Wednesday, February 08, 2006


The Day The Music Died

Computers. Damned things. This has NOT been a good week for me and computers.

I am, as I often call myself, a technopeasant. What I don't know about computers could fill a warehouse. When people ask me what kind of system I'm running, I usually answer, "It's beige."

About a week ago, The Squeeze was on our computer at home and he ran into some sort of problem. As I understand it, he received a notification that our virus program had expired. Considering The Squeeze just updated it a couple of days prior, we knew something was not quite right. Then The squeeze checked the date on the computer, and it seemed to think that the year was 2555. Ya, it looks like the virus program expired about 548 years ago back in ought 7. So The Squeeze tried a few things, but to no avail. He tried to manually change the year, but 2006 was not in our list of dates. FREAKY. So we figured we had been hacked as a result of a firewall being disabled...crackle...zap...zcheelellllchcsssssssss*whitenoise*. Ya, whatever he said.

The Squeeze figured we better have the system looked at. Since The Squeeze and I are always at work, we decided to leave the arrangements in the hands of The Squeeze's brother, since he's usually at the house during the day. I tell ya, it is so convenient having him live with us! He cleans the litter box, takes out the compost, empties and fills the dishwasher, cleans up after himself (and us), and pays us for the privelege to do so! Today he's going to be home when our new dryer gets delivered. Too convenient!

So the brother-in-law (BIL, for short) contacted a computer place who would come to the house and service the computer. The guy showed up on Thursday, and determined that it would have to be taken into the shop and be wiped clean and have everything reinstalled. Everything to me means EVERYTHING. BIL called me at work to ask what was on the computer that we wanted to keep, and I'm pretty sure I said "whatever is there now". I mean, it would stand to logic that if there were things on there that I didn't want, wouldn't I have deleted them my damn self? Therefore, whatever was on there is something I want to keep.

Well, the computer was ready on Saturday, so BIL picked it up for us and reconnected everything. When we got in we took a look and I felt my stomach sink. All of my music files (and there were hundreds and hundreds of them) were gone. A few of my Christmas songs which I kept in a different folder were still there, but quite honestly, if there were any songs I could have done without, it would be the ones I only use for about one week a year. All of my great old songs from the 80's were gone. All of my old vinyl that I transferred and cleaned up and saved to MP3 format were gone. Actually, the program I use to record the music was gone too. All of the songs I burned from my CD collection and the hundreds and hundreds I got off the net were history. I'm feeling my blood pressure rise again just thinking about it.

A call to the computer place Monday morning confirmed the fact that the files were gone forever. I was hoping against hope that they had done a mirror copy of the whole computer and that there might be some slim chance that I could still retrieve the files. No dice. The guy there suggested a program I could use to download the songs again. Thanks. If only I had a list of all of the songs I had it might help me a bit more.

Let this be a lesson to everyone. Backup everything. Save everything you will ever want to keep to "My Documents" and be sure to tell your computer guy to save that folder.

Oh, and about the virus? Not really sure if there was one because when the computer guy turned the system on when he was at the house, the date was right and everything was fine. He thought it should be cleared out and reinstalled though. He figured it would make things a bit faster too. So $160 bucks later, I've lost a ton of files, and you know what? The computer isn't any faster. I guess what I've learned is if it ain't broke, don't fix it. And even if it is broke...maybe it ain't so bad either.

Computers suck.
Amen sister! I'm s-l-o-w-l-y working on restoring my music library. I just can't remember most of what I had on there, which probably means that they really weren't that important. I refuse to accept that!
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