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@direvus direvus/
Last active Mar 29, 2019

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A list of software to avoid

Brendan's Shitlist

This is a kind of inverse honour roll of software that has ruined my day in one way or another.

My recommendation is to avoid using anything listed here if it is at all practical to do so.

Trend Micro Deep Security

What is it?

In theory, it's an anti-virus, anti-malware, intrustion detection/prevention and firewall system.

What qualifies it for the shitlist?

  • It's unreliable, and since instances register with the Deep Security Manager on launch, it acts as a single point of failure when it stops working. Which it does. A lot.
  • It maintains its system event log in its own database, with no way to export it. Well, that's not entirely true. There is a way to export the logs, but when you switch that on, it strips out all the useful information from the log message! Sensational.
  • Their paid support is unbelievably shit. I had to go five rounds with the moron assigned to my case before he understood the above issue.
  • It doesn't cope at all well with immutable infrastructure deployments, where you replace instances as part of normal workflows. Deep Security expects that once a "computer" is registered it should persist for all time. This is especially wonderful when you launch temporary instances in order to build AMIs.

ArcGIS Data Store

What is it?

Good question. If you read the webpage titled "What is ArcGIS Data Store", and you still don't know, well at least you're in good company.

In fact, ArcGIS Data Store seems to be nothing more than a thin wrapper around Postgres, CouchDB and/or Elasticsearch, depending on which "stores" you enable. It's not clear in what way this is better than just configuring those databases.

What qualifies it for the shitlist?

  • Nonsensical directory structure, with a completely random distribution of both unix and windows style directory names scattered across various locations. If there is a logic to this, I cannot see it.
  • Crappy command line tools with silly argument conventions, inadequate progress output, and misleading error messages.
  • Empty log files. Seriously, this thing just opens log files when you start it up and then never writes to them.
  • Hard dependencies. There is a whole host of functionality in other ArcGIS products that requires Data Store, whether you want it or not. There is no option to just configure a database the normal way, and point the server at that. This is what is technically referred to as a "Dick Move".
  • Shitty documentation. I found code examples that were completely broken and led to unintuitive failures.
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