After departing this morning on a mission my failures had made urgent, the first stop was Thot Computacion.
The mission was get out the door by 8:00 and thusly the walk continues. This place gets a return trip.
Hard to tell if this is an eviction, renovation, or ransacking, but this is the only storefront on its block with an open door.
Ah, they moved and left an open door and a telephone number. No, the telephone number was not answered when called. Double checking their website reveals they still advertise La Avenida General Riviera 3387 as their place of business.
Closed as well at this hour. Gets a return visit later.
Closed as well. And that exhausts the contenders on La Avenida General Riviera.
A few meters from the address advertised as "Sampler" is INTERWEB CYBER-KIOSCO, and no. Their networking setup didn't appear to be more than consumer gear. Of the firms listed they felt NNet was the most promising because "They sell so many different things on Mercado Libre".
Optics are weird.
On the way to the next cluster of stores, there is an Obelisk.
And a church.
And THE Tres Cruces Cruz. There apparently are not and never were. Another warning sign I should have heeded.
Here we have the location where Fast Import claims to do business.
It is now 9:30 and the hereto highly recommended NNet is open.
And so they are. The other customers are picking up their online orders from Mercado Libre. When I present my shopping list to the clerks, they promptly recommend Technolyn S.A. and give directions. The reversed the number of blocks between turns, but anticipating that I got the address and the trip was uneventful. If you need a blender and Kingston SSD in the same trip, NNet probably isn't a bad place to go. Cheaper than Tienda Inglesa.
The interior of Technolyn S.A. is as dark as the exterior suggests. Yes they have 42U racks on display in the window. With the exception of one narrow walkway the floor was stacked with boxes of merchandise. A wide variety of cables, PDU's, and other materials were on display. When the idiot I first talked to said they have 2U rackmount boxes, they lost interest in the conversation because I wanted 12 and they only had 2, I made the decision to check out a couple other stores and return when hopefully someone less retarded was available.
The address of Ok Computers. Gate to the door open, but no response at the door to attempts at communication. No signage indicating that this is the location of a store calling itself "Ok Computers", and attempts to contact them online have repeatedly been ignored. I have to assume they aren't in any business at all.
The address listed for Tecno 18. On La Avenida 18 de Julio, which everthing printed about Uruguay proclaims as the principal calle de Montevideo.
The gals at the Pharmacy were very glad to helpfully confirm that Tecno 18 was indeed closed forever and not hiding upstairs.
Girl Power Gas Station. At this point I returned to Technolyn, found someone less retarded. They showed my the one 2U server chassis they had in the store, explained they might have two more in their warehouse but needed to check their condition. I let them photocopy my shopping list, including the other stores I would be visiting and explained I would like a quote for everything this afternoon, because they like apparently everyother self declared place of commerce is closed Lunes y Viernes por Carnaval. When I asked the proprietor if he could suggest other vendors that might have the required form of chassis, he replied "No, in Montevideo that is very hard to find." On the way to the next Tienda it broke out in a downpour, so I hired a car to take me to my desk and put in writing to the one business I found so far with a single 2U chassis, that I would like a quote this afternoon.1
At the start of this exercise I though I had made a grave error in my priorities. At this point in the exercise I realized that I had no idea what grave was when I started walking today. The one store so far that looked like it almost knew what it was doing had a single 2U case and a bunch of whole racks. If this was learned in December we could have started slow boating materials over or pulled out and tried a different Orcistan. In January we could have spread the load between multiple Lords of the Republic.
It is by Mircea Popescu's grace I have the opportunity to be in South America, and the biggest failure here is mine. My choices and decisions has lead to a situation where my Patron wants me to house his hardware, and not only can I not provide the most basic supporting materials this is being discovered at the worst time. Everybit of this failure is mine.
Now let us return to the lesser failures:
I returned to Thot, recieved a simple "No tengo" and no recommendation for other suppliers.
As a revisit the rest of the Avenida General Riviera tiendas, I can't believe I missed this the first time. The escuela de informatica para adultos gave up, quit, and the cursed ground on which they tried is one again for rent.
Techno Paz. The first person I talked to could not stop imagining I wanted a rack, like they had their wifi stuff in, but only 2U in height. The other fellow there promptly shooed her away and had me put on the phone with the owner. No boxes were seen, but he had confidence he could "find some" in Montevideo. This is the exact sort of statement I am developing a strong allergy to.2
Game Gear, the most helpful visit of the trip. The fellow at the desk made it clear what I was looking for there and proceeded to try to help find who might have some. I gave him my lsit of stores without telling him which I had visited, and based on his accurate descriptions of the places I been I had a lot less faith in the places I would be going next. He knew why I wanted rackmount equipment3 and explained that here people tend to do the factory authorized distributor thing for servers, though he has had customers do the tower server thing when all their business needs is a one off. He recommended the already contacted Technolyn who I was awaiting response from, and an outfit called Banifox. He suggested I didn't have to visit all the stores, but I fucked up and now I have a mission. We managed to eliminate The Miami Shop and Newtek Computers via telephone.
If you need to build a desktop computer in Montevideo, you can't find better customer service than Game Gear provides.
Banifox is almost the opposite of Technolyn. It is a big well lit warehouse space. Product is carefully merchandised for maximum gloss. They have one 4U rackable cabinet. As is apparently Uruguayan tradition I missed earlier being blinded by the beef, I sought clarification and one means one item on hand. Not that they stock one sku for the type of item.
At this point it was time to hire a car and skip to the South end of the city and walk back home through the last few candiates.
I was greeted at infoland with "We only work with big businesses." I reply with "I am a big business." There is a bunch of Argentine style back and forth about applying to be a customer. I am dumbfounded until I finally read her business card a few blocks away. "Microsoft Gold Certified Partner"
Wasn't on the list, but confirmed anyways. Art Computer does not sell rackmount boxes.
Compusys spends more merchandising space on dolls with big heads than the rest of their classes of merchandise. Also does not have 2U boxes.
This store does do the hide upstairs thing. After consulting the doorman across the street and being pointed to the right door, I was greeted enthusiastically. As though customers finding World Master is a rare joy. Their enthusiasm deflated completely when my ask was rackmount boxes.
More than the other failures of mine, this one hurts. Living through a dim reflection of my own failure repeatedly today as unwittingly reenacted by the locals was unpleasant. For me I can see where there'd be humor in this exercise if this were December, I had just arrived and this inadequacy in the locals was uncovered then. Instead here I am eating my own dogshit because February is a third of the way done, the rack is sitting empty, and I have most certainly more than disappointed the man who was kind enough to not only give me a chance but bankroll it.
The cargo cult is a thing. That I did not probe to see just how deep it was until now, that failure is all mine.