September 14th, 2008
I hate my computer. (I have two, in case you were wondering how I was writing this)
I purchased my primary computer from a friend a few years ago and it was an awesome rig the day I took it home. I know it's dated by now but it's good enough for me. It was enough to play the games that I like on the highest graphics settings and it was plenty to handle my internet needs.
Then out of the blue I start getting random crashes. The speed with which it was handling my programs remained fairly consistent, but every now and again it would either restart or freeze up.
So, I did what I had to do. I pulled all my files onto an external hard drive and reformatted. Bingo, problem solved. Computer was running faster than ever (this was about a month ago). Everything looked more crisp, programs were loading up much faster, life was good. I go about my regular business using it for web browsing, downloading, and some occasional gaming. Then about a week ago the random crashes start again. I'm thinking maybe I'm just downloading too much stuff. But like an idiot I wave it off thinking "hey, I just reformatted, there's no way it could screw up as bad as it did before."
Spoke too soon... Now the darned thing won't boot up, I can't pull my over 60gigs of personal files off of it.
I know it's not an issue with the hard drive and that I could easily hook the hard drive up to another computer to pull the files off. But it's such an inconvenience! I swear every time I think about connecting my hard drive to another PC, I can hear my computer laughing at me. Like a cackly, piercing, demon laugh.
Last time I thought I was having issues with my RAM. So I switched the slots that my two sticks of memory were sitting in and that worked like a charm (I had some minor issues after the reformat) but this time, before I got to the point of my computer not wanting to boot up, I noticed one of the fans making an odd/funny noise. I realized the noisy fan was the fan on the graphics card.
The graphics card is ancient. Geforce 6800gt, nothing special anymore but gets the job done. It has a nice blue light under the hood of the piece holding the fan down. It sits fan side down so I had to get on my hands and knees to see what was going on. I turned the computer off, turned off the power supply, and cleaned the fan. After plugging the card back in I notice that neither light nor fan is powering up on startup. No big deal, I've seen this happen before. Usually a nice quick reset will do the trick. Not this time.
So in my frustration, I go to find my trusty WindowsXP startup disk in order to reformat once more. All I need to do is go into safe mode, and pull my files from my hard drive onto my external drives. Easier said than done. My computer decided to give me the finger, allow 5-6 unsuccessful attempts at a safe-mode boot up before slipping into a coma, leaving me with the hefty medical bill.
Instead of spending time and effort troubleshooting, I am hereby declaring that I need to buy this wench a new personality and a brand new set of brains.
Shopped around on Newegg.com and found a nice motherboard with a PCI 2.0 slot, a pretty good chipset, and quad-core extreme compatibility (in case I some day win the lottery). Not only that, I also found an inexpensive processor and some very affordable RAM. Lovely.
Now here's the problem... it's all going to cost me around 300 dollars. 300 dollars that I currently have no means of acquiring. I took a 1 month leave of absence from my job in order to study for an exam I am taking in October.
I SHOULD be focused on the test in October and not on this computer sitting next to me... mocking me with it's defiance...
I think that's what I'll do. Take a nice deep cleansing breath, realize that it's (in the words of Randy Pausch R.I.P.) "just a thing" and pay attention to what's really important today 9/15/08.
This week - I have an exam on friday, several chapters to read for another class, an assignment due on friday, and another two days to try to get myself in the good graces of one of my professors. I'm trying to get him to like me on a personal level without coming across as a gunner or a douche bag, which is quite a feat for those of us with a healthy set of socially proficient peers. Getting noticed and liked by this professor just might be my ticket to attend the graduate school of my dreams.
That's all I have for today, perhaps the reason why the first 56 minutes of this day are so bad is because it's the first 56 minutes of the worst day of the week... Monday.