Personal: VPC, XPC and Offline for hours – but I survived

I was trying out Microsoft Business Intelligence VPC Release5.1 on my "poor" XPC machine yesterday (for those into MSFT BI see following links) [more] 

Part 1


Part 2

It's running Core Duo with 1GB and I think XPC is an impressive setup considering the price but for some reason I've managed to damage the hard disk last time. I got a new Seagate SATA HD, had the previous one as secondary storage and added another 1GB DDR2 (Transcend – not sure if this is good but got it anyway). And then yesterday a lot of things messed up again. Running the VPC @ 256MB freezes among other things. So I decided to get a memory upgrade and a new HD as I'm suspecting that the old drive though secondary is dragging me down. When I got it all setup and started, the memory was ok but the disk cannot be detected. Sad. So I checked the connection and started again. This time the monitor doesnt seem to accept any data anymore. Bad. So I looked inside again and checked everything and removed the DDR I added. Booted, yey…. But after the Windows loading splashscreen, restarted and the next time it displayed something in the monitor it had gardbage text on it, the screen was full of 1's and 0's (which reminded me of Turbo C/C++ programming in the past). And after many checks and reboots no luck and I gave up.

For a number of hours, it felt very uneasy knowing that the PC is not working and not being able to do somethings I was looking forward to (research and all). I have more than enough books around me but it was different. Funny and stupid but it's as is you lost something very valuable even just for a few hours. I could always come to the office to work but it's still feels different.

So got the PC store hours ago, turned out that the video card was failing and affected some other modules and after some hours of wait I'm here with a newly revived machine with the added 1GB and HD working as expected. I hope for good.

I think I type and click relatively too fast but I believe I'm not careless especially when it comes to coding nor do I have a lot of typos of clicking the incorrect folder or button. But lately it makes me wonder whether I just really need a good machine to keep up with me or I have to go easy on the machine a little bit. I don't leave this ON unless I have to do something and I do take care of it so probably it's either just bound to fail or was just unlucky.

Bottomline is here are things that this event made me think about, learned (or at least will start learning):

  1. not to get too attached as not to feel very uneasy when you can't get to do something because your PC is broken
    1. a.k.a. "get a life away from the keyboard"
  2. backup as much as possible
    1. (yes I actually did this and didn't loose any valuable data even from the 1st HD failure but a good reminder)
  3. don't overwork your PC (with the added benefit of saving the environment when conserving energy and doing yourself a favor by having a break)
  4. what you can do now, don't wait for tomorrow. Note that it says "what you can do now", it doesn't mean "don't sleep until say you get a 1week long task done for straight hours without sleep)
    1. Not guilty of the former (sometimes guilty of the later) but just glad I always have files checked in when I should (in addition to backup

So that's it for now and as much as I would like to post a lot of other things, have to get back to work now and save the research and post hopefully after a few hours.

For those I'm suppose to do something for, at least I'd just have to link you this post for a little justification. I'll get to them asa i can.

Smile