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Author Profile

Matt Simmons

Matt Simmons is an IT Administrator with several years experience on small and medium networks. He is currently employed in the financial services industry, and has previously worked in logistics and internet services. Matt maintains a systems administration blog, and spends his spare time reading and learning new things. He can be reached at standalone.sysadmin@gmail.com or via his blog at http://www.standalone-sysadmin.com

Physical Network Layout for the Reluctant

How do you select the hardware for your network, and connect it all together? How do you then test your network and ensure that it is secure? Our crash course for the reluctant tells you enough of the basics in simple language to get you started. Read more...

Logical Network Layout for Small Networks

Matt examines what it’s like to design a network from the ground up, as well as dealing with an existing network that has been undocumented, by analyzing the relationships between the systems Read more...

Networking - The Crib Sheet

When anyone mentions network masks and the 'seven layer model' we all nod wisely and hope not to be asked too many questions. No longer need we feel embarassed, as Matt Simmonds has produced the simple cribsheet for 'the rest of us'. Read more...

Unteachable Disaster Recovery Techniques

There are some skills which are extensions of your instincts, and which you can only learn though years of experience. Matt Simmons has this brought home by the fact that he was recently minutes away from a data-loss disaster, and he doesn't quite know how he prevented it. Read more...

The Ego and the System Administrator

Because the Sys Admins and DBAs who are efficient end up wielding a great deal of power, there is always a danger that it can 'go to their head'. If ever you start imposing your decisions on the organisation for no better reason than the fact that they're yours, then it is time to read Matt's simple guide on how to prevent your actions being controlled by your ego. Read more...

Hiring System Administrators

Hiring someone for a technical post is a task that should never be tackled half-heartedly. Matt Simmons provides some general advice on the subject, illustrated by a recent experience of hiring an IT administrator to help share the load. It opened his eyes to the real state of the economy. Read more...

Manage Stress Before it Kills You

The key to a long career in IT is in learning how to cope adaptively with stress. Matt Simmons, like many, didn't realise it applies to everyone until he was rushed to hospital with what looked to be a heart attack. It was a salutary experience. He then discovered that there are many effective ways of unwinding, and it pays to be aware of them before you get the warning-shot. Read more...

A SysAdmin's Guide to Users

What level of trust do you afford users by default? What level of support do you offer users who have low technical skills? Are you creating a system which is more difficult to use with little or no payback? Are you adopting administrative policies as a punitive measure? do users believe that you are deriding them for their ignorance? Matt provides some timely advice. Read more...

A SysAdmin's Guide to Change Management

In the first in a series of monthly articles, ‘Confessions of a Sys Admin’, Matt describes the issues involved in Change Management, and gives a simple guide. Read more...

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