Saturday, August 27, 2005

Behind in blogging,again...

Had a hard-drive failure on my laptop a couple of weeks ago -- total loss: even a low-level sector scan was unable to recover a single byte. The laptop belongs to IBM (though I use it nights and weekends for my own personal web browsing, and almost never bother to navigate the mess in my study at home to sit at my own workstation), so I had to wait for internal employee channels to get me a replacement hard-drive.

Thankfully I did have a backup image -- though it was a couple of months out of date, so I lost some stuff permanently -- but unfortunately the product I had used, Retrospect Express 6.0 (it comes with Maxtor external drives), leaves quite a bit to be desired. It doesn't restore the system completely: instead, you have to FIRST install Windows and THEN restore the backup image on top of it.

Anyway, unsurprisingly, something went badly wrong: the resulting system was unstable and had lots of bizarre problems (e.g., the Network Connections window couldn't find any of the network controllers, even though they were clearly there in the System Control panel).

I ended up just saving off the files I wanted and taking the machine back to the IS department at work, to have them wipe the disk and install a new image. Since then, I've been re-installing everything by hand, from scratch.

All in all, it took the better part of two weeks to get the machine back to full working order, between having to wait for hard drives, wait to have them imaged by IS, and then waiting again to have them imaged a second time, and then reinstalling all my work-related applications and my own personal preferences, Internet Explorer favorites, Furl, Flickr,, and Technorati tools, etc. etc. And at the same time, work has been super, super busy -- in the meantime I had to actually dust off my old workstation at work and get that up-to-date with the latest tools we're working with, etc., and have been working on that machine until we got past our deadline.

All in all, blogging has had to take a seat way, way in the back.

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