You do a little online research, pick a mature technology that is well established, perform a quick install and everything just works. The sun is shining, deadlines are met, birds are singing and you are a hero. That scenario is not a stretch, it happens every day. Many tools have dedicated significant effort to making their installation “idiot proof”, but what happens next?
As your environment grows, cracks begin to emerge in the foundation of your new tool. They may start small, but they grow and spread. Where did these cracks come from, where will they appear next, what damage can they cause? At every step of the installation, you accepted the default settings and moved on. Each of those options were forks in the road and you took a direction, without knowing the options available and without knowing why. Now, you do not know where you are, how you got there or how to correct course.
Maybe you did everything right, but did you do it on purpose? If you do not know why your deployment was successful, if you did not develop and enact a careful plan to result in a solid environment…then you got lucky, at best. The initial results may look the same, but the long term results and the value provided will be miles apart.
Too often in IT, I meet people willing to simply get a task done and move on, literally leaving a mine field in their wake. It would be better to fail following a plan than to succeed without one. When you follow a plan, you can retrace your steps, correct course and move forward. When you have blind success, you create a false sense of security that can cripple an organization when things finally go “bump” in the middle of the night. Trust me…eventually, everything goes “bump”.
Be good, be bad, be deliberate or be careless, just do it on purpose.
**PS-I really will post a technical entry eventually. Look for one on Linux P2Vs soon…