Single Status Update
I think I don't like laptops very much. I bought a laptop a year ago, and now it's already a bit faulty. Some of it could be just dust inside, but if I open it, even just to see what's inside, the warranty goes off and I probably have some 10 months left of it.
I think the GPU is overheating after playing some more modern games than Doom, or if I play Doom with a more modern port with models on. Usually when I've encountered any overheating problems with my computers, I have opened them and cleaned the dust and the overheating problems have gone away.
Then there's also another problem, that I might be able to fix but I have no idea until I have looked inside the case. The blu-ray drive is no longer reading discs, it fails like +90% of the time, so very rarely it manages to load a disc, which then works as long as the computer is on, or until I eject the disc.
The blu-ray drive problem could be more dust, or some cable a bit loose. I could probably fix this kind of issues myself.
Then there's also USB 3 port that doesn't work as USB 3. Initially USB 3 devices didn't work in it at all. Later with some driver update, they worked, but they seemed to work in USB 2 mode.
I don't really like my external HDD (the USB 3 device) either, when it's not used for a while, it goes to power save mode, and wakes up when I use a program, and delays the program start until it has woken up, even if the program doesn't use anything in the external HDD.
I don't really like the 16:9 display on the laptop. I liked my old 16:10 display, had a little bit more vertical space, even though it's old and doesn't have as high resolution as the 16:9 display.
Oh and I also really don't like that I need to press the "fn" key to press Insert. There is even good amount of space for a separate Insert key in the keyboard area.. why didn't they have it there!?
Also I hate that I don't have proper numpad.. they're just duplicates of the other number keys. This could be solved with BIOS update, but they would lock the numlock into one state, which would be used with any external keyboards too...
Today I started my old desktop computer to see if I had some old version of some program there, and to see what was in some of my dvds. I got kinda excited about using it, because I had selected the components for it, I had put it all together, I could open it any time without breaking some warranty (not that they're valid anymore), and it still works as good as ever! Bought it 2008.02.22 (just found the receipt for it today, I wonder where I have the receipt for my laptop...). So, almost 5 years old.
I had hoped the laptop would have lasted more than a year before any issues appear. I kinda would like to buy a new desktop computer, so that I would have a more up to date computer that I can customize if necessary, replace broken parts easily, etc. But I also don't feel like buying a new computer just yet...
Should I send this laptop to maintenace just because there's dust inside, because there might be a cable loose? Then wait for its return for weeks or how long? Maybe as a bonus they format the HDD?
I was thinking I'd send it to maintenace if the keyboard keys suddenly popped off and didn't want to reattach, or the display melted, or something else more serious than dust or loose cables.
I want to look inside! Should I?
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It's not random, it breaks because of a bug and that's something you can find and fix, or at least submit good, detailed bug report (so bug can be reproduced and fixed). If it's randomly breaking, you've got some worse things happening (like bad memory, or other hardware that's marginal). If you're not absolutely positive your hardware is good, try running this on your machine:
You'll want to let it run through every one of the tests (enable them all!) and it may well take a day or longer for your machine to go through them.
That doesn't test HD, USB, and other I/O stuff but at least you'll know if memory and CPU are functioning okay. A long time ago (before I knew about this tool), I had an AMD K6/400 that was flaky sometimes. Some things unexpectedly crashed, and it didn't always finish compiling stuff... Eventually I upgraded to another machine and the crashes went away (even though I was using the same OS version, same programs, etc.)
But don't be so quick to dismiss puppy because of one problem. All OS have bugs hidding somewhere. I even had OpenBSD crash on me sometimes. One time it was pretty bad too, an entire filesystem's contents got sent to lost+found directory at boot fsck time. That sucked, but at least it was just a test machine.
Doesn't XP waste too much power, though? It halves the life of my battery, it overheads my recharger etc. Maybe Windows 7 is more efficient?
This depends entirely on what you're running. It has a proper CPU idle mode (unlike, e.g. Windows 95), so unless you have a ton of useless services in the background (which is much more probable with Vista/7 and their speculative caching), I don't see why it should function any worse.
I suppose this has become about software too.
In that regard, I have decided to stop using "borrowed" software completely (and complete this goal as soon as possible). So, now it's buy it, or if I don't want/can't buy it, I'll have to find an alternative that is cheaper or free.
I just learned how insanely expensive 3dsmax is and I wouldn't buy it, even if I had lots of money. No software should cost that much. In Finland its price is also doubled from the normal suggested price. What kind of puppy fuck are they trying to pull off with ~5000€ for one fucking license?
I wonder what to do with all the models done with it... at least the 5 newest ones I was satisfied... most others I have been disappointed, and could probably free up lots of HDD space by removing them all.
I have found some alternatives for the 3D program: kHED, Wings3D and MilkShape3D. I've tried a bunch of others (not all of them though), but most programs had so crappy interfaces that I couldn't learn them, or would have needed the manual to hold my hand.
kHED I learned in about 30 mins without looking at the manual at all. This one seems to have pretty good UV mapping feature (best of the 3).
Wings3D was slightly more complicated (with a bit more modeling features), but I was able to learn it without a manual too. Though I'm not sure if I like the interface as much as in the other two. This program was the only one with edge modeling, which is quite useful.
I wonder why these two weren't in that list...
MilkShape3D I had tried before some years ago. I did read the manual back then (as I was totally new to modeling back then). So I already know how to use it. This one I have to buy though, but it's not too expensive. From these three, only this one can animate, and I like how the bones work in it.
And because someone might mention/suggest Blender: I have tried Blender on multiple occasions, have read the manual, have been instructed on how to use it in school when I was there some years ago.. So I have used it for many hours and I still don't know how to effectively use it. It just doesn't "click".
Sound/Music programs are cheaper, but still quite expensive.. the ones I've been using are some 400€ and 500€. So I could buy them, but still it feels quite a lot for just computer software. Though I can understand why they're more expensive than games...
I think I'll at least buy the music program, I wouldn't want to give up on my songs, even though I'm pretty much the only one ever listening to them. Plus the newest version of it also includes a new program or something.
The sound program could be easily replaced by a free program as they all edit the same kind of files.. I think I'll find something here: http://www.hongkiat.com/blog/25-free-digital-audio-editors/