May 2009 Archives
I remember earlier there was something interesting I wanted to say tonight.
But I can't remember. Maybe cause people pissed me off tonight. Or maybe just one people.
Not Stu. He's the bestest sweetie ever.
Had a crap crap crap day today.
A simple oversight (basically from me not RTFM) caused hours of stress while I tried to figure out why something wasn't working :( Complete waste of time, and it was all my fault :(
The computer shop didn't have a screwdriver capable of opening the faulty Seagate disk (enclosure). This is a disk that was dying with bad sectors so we took it back to Officeworks where we bought it, but they said it was fine and gave it back to us. It was *not* fine, and subsequent attempts to format it resulted in all sorts of horrible noises coming out of it. But because Officeworks is a pain in the rear end to get to, and we'd left it so long, and we hate that sort of thing, we never ended up getting it replaced. So just want to rip the thing out of its enclosure and replace it with something else. If we can get the screws out. Have left it with them, they are going to see what they can do.
Spent the evening fighting with hard drives and computers. Discovered I could have actually mounted the external hard drive with a writable ntfs mount. If I'd done that it would have been much easier to get the files off it now.
Basically a grumpy crappy day :(
Well today I went and bought myself a new hard drive (500gb Seagate for $139).
Brought it home but didn't get to touch it, as Caroline came over for dinner and was busy cooking and eating and watching tv and playing Wii.
Finally got around to installing it. Didn't take too long to figure out how to pull apart my case (which turned out to be rather simple). Swapped out the old drive for the new one.
And ran Windows 7 setup.
There was a tense moment as it seemed to have hung in the same place it did last night, but it carried on and installed fairly quickly. Once in windows it took a hard reboot to kick the network interface. But apart from that it seems to be going ok.
I'm a little worried about attaching the USB hub. While I was having all these other troubles, the computer hung at the Dell splash screen when the thing was attached. Whether or not it'd do it now I'm not sure.. I'm almost not game to try - what if it kills this disk too?? I'm sure I'm being paranoid. Pretty sure the disk problems started happening before I first attached it.... Wonder if I could retrieve the old disk's windows event logs to see....
So anyways.. we'll see how this goes..
But after some time of it extracting files, it gave this lovely friendly error:
Windows cannot access the installation sources. Verify that the installation sources are accessible, and restart the installation.*yay*
Googling tended to indicate that probably the hard drive was fubar. Fine. Well lets see if I can boot off a live CD and mount my drive and see what can be salvaged.
The two knoppix cds I have refused to boot (the old Neither of my Knoppix cds boot. Can't find KNOPPIX filesystem, sorry. error) so tried a Suse cd Simon burnt me last year. This thing *just worked* first go, even on the network.
So figured out how to mount the internal drive ( mount -t ntfs /dev/sda3 /mnt ) and then attached a memory stick. Was able to retrieve the file I most wanted to. But had all sorts of problems with the drive staying online (and getting lots of I/O errors in the syslog). Stu brought home a large hard drive for me to copy files to, but Suse kept wanting to make the NTFS drive read only. Tried a few things, but in the end just formatted the disk as linux. Will be able to copy off from a live CD if need be.
So I'm currently copying off what I can from stuff I know I've modified in the past few weeks.
The plan is to buy a new drive as soon as possible, install Windows 7 on it (Windows will be on a separate partition this time!!), then restore/retrieve my data from backups. The medium term plan is to get a file server so can actually do daily backups, instead of backups every couple of weeks when I bring home hard drives to backup to.
I kinda like this Suse thingie too. May even setup a virtual machine with it on at some point.
So today I thought I'd install windows updates. I started the process, but left it as we decided to go shopping. When we got home the computer apparently had restarted with some error. (There might also have been an error about disk space, but the computer had six gig free). I didn't think too much about this, and ran windows update again. It did stuff like install IE 8 so it was definitely doing something. It got to the end and wanted to restart, however it said there was a failed patch and gave an error code, which to be honest I didn't pay too much attention to, I just thought I'd try again after a restart. Now to complicate matters, I'd also attached a new USB hub, but I can't remember at what point I attached it - whether it was before or after I went shopping - but probably after.
The Dell splash screen came up, but then got no further. Tried hard booting it, same thing. No response on keyboard. So attached the keyboard to a real usb socket and disconnected the hub. This time it got further, but restarted, and came up with a screen saying windows failed to load. I could try again or run the setup repair. Trying again didn't work so tried the setup repair. It tried to repair errors, but still wouldn't boot. Tried repairing again (actually a couple of times). It decided to do chkdsks. That didn't seem to go well. Tried using the vista repair options. Got a dos prompt and tried a manual chkdsk. It finally complained about not having enough space to fix errors in hiberfil.sys. Cleared some space and tried again. This time it completed, but the setup repair still wouldn't work. Only messages include things like "bad patch". Tried restoring to a system restore point of the 23rd. Still no luck.
At this point there seemed to be no other option than to reinstall windows. I unpacked my system cds a while back, but really have no idea where I put all the cds. Plus I'm always paranoid those things are just going to wipe your whole hard drive and restore a stock standard image. So I thought this would be a good opportunity to try out Windows 7. So Stu downloaded it and I just tried installing it.
Except it seems you have to be inside a working verison of windows vista to actually run the upgrade in place.
So looks like will have to do a custom install and start again. Except I don't have the disk space to spare. Not without deleting a bunch of stuff.
Really need to get that file server up and running.....
So we went to Fyshwick (Hardly Normal).
Most didn't strike our fancy, but one did. It's perhaps not 100% what I would have chosen if I'd had more choices, but it doesn't seem too bad. Pretty expensive tho :/ Altho not in comparison to the ten thousand dollar massage chairs....!
Anyway, so we should get it in a few weeks.
... oh.. except the ending and Willie Wonka's dad stuff... :)
Willie Wonka, Willie Wonka, the amazing choclatier......
But anyway, I've uploaded a few photos from Day 0 of our Japan trip into the travel blog (with a link to more (and bigger) photos from the day).
Do people care? Should I keep linking to the trip as I do each day? Will anyone actually go and look? (Just asking so I know whether I should bother linking from here or let Google searches be my only traffic ;) )
We weren't really sure what we were doing, so just thought we'd stock up on some of our staples and non-perishable stuff.
- can shop at own pace, from home, no crowds, online - the way we like to deal with people (or not ;) )
- pricing shows price per unit on different products, and you can sort by that too. This is actually really cool and saves having to calculate it in the shop
- you can't read product labels. All you get is a picture. So you can't see the ingredients, which means we have to stick with what we know
- too many plastic bags! (ten for this shop - cause can't use green bags obviously) Far too many bags than we'd ever get through.
- fresh stuff came cold but don't know how much I'd trust things like ice cream
- we still need to do fruit and veg shopping every week (but can go to the markets for that)
- can't just browse and see what's available easily
- decide on when we were *actually at* locations in local Japan time (except for Sydney and first plane trip photos which are on Sydney time)
- put the date/time stamp on everyone's photos and put that into the file name of each file in consistent format
- fix problems with cameras still set to Sydney time, problems with times being an hour out because of daylight savings
- script renaming files by an hour or two or three where necessary (which included movies that didn't have exif data so were renamed in the first instance by date modified)
- fix mistakes in renaming by adding back an hour where necessary
- fix script problems that sometimes renamed 00 to 0
- fix days that sometimes went into the next day
- sort each day's photos into day directories
- triple check I haven't missed any
- fix problems with some of Sandra's files that lost exif data
- sigh over Sandra's camera being twenty minutes slow
On the plus side, I now have all photos with a consistent and accurate time/date stamp on them, so will make sorting them out and picking highlights that much easier ..... (for me anyway - anyone else would just pick the ones they liked and be done with it ;) )
Our cherry tree that last weekend was mostly all yellow leaves, had lost just about all its leaves by this weekend..
Still lots of colour on some of the other trees
This afternoon we went to the Belco markets for our fruit and veg, and a hot chocolate.
There was a nice doggie there
I had to perform surgery on my toaster oven today. The rivet holding the door on a spring snapped off, so had to pull the thing apart and reattach the door to the spring. Hopefully this mechanism won't jam as much as the rivet used to.
Tonight Stu cooked some brussel sprouts with a hazelnut in burnt butter sauce. Was surprisingly delicious. But after watching Master Chef we were still hungry, so I fried some portabella mushrooms in butter - yummm :)
Weekends definitely go by too fast.. *sigh*
Also in 1999 I went over to Vic's place and had my second ever beer. In honour of the occasion I went and got some of the same beer. Cheers Vic! :)
So we watched it tonight.
Star Trek VI by J.M. Dillard is one of my favouritest ever books. I've read it like four times, even more than the Harry Potter books. I'm not entirely sure why I like it so much. Probably because I can picture the movie (which is maybe my second favourite Star Trek movie after The Voyage Home (or even equal to)), but also because of the wonderful character development. In fact it wasn't until reading this book that I really understood what character development really was. (High school English essays might have benefited from this knowledge! ;) ).
I was always so surprised in the movie how hostile they were to the Klingons, especially after the end of STV where they're all chummy and drinking with them at the end of the movie. In the book of STVI they continue with the Carol Marcus thread (which hadn't been seen in the movies since STIII). Carol is injured in a Klingon attack and Kirk doesn't know if she'll survive. All the media about the event also influences the others' opinions too. So this stuff in the book made the story make much more sense.
So anyway. Great movie, great Friday night :)
Decided to cook a bucketload of pasta, with two different sauces for dinner (as we'd had pizza last night ;) )
Watched another couple of episodes of Abenobashi, then a couple of Starblazers (!!! haven't seen Starblazers in like twenty five years), and one of Speed Grapher.
And then we played Mario Kart, which of course Nat won most races of ;)
ok how boring am I when that's the most interesting thing I can think of to blog about tonight? I don't even have any new photos..
oh all right, since you insist.. here's a photo Andrew took of us at Kinkakuji (the Golden Pavilion) in Kyoto.. :)
These things look pretty impressive but aren't hot. Grew these myself and used them in a stir fry the other night
It be autumn around here..
And one solitary crysanthemum plant did its best for Mother's Day..
Really enjoyed it. Well, most of it .. :)
(potential spoilers in extended entry)
Have several dvds of photos to look at now :)
Think I had a few too many beers tonight... :)
Had pizza for dinner and ended up only having seven on the table (someone else didn't show up and we never heard from her that she wasn't coming.. shrug).
But thanks mainly to Stu, Dave, Prescott and Andrew (I got a couple of questions but not many) we actually won!!! :) Pretty exciting :) Of course the prize was wine and movie money, but Nat, Andrew and Dave don't drink wine. Ooops! We'll have to get them something .. or their pizza.. heh :)
Pretty cool stuff :)
Except I only got down to just under two thousand photos. :( That'd take about two hours to go through :(
Problem is, I'm going to have next to no time at my computer in the next 72 hours, so don't quite know how I'm going to get it all done in time... *sigh*
But here's our only other group shot of the trip, taken at the hotel in Hakone by Mac the owner, with his bonsai behind us:
Culled a bunch more Japan photos tonight.
We had to go shopping tonight, so went out to dinner first. Went to Central Cafe in Gungahlin again. A tad on the pricey side, but not bad otherwise..
I had the chicken kiev (queen size)
Stu had calamari
And a few more photos from the past week..
Stuffed portabella mushrooms (stuffed with the stems, tomato, zucchini and cheese)
Red leaves on a tree outside
A ripening lemon
Wasted plenty of time today. Got a few things done too, but not much. Got about half way through going through my Japan photos and selecting highlights for showing people. Well a first pass go through. They will still need more culling so people that we subject them to don't die of boredom. And then when that's done will pick out the best of the highlights and update the blog entries. I said I'd do that with our Europe photos too, so that will have to be next...
Electric blankie is waiting for me... :)
Did some pasta for dinner and then had Nat and Andrew over for some Wii-ing which was a lot of fun :) And stayed up way too late.. oops ;)
Tonight we watched Star Trek V. I remember quite enjoying this when I saw it at the movies, simply because of the chemistry between Spock/Kirk/McCoy. The movie itself, especially the end, is quite lame of course. The book had more character development, some extra stuff with the Klingons, but not too much extra.
Electric blankie goes on the bed tomorrow!