Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Computers - devil's work. Hard disk temperatures and print queues. That was my day.

At school today we had the saga of the printer that didn't exist. Or at least that's what I began to think. We've got a command line on each computer that tells it where to print. Only print servers actually have a physical printer attached. Except this one bloody machine kept reporting a duplicate printer. And no matter what I did it just would not delete. It didn't exist, couldn't exist and had been like this for a few weeks. I'd meant to sort it last week, but although it huffed a bit and was a tad slow, it did print what it was meant to - so it went to the end of a bloody long queue.

Today it stopped printing completely. It would print a test page no matter what happened. Even when it technically had no printer attached, out came the page.

So I tried everything. Admin deletion, safe mode deletion, safe mode networking deletion, looking through registry entries. It took ages and nothing worked. Then I unplugged it from the network and rebooted. Printer is still there and so are three Microsoft Word 2007 print jobs from a week ago. Delete those and the bloody printer finally deletes itself. Obviously the teacher had either logged on wrongly when the network was down and the print server down or there had been one of those stupid accidents that computers like to have just to screw me around every so often.

That was three hours of my day. When I finished I felt like either celebrating or throwing the computer out the window. In the end I decided against both and had a coffee. But thinking back I've decided to blame Microsoft as it was a Word 2007 print job that caused it. Seems fair to me.

The other problem of the day comes from this post at the weekend. After the upbeat tone at the end, things went from bad to worse with my computer and it's hard disk temperature.

To recap, I read a post in Ask Jack and started worring about my 4 year plus computer and the hard disk. Downloaded a couple of temperature monitoring programs and immediately started worring when they told me the thing was critically hot. Three programs reported high, one reported all well. Same yesterday as I was frantically backing up and resigning myself to a new computer soon.

But after a google around and testing on the machines at work, it seems there'sa problem with Samsung HDDs reporting temp eratures wrongly on some programs, especially the ones I used. So after all the worry it was but a false alarm. Two programs report all is well 98% healthy, 32C after an hour and a half working on it tonight and all seems well. I'm increasingly convinced I'll end up with a new computer within a year, but maybe this one has a little bit left in it yet.

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