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5 Things I Learned from Air Force Networks

After completing what may very well be my last tour as a Cyber Systems Operator with the Air Force Reserves, I'd like to offer this (unclassified and possibly incorrect) insight into the wonderful system that is the Air Force Global Information Grid (AF-GIG):


  1. The more complicated the password requirement, the more likely it is to be found written on a sticky note next to a monitor.
  2. The scream-test is the most effective method of determining whether a system is critical or a link is live. Unplug it and if someone screams at you, it was important.
  3. Never complain about having to use outdated technology to the person who has to try and maintain that outdated technology.
  4. The more classified the network, the older the equipment. I'm confident that at the center of the most secretive AF networks, there is just an abacus.
  5. You don't need to know the acronyms meaning, you just need to know where the acronym is at in the rack so you can reboot said acronym when your CC complains that his acronym is not working.

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