Sunday, February 06, 2011

To buy, or not to buy? That is the question.

I have to entirely rethink my online life right now. The big hard drive (onto which I had put data from a couple of old HDs) died, but it never got on with the old motherboard, and Microsoft don't like to support XP Home any more, and so on.

It seems pretty symbolic that this PC base should pretty well die on me, as I approach 65.

I have enjoyed getting under the hood for a decade, but I have switched to wanting to write (or 'create content' as we now say) and not have to tinker with the software/hardware all the time.

The first clue was Scrivener Beta not installing, then updates not working, and the whole pack of cards slowly collapsed as I chased the bug.

I now have the choice to carry on cannibalising old machines, and bodging together bits and pieces from the cupboard, forcing them to work together and all that. Or just finally let it go (like the boxes of cassettes, old videos, and other stuff that lies around - data untranslated, probably never to be accessed again).

Beyond a couple of little panics, do I care about what was on that big hard drive? It was mostly stuff imported from older drives, and I have some backup on a 250Gb external drive, and some USB sticks, and such, so I doubt very much is missing...

I may clear my workstation, and just plug the netbook into the monitor, etc, when I get home, and use that. Or buy a new base, probably with Windows 7 - and have to go through all that re-installing of bought software, compatibility issues, finding old license numbers, etc. Or even skip the whole base thing, and go for a simple laptop to complement the netbook.

Meanwhile, this post is coming from an old HD dropped into the base and stumbling on...

I'll make the choice this week.


Sean Skipton said...

I had a PC pack up on me just over a year ago; the HD died. Worst of it was trying to recover what was on it before the final gasp, as I'd backed up most things but not all. Purely by good luck, PC Repair Man managed to copy the important stuff before it died. It then took about two months to reinstall software, get cable adaptors for printer, test stuff and so on, all on a new PC with a new OS, before I could start writing again. I've no geekish interest in hardware or software; to me a PC is just a tool to help me write. But when the tool breaks down, you can't help getting involved in these things out of necessity. Technology is great when it works, but a notepad and pencil are always useful.

Nate said...

I can attest Windows 7 is quite user friendly and efficient! Although if you have the dough a Macbook Pro has a very high reputation...wish you the best either way you go!

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