived and dumb in brainy brain when interacting with the client and demoing my other stuff.
I guess it's usually when my perfectionism flares up that I'm likely to do stuff like that.
Will consider an all-nighter if it's reeeally necessary but there's few scenarios I can imagine where that is warranted. Maybe when working on a very serious security flaw or something of that nature. Most stuff can wait a couple of days...
Edit: goddamn I guess I committed the sin of not really answering the question. There's no story here. Boooo. Permission to hate myself, captain?1
It was 11:30 pm, started working a small feature telling myself "This will only last 30 minutes".
Next time I looked at the time it was 7:30 am and sun was shining through my curtains.
I thought: Okay lets update this open source software the day right before my exam. What could go wrong? All previous updates worked without a problem and this is an urgent security fix for RCX.
Of course: It failed. I spend the whole night searching for the error in my config files etc. The error was: A missing null check in start sequence. Had to fix and build it myself as I required the files stored there for the exam.
I learned a lot that day/night about updating only when you have the time to deal with errors...
Hahaha which time?
The most memorable is probably spending two out of three days awake trying desperately to finish a site and server on next to no specs with no brief before my boss was supposed to be discussing with the client in a meeting.
He spent the entire day times arguing saying it was wrong and that they were going to hate it (even though I'd spoken to the client and knew what they wanted) and would get regular slack messages asking where everything is every 5 minutes even though he could access the device server to see it.
Literally slept 6 hours across three days. Got it all done, client liked it, didn't get a thanks or congrats from the boss.1
Oh, I've pulled a lot of all-nighters. I love doing hackathons. I find myself most productive when I work on something in a single stretch. I have ADD that way. If I leave a project mid-way, that's probably the last time I'll be working on it; unless someone comes to me and reminds me about it.
Other than attending organized hackathons, I go on personal hackathons. When I'm in the mood to code something up in my free time, I just find some stupid, random idea to code and code it up overnight. (Oh, I have a very long list of projects that I can complete over the weekend)
Other times, I'll just be in the mood as I'm working on something and then lose track of time (and other bodily calls like hunger) as I finish it.
If my weekend looks very peaceful without any distractions, I put my hand in my project bowl and pull something up to finish it off over the weekend.1
I pulled a lot of all nighter when I was in university, it was so easy. But its been couple years and I don’t even remember how I did it.
Stayed up doing all the projects for my CS class the day before the last day of classes. It was simultaneously worth it and not worth it
I do it pretty regularly maybe once or twice a week depends when I'm working on something interesting and want to get it done. Not very hard when you have coffee, headphones, good music, and enjoy what you do.
As for a story i don't have much of one unless you want one about implementing jwt tokens with a rest api along with trying to implement an 2FA system that would support otp and u2f. Then nuking it from orbit two days later cause it looked like garbage from trying to abstract everything