MLS Test Data

Discussions around using and interfacing with the Church MLS program.
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Mikerowaved
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Postby Mikerowaved » Fri Nov 07, 2008 1:06 pm

It's probably OK. It's been widely published before and probably will again sometime.
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Postby lajackson » Fri Nov 07, 2008 1:18 pm

gpetersen wrote:. . . every advance notification of an MLS release is sent to each ward computer . . . . I would like to see the notification limited to the stake computers only.


I understand the concern, but keep in mind that neither of the two STSs in our stake live within an hour's drive of the stake center, so it is handy to have one of the clerks in our respective buildings let us know that something is coming our way.

I would hate to see communications go backwards. I have never forgotten receiving 14 new computers one Friday afternoon and starting to set them up in my living room, only to find out that I needed a password to do anything and the help desk was closed for the weekend.

So the 14 CPU boxes and the 14 monitor boxes strained my family relations for the weekend until I was able to call the help desk on Monday.

Monday is another thread. (The help desk did not know the password, and the person who finally did give it to me, because I became a little bit persistent at that point, told me I should have been able to guess the password.)

Someday, when I write my book . . . . [grin]

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Postby russellhltn » Fri Nov 07, 2008 2:27 pm

lajackson wrote:I would hate to see communications go backwards.


I guess it's depends on one's perspective.

If one lives in a stake where the STS is largely inactive, then the password helps the clerk keep their machine functional.

But if one is the STS, then giving anyone with access to MLS the password allows them to bypass any specific plan you may have had for doing the update. It may also plant the idea that it's acceptable for the clerks to act on their own rather then come to you on the best way to manage the stake's machines (and yes, all computers belong to the stake. They are only assigned to wards.)


lajackson wrote: I have never forgotten receiving 14 new computers one Friday afternoon and starting to set them up in my living room, only to find out that I needed a password to do anything and the help desk was closed for the weekend.


I guessed it. But that was also the last time I've ever gotten a computer that was pre-loaded with a church setup. Everything since then has been plain old WinXP. So in that respect it has been a step backward since then.

lajackson wrote:ISomeday, when I write my book . . . . [grin]


And I expect to be able to buy one when you put it up for pre-sale. ;)
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Postby techgy » Fri Nov 07, 2008 3:00 pm

lajackson wrote:.....I would hate to see communications go backwards......


I agree with Russell. Keep in mind that the issue here isn't just MLS. There a whole list of Church-approved software on that site. Most software installations go fairly smoothly. However, there's always that one that doesn't. If a clerk takes it upon themselves to do an install and something goes south, the STS is called to clean it up. You'd have no idea as to what was done.

As the STS for our stake, I insist on doing these installs myself. Fortunately I don't have to drive anymore than 20 minutes to get from one end of our stake to the other, so distance isn't an issue :)

I simply don't wish to cleanup something.

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Postby russellhltn » Fri Nov 07, 2008 4:12 pm

Techgy wrote:I simply don't wish to cleanup something.


A man after my own heart! I'm sure some people must think I'm a control freak givien the way I lock some systems down. Nope, I'm just working hard so I don't have to put out any "fires".
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Postby lajackson » Fri Nov 07, 2008 4:27 pm

RussellHltn wrote:. . . giving anyone with access to MLS the password allows them to bypass any specific plan you may have had for doing the update.


SL already does that pretty well. We find here that it allows the unit clerks to bypass the lengthy dialup download for major releases. There is just no way we can get around to all of the machines before the "three clicks and you're out" policy kicks in.

Actually though, I was talking about the notification itself, not the giving out of the password. If the password(s) were changed, that would be ok with me. We only gave them out selectively to ward clerks who were responsible and did what they were asked to do.

Oh, and we also require them to clean up their own messes. They are old enough. [grin]

techgy
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Postby techgy » Fri Nov 07, 2008 5:14 pm

lajackson wrote:SL already does that pretty well. We find here that it allows the unit clerks to bypass the lengthy dialup download for major releases. There is just no way we can get around to all of the machines before the "three clicks and you're out" policy kicks in. Oh, and we also require them to clean up their own messes. They are old enough. [grin]


Obviously the decision as to who gets the priviledge of doing the installs is up to the STS and your stake leadership. If buildings are spread around over miles or hours then I can appreciate your predicament.

To tie a knot on this discussion, since we're a little off track (my fault), let me just state for the record that it's the responsibility of the STS to contact SLC when problems at the ward/stake level occur and additional help is needed. The wards are instructed to contact the stake for help.

Following this procedure takes a lot of pressure off of SLC. It's their intention that problems be resolved at the lowest possible level and following this procedure does just that.

Sorry for getting off track and for getting on my soap box. :D

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Postby russellhltn » Fri Nov 07, 2008 5:47 pm

Techgy wrote:Following this procedure takes a lot of pressure off of SLC.


Great, so now you pass the soapbox to me. :p

That's all great in theory. The problem is there's no training for the STS. About all they can do is say "Beats me. Call SLC and return and report". So *if* another ward has the same problem then maybe the STS can say "Oh, well, here's what the other ward did".

If the problem is an issue with data corruption, there's nothing the STS can do. I won't say the STS is useless, but he doesn't have a lot of tools to work with.

Ok, who wants the soapbox next?
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Postby aebrown » Fri Nov 07, 2008 5:56 pm

RussellHltn wrote:Great, so now you pass the soapbox to me. :p

That's all great in theory. The problem is there's no training for the STS. About all they can do is say "Beats me. Call SLC and return and report". So *if* another ward has the same problem then maybe the STS can say "Oh, well, here's what the other ward did".

If the problem is an issue with data corruption, there's nothing the STS can do. I won't say the STS is useless, but he doesn't have a lot of tools to work with.

Ok, who wants the soapbox next?


I'll step up.

The STS does have clerk.lds.org and our beloved tech.lds.org. While that's not "training" per se, it's a great resource. And all the stakes have been informed of clerk.lds.org. That's quite a bit of tools to work with.

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Postby lajackson » Sat Nov 08, 2008 6:07 am

Techgy wrote:Obviously the decision as to who gets the privilege of doing the installs is up to the STS and your stake leadership. If buildings are spread around over miles or hours then I can appreciate your predicament.

. . . it's the responsibility of the STS to contact SLC when problems at the ward/stake level occur and additional help is needed. The wards are instructed to contact the stake for help.


I agree that the STS (stake technology specialist) should contact SLC when the wards have a problem. That way, the STS can help solve the other wards' problems as well. I also agree that there were not a lot or resources at first for the STS. And that sometimes it was better that the ward call and report to the stake, something with which the help desk always seemed to disagree.

But, they did not know how we were working things at our end of the line, just as we did not know how they were working things at their end of the line. They still only got one call from our stake. They just never believed it.


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