Tales of the Rampant Coyote

Adventures in Indie Gaming!

Back in Business with the New Computer

Posted by Rampant Coyote on February 13, 2017

I talked about computer woes a few weeks ago. Since October I have been dealing with a computer that has grown slower and less stable almost by the day. I spent tons of time and not a trivial amount of money over three unproductive months fighting the inexorable crawl of failure.

Any sort of development (or gaming) on the computer at this point was out of the question, except for maybe turn-based strategy games (which is why I played Master of Orion over the holidays). It didn’t matter much through most of that time, because I was in serious crunch mode at the day job and didn’t have much time to devote to development anyway. I futzed with the computer, trying and testing things, and then I’d spend some time writing… enough of a change of pace from programming that I could devote some attention to it.

It eventually got to the point where the only things left to replace to see if MAYBE they’d fix the problem were expensive… and not exactly cutting edge. By the time I was done, I’d have a whole new computer made of obsolete parts. Or I could order a new one, with exactly the parts I wanted, all hot and new and hopefully capable of lasting a good long while. I waited too long to make that decision, and the old system died in an ugly mess of Blue Screens of Death.

It was okay, I told myself. The hard drives were probably not the point of failure, and while the old machine couldn’t stay on long enough to transfer my HUGE development environment, the data was still safe and sound. I also kicked myself for not keeping backups as current as I should. Probably not hard enough to improve, though. I could always open up my wife’s computer, plug the drives into it, and use it to transfer the dev environment to my laptop. But … would it be worth it, as I’d only have to transfer it again to the new system in a few weeks?

While the delivery date of the new computer was a lot further out than I’d hoped, I held out hope that maybe it would ship early. Would it really take them four weeks to put together a custom order and ship it to me? So I held out hope that maybe it would ship a week early.

It shipped a week late.

So I finally got the new machine last week, and spent every single night getting it back together. I cannibalized the video card and one of the hard drives from the old machine. I had tons of licenses to transfer, installs to make, data to transfer (literally more than a decade’s worth… transferred from about 3 previous generations of systems), and generally had to make it my home again.

Fortunately, with only a few setbacks, I finished setting things up this weekend.  The new computer is sweet. I even got a fairly inexpensive mechanical keyboard, which is kind of awesome. While it’s completely over-the-top, it has a programmable LED backlight color cycling. Between it and the color-cycling LED lighting I put inside my case (Why? Because I was pissed off when I ordered the computer, and I needed only a few dollars more added to the cost to be eligible for a discount, that’s why), I can work in the dark with zero problems… and my office is lit up like a rave. At least, my imagination of how a rave would look.

Part of me thinks the new machine sounds excessive… GTX 1070, 16 gB of RAM, 6.25 tB of storage (with one of my old hard drives), an SSD boot drive (the .25 tB in that number), anti-vibration fan mounts, Intel I7-7700K running at 4.2 gHz…   Then another part of me thinks the whole thing is going to be pretty lame a year from now. But for now, mostly, it games really nicely, and I’m happy.

I even upgraded Frayed Knights 2 to the newest version of Unity without a hitch. I got to play in the [redacted] [redacted] and fought a [redacted] and everything worked perfectly, even the cheat commands [redacted] and [redacted]. So we’re golden!

There will still be things to install and configure as time goes on, but it’s a relief to be back in business.

Just in time for me to be gone half the week at LTUE.

No regrets. 🙂

Filed Under: Geek Life - Comments: 2 Comments to Read

  • lakerz said,

    Awesome, congrats! A new PC is indeed a pain to get all set up, including transferring over all legacy software and all that. But looks like you are now raring to go for the next 5+ years. My PC was over the top like yours when I bought it 3 1/2 years ago. Today, it is kind of clunky, heh. Hope it lasts me another 2 years though.

  • Rampant Coyote said,

    Sucks, doesn’t it? I should totally be used to it by now, but I still keep thinking, “Oh, yeah, my machine is awesome and can handle any game… well, it was when it was new only… uh… wow, it’s been a while.”

    But that’s also why I don’t usually get bleeding-edge hardware. Because it’s only hot for about 6 months, and next year you can get even better for $500 less.