Back in the Saddle Again

It took a week for the drives to arrive from Amazon and only a couple hours to install and partition them. I spent most of the weekend organizing and restoring all of my files to their original locations. I haven’t done an exhaustive inventory, but it looks like pretty much everything is recovered now. That means that I can start moving forward again instead of treading water waiting for parts to get here.

I should have some new images up on the site later this week and I’ll have an announcement by then about the West of Center show at the Museum. Stay tuned to this channel . . . film at 11:00.

Till then . . . jw

Bad Hair Day

There are some days you should just stay in bed. If you only knew what was coming, you could cancel the alarm, roll over and pull the covers back over your head. I had one of those yesterday. It would be nice if you could skip a day and avoid the day’s headaches, but in reality you’re only postponing the inevitable.

My morning routine begins by starting a pot of coffee and then recording my vitals on a chart that I keep for my doctor. By the time I’m done with the spreadsheet, there’s enough coffee in the pot to squeeze out a starter cup, and I can begin to feel human again. When I tried to open the file yesterday, I got an error message saying that the file didn’t exist. I thought, “Of course it exists, you stupid computer. I keep it in a folder on my Data drive.” As I navigated to find it, I discovered that the drive was missing. It gets worse. As I investigated further I opened up the Windows Disk Management Console and found that the entire physical disk had failed. I had the 2TB disk partitioned into thirds and I kept regular data files on the first section, all the files related to my web site on the second, and all of my photographs on the third. My life flashed before my eyes.

OK, I thought, maybe it’s not all that bad. Maybe the connection had broke, so I rebooted the computer. It didn’t start. The screen was blank with the little circle of dots endlessly going round and round. I gave up and powered down the computer, then went to Anne’s laptop to get diagnostic information. After I got what I needed, I went back and started a four-hour process that ran a surface scan on all the hard drives. When it was finally done, the program said that they were all fine.

I worked all morning and part way into the afternoon trying this-and-that with no success. I finally pulled the derelict drive out of the box and only then did the computer come back to life. I made a few configuration changes and finally the computer was stable again. Then I immediately went to Amazon and ordered a replacement drive. After a couple of hours, I had second thoughts and ordered a second one. Since the box is open, I might as well replace them all. As I’ve said in another forum, the question is not whether a hard drive will fail, but when.

You’re probably questioning about all the missing files. Things like tax returns, letters, databases and thirteen yeas of digital photographs. Fortunately I thought about that several years ago and installed an external drive to make weekly automatic backups. I’ve had two of them actually. The first one got full, so I replaced it with a larger drive. After the new hard disks arrive, it will take me a while to restore the files, but thankfully, I still have a copy of everything.

So here’s a life lesson that I’d like to share. Take care of your teeth . . . and back up your computer. Nuff said.

Till then . . . jw