Tales of the Rampant Coyote

Adventures in Indie Gaming!

Mein Desktop Ist Kaput!

Posted by Rampant Coyote on January 11, 2017

My desktop computer is dead. Again. 🙁

I can resurrect it for brief periods, but not long enough for transferring a large backup, apparently. I haven’t seen unusual heat values causing it to automatically shut down, just the ol’ Blue Screen of Death. Well, okay, it’s Windows 10, so it’s the new Blue Screen of Death. However, sometimes it won’t even boot, so it’s not (just) a Windows installation problem.

After many weeks of trying to solve increasing problems, this is about to be a day of unplanned upgrades. I’d hoped to put that money into getting a Vive, but noooooo…………

I’m just frustrated with having sunk so much time and money (primarily time) into dealing with problems. It’s not like I have that much ‘free time.’  However, I am grateful that I managed to get it up and limping along well enough over the holidays to finish writing a novel, get some work done on Frayed Knights 2, and get some honest-to-goodness gaming in. So there’s a pretty significant silver lining.

I guess that’s the way it goes. Cars and computers and home appliances.  The modern world. I’m just glad I have a functional (and honestly, pretty decent) laptop. So I’m moderately functional for the time being.

Filed Under: Geek Life - Comments: 5 Comments to Read

  • GBGames said,

    Ugh, I’m sorry to hear that.

    My laptop, which is my main machine, is now over 5 years old, and every so often I see it crash. I think it is the Nvidia drivers messing up based on my machine’s logs, but it’s hard to diagnose, and a reboot gets me going again, so I don’t spend too much time looking into it.

    I learned that the BIOS updates are woefully behind, but I didn’t want to upgrade it until after I had released my game last year.

    Same thing with updating to a later version of Ubuntu. I wanted to wait.

    Well, now that I have released my game, I should update my machine before I get too far along on any new projects. Of course, maybe I’ll find that I also will need to get a replacement machine this year, which is not something I look forward to using my money on.

    Do you think you just need to replace a few parts or the entire thing?

    I went to a conference a few months ago and learned about the concept of Pets vs Cattle (http://cloudscaling.com/blog/cloud-computing/the-history-of-pets-vs-cattle/).

    I realized that my home computing devices are all pets, and that if I want to avoid catastrophic failures that slow me down, I need more than merely a backup system. I need to start treating my machines like cattle that can be easily replaced without me missing a beat.

    So I’ll be looking into using VMs, and Docker.io and other tech. That way, no matter what happens to any one computer, my data and work can continue seamlessly.

    I’ll probably still name my computers as pets and probably customize them, but I’ll change my workflow so most everything important is pet-agnostic.

  • Rampant Coyote said,

    Interesting analogy. Stuff to think about.

    I’ve replaced some parts already, but now we’re getting into CPU-and-mainboard territory… and I finally thought, “Bah, why spend all this money on experimental replacements if I can just upgrade?” So I’m getting a new case, mainboard, CPU + cooling, new (and more, and faster) memory, SSD boot drive, and main hard drive. I’ll bring over the video card (I’ve got a GTX 1070… there’s really not much I could do to upgrade it!) and at least one of the hard drives over.

    But your comments (and this latest minor disaster) have definitely made me think. Things like backups and so forth haven’t been fully turned into a process. I’ve finally *mostly* done it on the writing side, simply because it’s easy. But on the game dev side, I’ve been far more haphazard – partly on account of the size of the project and the expense of going with a pre-made third-party solution. But this is a regular issue, especially with collaborators and things like me having to go out on the road for a while and switching “primary” development platforms.

  • Captain Kal said,

    Have you checked, the PSU? Random crashes and inability to boot the machine, point to a PSU fault.

  • Rampant Coyote said,

    Yup. I replaced the PSU last month.

  • lakerz said,

    Bummer about the desktop. I put computer crashes amongst the most annoying things to deal with as so much of our existence is experienced through the digital domain. While I have important documents backed up securely, there is the question of all the game saves, will those games even be compatible in the next PC, etc. Not to mention the cost of a decent new PC equipped for gaming. I know I know, first world problems.