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Laptop Aaargh...

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Posted : Wednesday, 22 March 2017, 15:02 | Permalink

WW Entries : 106

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Posted : Wednesday, 22 March 2017, 16:11 | Permalink

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Oh smeg, that's a dead / dying drive right there.

Web / Game Dev, occasionally finishes off coding games also!

Refresh Games - Game Dev Blog
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Posted : Wednesday, 22 March 2017, 17:48 | Permalink

WW Entries : 106
X hours later,,.
Have managed to get to command prompt. Hard drive is insanely slow at doing pretty much anything.
Am backing up the 2017 folder and monkey setup to a thumbstick.

Laptop #2 has come out of retirement and is currently 32% through doing 5 months worth of Windows Updates.
.. it's randomly reset on me twice, already.

Plan of action.
I'm going to have to to buy a new HD for this system.
I'm likely going to also have to buy a copy of Win10 since I've no recovery disc, and no way to find out my old serial number, (Why no stickers, anymore??!)

Good job I just spent all my money on a new watch, eh..?

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Posted : Thursday, 23 March 2017, 03:21 | Permalink

WW Entries : 3
Isn't it stil under warranty? You only got it last year, didn't you?
Posted : Thursday, 23 March 2017, 04:10 | Permalink

WW Entries : 106
November.. yes, it should.

Slept on it, and came up with a plan.
Contacted Uncle Dave who's happy to be buying a cheap laptop.

1. Buy new new laptop, because already this morning, I'm struggling to get things organised, like the daily Platdude Pixelart upload.
2. See about getting dead new laptop fixed.
If no 2, then do some DIY. Buy a new hard drive, and go from there.
3. Once dead new laptop is up and running, sell to Uncle Dave.

However this goes down, it'll include a shitload of reinstalls and other gubbins.
Bah, humbug...

Bank account : Crying.

Oh, and Fuck you, HP, I'm never buying a laptop from you ever again!!

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Posted : Thursday, 23 March 2017, 04:57 | Permalink

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It's no necessarily HP - remember they don't make HDs.

Here's a list of the current manufacturers and failure rates for Seagate, Hitachi and WD -

Ive had three or four HPs now, and while they've all died eventually, none have given any problems withing the first two or three years. The one I'm on now must be four years old (or nearly).
Posted : Thursday, 23 March 2017, 05:04 | Permalink

WW Entries : 106
Yeah, I normally trust HP. This is my first bad experience.

A hard drive dying after less than 6 months is not a particularly good experience!!
Neither was this.

..So, really not having had a good experience with the HP, if I'm honest.

|edit| Although I'm fully aware that neither of those are really HP's fault, but .. still ... grrrrr!! |edit|

Ordered a Dell.. God help me..

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Posted : Thursday, 23 March 2017, 09:18 | Permalink

WW Entries : 106
Bank account is now approximately half of what it was, at the worst of my "No PIP" time. Fuckity fuck..

Dell Inspiron 15-5000 should be arriving tomorrow.
Core i5, 2.7ghz
8gb ram
1Tb hard drive that'd better fucking last longer than 6 months
Full keyboard (e.g. Numpad!)
Full touchpad (e.g. Two clicky buttons!)
And a 1366x768 display... bit small, but Laptop 1 had that res, and I coped..

Glad of two things, today.
1. That I kept that "in case of emergencies" amount in my bank!
2. That I kept the "random crashes" laptop, rather than fix it up and sell it.

Always have a spare, guys!!!

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Posted : Thursday, 23 March 2017, 13:40 | Permalink

WW Entries : 106
Laptop #2 (The craptastic backup system that seems to randomly reboot every hour or so) has only rebooted twice, whilst doing the newsletter! Hurray!

.. Of course, if "doing the newsletter" wasn't simply a case of emailing myself the newsletter from the iPad, opening it from gmail, copying it to the converter, then reposting the results to the site and the Google/Yahoo groups, all of which takes about 5 minutes at the most, then that might be a decent amount of time for it not to be rebooting.

Unfortunately, 2 reboots within 5 minutes* isn't really all that great!
I'm glad I have it as an emergency backup... But I certainly remember why I stopped using it!!

*actually more like 2 reboots in 10 minutes when you account for having to wait for the reboot, then re-opening everything.

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Posted : Friday, 24 March 2017, 11:06 | Permalink

WW Entries : 9
Omg same thing happened to mine today! Last night it took about ten minutes just to load the desktop so I thought something was odd. Today it's reading at 20kb/sec with lots of errors. Yay for backups!

Posted : Friday, 24 March 2017, 11:23 | Permalink

WW Entries : 106
.. Until you try to transfer those backups and the number of .build folders (after weeks and weeks and weeks and weeks and weeks and weeks of AGameAWeek) means SyncToy's going at a rate of about 2 files per hour..


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Posted : Friday, 24 March 2017, 12:11 | Permalink

WW Entries : 106
The first seven hours..

Laptop arrived.
Unboxed, plugged in, switched on.

Filled basic amounts of the usual "new Windows" forms, like username, MSN account, time and date, etc.

After a long long "preparing Windows" wait, it's now downloading over 4Gb of Updates before carrying on.

A notification appears.. "an update is downloading"
.. whilst the rest of the screen says pretty much the same thing!
20% complete
The audio in the update notification was quite crisp and clear compared to the HP's audio.

It's requesting that I let the Dell Advisor organise the settings.
Not sure if that's a good idea!

100% complete downloading the big update, its now started actually doing the update.

Watching percentages on a blue screen is no fun.
To think, just a coupe of days ago, I was happy that my Framework and general devkit was wonderfully perfect, and that I was even ahead of schedule with this week's game!
... not any more!!!

Update progress is up to 81%, and has been for about 5 minutes.
... tell a lie, it's just moved to 82%
More waiting...

100%, and a reboot later, the new "working on updates" screen is up to 1%!
... more waiting...

I swear.. modern technology..

Rebooted again. Back to the update screen.

The old familiar windows login screen!
Password entered.. here we go!!
"Getting things ready, please don't turn off your PC"

"These updates help protect you in an online world"
Someone at Microsoft must've broke the full-stop key!

"Go to Start > Get Started app to see what's new"
.. would if I could, Microsoft... would if I could...

And a notification that "updates are installing."

"No! Don't uninstall me! Noooo!"
Mr Mc Fucking Afee can piss right off!!

I hate that removing a virus checker takes THAT LONG to reboot the PC.
Login screen now has Gabby
Updating and enabling Windows Defender...

Disable Windows Animations. Grrr!
Set Defender on a quick scan.

Disable touchpad-tap.. I fucking hate that!!
Touchpad has no clicky buttons.
Instead the whole touchpad clicks down. The bottom right area still works as right click.
This is a good compromise. No complaints.

Installed Chrome
Repeatedly told Windows to set Chrome as default browser...
Eventually tried telling it to use Edge... THEN telling it to use Chrome.
.. that worked!

Playing with settings.
Deleting most of the shite.
Installing things like Synctoy.

Still tidying things up.
Got Synctoy doing its thing. It'll probably take a good few hours.
Setting up the printer, at which point I went "Hey, that's a Dell, too!!"

Synctoy continues..
Installed a few utils, and also got a couple of my own games running.
All seems good, so far.

Have started watching countdown while Synctoy carries on.
... Synctoy takes ages!!
Battery (has been unplugged since 12:40'ish) still states 6hr 49 remaining (79%) which is a nice big number, giving I've been doing so much installing and uninstalling.

Tried FR-025
1366x768, no antialias options available :/
'Tis a teensy bit stuttery, but I think that might be down to Synctoy scanning the NAS in the background, since the stuttering is every second or so, and not a proper slowdown of the FPS.
Will have to try again, later.

Slowly installing apps..
Lots to do!

Have installed "the big three", Blitz3D, Plus and Max.
It occurs to me that I've still yet to actually use Plus other than a few quick tests. Quite why I always install it, I've no idea!
I'm not starting the Monkey Install gubbins until SyncToy's done, and given that it's still scanning (not yet started copying anything!) I imagine that might be quite a while.
.. takes fucking ages, that does, when it's doing it's initial scan.
Bah, humbug.
Battery is now down to 54%

Installed KLite MegaPack, then had to double click a bunch of files, telling it "yes, I DID want you to open the video/audio file with that app!" for every damn format I could find.
Ditto for Irfanview and images.

SyncToy's got stuck on those build folders again..
Forgot it did that. Cancelled sync, and am currently deleting folder after folder after folder....

Am currently fighting with Window's shitty "find files" dialogue. Bloody stupid bloody thing.

I think I've deleted most of the build folders.
Windows' file search has been shit since XP!
Have restarted the sync.

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Posted : Friday, 24 March 2017, 16:54 | Permalink

WW Entries : 3
Ahhhhh, the new laptop waste of a complete day routine. Doncha just love it?
Posted : Friday, 24 March 2017, 17:32 | Permalink

WW Entries : 106
I have completed a fair number of shrines, tonight!

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Posted : Saturday, 25 March 2017, 04:25 | Permalink

My new laptop is not ready after 2 months. The icloud drive has been sitting in the 33% cpu use for that time. It uploads only a few hundred kilobytes per minute or so. I wonder what they were thinking while coming up with that aproach.
I kind of regret getting that space now.
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Posted : Saturday, 25 March 2017, 04:30 | Permalink

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Yeah, better off using something local for things like that, perhaps with the local Drive additionally backing up to somewhere external, just for good measure.

Woke up at 10;30 and instantly checked on the NAS sync's progress.
.. "Windows has updated"

.. and rebooted mid-sync, which I now have to start all over again.

Thanks, Windows!!

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Posted : Saturday, 25 March 2017, 10:25 | Permalink

WW Entries : 106
I just remembered something..

.. From 16th January..

View on YouTube

Hmmm.. A sign, methinks..

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Posted : Saturday, 25 March 2017, 11:19 | Permalink

WW Entries : 106
New laptop grumbles, so far.
1. The tracky/touchpad thing. I'm "almost" getting used to not having physical buttons, but my left thumb keeps resting on where the left clicky button usually sits.. That's causing "two finger" issues, as my right finger is moving around on the pad.
There's also occasional "click moves the mouse" because, again, the bottom of the touchpad is also touchpad, not just a plastic button.
I'll get used to it, but .. grrr!

Also, I tend to right-click-drag icons in Windows, so I get a nice menu when I release it.. That really doesn't work on this, because, again, that's touchpad not a physical button.
It's weird..

I'm getting better, but it's still weird!!

2. Page up and down have switched places with Home and End. As you can imagine, I've screwed those up more than enough times, just from writing this morning's blog!!
Pain in the arse, and it'll only get worse once I get coding..


JNKSoftware folder is now sync'd up.
Next it's the Server folder, and then finally the Monkey folder.
I *think* that's everything I usually sync, since I've recently merged a bunch of folders together, and neatened up my backup..
I'll have to double-check, though.

Should only (!?) be another half-a-day or so, until everything's ready to actually be used.

.. And by used, I mean I'm going to have to start getting the Android DevKit stuff up and running.
.. Nnnngh....

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Posted : Saturday, 25 March 2017, 13:31 | Permalink

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"Downloading Windows"

Huh. Microsoft now have a tool online which downloads Windows and sticks it onto a thumbstick so you can install it onto another PC.

So, I now have a thumbstick with a copy of Windows on it, ready to try installing onto the Dead-HP.
Thinking about it, I wonder if I should pinch the harddrive from my PS3? It's not like it's even barely been used. I mean, sure, it has the GTAV install on there, but that fits onto the default system. Other than that, I don't think I really used it for anything else.

So, I might give that a go. Dig the HD out of the PS3 (just slots into the side, no hard job) and then the daring business of opening up the laptop.
I tried that the other day. I downloaded the service pdf, and followed steps 1-3. Step 4 asked me to remove the service door. ... The laptop doesn't have a service door..
I think my model is different than the version included in just about every manual I could find..

Going to have to play "Mr Guesstimate!"

.. Am I really going to attempt this!?
Seems silly, but .. It's not like I have anything better to do.


Maybe tomorrow..

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Posted : Saturday, 25 March 2017, 15:18 | Permalink

WW Entries : 106
Getting everything sorted, bit by bit.
It'd help if a lot of these tools would save their settings in their folder (or allow you to choose an alt-folder that I can easily backup) instead of saving everything in the RegEdit list.
I swear, I only just went through all this crap a few months ago, and yet.. here I am again.. setting Irfanview to open images in the center of the screen.. setting PaintShop Pro to have an 8x8 grid.. setting CoolEdit to not save those bloody .pk files everywhere..
Such a bloody mess.

Gave FR-025 another go, and it now runs silky smooth. Was indeed SyncToy that was causing the stuttering.
SyncToy's still going, btw. It's just now simply copying files, not doing it's big check for changes.. Only a couple more folders, then I get to install iTunes and get those backups syncing, too.
So much bloody stuff.
I HATE that this has come about because of a fucked up hard drive..

... Normally I'd be all "YEAY! NEW LAPTOP!! WOOOOO!!!"
but.. I'm not.
I'm all "For fuck's sake..."

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Posted : Sunday, 26 March 2017, 04:11 | Permalink

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Audio driver wasn't working quite right.
Downloaded the slightly earlier version from Dell's site, last night.
Worked much better.

.. Woke up to find Windows had updated the driver to the new version.. aka The broken version...

Stupid bloody Windows..

Did a "Roll Back Driver", and clicked the "The previous version seemed better" (or whatever) option. Hopefully it remembers that!

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Posted : Sunday, 26 March 2017, 05:29 | Permalink

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Headed into BIOS and changed the "fn Lock" option to "Fucking well make my Function keys work properly, you arsehole" mode.

Additionally, grabbed KeyTweak, which changes the keyboard mapping, so I could swap Home&End with PageUp&PageDown.
The writing on the physical keys is now inaccurate, but my finger-memory is much happier!

Next up..
.. *nnngh*
iTunes, and all my iPhing backups.

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Posted : Sunday, 26 March 2017, 15:03 | Permalink

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Monkey Installation Progress
Win.exes appear to be compiling properly.
Android (OUYA) appears to be compiling properly.
HTML5 always compiles! HTML5 is happy!!

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Posted : Monday, 27 March 2017, 05:00 | Permalink

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Driver Dilemma.

If I use the newest driver, the audio has a little fraction of a second before it starts playing.
If I use the slightly older driver it doesn't.
Which is better.

.. However..
The slightly older driver seems to keep thinking I've got headphones connected, and mutes the speakers.

Back on the newer drivers for today, and will play "Mr Investigative Tweakyman" later.

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Posted : Monday, 27 March 2017, 05:49 | Permalink

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Doing a system recovery backup thing. .. Because.. lesson learnt!!
Making good use of that 32gb mini USB drive I bought last May. I bought me and my sister one each. Her's so she could backup all her music and photos I have on my NAS, and take them home with her. Mine, for "whenever I need it."
Guess it's got a purpose, now.
I'll have to find somewhere safe to keep it. It's very very tiny! One of those "so small you struggle to grip it, to pull it out of the USB connector" type things.

Currently watching a "Creating the recovery drive" progress bar.
It's been 20 minutes, so far..

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