Occasionally I get a good story, and it needs to be shared. This is one of those stories.
Back in 2007 (I was helping CFH launch), CFPB had a situation where our audio processor died. The audio processor was deemed fried, and a replacement was purchased (Peavey Media Matrix Nion N3). The vendor that replaced the processor also programmed the processor for us.
Long story short, there was a password put on the Media Matrix. Months later, I came on staff at CFPB to oversee production. When I started asking people what the password was, I started getting weird looks. Pretty soon I started giving people scared looks back. Come to find out, no one knew there was a password.
No problem. Just call the vendor, because surely he knows what the password is... they did not...
Well. I guess we could just reformat the entire unit allowing us to create a new user, and upload the file that the vendor had as a backup... nope... vendor lost the backup... no record of the work done...
Well. maybe we could reformat the unit and have the vendor come in and reprogram everything like he did before... they can do that, but it'll cost $5,000.
Wait, you want me to spend $5,000 to get to exactly where we are now? No way is that going to happen.
Over the course of a year we tried multiple vendors coming out to give quotes on how to hack it. No one was really confident. Multiple volunteers spent hundreds of man hours as well trying different things. No one could get through. If you don't have a username or password, you cannot get in. Peavey themselves told me this multiple times. I was getting ready to throw in the towel.
As a last desperation @robertcrisler spent some time this week trying to get in. Guessing passwords. Brute force. Contemplating taking the entire unit apart. Telnet. Webserver... Eventually, after talking to 2 or 3 techs, he finds a way in (evidently the superuser on the web portal didn't have a password registered) and like that, we're back in the game. Well, it was a lot more complicated than that, but if you ask @robertcrisler he will talk like it was that easy.
Look for major modifications to CFPB's Worship Center audio in the coming weeks...
Thanks, @robertcrisler, for being the obnoxious, know-it-all geek that you are. CF would not be the same w/o you.
Oh, and thanks to "Avery" in Peavey Tech Support for bearing with us today. You gave us a lot more of your time than some of your other techs. Also, Peavey, you should really consider putting a backdoor on the Media Matrix N3... at least on that really works. 'cause I'm sure this happens to other people, too.