Paul "Bart" Boyd—Troubleshooting Issues for Data Center Clients

Paul “Bart” Boyd—Troubleshooting Issues for Data Center Clients

As a data center engineer at the Pearl Technology Data Centers, Paul Boyd—whose nickname is “Bart”—is adept at troubleshooting issues for clients, primarily managing all areas of network administration. Bart relies on his programming background to provide quick solutions.

How He Serves

Paul works in the data center in Bloomington, Ill. He says a typical day is spent following up on prior projects or events.

“Most of my time is spent on troubleshooting,” Bart said, “and I lean on my programming background to manage and provide solutions for our clients. I find it helps to think like the device I’m managing to facilitate solving issues with that device. Each project adds to my abilities and helps make me more valuable in my service.”

Bart loves the flexibility of his job and believes his work helps contribute to customer retention. “Taking care of our clients’ needs helps keep them on board. I primarily work on upgrades—both hardware and software—to improve our data center operations. By breaking the complex issues down to manageable essentials, I am able to cut to the solutions more quickly.”

What His Experience Means

Bart has been working with Pearl Technology since the data center operations were acquired in 2019, so he’s been with the company for about 4 years. “I pretty much came with the building,” he said.

Though Bart claims he has no special training for his current position, he has 40 years of experience, which helps.

An ISU graduate with a major in computer science and a minor in business administration, Bart also had a tour of duty in the Army (where he helped with computer operations) contribute to his skills. Following his Army days, Bart started a business in 1988 and wrote computer software for clients. “It didn’t work out well because clients kept constantly changing their specs. Software at that time wasn’t flexible enough for what clients needed to make business profitable.”

After that, Bart worked for Dave’s World ISP, where he managed the network and provided telephone technical support for dialup users (remember those days?). He says the business became ICCX, and when that went bankrupt, the data center acquired the local assets of what was formerly Dave’s World.

“The history gets fuzzy from there,” Bart continued. “But I became the network administrator for both the Peoria and Bloomington data centers, and I’ve been in that role ever since.”

Bart tells a story of how he helped a client. “Most troubleshooting has to do with identifying a client’s problem and what systems are involved. In that light, I had one client who could not get email to work on their phone. They even told me the phone store couldn’t get it to work… they didn’t even know what phone brand they had! They did know how to open their browser, so I had them surf to the web mail interface that got them in. Email for most end users is the most critical of technologies they need to work.”

What Sustains Him

A Bloomington resident, Bart says the ability to step back and take a break helps him continue his work with a refreshed outlook. “If it takes more than 5 minutes to fix, I call it a major project. The key thing is in identifying when to treat a major project with its due respect.”

Bart’s main therapy is working on home projects and gardening. “I’m not prone to do anything small. I set up my whole back yard as a vegetable garden. I grow things like tomatoes, peas, green beans, beets, carrots, peppers, and such. I also learned how to do pressure canning and repel rabbits from eating everything. I even added rain barrels to help with watering the garden.”

Bart tends to be private about most things and says what he does at home reflects his survivalist tendencies. “If I can do something myself, I do it rather than rely on others. Ask me anything… but be prepared for an e-novel response. My experiences are somewhat vast.”

Does your business need help with IT solutions, cybersecurity, data centers, or audiovisual integration? Contact us to see what technology solutions might work best for you.

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