I’m tired of being pigeon-holed because I mainly manage systems running Windows. 

Developers look down on us… “They are just systems administrations.. they don’t need Visual Studio (or source control/build server/clean code).”

The DevOps community looks down on us… “Oh, why would you want to run Windows? You can’t automate that! It’s the tinker toy of the server world.”

The *nix community looks down on us… “Why would you want to use a system where you can’t work with the source code? We can’t have people making money and feeding their families by licensing software!”

This becomes a self fulfilling prophecy, as I’ve heard other systems administrators offer those same evaluations of themselves.  “I’m just a systems administrator, so I wouldn’t know that.” Or “I run Windows, I don’t need to understand that command line stuff.”


It doesn’t have to be that way.  Ignorance is not an excuse for us to ditch our professionalism or abdicate our responsibility to learn and grow our skills.

Yes, the pace of change is rapid and we can’t learn everything in our space, but we can keep growing our skills, diving deeper in areas where we are strong and broadening the reach of our experience. How can our environments move to newer platforms and leverage better patterns, if we don’t learn how to take advantage of them?

And to my fellow Windows administrators, don’t let anyone take your skills for granted.  Our work, knowledge, and skill set is valuable (but only while we keep it current).

In the words of Stuart Smalley:

I deserve good things, I am entitled to my share of happiness. I refuse to beat myself up. I am an attractive person. I am fun to be with.