?

Log in

No account? Create an account

Aristotal 2 - the birth story - Tactical Ninja

Nov. 28th, 2014

09:16 am - Aristotal 2 - the birth story

Previous Entry Share Next Entry

Every time I've upgraded my computer, it's been because of a game. Back in 2004 I learned to install my own optical drive so I could play WoW, then it was a new motherboard, CPU, box, and overpowered power supply for Dragon Age: Origins, then a new graphics card for Skyrim brought my spec up to what's done me right through ME3 to now.

And then, along came Inquisition, with its minimum quad core 3.2GHz requirement. My old dual core CPU was all NOPE, and I was all *moop* and it was sad.

However, after 4 years it probably is about time for an upgrade, and me being Budget Girl, I had money aside for that very purpose. I will spare you the details, but I bought:

- hex core CPU 3.5GHz
- motherboard that's a step up from the average recommended one for that CPU
- 16G of RAM with the totally not male wish fulfilment fantasy name of Vengeance

Everything else was still well over recommended spec for this game, due to my habit of going one step beyond what's currently required. The parts arrived on Tuesday and Wednesday, and Wednesday night I was all "Can't.Wait.Any.Longer!" and started putting it together.

Can I just say here that I get a thrill every time I see my graphics card? Thing has *copper lake pipes*. *ahem*

Anyway, I haven't built so many computers that I'm not still nervous about messing it up, and so I dragged Dr Wheel (who was all "I hate hardware damnit!" but still helped me because he's awesome) in, mostly to make sure I got all the right plugs in the right places on the motherboard. One hour later we turned it on, fired it up, and Windows went "OhfucknewhardwareICANTCOPEARGH" *blue screen of death*

Luckily this was expected, the only frustrating thing being that in between all this fixing and installing, I still have to sleep and work. So after another day and a bit of googling, I concluded that a fresh install would be less faff than trying to recover Windows.

Except that Win7 has this weird bug where if you're booting off an external USB device (my DVD drive is one of these) it only works if you have it plugged into a USB 2.0 port. If it's in a USB 3.0 port, it can't find the drivers for your motherboard and comes up with a screen that says "Please select drivers from this list" - with no list to select from.

Which I found out when I googled it. What on earth did people do when they hit install bugs in the days when nobody had more than one internet-capable device? Well I guess they didn't have trouble with USB 3.0, anyway.

So, long story short, I finished installing, grabbing drivers, updating, and protecting, and copied my backups at 9pm last night. I installed Inquisition after that, and it took 2 hours because I'd left my drive plugged into the USB 2.0 port. Doh.

But it's done. And it goes. And it's shiny. And I'm all TRY TO USE ALL THESE CORES, INQUISITION! When I get home from Spinfluence on Sunday, I'm off to Thedas for the foreseeable future. Reports coming in are that this game is a step back towards Origins without losing the cool battle graphics of DA2, and that it's gut-wrenching.

Can't wait.

Tonight, the monsters are doing acrobatics for an audience. They are a bit nervous but they've learned their parts really well, and they have no lines to fluff. Wish them luck!

Comments:

[User Picture]
From:warriorsavant
Date:November 27th, 2014 10:13 pm (UTC)
(Link)
Gosh, this post makes me go all shivery, the same as hearing love poetry recited in Swahili. Or Mandarin. Or any other language I don't speak. Regardless, it's clearly a paen of love on your part. I'm glad you're all happy about your new toys (toys are good). I'm one of those silly people who just want gadgets to work they way they are supposed to when I turn them on.

Back in the pre-computer days, when we had to walk five miles... wait, wrong story. Back in the pre-computer days, I liked tinkering with my car. It was an old clunker, but it was a Mustang, so it was an almost cool old clunker. I enjoyed fixing it when something went wrong, say, oh, about every weekend. Then I needed to use it to commute. Suddenly it's working hit-or-miss wasn't tolerable, and I was wayyyy too busy to enjoy having to tinker with it constantly to keep it running. (If memory serves, I finally sold it to a friend with a 30-30 guarantee: 30 feet or 30 seconds.)

The problem with tech heads (present company of course not included), is that when there is something that could be done simply, or in a ridiculously complicated way, they choose the latter. Their eyes light up, and they tend to say things like "wouldn't it be a good idea if..." Short answer: "NO!!!!" They clearly have had a visit from the Good Idea Fairy (not limited to techies, bureaucrats have the same problem), and haven't learned not to listen.

Anyhow, I am glad that you have a new toy to keep you off the street and out of trouble, and now have something more enjoyable to do than sex. Also happy that after apparently 2 straight days (3? 4?) of work, you have upgraded your hardware enough to run the software so that the graphics are good enough to count the nose hairs on the NPCs. Enjoy.
(Reply) (Thread)
[User Picture]
From:tatjna
Date:November 27th, 2014 10:20 pm (UTC)
(Link)
I am the sort of techie that the real techies see as something of a Luddite.

- I didn't get a smartphone until someone bought me one.
- I was still using Windows 2000 in 2010 (what? It was stable)
- I prefer to fabricate things out of leather and aluminium from a hand-drawn sketch than to use CAD to create a program for a 3D printer.

That having been said, I'm also practical, and I want my stuff to work. I don't really enjoy tinkering with computers, but I appreciate the result of my efforts when I do. And I'm too much of a tightwad to pay the premiums that go with buying a ready-built machine, especially since they tend to do things like give you a whizzy CPU and combine it with a crappy graphics card.

So I have learned to build my own, more or less - and to buy parts that have at least a year or two's inbuilt futureproofing, which saves me having to do it too often.

Of course, not having to do it too often is the reason that when I say 'build my own' it comes with the 'more or less' disclaimer. I don't do it often enough to be confident I won't mess it up without at least a bit of moral support. Doh.

I'll keep you posted on the State of the Nose Hairs.
(Reply) (Parent) (Thread)
[User Picture]
From:meathiel
Date:November 28th, 2014 08:13 am (UTC)
(Link)
Sorry for barging in but your comment made me smile! ;-)
(Reply) (Parent) (Thread)
[User Picture]
From:warriorsavant
Date:November 28th, 2014 04:28 pm (UTC)
(Link)
Never considered barging in when you bring wine or compliments.
(Reply) (Parent) (Thread)
[User Picture]
From:anna_en_route
Date:November 27th, 2014 11:11 pm (UTC)
(Link)
Best of luck to the acrobatic monsters =)

(Reply) (Thread)
[User Picture]
From:tatjna
Date:November 30th, 2014 08:49 pm (UTC)
(Link)
They survived!
(Reply) (Parent) (Thread)
[User Picture]
From:fbhjr
Date:November 27th, 2014 11:56 pm (UTC)
(Link)
Hope all works well!

Several of our computer updates have been for games as well. Mostly WOW.
But, what's wrong with that?
(Reply) (Thread)
[User Picture]
From:tatjna
Date:November 27th, 2014 11:58 pm (UTC)
(Link)
Absolutely nothing. In fact, if that's the reason you're upgrading, your machine is probably way ahead of the rest of the field (except those folks who do graphics rendering for a living).
(Reply) (Parent) (Thread)
[User Picture]
From:girlguitarist
Date:November 28th, 2014 04:25 am (UTC)
(Link)
My computer is quite a few years old but I'm glad I splurged on it (which I have to to run all my RAM-heavy photo software!). I juuuust scrape by for the new game, phew! But if I'm just scraping by my computer obviously isn't good enough anymore ;)

I am jealous of your 16GB RAM. I'll go pout over here with my 12.

p.s. I just started Origins yesterday. I have so much catching up to do :(
(Reply) (Thread)
[User Picture]
From:tatjna
Date:November 30th, 2014 08:47 pm (UTC)
(Link)
There's no need to pout, right now I have no RAM, because one of my whizzy new sticks failed during a critical update and borked my OS.

Now awaiting arrival of stopgap 8G so I can at least create my bloody character while I wait for the replacement to arrive.

*kicks puppies*
(Reply) (Parent) (Thread)
[User Picture]
From:meathiel
Date:November 28th, 2014 08:14 am (UTC)
(Link)
Sounds like a serious upgrade.
I'm one of those people who buys a machine and then it has to work. No fiddling around. Though I DO remember adding RAM years and years ago and I'd have needed 3 hands at least - I guess that was the point when I gave up!
(Reply) (Thread)
[User Picture]
From:tatjna
Date:November 30th, 2014 08:48 pm (UTC)
(Link)
There are definitely advantages to buying things that just work out of the box. Sadly, the specs I want would cost about twice as much if I did it that way, and I can't justify that.
(Reply) (Parent) (Thread)
[User Picture]
From:ivonava
Date:November 30th, 2014 04:34 am (UTC)
(Link)
I read your specs out to my son, who said "Yes! That's what I want!" He is also itching to get hold of Inquisition. Christmas shopping just became a lot easier. :)
(Reply) (Thread)
[User Picture]
From:tatjna
Date:November 30th, 2014 08:48 pm (UTC)
(Link)
Excellent! And also a way of ensuring offspring are occupied and not out causing mayhem over the Christmas holidays!
(Reply) (Parent) (Thread)
[User Picture]
From:plantgirl
Date:December 3rd, 2014 09:58 pm (UTC)
(Link)
I built my own computer once, with significant help from a friend who spec'd parts for me. I was very very sad when 5 years later it was no longer coping well with the increased demands of being On The Internet.

It was fun. I would do it again some day, but would definitely want some hand-holding along the way.
(Reply) (Thread)
[User Picture]
From:tatjna
Date:December 3rd, 2014 10:00 pm (UTC)
(Link)
Yeah. All those letters and numbers can be a bit daunting.

Luckily for me, my upgrades are all game driven, which means I have a recommended spec to go from. From there it's just a matter of selecting compatible parts and putting them together.
(Reply) (Parent) (Thread)
[User Picture]
From:plantgirl
Date:December 3rd, 2014 10:07 pm (UTC)
(Link)
Yeah. Give me specs and I'd be fine. It'd be nice to have someone make sure I don't stick the bits in the wrong places on the motherboard, but I could cope. It's deciding what specs I want/need that leaves me grateful there are people in the world who Just Know Such Things.
(Reply) (Parent) (Thread)