Sunday, May 20, 2007

Blue Screen of Death

Originally uploaded by Martina.
DELL 2004-2007

No more warm afternoons writing on the back deck.
No more surfing the net from bed.
No more laptoppy goodness.

I had a feeling it was coming, but cannot believe my laptop would choose just when I was getting into a regular summer writing on the back porch groove to gasp its last breaths. What a betrayal!

In my technically inept way, I keep hoping that maybe it will start if I just try one more time, but each time it just gets worse. First chkdsk called my volume "dirty" and now the black screen makes vague suggestions about how I might be able to restore whatever is missing or corrupt by running the setup disk (like I have THAT!) Somehow, I think I feel a Mac coming on when I replace it. Guess I'd better start saving. Thankfully, there's still the desktop in the house, but for now my new laptop consists of a nifty lime and turqoise colored paper notebook with a glittery cover and a gel pen. I'm very retro that way.

In other craptacular unexpected expense news, when I took my car in for service on Friday, I found out that it needed (along with some other "routine maintenance" to the tune of an additional $600) front brakes that were not down to 10%. With my long commute, the brakes freaked me out a bit, so I went ahead let dealer do them, even though I know I could have had it done cheaper somewhere else. The other maintenance (transmission flush, coolant flush, assorted filters, etc.) will have to wait. I have to think there is someone out there who can can handle the job for a lot less than $600.

I know that it's totally unjustified whining, because I have so much more than a lot of people do (even if not as much as some), but there are times when it seems like everything falls apart at once. Oh, well, I guess I should be happy that I'm spoiled enough to even have all these possessions that can then break on me.


Leslita said...

Bummer! I totally know what you mean, though. All my savings flew away recently into an unexpected expense and I found it hard to allow myself to feel too sad about it consdering all the things I do have. But STILL, you know? Sigh. I hope you didn't lose too much data.

Martina said...

I know! That's really all I want in terms of wealth - to not feel like those "unexpected expenses" disrupt everything.

I'm feeling more hopeful today as it's looking like my tearful goodbyes may possibly have been preemptive, unnecessary melodrama. Reinstalling windows may help AND the Dell people are processing my order for a free OS Reinstall Disk as I type, so keep your fingers crossed for me.

Neil said...


I’m at Dell Headquarters in Austin, Texas and I just came across this last post. I'm sorry to hear that your laptop died but it sounds like it might only be the hard drive that's in need of replacement. With most three year old systems, a replacement hard drive is less than $100 and only takes a minute or to swap out so if that's all that's wrong and you're not prepared to buy a new laptop yet I would pursue that option.

Dell, Inc.

Martina said...

Hi Neil -

Now that's customer service! I whine on a weblog far far away and the Dell people find me! ;-)

Thank you so much for taking the time to help me with my computer. A new hard drive sounds WAY better right now than a whole new laptop. I will have to look into that. I'll have to do some research on your site this weekend.

Thanks again!


Neil said...


If you can establish that it's just a bad hard drive then I would definitely consider that option. The Dell Community Forum might be a good place to find advice on this, as well as deals on a replacement drive. If you need a Diagnostic CD to run tests feel free to email me the system information and shipping address and I'll have one sent out. Here is a link to the forum:

Dell, Inc.