8/23/07

My Mac Let Me Down (Sort of)

This morning started out like any Saturday morning, for the most part. I got up a bit earlier than usual. Started coffee, read e-mail. Some piece of e-mail led me to a web browser. Then things started to go bad.

I got the Spinning Beach Ball of Death (SBBOD). I was able to move to other applications. But, I could not bring up the system monitor, though the performance meter I had running did not indicate a problem. The hard drive was making a noise I did not like. No, I cannot describe it. It was seeking far to much and making too much noise.

I power cycled it. No joy. It would not boot. I booted in option mode. I got an alternating folder icon with a question mark. Hmmm. To make a long story short, I took it over to the Apple Store in the Columbia (MD) Mall and talked to a David at the Genius Bar. I was hoping he could diagnose the problem at least, or fix it. He did diagnose it: failed hard drive or failed bridge controller. Either way, I needed to send it out for repair, so I signed the paperwork, gave a credit card (to pay the $310 charge—$100 labor for a PB G4 12" + $210 flat rate repair charge for same). I should get it back in 7 to 10 days.

The good news: It was only $310; the last time I backed up my home directory was 3 days ago; my e-mail is on an IMAP server, so it is (was?) on my Mac and also on my server.

The bad news: I don't back up my non-home files. Particularly, the Ultilities and Applications directories are not backed up. So, any applications I've added or system settings I've made will have to be reinstalled/remade. Ah, well. Not so very bad news.

I'll report on my progress. For now I am using my Linux desktop on which all of my files were backed up.

Drop me e-mail if you have any back-up schemes you would like to share. I suppose I should automate the process and I should back up everything periodically, and I guess I'd better copy the back-up files from the Linux server to a DVD and put it in my safety deposit box. Any ideas?

I got my PowerBook back yesterday, Wednesday. I am restoring the contents of my original HDD. I will report more here later.

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