The upgrade – what I forgot

I always do a Clean install and sometimes I forget stuff.
All my Chrome bookmarks. This matters because I ‘work’ in Chrome and use Firefox for everything else. So I lost every single work related bookmark. Some matter less, some matter more as they were custom searches.
A recent Voodoopad document I had started. This too was full of work information but it had been pulled from sources I still have so it’s not a complete loss. I had not got round to dropboxing it.
Notational Velocity data. I thought it was dropboxed.
My Sublime Text 2 User settings.
The Hit List database so I lost my list of what I do daily. I thought it was dropboxed.
I did not take a screenshot of the menubar which would have been useful. Nor did I take a screenshot of System Preferences which would also have been handy. I did however take screenshots of the Applications directory.
The above are now all dropboxed.

But it’s only data.

More Dell goodness

Finally got round to calling Dell back regarding the microphone not working after the laptop display was replaced. Got through to the right dept quickly, let him access remotely so he could check everything and uninstall/reinstall as needed. He was efficient, told me what was happening , what he was expecting. The upshot is that a new display is needed and someone will be round to the house tomorrow to fix this. Like last time I spoke with them over the phone I could not find fault. Perfect Support from Dell.

Dell – excellent service

The hinge on my laptop just crunched as I opened it. It “breaks” as it is opened. Not good. Searched for the issue online and it’s known to Dell. Worldwide free replacement. After a couple of wrong turns in the phone tree I got through to tech support who put me through to hardware support.
It was one of the best tech support calls I have made. The guy got to the point, knew exactly what he was talking about. I hadn’t done a warranty transfer when I bought it from Amazon so he asked me to do that while he processed everything. Totally friendly – and it didn’t seem put on – he sounded like a really nice guy. All the stuff done and I can expect someone round to the house – yes they are coming to me – by the end of the week. I seriously could not have improved on the call and if – I think his name was Ran – was the model for their calls he’d be a great one. Very very impressed.

A backup

Finally considered NAS again and it’s going to be the Synology DS211j. I’m wondering if I can remove the HDD from 2 of my WD MyBook’s and slot those in. Might get 2x1TB though. Jacq seems sold on the idea and it’s a new toy to play with. The proliferation of ext HD’s has to stop, the simplification of backups has to start, media sharing will be good and scooting around with usb drives gets boring and this is definitely the way.

D’s macbook screen died 2 days ago so with the age of the overall machine and her coming need for a laptop when she starts a new education/career course in September I said she could get a new one. Being a student does indeed have it’s benefits which saved me around £300, she impressed with her knowledge of the machine so is on the shortlist at that store for a position and she has the best computer in the house. And it’ll do Facebook, Minecraft and Runescape. Keeps her happy 🙂 On the upside she does now believe that Portal and HL2 are worth playing despite my saying so for a long long time.

The 3rd

1st: the external HD (which subsequently came back to life)
2nd: daughter’s macbook (which was repaired for free and Apple got another customer for life)
3rd: the CD/DVD drive on the mac mini died. Got two of them and now both won’t play discs. They just make a lot of noise. Pointless taking it to Apple as an external burner is going to be way cheaper. And can’t complain with the work they did and their age (5 and 4 yrs).
But at least the 3rd breakage has been and gone.


I buy another drive and the dead one breathes again (gave it power to test a plug as another drive appeared dead). It is seen and repaired by the mac and ‘appears to be ok’. So I have 1TB of backup hanging off 1 machine and 1.5TB off the other. Nuts, absolutely nuts. Offline I am disorganised. The phrase “Yes I know it looks a mess but I know where everything is”** applies here. But on the machines it is tidy and organised. Spotlight can’t look anywhere because it’s all set to Private (if I really need something in a file I use Easyfind but that is rare indeed. So all that space is going to stay just space. You can’t backup backups esp when the important stuff is backed up online already. Play around with photo libraries maybe.

And I write this while praying at the Altar of Apple. Much pain through the night at my coccyx and I can’t do anything without it hurting. So I am kneeling at this desk, elbows raised and tapping away. So to the casual observer I am worshipping much white plastic. I don’t think so 🙂

**Everywhere J goes is clean and tidy. Not fair to live in a bombsite for her. Probably explains why this room is a Health & Safety problem. 19 plugs off 1 socket? What’s wrong with that?

I killed a HD

Daughter’s macboook started making a huge clattering noise yesterday. Not some ticking, this was closer to a golf ball in a tin. It’s the first white macbook I bought in early 2006 so it’s had some use but nothing extreme. This morning went to back it up before her Genius appt on Tuesday. Attached the 500gb WD (which is 4 years old, formatted as journaled) and dragged over her home directory. That threw some sort of file error so I asked her to drag over several directories at once. In total around 50gb of files, 330gb free on the WD. That hung so a reboot and pulled the usb plug out. Costly was that.
The mac will not format from Disk Utility or Terminal. Disk Warrior says it is unformatted so will not recover.
Windows can see the disk but will not mount the disk
Ubuntu says the disk is failing and will not format the drive or the volume.
So I do believe I have killed this HD which is a lesson about unplugging. I’ve not given up hope but I’m not hopeful from what I have read. At Amazon I can now get a 1TB drive for less than I paid for this 500gb but then you need 2 really – to back each other up. Bigger drives are good until you lose bigger amounts of data. Not that in this case I lost anything – all backed up elsewhere. Oh – and during this I had to burn a CD and doing that in the mini was really noisy too, sounded like the disc was shattering. Comes in 3’s doesn’t it – which machine next ….