Monthly Archives: June 2009

My Laptop(s) and Me

Round 1

So I got my first laptop in 2004 for a pre-college program. The Baby Dell. Fantastic machine. About a year and some after I got it, possibly 2, the “b” key broke off and has never been replaced, so there’s just a nub for it. Fair enough. It still *works*. A short time after, the hinge broke, so it cannot actually be used without it being propped up. Irritating as hell, but again, it works, everything on it works. This is the best laptop I’ve had. I can still turn it on, use it, et cetera. Worst thing about it is, as mentioned, the hinge, and that it heats up really fast. Fine.

Round 2

I replaced it in 2007 with the evil IBM. Okay, most of it was my fault when I accidentally spilled coke on it a few months in. But man that computer held a grudge. First the fan went, then all kinds of motherboard things started screwing up, and it got to the point where it no longer even booted up. During the worst parts of this period, I used Baby Dell, which provided it was propped up, worked fine. Even wrote a paper on it, thanks to evil IBM. Wrote my 08 Nano on this machine, though was totally uncertain about whether it would even last out the month. It finally went to its grave mid-February after extensive maintenance, when we decided it just wasn’t worth it to keep ad-hoc-ing it together.

Round 3

So I got another Dell, which I’m typing on right now. I’ve had it 3 and a half months-ish. This time, it was not a hardware problem. Something, *something* screwed itself up after some unknown event (I still don’t know what) and I managed to uninstall MS Word. I know some people don’t like it, but I grew up with it and am quite happy with it. I’ll switch if something really wows me, but I like what I’ve got and plan on keeping it. Worse, idiot that I am, I never bothered before this point to create restore points, so it would have had to go back to factory default.  Unlike some people, this is not terribly a problem for me. Why? Because I established that, on a regular basis, I use four programs: MS Word, ITunes, Yahoo Messenger, and the internet. Of those things, three of them can be re-downloaded without incident given that my IPod doubles as a hard drive for my music. So wiping to factory settings wouldn’t have really been a *problem*, just a pain. And because it’s a Dell, even if we have to totally wipe everything, even the OS, I have recovery disks. I still am not *entirely* sure how this problem fixed itself, but it did – at least inasmuch as all my programs appeared to be working again.  I created a restore point, and crossed my fingers.

Round 4

The latest in the saga happened earlier today, when I downloaded some updates and promptly managed to break Windows Updater. Don’t ask how, it just happened. I looked up the error code on google, and learned that basically the only solution was to restore to an earlier point! Wow! I just did that (a week ago)!.  So I did as it told me to (actually, I didn’t restore back to that point; the machine had created a restore point just before installing the updates), and everything once again seems to be working as expected.

I just wish me and computers got along better – I wouldn’t live in constant fear of the new Dell rebelling and eating me while I’m asleep.

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