.. a wild BSoD appears!
.. and then disappears as the screen goes black. Boo. And then tries to restart, and fails, and asks me for a boot disk. To which I go "Ummm..."
So those of you who've ever used a computer before will be familiar with this scenario. Yep, my hard drive had crapped out. Or at least, it'd crapped out a bit, and the bit where it had crapped out was the bit where the operating system boots up.
This is actually the first time this has happened to me, but given that:
a) I'm relatively good at diagnostic thinking and
b) Dr Wheel was sitting beside me going "It looks like your hard drive has crapped out"
it didn't take long to work out.
On the upside, I had just finished the first draft of my essay and emailed it to myself (force of habit). And, I'm pretty good at making backups. Also, Dr Wheel burned me a disk for Ubuntu and I ran that off the disk and was able to retrieve really important stuff like my DA and ME savegames, recent photographs and ambient electronica and back it up to my portable HD. Fact is, a lot of my stuff is in several places now anyway - evernote, gmail, work machine - it seems it's getting harder and harder to actually lose stuff in a crash - but I'm still glad it wasn't a total loss.
On the downside, crap. New hard drive needed. Turns out my rig is only 2.5 years old and the drive is still under warranty, but in order to make good on it I have to send it away, and in order to do that I have to buy a new one and get my stuff off it to continue working/playing while it's assessed. Which makes the warranty process seem a bit pointless. However, I'd heard Seagate were pretty patchy in quality these days, and I guess this is my wake-up call.
Anyway, remember how I was whining about how I couldn't play Skyrim and new video card needed? Well, the fact that I was buying parts anyway made me look into a total rebuild. Turns out that one of these* will likely do me quite nicely for another couple of years. Also turns out that at my last rebuild, I deliberately overdid the power supply so mine will run this (and the rest of my system) with a couple of hundred watts to spare. So instead of a complete rebuild I've bought that video card, a new hard drive and another 4G of memory, and this should keep me happily taking arrows to the knee and saving the universe and shooting lightning at fools for then next wee while.
Which is a good thing because I gave up on The Bard's Tale (crappy interface) and The Witcher (Win7 64-bit crash bug too annoying), and was playing Oblivion, which I seem destined never to finish due to ending up rebuilding my machine every time I play it.
And I am excited because new video card! Instead of bummed because broken parts. This is how my brain works. I was planning it anyway, this just sped the process up a bit, and it turns out I don't need as many bits as I'd thought, so yay!
* I like that it looks like it has lake pipes.
These are the times when I'm glad I keep a slush fund for breakdowns, and keep putting money in there even when it looks flush. Because otherwise I'd be all "WOE! BUSTED PUTER! ARGH!" As it is I have to wait for said bits to arrive, which will stretch my almost non-existent patience to capacity.
I am also waiting for other things. Freedom's Call got gooped over the weekend, and because of the rain/humidity it's going to take its full 72 hours to be dry enough to work with. Also, there's acres of sanding to do. This one has to look like metal, not old bone. So it has to be done thoroughly. After one experimental brushover, I decided this was best tackled using a dremel. So I'm waiting for that to arrive too. *sighs and drums fingers*
Meanwhile, I'm feeling a bit Better Homes And Gardens because I made yoghurt in my slow cooker and it worked. Yes I know yoghurt is really easy but still. It worked and I'm stoked. Although, I'm not normally a milk drinker and it seems really sweet. Is that normal?