Meet NSSDC's Systems Administrators Staff

Volume 16, Number 2, June 2000

By Teresa Hall-Jackson

NSSDC's systems administrators staff: (from left to right) bottom row:
John Jacobi, Terri Shaffer; second row: Sean McKeown, Teresa Hall-Jackson;
third row: John Kodis, Jennifer Ash-Poole; top row: Walter Cook.

This article introduces NSSDC's computer systems administrators, all Raytheon ITSS employees charged with keeping NSSDC's computers secure, efficient, and available to external customers, internal data operations staffers, and applications software developers. They are also charged with helping to plan the evolution of NSSDC’s computer environment to satisfy evolving requirements and to exploit emerging technologies.

There are actually two interacting subgroups of system administrators corresponding largely to the two parts of NSSDC's contract with Raytheon and to NSSDC's residence in two Goddard buildings. These are the five-person "level of effort" (LOE) group in Building 26 and the two-person "performance-based contracting" (PBC) group in Building 28. Building 26 computers are primarily UNIX-based Web-server, data-base-server, and FTP-server machines (NSSDC, bolero, etc.) while Building 28 computers are both VMS and UNIX systems and used in the NASA Data Archive and Distribution System (NDADS) and other data operations activities (nssdca/ndadsb, ndadsd, etc.).

Terri Shaffer, an NSSDC LOE UNIX and VAX systems administrator/help desk support coordinator, has been a part of NSSDC since 1989 when she started as the computer operations supervisor on the NDADS cluster. Being the veteran in the group, she has been able to use her knowledge of NSSDC to help new members transition into their roles smoothly. Next is Jennifer Ash-Poole, Solaris/Web administrator, who has been at NSSDC since 1995 when she started as an associate scientist in the Coordinated Request and User Support Office (CRUSO). Her experience with Web administration has benefited NSSDC with more secure Web servers. Sean McKeown, Digital UNIX administrator, joined the group in 1995 as a computer operator. In early 1996 he began assuming Web and systems administration responsibilities on Solaris, Irix, and Digital UNIX. The most recent addition to the LOE group is John Jacobi, Sun, DEC, and SGI administrator with an extensive background in computer security with UNIX systems, who has been a great asset to NSSDC in securing its computer operations. Rounding out the LOE system administrator team is its leader, John Kodis, who has a broad range of systems administrator skills as well as systems design and development skills.

On the NSSDC PBC systems administration staff is Walter Cook, a systems administrator for the VMS NDADS cluster and for other stand-alone systems used by the data operations staff. At NSSDC since 1991 when he started as a computer operator, Walter Cook has provided support on many different projects for NSSDC. The other member of this team is Teresa Hall-Jackson, UNIX system administrator, who joined NSSDC in 1999 as the lead systems administrator for the PBC area.

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Author: Miranda Beall
Curator: Natalie Barnes
Responsible Official: Dr. Joseph H. King, Code 633
Last Revised: 13 July 2000 [NAB]