1 Reply Latest reply: Jun 14, 2012 3:12 PM by antwesor RSS

What's the thing you hate the most about the tools you use? And what would you do about it?

plankers

When it comes right down to it, many of the tools that we use in the IT world don't actually save us much time. Sometimes they require as much maintenance as a full application, with databases and application servers and web servers. Sometimes they're so full of bugs that they can't be used properly. To me there are three classes of tools:

1. Tools you choose to run because they're great, easy to use, and save you loads of time.

2. Tools you have to run because of some other choice you've made.

3. Tools you don't like but don't have time to do something different.

 

So what puts a tool in category 3? For me, my biggest pet peeves are:

A) unfocused UIs (GUIs or CLIs) that get in my way.

B) complex maintenance & upkeep.

 

Some tools I'd fix by streamlining the UI, so that relevant information is shown immediately. Most monitoring tools have issues in this area, by nature. They need to display a lot of complex information, and doing it in a way that's helpful can be tricky. Sometimes this is an implementation issue, too, where the users could have chosen better ways of displaying their data. Perhaps good templates are in order, then, or a good default installation that users can build on. Or even alternate views of the same data.

Some tools I'd fix by delivering them as virtual appliances. Endpoint & server management consoles come to mind, where there's no reason I need to be a DBA and an app admin for these products. If I can have a way to back my data & configuration up every night, and load it again into a fresh install, I'd be happy.

Some tools I'd fix by just getting rid of them completely. Most things in my category 2 are like that. Do we really need to run that server hardware management console, or can we achieve that some other way? Why are we buying storage with the world's worst management tools? What would happen if we accounted for the staff time we lost in fighting these tools?

What do you hate about IT tools? And how would you fix them?