Tuesday, 15 November 2011

Post From a Zombie Laptop

As I said, a few  days ago, I experienced an unscheduled outage in my computer time.
Put simply, Windows Vista fell over and died. The laptop was thus brain-dead. But no worries, because Vista's got built-in repair tools, and, failing that, if all the hammering and sawing and welding are to no avail, then I can use the built in "Restore to last known good configuration"
Nope. "Can not restore...." Then we go to "Select an earlier restore point"
Then we use the fancy drive image backup my brother in law advised me to get.
"File corrupted".

So, dammit. I went to my original rescue discs and restored the thing to the state it was in three years ago. I've lost little or no data, all my documents and pics and so on get backed up elsewhere. Just not the operating system, the bookmarks and links and so on.

In the meantime I've been decluttering my clutterer home, and I dredged up the ancient laptop and its power supply. "I wonder?", I mused. Plugged it in, and  accessed the interweb via firefox 3. A retro experience indeed. All the old bookmarks... I try them, and most of the places they pointed to are long gone.
If I unplug the power lead, it's like I've squeezed off the oxygen, the laptop staggers, coughs... I plug it back in, hey, it's a zombie. It's the undead, the undying.
Of course, plugging it into the interweb is the wrong thing to do. All the old programs, unused for years, start groaning "Braaaaains!, Braaains", and are trying to suck in as many updates as they can get their hungry gums around. I'm killing processes as I go, printer drivers for long dead printers... Eventually we hit an impasse. I'm trying to write a blog post and the error messages start.
Poor little thing, its brain's full. Can you believe, a laptop with a six gigabyte hard drive?
My phone's got more storage than that. I'll bet the toaster does too.

So I gave up, took the shiny laptop to the computer gurus who rent space from us at work. They ran diagnostics prior to the planned windows 7 install, and lo and behold, they found it wasn't windows' fault, but rather a failing memory chip. Cybernetic Spongiform Encephalitis.
So a quick lobotomy, followed by a prosthetic memory, a new  shiny operating system, and a brave new world.
I'm back!