Thursday, June 30, 2005

New Accomodation

So I have finally decided to shift to a new house. The house owner has agreed to a deposit of 6 months in advance and a rent of Rs.5000/-. I should be shifting in by this weekend.

This means that I will be moving out of Gokul’s house, but then I will be getting the peace of mind which I wanted. If things are not well at home, then there are obvious chances that it will affect your work. The problem with the house was the water – I have mentioned it in one of my previous posts Life @ Chennai– I could not carry on washing my clothes and taking bath in that water.

Now that I am moving out, and that too alone, there will be some problems. Firstly is the rent, which might be a bit of a problem for me. Five grant means that I will have to cut down on my extra spending. I am hoping that at least one of classmates from TAPMI, who have got into Polaris are placed in Chennai.

A new life starts from next week.

Tuesday, June 28, 2005


Friend – A person whose likes and dislikes matches yours, a person who has the same point of view as you, or a person whom you want to be with you during you good and bad times. A friend is also the person, for whom you would be ready to give up everything in life. You would give up anything to see him happy; you would be there with him during his good or bad times. But the greatest thing that defines friendship/closeness between two people is the absence of expectation.

Where there is expectation, there is hurt when the other person falls short of your expectation. You expect you parents to get you a toy. You expect your friend to stand play with you. You expect your girlfriend to call you on your birthday. You expect your wife to prepare tea as soon as you get up. You expect your child to stand first in his/her class. You expect your children to support you once they are independent. The expectations a person can have is numerous, some of them are reasonable, but even reasonable expectations can lead to stained relationship between people.

Personally I have had very few friends in my life – until TAPMI. The reason for that being the regular transfers that my dad got due to the nature of his job. I had to change schools every 2-3 years. Since I was the only child in my house, I am a recluse. I do not get along freely with people; I require time to know people. These two reasons combined has resulted in a typical behavior developing in me due to which not many people like to be with me.

Even in my engineering, thought there were a lot of students, I had a handful of people whom I could call as close friends.

Come TAPMI, the things changed. There were friends – Associate Group friends, Core Group friends, T-Flank friends, System Forum Friends, TSG Friends, Systems Lab Friends, Pulsar Friends, Episode Friend, BrandScan Friend, Friends in my Gang, Friends from other Gangs, you name it and there was a friendship with every other guy in the college, be it from my batch or from the junior/senior batch.

The reason for it was the curriculum of TAPMI. While during your school days and graduation, the stress is on individual performance; in Management education the stress is on group work. There are groups for every activity in TAPMI, and so for the successful completion of the work you need to forge good relation with your teammates. You need to understand the other person and play along.

Two years ago – on 27th June 2003, I had joined TAPMI. In a matter of 22 months, I have learned a lot. As I look back from now, I have a lot of friends, on whom I can rely on. A lot of friends with whom I would love to stay in touch, I love to hear from.

There is a particular dialogue in the film “Dil Chahta Hai”, spoken by Akshay Khanna – “Our life is like a sea, and we are like boats. Each one having its own targets and equipments to meet them. Some of them meet by chance, stay together for a period to attain common goals, but after that they move on – To find newer goals.”

This is so true with friendship. If you look back in life, you will have more friends from the recent past than from your school days. Time flies, people move away, have different priorities in life and develop new tastes and friends group.

After TAPMI, life has brought me new friends, the Management Trainees who have joined along with me in my company. Thought I still have contacts with a lot of people from TAPMI, I am not sure as to how many of them will stand the test of time. There are a few who I am sure will stay in touch for a long time, but about others – Time will tell.

New House & Virus in my Office Computer

The computer that I have been assigned to had been showing problems from the day I sat on it. From the first day it was slow and whenever I opened the Task Manager, I found that the CPU Usage was 100%. My first reaction was to delete all the cookies, Temp files, Temporary Internet Folders of all the users of the system. The problem persisted.

Now it was time to take more effective tests. It was time to run a virus scan. To my utter surprise, I discovered that my computer did not have any Anti-Virus or Anti-Spam software installed. So I called up the admin and got the Symantec anti virus installed. Immediately upon installation, I saw that the computer was infected with W32.MyTob.As@mm virus and there were Trojan Horses also.

I was shocked. Mainly due to the fact that I had opened my ICICI bank account and changed my password. Since the virus was detected, I thought that the threat is minimized now, and I need not bother.

Things don’t settle smoothly. I have had many moments in life, which reinstates the fact as told in Five Point Someone (written by Chetan Bhagat, and one of my favorite novels) – “When you think that you have fixed everything in life, it comes right back to screw you.” From the moment of installing the anti virus, I keep getting alerts every 5-10 minutes that a virus had been found. This continued in spite of having deleted all related files, cleaning all registries. I had no clue as to what is to be done. To add to my frustration, the computer was still slow. I checked out the CPU usage, and it was still hovering around the 100% mark. I checked the process which was using up all the processor’s capability. It was a process called “taskgmr.exe”. On referring Google, I found that it was due to the MyTob virus. The virus was still in my computer.

I decided to consult the experts once again. The admin was called and he fixed it. He downloaded the latest patch for windows 2000, also the latest Windows updates. Then he ran the MyTob fixing tool available from the Symantec site and fixed the virus for good. Now I have my computer back, as good as new, without any viruses. The first thing I did was to change my ICICI passwords.

Yesterday I also went to take a look at the house I was talking about in the previous mail (The house is in KK Nagar). It was a good one, in a nice locality. I liked the place and I have decided to take it. The water is good, and I will not be facing the problems, which I am facing at the current place of residence. It is also closer to my office. So in all respects it’s a good house.

Monday, June 27, 2005

E-serve Annual Day & Besant Nagar Beach

This weekend, we had just one day off – Sunday. My initial plans for the day was to hunt for the new house. But on Saturday evening, Ram Uncle – dad’s colleague – called up and told me that he knew of a house, belonging to one of his relative, which is free. He told me that the house was a 2 BHK, with basic furnishing, one room had an ac, and there was a telephone connection as well as a gas connection. The rent was Rs.5000/-. This was an ideal flat for me. The hitch was that Ram Uncle could not reach his relative and he could not confirm whether the house could be given to me or not. He told me that he could confirm it by Monday evening. So I decided to wait till Monday to start searching for a house.

The morning went off without any incidents, was reading the newspaper and killing time. Just as I finished the newspaper, Surya called and asked me to come over to the annual day celebration of e-serve. I thought that it was an ideal time to catch up with my classmates at TAPMI. The program was being held at the YMCA grounds in Nandambakkam.

Upon reaching the place, I saw that more that half of my batch mates who were posted in Chennai were there. I met Dipti, Kranthi, Surya, Chaparwal, Ankur Agarwal, Jhunjhunwalla, Rama (APRKR), Souveer, Shayanthan, Sinha, Yash, Venkat, Vexy, Karan, Santhosh, Sumit and Anirudh. I also met a few of our seniors – Nayana, our immediate senior and also one 2003 passout.

We had a nice time there, reminded me of the college, where a gang used to pull chairs and sit together, making a lot of noise and attracting attention. The same was happening at the YMCA grounds.

I left the grounds with Rama at 3pm and went to the flats where Jhunjhunwalla, Ankur and Karan were put up. Watched TV with all the major channels for the first time after coming to Chennai. In Chennai, you have the CAS (Conditional Access System) in place, due to which you need a Set Top Box (STB) to watch pay channels, and all the major channels are pay channels.

We left the flats at 5:30pm for Besant Nagar Beach (this is my second trip in 2 weeks). After staying in Chennai, it has become a necessity to go to Besant Nagar beach once in a while to satiate your needs to watch beautiful faces. You can get them in a other few places also, but the beach, along with the walkway, where you can sit and enjoy the breeze while giving your neck some good exercise.

It so happened that the car in which Yash, Souveer and Venkat were to come to the beach developed some problem, and they were late. Kranthi told us that she would be joining us at 7pm. So Rama and myself were roaming around in the beach, talking about our present, past lives and also looking out for some nice faces to ogle at. Time flew quickly and it was 7pm, with no news from Kranthi. Suddenly I get a message from her that she was in an auto and would reach in another 20 minutes.

To spend these 20 minutes, Rama and I decided to sit in the walkway and give some more exercise to our necks. We were having a nice time looking at a girl who was standing a bit away from us. She was the most beautiful girl we saw yesterday evening. She was married, which we guessed from the hundreds of red bangles that she was wearing. That did not deter us from looking at her.

That’s when Kranthi’s message came that the auto driver had dropped her somewhere and she could not figure out the way to get to us. She did manage to get to us, and by that time others had also come, after they repaired their cars.

Soon it was time to leave, and I started to search my pocket for my bike keys. To my horror, I could not find them. I was in a beach, had roamed the length and breadth of it and now I had lost the keys and had no clue as to where I should start my search. I remembered that I was playing with my key chain when Rama and I were waiting for Kranthi at the walkway, where were looking at that married girl. So I decided to check that place first.

When I reached, that girl was still there with her family members. I started searching for the keys – looking at the place where we sat. That’s when the girl – the same married girl – came up to me and asked whether I was searching for a key. To my relief, she told me that her husband had found the key and had gone to look for its owner. I called him on his mobile and got my keys back.

I could not find words to thank the couple. The relief was immense and I could not imagine what would have happened if I had not found my keys. I would like to thank the couple once again for having kept the keys with them.

By the end of the day, I was dead tired. I also had a headache. I reached home, took bath and slept off.

Friday, June 24, 2005

War of Mails

Today I was relatively free in the office. The server consolidation project about which I talked in the last post is stuck as I am waiting for replies to various queries I had put to system and network administrators.

Yesterday there was a mail from one of my classmates to the yahoo group regarding his posting in Bhubneshwar. In his mail he had mentioned bbsr instead of Bhubneshwar. When I went through his mail for the first time, I could not guess what bbsr stood for. I had to go down the mail to his signature to decipher bbsr. Now another one of my classmate, Satyajit replied to his mail asking him what bbsr was. Since I did not have much work, I replied to his mail saying that bbsr stood for Bhubneshwar. Thus, the stage was set for a major war of mails between Satya and me.

Replying to my mail, Satya said that I had great understanding with the other person, due to which I could decipher his mails easily. I did not reply to his mail then, since I wanted to go home and left for the day.

Today morning I replied to his mail, saying that you did not need understanding with a person, but common sense to decipher bbsr. This war of mails or ego clash between us continued till the afternoon, by which we had sent some 10 mails to the group. That’s when I sent the killer mail. I sent a mail making fun of all Infosysians, which was not appreciated by some of 21 of my classmates who were working with Infosys. I had sent the mail just to pull Satya’s leg and it was all part of fun. Many of my classmates who were witnessing this war of mails, took it in the right spirit.

In the afternoon I receive a mail from Deepti, one of my classmates working in Infosys. She had lambasted me for the mail about Infosys and said a few harsh things. I was really pissed off when I read her mail. After this Satya sent another one of his leg pulling mails to the group. Then I replied to his mail, asking him to stop, or things would turn foul.

Deepti wanted to help Satya, and also could not bear to hear harsh things about the company she was working with, which was the reason for her mail. She failed to understand that it was all a part of fun play between Satya and me, since both of us did not have much work in the office. Now the people who were enjoying the dual between Satya and me did not appreciate Deepti’s mail. No mail was sent to the group, which would have told Deepti that she had missed the part of fun in the war of mails.

But, she happened to go over to Satya’s cubicle and read my mail lambasting her for her stupid mail, and also a chat going on between Satya and another of our friend, who also did not appreciate Deepti’s mail. Now she was caught in ‘No man’s land’.

I sent Deepti a personal mail apologizing for such mails, and she also apologized for the personal remarks on me.

By the end of the day all was settled and things returned to normalcy. For a few hours there were many furious people and angry mails across many servers in the country.

Wednesday, June 22, 2005

First weekend at Chennai

This is my first post from my company.

The induction is over, and all the 9 of us have been allotted to their respective departments. I have got “Corporate Support Group - IT”. It is the department that takes care of all the IT related activities of my company. During the first year, the emphasis is on learning. So we would be required to do various projects under our departments as well as other departments.

I have got my first project. It comes under the technical name “Server Consolidation”. It is done by organizations which has a large number of servers distributed at different locations. This situation leads to a lot of cost as well as data vulnerability for the company. To reduce cost and to increase reliability, companies group various tasks accomplished by many servers into tasks that can be handled by a fewer number.

More details about Server Consolidation can be found in the sites of IBM, Wipro and DELL. These companies have developed their own methodology of server consolidation.

I have started the project and I am currently collecting data regarding the servers and the applications that run in each server.

I did not go home last weekend, even thought I got 2 holidays. In my company, the 1st and 3rd Saturdays of a month are off, the rest are working. The reason for staying back was to search for a house. After a week of thought regarding shifting, I had still not decided whether to leave Gokul and to search for a new house. So I did not search for a house.

On Saturday, we (Gokul & I) went for a movie – Anniyan. It was the latest movie Directed by Shankar. Vikram played the lead role. It was a time pass movie, can be watched once. The movie lacked the originality of Gentleman, Indian or Mudhalvan. All the 4 movies had the same theme – To remove corruption and onset of utopia. The plus points of the movie was style, extensive use of computer graphics, choreography of songs and the heroine (she was looking real cute in the movie). Vikram has done well in his role, he was amazing in the scene where he shifts between his alter egos. Two songs which I liked are “Iyyenggaru Veetu…” and “Kumaari…”

We had gone for the second show at Satyam. Met one of my classmate Santhosh Raghavan on the theater. The show got over at 1:50am. The return trip was good, empty stretches of roads. We reached back home within 15 minutes. The journey to the theater took us 40 minutes.

On Sunday, I went to Besant Nagar beach with another of my TAPMI classmate Anirudh Baskaran. Actually I had gone to his place to look for a house along with him. He had recently known that his posting was in Chennai. He is with Sify, and Sify has a policy wherein they pay the deposit for the house taken by employees and they encourage a group of their employees staying together. So that option was also closed for me.

Lets hope that I get settled in a new house soon.

Tuesday, June 14, 2005

Life @ Chennai

Arrived in Chennai from Bangalore on 3rd evening by Brindawan Express. The company had provided accomodation for 10 days, and Gokul was also in Chennai. I had planned to stay in the company guest house in the first day, and move along with Gokul on 4th evening.

I took an auto to the guest house in Adyar. The trip cost me 120 bucks. When I reached the guest house, I saw that it was locked. The time was 9:30pm and I did not want to wait for the people to return. I was not sure whether someone had occupied it earlier, and enquries to neighbours were not fruitful, so I decided to move along with Gokul on the same day itself. So Got another auto to his house in Vadapalani, this trip cost me another 100 bucks.

Gokul's was a 2 bedroom house near Vadapalani Bus Depot. The house was good, except for the water. It was salty, hard and the color was bad. All this was secondary, since I wanted to be with Gokul.

The next day, I visited my company to collect my uniforms. Met a few of the other Management Traniees who would be joining with me.

Sunday (5th June) was a horrible day. It was hot, which is not unusual in Chennai, and on top of that all my roommates went to work and I was left all alone. I killed time by reading Angels & Demons by Dan Brown. I had brought this novel in Kolkatta Airport during my return trip from Sikkim.

I joined duty on 6th. Met all the 8 Management Traniees. We had to go through an induction program which lasted for 10 days. During these 10 days we had to sit through persentations by various department heads, HR personnel and by the top bosses of the company. We also visited our company's facilities in Chennai, Bangalore and Tumkur. During the trip to Bangalore and Tumkur I visited home.

As I had mentioned earlier, the water in the new house was bad, and it was becoming a problem since I had to wash my uniforms. After 2 washes, my white uniforms became yellow in color, and this prompted me to search for a new house.

The problem that I have now is that I do not want to leave Gokul, while I cannot survive with this water. Gokul expressed his displeasure when I told him of my plans to leave.

As of now I plan to move with a few friends for a few months, untill Gokul is also ready to move out, then we would search for a house together.

I dont know what he would think about my decision. I only hope that I do not loose a very good friend.

Monday, June 13, 2005


A long time since I posted, and its better late than never.

Some updates on me from the last post.

  • I went on a trip to Gangtok, Kalimpong and Darjeeling with my parents (26th May - 31st May). The trip was great. The pristine beauty was captivating. Could not visit a few good places due to the weather, hope to make it in my next visit. In my next visit, I would definitely like to visit Changu Lake and view the sunrise from Tiger Hills.
  • Joined duty on 6th of June.

More details about mycompany and Chennai in my next post.