The PhoneBoy Blog


Simplifying Telecom, Mobile Phones, Gadgets, and More!

PhoneBoy’s Week That Was 8 June 2008

PhoneBoyI took a week off of blogging. You know what? It wasn’t enough :) Maybe it’s because I spent the week in Ottawa working and experiencing failure after failure in terms of my technology.

Before I get into my technological woes for the week, here’s the few items I managed to get out this week (all on The VoIP Weblog):

On my trip to Ottawa, I brought both my personal MacBook and my corporate Lenovo X60s with me. I would have only brought the work laptop with me except that I needed to bring my laptop into the office so it could be reimaged. Issues with Pointsec keep interrupting my work.

Even though I didn’t take the laptop into be reimaged until Wednesday, I couldn’t use it. Brought the wrong power adapter with me. Doh!

Somewhere along the way, I realize my VMware image of XP on my MacBook went horribly wrong and needed to be redone. After several hours, I got that rebuilt, but that’s several hours of non-work. I was able to plow through some work after I was done.

One thing my VMware image of XP could not do is upgrade my Nokia handsets with Nokia Software Updater. Since I needed to do this to this unreleased handset I am testing, I found a couple of co-workers who were willing to let me use their system to install NSU on it. One co-worker’s system didn’t work, another eventually did work.

To top off the experience, my MacBook suffered a fall in the Ottawa airport. That’s the danger of carrying two laptops through security. I was trying to get them through the X-ray machine and the plastic bin containing my poor MacBook fell backward off the edge of the table. It didn’t appear to damage the MacBook at all, so I wasn’t too concerned.

Later, while I was waiting in the Ottawa airport, I noticed my MacBook stopped working so well. I experienced random crashes and delays–something I never had before on this machine. I suspected the hard drive might be flaky due to the fall, so when I got home, I pulled it out of the MacBook and stuck it on my PC where I could run Spinrite. Since this was late last night, I let Spinrite run overnight.

In the morning, I came into my office to find my computer “choking” on Spinrite and my MacBook drive clicking. It seems that every time I power on the drive and it is asked to seek somewhere, the drive now clicks incessantly. While I’m sure I could try a number of methods to get the drive heads unstuck, I am going to declare the drive dead for now. I may experiment on it later.

The good news? I do have a backup–thank you, SuperDuper!–though it is about a week old. Other than my VMware image that I rebuilt, I haven’t lost any serious data. But I am going to be without my Mac for a few days until the new drive arrives–a 320 gigabyte SATA laptop drive manufactured by Samsung that I found on Tiger Direct.


C-List #Cybersecurity Celebrity, Podcaster, #noagenda Producer, Frequenter of shiny metal tubes, Expressor of personal opinions, and of course, a coffee achiever.