The past week+ has been one of far greater unproductivity than I would have liked. (Please do not confuse this with my previous post. Their similarities are completely coincidental.) If I had not made the “job search” a January priority, this lack of productivity would not have been as big a deal. Unfortunately, a job search being conducted on a computer with a bad case of the reboots has forced me to duplicate my efforts nearly every time I have sat at my desk. As I look back over this time where I was constantly cursing myself for failing to “save” THAT document, I now believe I can return to my “normal” productive life. (My productive is not your productive, but my recent productive was really not productive at all!)
What did I try as I sought to remove the roulette from my computer’s life? (Of course, it is my life I am concerned about. My inclusion of my computer is to make me slightly less selfish than I may appear. Buying a new computer might fix it, but the problem-solving part of me believed that to be the path of a loser. My computer is inanimate, but when you stare at its screen login, any failure on its part to meet my needs feels/smells like a betrayal.)
- First, I just accepted the first few of reboots as a power thing. I do have a UPS (Uninterrupted Power Supply), but I thought, “maybe it isn’t working correctly”. When the power went off briefly during a recent storm, the UPS kicked on. This coupled with the ongoing random reboots quickly made me pursue other possibilities.
- After 3 or 4 days of 2-3 reboots a day (Most documents were saved as “recovered” documents AND my browser asked me if I wanted it to restore the “tabs” as they were when the trigger landed on the bullet-laden chamber.), I started refamiliarizing myself with the “Event Logs”. I kept seeing an event error for a program that had been uninstalled. Being a “doer”, I felt deleting the registry setting was a good idea. (I had some regrets being the bull in the china shop who might unleash all sorts of possible damage. As the reboots mounted, my “fixing” instinct became uncontrollable.) Fortunately, I only deleted one registry setting. (If not familiar with the registry, this is a place within Windows where you can cause great havoc should you not be careful.) My recognition of the potential headaches I might unleash allowed me to show restraint. Fortunately, my one “fix” did take care of the one issue.
- As the reboots continued, I experimented with oddball things. I left my music playing when not sitting at the computer thinking the program might somehow provide a defense against the “reboot roulette”. While a small amount of hope was created, this method also proved inadequate.
- Next, I moved to the “Uninstall” step. The event logs showed the problems starting on 9/22/16. Coincidentally, that was the day Microsoft updated my computer with 3 different updates. In my mind, whether illogical or not, I decided I could uninstall all 6 or so updates from the present back to the date in the past. In theory, this was an excellent idea. However, when the uninstalling takes so long it can’t be done in one sitting and the computer does not ask permission to become as current as possible when I am not there, this method only got me more frustrated. (I uninstalled. The computer was having a meal sent from Microsoft it did not know how to refuse. Turning off the network connection was a viable but not a good option.)
- Next, I sought after a “recovery point”. (A time where I told the computer, “Please remember today was a time I liked you.” If not “like”, at least not “hate”.) I did go back to a recent recovery point. And, while this seemed to go okay. It didn’t fix anything. In fact, I am blaming the “recovery” issue from preventing me from uninstalling all of the “updates” being blamed for making my computer sick.
- After copying and pasting a couple of the details from the event log into an internet search, I received pages providing suggestions on how I might solve that problem. I made changes to the computer based on the recommendations. Does it matter if the hard drive “never” stops or a couple of other small changes? It seemed to be a proven way to “maybe” fix one of my computers symptoms.
- With thoughts of a new computer and the pain of software loading and constant rebooting in my head until the process was over, I reached out for a couple of pieces of software to fix the problems “magically” I was not able to do in the piecemeal manner I was using. First, I downloaded “System Mechanic”. This software made me think I was doing something to improve the health of my computer, but the errors in the event log continued.
- Then, I thought, “There has to be a program that fixes a few buggy Windows things.” Such a program did exist. I had reservations. The program was called Reimage Repair. It seemed to be reviewed okay, but when installing a program with the power to play with all of the boxes in your computers attic and basement, I had to take pause. The result of the pause was the realization I would not stay sane unless the computer was fixed or replaced. I installed it and tracked the progress on the computer screen. (I would pause our partial binge of “Homeland” to confirm the screen said the computer was getting happy.) After more than 2 hours of allowing the software to play a second time to make sure it didn’t miss anything the first time, I am claiming success…sort of.
- A couple types of errors are still showing up in the event log. I will try and fix them at my leisure. They don’t seem to have fangs or claws capable of causing my little princess to stumble. If she does, I will pick her up off the ground. We will both get on the horse together with the hope the next reboot will be a better ride.
My trust with computers (and people) is only as solid as the last time they lied or failed me. We will continue to work together as I gain a little bit more trust (I hope) each day. She (does this mean I trust women more easily than men or what does it say that my computer is assigned a female pronoun?) has been sick about 50% so far for 2017. I am hoping she likes her medicine and stops having so much gas!