Just Because You Can Do Something, It Doesn’t Mean You Should

I get it; money is tight and people need to be creative.  But I also know that you shouldn’t do something just because you can.

Take backup of Hyper-V for example.  Several times, I’ve been challenged on “support statements” for Hyper-V.  People want to, and are, installing backup software (the management product, not just the agent) on the parent partition of Hyper-V hosts.

Microsoft are quite clear on this: it is not supported.  The only things that are supported are management agents such as anti-malware, monitoring, backup, etc.  I don’t care what the backup software vendor says.  If you have a problem with that host when it breaks, you better hope the Company X knows how to fix Hyper-V because Microsoft support will tell you that you did something that wasn’t supported.

Like I said earlier – I’ve been challenged on this during presentations.  OK, I’m quick on my feet when I’m presenting.  I gave the persons in question a simple analogy.  I can hold a loaded gun to my head and pull the trigger.  There is absolutely nothing in the architecture of my rib cage, shoulder, arm, hand, neck, head, the gun or the bullet that prevents that.  However, it turns out that the manufacturer doesn’t support that and there’s a good risk that my brain will fail to function (although some might claim that happened quite a while ago).  Just because you can do something, that isn’t a reason that you should.

Creative engineering is good.  I’ll be among the first to applaud a cool design.  But doing stuff to save €100 here and there, while not understanding the tech, while deliberately contravening the manufacturers support statement, and putting your customer (internal or external) at risk is just plain dumb.  In fact, I’ll have to be stronger about that; knowingly contravening manufacturer support statements is negligent.

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One thought on “Just Because You Can Do Something, It Doesn’t Mean You Should”

  1. Well put. Creativity is key in our profession but you need to know what, where, when & how. And if you go against manufacturers support statement be ready do go it alone. If you can pull that off and you save big € or $ good for you. If the saving are mediocre & you’re not abosolutly in control of your design … don’t do it. No this is not FUD, this is not fear mongering or money grabbing. Take risks and manage them where needed and with a matching benefit but not where it just doens’t compute.

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