Wednesday, June 21, 2006

Progressing slowly

Things aren't as bad with the computer situation as first thought. The computer had begun to play up some days before it finally crashed – sometimes refusing to shut down, then after had managed to get it to shut down, refusing to ''boot up'' properly.

Umm, think I, so copied some of the crucial data to CD. Then, last week, it refused to ''boot up'' whatever I tried. Rang my local ''techie'' shop last Tuesday morning to see if they had any suggestions, but they just said ''bring it in''. Duly unplugged the desktop Acer 3300 (1.4Mhz, (upgraded to)512 RAM, 20Gig HDD, (upgraded with DVD burner), shared graphics, 14 months from new .. (that brand, as well as LG, is now on my ''avoid'' list.) and ''took it in''.

They rang me Tuesday afternoon with ''good'' news'' and ''bad''news. The ''bad'' news was that the Hard drive was completely cactus, and there was no way that they could recover any data – the ''good'' news was that they could replace my original 20Gig HDD with an 80Gig one.

“How much?” Say I. “$200.00” say they. HO HO think I, so much for the ''good'' news. “Don't do anything,” say I, “am coming to have a chat.” Drove to see them on Tuesday afternoon and there, on a side bench, were several secondhand ''boxes''. One of them was a big (oldish) Compaq for $450.00. Umm, think I. Since I'd have to begin again with a clean Hard drive, made some enquiries, found that it was a better system than mine, did a deal which included swapping the DVD burner .. so now have a Compaq 2Mhz, 512 RAM, 80Gig HDD, DVD burner, Nvidia Gforce graphics card thingo – Win XP pro, AVG virus whatsit, and some other stuff, installed .. all for $400.00. (heh, talk about a ''throwaway'' society.)

An expense that I could ill afford, considering all the other problems at the moment, buuuut, what the heck.

Getting a ''clean'' Hard drive is a bit like acquiring a new-born baby. Have been slowly re-loading all the relevant programs, but find that all the ''tweaks'' and customisation that have been doing over the past six years have ''disappeared'', and I have to ''re-train'' the bloody thing back to what have been used to.

Had a ''panic attack'' when I reloaded the Accounting software, as it refused to read the data files that had saved to CD. Six years of accounts, including a list of ''unpaid'' invoices totalling $2K .. errrk!! Fiddled with it with mounting frustration for a while, then eventually caved in and called an Expert.

He turned up within half an hour, opened and closed several screens at the speed of light, then Hey Presto! .. Accounting system restored to full glory. He also installed ''OpenOffice'' to replace my (origin dubious) copy of MS Office 2000. One thing he did recommend, though, was ''backing up'' to a Flash Drive. (yer, O.K. fer those who know about these things, but self had never seen one.) He pulled this little gadget slightly smaller than a cigarette lighter out of his pocket, plugged it in to the USB slot. After he'd left, I went along to Big W and bought one. 128MB .. $23.00. They did have 1Gig ones for $49.00, but thought to start small.. heh.
Brilliant little gadgets! Stores all sorts of stuff, waterproof, shockproof and y'can carry it on a key chain.

Am definitely in the wrong business. He charged $65/hour for sitting in a warm comfy office tickling a keyboard and here's me heaving machinery around all day, battling heat, dust, flies, rain, cold, smells .. for roughly $7.00/hour. Bah! Humbug.

Can now concentrate on figuring out what to do with the business and where to go next.

4 comments:

GreenSmile said...

considering the hand you were dealt, you played it pretty well.

good to see yer plugged back in to the world.

Anne Johnson said...

If my hard drive crashes, I lose a 700 page novel I've been tweaking for 15 years. I'm too lazy to save it every time I change a sentence from passive to active.

Anyway, Happy Solstice, Davo! Now you start to get your sunlight back. Maybe this new computer will work for you. Make a sacrifice to the faeries, and they'll protect it.

Anne Johnson said...

Ooops! Making a sacrifice to the faeries is easy. Just leave a little booze in your glass and set it out on the counter overnight.

Davo said...

Anne, I'd strongly recommend copying onto another Hard drive, either one of those that stands alone - or find out how big the file is and putting it onto a USB flash drive. Dead easy, and you can plug it in to any computer with a USB port.

The Faeries might have to wait awhile .. am off the booze until I can figure out where to find the next residence .. heh.