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Hardware again

I knew this was going to happen as soon as I posted about the laptop[0]. Not to be left out, my home disk has shat itself.

This is all due to the joys of BillOS and disk write caching. I don't pretend to understand how it works down low, but it's writing to memory in the cache and either the cache is read-only or it's flushed before the cache is written. It's the "Delayed Write Failed" thing that nobody has a real answer for. This is for every file on the 400GB disk that's acting as my storage home. Let's review: Music? Yup. I've just discovered MusikCube and I'm nowhere near the tracks I had before the last hard disk died... video? Yup. All of Doctor Who for starters. Documents? Yup. Including everything for $CURRENT_PROJECT. I'm too dumb to have checked the backups that I do have... I'm not even going to mention the NWN savegames.

Further experimentation tells me that I have a read-only hard disk. Dunno how much longer this situation will last—it's either a problem in the disk (in which case it's going straight back for replacement as it's under a year old) or it's a problem in the motherboard's SATA controller. Either way, the disk is living on borrowed time so I'm starting the DVD archiving process. Part of me hopes that it's the motherboard so that I can upgrade the machine. The rest of me notes the price of decent components and winces.

One day I'm going to take up a simple hobby where the worst thing that can go wrong is me fucking up, rather than hardware deciding that I don't need it to work before my deadline...

[0]: I'm biting the bullet and going for a new macbook. $ORK has an employee purchase program that brings the new models within the same price range as the Core Duo ones currently on eBay. And yes, I'm getting AppleCare.



( 5 informants — We want information! )
Jan. 21st, 2007 08:22 pm (UTC)
A tip: AppleCare cover for the first 12 months comes with the laptop -- what you get for the extra money is an extra 24 month extension.

Far better to spend the money on as much RAM as the box will take -- 2 Gb -- and not from Apple (who charge 4x the market rate); if I were you I'd try a memory vendor like Memory Ten. Then spring for the extra AppleCare in the 11th month of your warranty period.
Jan. 21st, 2007 10:21 pm (UTC)
January seem to be the shit month of the year when it comes to computers.

Ive had lots of minor trouble i didn't have in, say, December. For at least the second year running. Nothing on your scale though. Good Luck, and if you fancy raiding for new video you're welcome over with whatever media you prefer.

Jan. 22nd, 2007 12:19 am (UTC)
re: macbooks.

[charlie is right about buying ram. buy ram.]

Motion sensors are cool

Jan. 22nd, 2007 10:54 am (UTC)
If you're going to be in the pub on Wednesday I can lend you a PCI SATA card to test the broken SATA controller theory.
Jan. 22nd, 2007 01:12 pm (UTC)
Thanks for the offer. I'll let you know.
( 5 informants — We want information! )



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