Journal Entry

28 July 2001 ... A Clean Install
I finally got around to playing with Fiasco the computer. I found it takes about two hours to go from "A:\ FORMAT C:" to a computer that I can actually do something with. And don't worry: it only took three of those format things this time around. heh.

The first format was just a simple crash at the very beginning of the Windows install. No big deal, I almost expect it these days.

Friday night I went through my second format. This time I wrote down each and every step I took. For future reference, ya know. Turns out this was the smartest thing I've done in a while. Maybe.

(From my notes...)

  • Windows Setup. about 15 minutes.
  • Detected Printer at the end of setup, but didn't bother to install.
  • Motherboard: Sound, Modem and Network installed.
  • Fix network settings and get needed files off old computer.
  • Video Card Adapter. update display settings.
  • Paint Shop Pro.
  • Trackball software. change trackball settings to my prefs.
  • Star Office. (ignore all errors.)
  • Earthlink. install, dialup, copy dialup to a DUN file, reboot and delete the worthless, system hogging Earthlink software which does a good job of slowing my 850mHz super-computer to a crawl. (ignore the single blue screen of death that happened during the install.)
  • Eudora.
  • Change settings on IE and Netscape. (Netscape crashed several times when I tried to change the bookmark file. Then IE died. Then the Windows registry crapped out again. And then I got annoyed and pushed in my startup disk and typed in that nice FORMAT command again. And then I went to bed.)
heh. So. Notice all the problems started during the Star Office install. Which means the problem could be Star Office. Or it could be the Trackball software, which I installed right before then.

I decided I could live without my trackball software. Without the software installed, the trackball itself works just fine. The speed of the pointer is a little bit different, and I can't set my buttons like I usually have them. But I really can't live without my free Office software. I don't use it as often as I use my trackball, obviously, but when I do use Star Office, it's important. So I hoped and hoped it was the trackball software that was causing the problem. (The third option is to unplug the trackball and plug in a mouse. But really, playing with a computer mouse is not my idea of fun, but rather the height of frustration.)

This morning, very early, I went through the two hour process again. This time installing the printer and scanner. And avoiding that trackball software like it was a virus or something, ha. And have had absolutely no problems.

So far, that is.

Well, except for the fact that I forgot to back-up my IE Favorites before I did the format thing. I always forget, and it always annoys me. It's easy to get around the problem in Netscape, you just make sure your bookmark.htm file is on a different partition. But you can't do that with IE, your Favorites are stuck forever in the C:\Windows directory.

And, yes, I do use both the IE and Netscape browsers. At the same time, no less. :)

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