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Hasta La Vista, Baby

windows_vista_logoFor a while now, I’ve been running two computers – my main “home” computer has been a tower system and I’ve had a laptop for making music, as the tower wasn’t up to running much in the way of music software any more, being  7 years old and, more pertinently, as it was running Windows Vista 32 Bit. However, it was still perfectly adequate for running Office, casual surfing of the net and reading e-mails, (although my Outlook file had grown to such a size that any new e-mail took more than a few seconds to open).   A couple of weeks ago, it wouldn’t boot at the first time of asking, throwing a DOS disk error, but like a fool, I ignored this harbinger of doom.  Well, not quite – I did something worse and, with hindsight, something that could have been monumentally stupid.

I had trouble with the tower itself last year and, fearing that time was running out for the PC, bought a 2TB NAS drive and set it to backup once a week.  The only problem was that I really didn’t think it through when defining which folders it should back up and included the C:\Public folders – which are where the Kontakt library installs by default.  I had used this computer as a music computer originally, (7 years ago, it was a high spec machine), and only abandoned using it as such when the demands of the software began to choke it, (it was actually Session Horns for Kontakt that brought it to its knees), but I never uninstalled the software.  As a result, the backup drive was full of multiple copies of the Kontakt libraries and the backups had been failing for a while, but you know how it is, there’s always something else to do and hey, mañana…

So what did I do when the PC wouldn’t boot?  Fearing the worst, I cleared the NAS drive ready for the next backup, so that I would have an up-to-date copy of everything – and didn’t make a backup there and then.  Error!  The PC worked fine for a few days more, then last week, it simply refused to boot.  Fortunately, it was a case of fortune favouring the foolish, as I found that if I pressed Ctrl-Alt-Delete when faced with that error message, Windows would load – to a point.  Having discovered this Get Out Of Jail card, I booted it into Safe Mode with Networking, which enabled me to copy all my documents, videos, music, etc. onto the NAS drive and then onto the laptop, (including the bloated .OST file for Outlook).  I am now up and running on the laptop as my sole computer, the only downside to which is that I’m having to finally get to grips with Office 2013 and it’s rather unappealing GUI.  Now, I just need to sort out a backup schedule for the laptop to the NAS drive…

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