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Re: Searching on the database

In <36EAA31B.5A679EF3@rivuug.webfront.net.au>, on 14/Mar/99 
   at 04:40 AM,(+1100 GMT)
Nathan Dietsch <njd@rivuug.webfront.net.au> said:

> Bob + All,

> So what you are saying is, even once it has been donated, we need to
> keep track of who we gave it to? This can be done naurally, but it would
> involve getting the details of the person we give the PC too. One thing
> to think of, if we give a person a PC and the video card was nicked, how
> do we go about getting that video card back?

Yes, unfortunately I think we're going to have to at least consider having
the ability to keep the info as it may at a later stage be forced on us. I
_do_ think that access to those records be highly secured and need, for
instance, an official request from police and ok from a management
committee to retrieve all the data. 

As to the nicked video card I don't see any problem in just replacing the
card with similar. In fact I don't think we'd have any choice, the police
would require delivery of  the goods and the user would be left with an
unuseable machine, something would need to be done. Once the process of
receiving donations is up and running I can see us being "flush" with some
components, video cards being one, from DOA machines that are stripped for

I _don't_ think that stolen property is going to be a big problem for us.
However it needs to be thought about in advance so the issues can be met
with reasoned responses :). 

> Should we be storing the serial number of all devices? Each device has a
> serial number on it, even RAM chips, this can all be added.

Yes, as long as such can be managed without too much effort. ( some older
RAM ie 30 pin may not be serial numbered though)

This next bit may go beyond the scope that you were envisaging for the
database but I think it could be a usefull tool for the techs building
machines too :).

 Are you thinking of allowing mass postings to the database via a flat
text file format ( CSV or TSV etc) ? That way a large donation can be
broken down to component IDs and logged using paper or a spreadsheet (or
even an editor [dare I say VI ]:) and tossed to a front end to update
things without having to be net accessible and log each item one at a

Loging as much info about components as we can is going to be very usefull
(at least initially) for further IDing of similar components particularly
where it comes to RAM where chip specs are difficult to find in some
cases. ( ie a machine boots with 16Mb ram, I'd like to tear the machine
down, slip out the RAM and note the chip info) We need to build expertise
in IDing wacky hardware as we're going to be dealing with some _real_
bueats :)

And for the donation admins, some sort of "one way" system of enquiry to
lookup who's received equipment would be usefull too (ie a query can be
made on recipients name and a reply would come back yes( has received) or
no, not " tell me the names of the last X reciepients). It would probably
need to treated as confidential info but be available more widely than
full disclosure of name address etc so that some management of outbound
donations can be made ( stop us being scammed in other words)

I can see a requirement for NDAs for members with access to confidential

> Nathan


/-- Bob Ogden  bob@contact.omen.com.au --------------/
/  -... --- -...   --- --. -.. . -.       Finger  for PGP key -----/

Does your system break in 292 days?

Does your system break in 291 days?