Month: July 2019

What a nice surprise!

Reading Time: 4 minutes

Came home from work today and was feeling a little blah. To perk me up a bit, I made some mac & cheese from a box, and while the macaroni was cooking, I came into the addition here and figured ‘what the heck’ and turned on my desktop. It’s been sitting for several weeks silent and unused since for some strange reason it wouldn’t boot way back when. In the interim, I’ve been using my old Thinkpad laptop, but have been missing the large 27″ monitor as well as my preferred Dell keyboard and the other peripherals that I’ve become accustomed to. After a little black screen, it booted. Holy crap, it booted!

Of course, I was fully expecting it to shut down after a few minutes, but even so, I grabbed a thumb drive intending to at least try to get a few files that I’ve been needing off the main drive before it powered off. At that point, I wasn’t even interested in getting into my email program to download three weeks of mail that has been sitting on various servers. First things first. Damage control. Triage. Jumping into the password program, I determined where the password file was located and went to the corresponding subdirectory. Of course, it wasn’t so simple, the thumb drive I chose was write-protected. Bugger! Thinking fast, I switched gears and uploaded the file to my Dropbox, so I could access it even if/when the computer were to fail. Once that was completed, I breathed a bit of relief.

On to other things, while my luck was holding out. My Jetpack had gone squirrely on this blog about a month ago, and I’ve been unable to access the server to remove the subdirectory in order to re-install it. Firing up my FTP program, I went to download the files in order to delete them later. Only, I ran into a snag. A couple of months ago, I added a level of security to the FTP connection and forgot the password. And naturally, stupid me, I didn’t add it into my password vault program to be reminded. I had to circumvent that oversight but was able to accomplish my goal with a minimum of angst or hair-pulling.

Finally, I started my email program and crossed my fingers. Several of the email accounts haven’t been cleared in about a month, so I was fully expecting there to be at least two to three thousand emails on at least one of them that needed to be moved off the server and deleted. With fingers crossed, I set Thunderbird to work and I can report that everything was successfully pulled from ALL of my accounts. During the largest pull, my backup program started. And was able to do a successful backup, even though the computer has not been used for over a month. I bought a 6 TB drive several months ago with the intention that it be my storage bay for computer backups, and it has been. Though I’ve been rather remiss as well as hesitant to junk the computer and get a new motherboard, chipset and all, due to the cost and pain in the arse that building a new computer entails. I figured at minimum a new system was going to cost me in the neighborhood of $600-700, and that’s without buying any storage. Just a case, memory, new chipset and a motherboard, as well as a new copy of Windows 10. If you have a new motherboard and chip, you have to get a new copy of the operating system. I’ve tried going the route of Linux before, but caveman that I am, I just prefer how Windows does things. And Apples are just too expensive. And next to impossible to repair.

Now that I have it running, I’m hesitant to shut it down. But I know I have to, if for not other reason than it has to update the software in several ways. Before I do though, there are some housekeeping things I need to accomplish in case it all goes down in flames. But at least for now, it works!

Hello, 54.

Reading Time: 3 minutes

Another birthday, another year older.

My birthdays anymore are either ones when I work, or I have the day off and I don’t necessarily do much of anything. Certainly nothing like a party here at Casa Leathers, or any sort of organized celebration. Another milestone achieved really. I may get a present, I may not, it depends a lot on whether I mention there’s something I’ve desired, and just haven’t gotten around to purchasing for myself, and the wife gets it for me (except for a motorcycle….not going to get one of those. At least life-sized).

This year, we’ve been needing a new wheelbarrow and we’ve been off and on shopping for it both online and locally. It has needed to have certain aspects to make it good for both of us (not too big, not too small, dual wheels and so on) and not cost $500. Believe it or not, we’ve spent over two weeks looking at prospects and dismissing most of them as either being too expensive, too cheaply made too many bad reviews, or a combination of those. Home Depot, Lowes, Amazon, all have nice offerings, but none have really checked off all the correct aspects.

The wife suggested the local Tractor Supply as an option. I went there after work one day and scoured the store, but didn’t find any! How odd. I left without checking with a salesperson (should have known better) and came home to report my findings. Going to the online store presence, I discovered apparently in their ‘stock’ it was listed they had several. So we decided to go back on the ‘day’ of my birthday, to check it out further, instead of ordering one online and having it shipped specially to the store.

Parking outside, we headed towards the door, but my wife stopped us to look at something on the wall, and sure enough, there was the beastie that had eluded me so successfully yet days before. But it was HUUUUGE! Way too big for our purposes. Heading inside, I made my way to the Customer Service counter and spoke to the employee there, informing her that we were in the market, but the one she had outside was too big, and did they having anything similar, but slightly smaller? Looking through her computer terminal, she determined that indeed she did, and someone was in the back assembling them.

Horrors! An assembled ‘barrow won’t fit in the new Murano. Would be way too big. Is it possible to get one unassembled? Sure enough, it was. Although admittedly it surprised her that I asked, most of her customers wanted theirs in one piece, not forty. Up stepped the wife (once I corralled her from the far side of the store) and paid for my present. Transported it out to the vehicle, loaded it up and headed for the ice cream stand/greenhouse to celebrate our victory!

I managed a birthday present and ice cream on the same day! I’d say that was a pretty good score. And I had a project to complete when I got home. Which I did. The wheelbarrow is all together, and sitting in the backyard now…with no pieces missing!

I done good. Happy 54th, Leathers.