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hard drive, soft landing

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It was coming: last night my notebook’s hard disk drive gave up the ghost after a 33-month life, 30 of those in my gentle care. It didn’t go with a bang, Windows XP actually made it back up into Safe Mode, but you don’t want to see a message like “Drive C: is not formatted. Do you want to format it now?”. That’s like someone going for a swim and saying “You’re stuck on the bottom. Would you like to inhale some water?”

I knew this day was coming, and have a backup scheme in place; I lost a few utilities I downloaded this week, but that’s it. My “core” data lives in four – whoops, three – separate locations. This website’s data, all of it, is in all those locations, plus on the live web server. If you consider what I do for a living, you’ll understand why this cobbler’s kids have good shoes on their feet.

Could I get the drive replaced under warranty? Probably not, and this is a good time to upgrade anyway. I’ll head to town tonight and see if I can pick up something larger at a sensible price, but if not I’ll order one, and I can wait till it arrives. I have a PC at work, customized way beyond the company specifications, so I can do work. I’m writing this on my old 6GB hard drive with Agnula DeMuDi Linux installed, which also serves to prove that this notebook is otherwise OK.

Or, why don’t I take a break from computing at home? My setup here is far from ergonomic, and I’ve got to do something about that soon. I may even have a pinched nerve in my neck, requiring treatment, or at least a massage and some suitable exercise.

Tonight I’m trying a TV show I’ve had recommended to me: Huff, a drama about the life of a psychiatrist, his family and his patients, interchangeable as they may be. It stars a veteran actor better known for his voice than his face, who also produces: Hank Azaria is behind about a third of all the voices on The Simpsons, but is also known for roles in Heat, Godzilla, and as Helen Hunt’s Husband, a series cancelled after a few seasons. His co-stars in Huff are equally illustrious – Oliver Platt, Robert Forster, Paget Brewster, Blythe Danner. The jury is still out on this one, but Wednesday night is just about the only night of the week there’s anything worth watching.

Here in Ireland, the Pope’s illness is headline news, top of the hour. That’s right, the titular head of one (1) religion catches a cold, and that’s more important than survivors of the Tsunami, the Iraq Election, a major Middle East Summit, and the IRA threatening to take up arms again. WTF? He’s 84 years old, frail, with Parkinson’s Disease. He’s not going to live forever, and when he pops his clogs his priestly abstinence means he won’t have any family to mourn him. What will the Church do? Replace him and move on backwards.

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Written by brian t

February 3, 2005 at 9:22 am

Posted in technology, television

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