Hardware Ups and Downs

I replaced the SSD in my desktop the other day and was pleased to not have a red bar when I booted it up and looked in Explorer. I went from a 128GB SSD (with 2GB free) to a 256GB SSD for about $130. Not a bad price, and since I have 2TB on other drives that are less than half full, this was a nice upgrade.

However.

The front fan was rubbing something when it ran, ticking just loudly enough to be annoying. I knew this would be an issue, so I shut down the desktop last night as I walked out the door to take my daughter to volleyball practice. This morning the machine wouldn’t boot.

Nada. Nothing. Press the power and nothing happens. This occurred a few weeks ago when I shut down after some install instead of a warm boot. I waited, fiddled with the power cable, and things restarted. This time I see a blue LED on the back that shows there is power to the case, but nothing boots.

Events like this are very frustrating to me. As much as I appreciate cool hardware, most of the time I’m working on something else and I just want the machine to work.

At this point I’m unsure of whether I have a motherboard failing, a short somewhere, a bad power supply or something else. It’s very strange and I don’t have the time, or energy, to debug it today. Likely I’ve got a dead desktop for a week right now. This is a first world problem, and more annoying than anything as I can work on my laptop. It’s just less efficient for me since I get a lot done with three large monitors.

At least I managed to get another machine working. As a birthday present for my wife, I ordered 8GB of RAM and a 500GB SSD for her Toshiba laptop. She had 4GB and a slow, 5400rpm HDD that caused her laptop to really drag. It’s an i3, and I could hear her cursing it regularly. For $270, I replaced both and now it runs much quicker for her.

It wasn’t completely smooth. The memory went right in, but the attempts to reboot the machine from a CD that contained the Acronis software failed. Toshiba has made the BIOS difficult to get to, and very frustrating. Fortunately I used the same software I’d used with my own laptop SSD replacement and that worked well.

All in all, a mixed day and likely I’ll be playing with hardware when I return from my trip next week. Hopefully I’ll get some idea of what to do and perhaps what to order, before I leave.

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