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Computer on the Fritz!

Our desktop is on the fritz for sure, and we aren’t sure what’s wrong with it. On Thursday I got up to get a cup of tea and when I got back to the desk, the monitor was displaying loads of funky colours and the computer appeared to be frozen. So, I hit the power button to restart. I did this about three times and finally I got to Windows Recovery. Followed a half an hour later by a message that Windows could not recover itself and the recommendation was to restore from a previous auto-backup. I didn’t want to do this, since Tim had just moved all his Wales photos onto the computer and I was worried the auto-backup would be from before the transfer, so I started downloading Knoppix on my laptop to make a DVD so I could pull the files off onto an external like I had to do in 2009 when we came home from a weekend away to a broken computer.

My laptop has recently been reformatted and fixed, so it doesn’t have any of my files on it. I wanted a file off my external, so I unplugged it from the desktop and on a whim, restared. The computer started up, and my friend falnfenix advised to always unplug the external before a reboot. Even though the problem had never happened before, it appeared as though the desktop had been trying to boot from the external, which of course doesn’t have an OS.

Problem solved, right? Uhm, no. We were away for most of the weekend staying with N and P at their place and doing various things (shopping for their new addition to the family, celebrating birthdays, taking the girls out for the bank holiday). We were home on Sunday, and the computer acted up once, so we restarted it right before we walked out the door and it hadn’t fully loaded by the time we were ready to leave so we just left it on.

When we got back yesterday evening, it was to a colourful screenful again. We attempted to restart several times with no luck, but at one point we discovered that Windows was in fact still loading (we heard the start up music), so the problem wasn’t with the OS. Next thought was the cables to the monitor were loose, so Tim unplugged, re-plugged, and jiggled things around. Still nothing. We were just trying to decide what we wanted to do and suddenly the problem was fixed. Again.

It didn’t last long.

So now we’re stuck. It’s either the monitor that’s gone or the video card, but either way it will involve a trip to a shop and it’s not something that will happen soon as Tim’s just started his round of late shift with on-call and doesn’t switch to the early shift until Thursday next week. We just aren’t organized enough to get out in the morning before his shift starts!

So I’m on the laptop for now. I have my Wales photos on my external, but I don’t have photoshop on my laptop (I’m not even sure if my laptop can handle photoshop) and I can’t watermark anything, so I probably won’t be posting any more photos until I either get photoshop sorted or get the desktop sorted.

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2 Comments so far

  1. falnfenix August 30th, 2011 16:12

    video card or motherboard is toast. most likely the video card…assuming yours isn’t using the onboard video.

    if it IS using the onboard video, hope it’s under warranty.

  2. Rebecca August 31st, 2011 21:28

    Pete has it now along with the monitor, but yeah, I think it’s the video card as well because the monitor does it’s “auto adjust” thing if you turn the computer off and that displays normally.

    Haven’t heard from Pete yet today, but I won’t bug him about it yet. even though I hate my laptop!

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